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Old 09-30-2007, 04:55 PM   #41
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I agree...so, I will just walk away shaking my head over this. Sorry to have brought it up at all!
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Old 10-01-2007, 04:30 PM   #42
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I AM NOT TRYING TO START ANY ARGUMENTS HERE, but would like to ask this simple question: Why would anyone be so anti-military while living in the United States? Do they not realize that they might be working under another countries power if we did not defend this country? That we have to defend what we have?
When I was at Monterey at the height of the Evil Empire portion of the Cold War, the Defense Language Institute students used to wear t-shirts proclaiming in big letters on the front "We're learning Russian..." and on the back in even bigger letters "... so you don't have to!"

Having said that, the U.S. military is one of the world's larger thoughtless heartless soul-sucking money-wasting bureaucracies. Look at the paperwork required to obtain a military contract, and see how long your small business would survive with the military's "pay within 30 days unless we need 90 days but maybe longer sometimes".

Wal-Mart and Microsoft may be evil personified, but they don't get to use near as much fuel & ordnance. The Hawaiian island of Kaho'olawe was bombed literally to death for five decades and $500M later there's still no guarantee that all the ordnance has been found/removed. Plenty of Hawaiian religious & archeological sites have been trampled & burned in the name of combat training and many communities have had their water supplies poisoned and their land contaminated. (Pearl Harbor land is so saturated with 90 years of diesel fuel spills that after every heavy rain the harbor shines with the oily runoff.) Farmers & ranchers have lost livestock to military "oopsies" accidental weapons releases. Military exercises & maneuvers cause noise pollution, damage the roads & land, and inconvenience the communities that have grown up in the area.

Look at all the veterans & families who've suffered from military medical malpractice, pay problems, arbitrary enforcement of administrative requirements, and fickle civil-service changes. Then there's the whole fumbling dysfunctional military-media relationship.

I'm sure there are dozens of other issues I've overlooked that, collected into a crowd and handled with bad publicity, could cause a lot of people to become vociferously anti-military.
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Old 10-01-2007, 04:51 PM   #43
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Thank you, Nords. I get it totally.
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Old 10-01-2007, 08:38 PM   #44
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When I advocate PEACE it is not because I am against OUR TROOPS. We can SUPPORT OUR TROOPS but disagree with the POLICY.

If I am passionate in my posts it is because of my concern for OUR TROOPS, OUR FALLEN TROOPS, OUR VETERANS, AND THE IRAQI PEOPLE who are being killed, wounded and maimed because of a failed Iraq War policy. I am also deeply concerned about THEIR/OUR FAMILES who are suffering because their loved ones are paying the ultimate sacrfice. 3800 plus of OUR TROOPS killed, an estimated 25000 to 30000 of OUR TROOPS wounded and maimed and an estimated 500000 to 1000000 Iraqi Civilians killed, wounded and maimed deserve our prayers and to have someone speak out for them

I come from a family who have served OUR country - one uncle served in WWII, one uncle served in WWII and died a lonely and broken man from his injuries as a result of the Korean War, one cousin was killed in Vietnam, one cousin is disabled from Vietnam and then I had several cousins who served in Vietnam. In my family my brother and sister served (she will be retiring in May 08)8). Currently I have about 4 to 6 counsins who have either served in or are serving in Iraq and Afganistan.

As for me I proudly served OUR COUNTRY because I LOVED HER and because I am thankful for everything that GOD has blessed me with.

While I am an advocate for PEACE I do beleive that the U.S. should have a strong military which can act as a deterent to those who may wish to attack us. But I also believe that the military should only be used ONLY if we have been attacked and as a last resort. Our military should not be used for nation building and to force democracy upon other countries.

To be President one does not have to serve in the military or in a time of WAR but I do think that one has to use COMMON SENSE when making decisions that will affect live and death. In the case of the Iraq War I do not believe that Old George W or his policies have served OUR COUNTRY well.

Many thanks to all of those who have served in the time of PEACE and in the time of WAR. I for one will not forget the sacrfice that people like you have made so that we can all have the freedom(s) to speak our minds and to live as a free people. We have many freedoms that are not enjoyed by other people of other countries.

GOD BLESS OUR TROOPS, OUR FALLEN TROOPS, OUR VETERANS, THEIR FAMILIES, THE IRAQI PEOPLE AND THE GREAT WILLIE NELSON.
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Old 10-01-2007, 09:48 PM   #45
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Wags,
You have yourself a conundrum. How do you speak out against a war you feel is unjust, and at the same time not give aid and comfort to the same people that are killing our solders daily?

The time to speak out is before the first soldier is deployed. If you, and others in the population can not stop the deployment of troops, then it is time, IMHO, to cease and desist. When the battles are over, and the soldiers and sailors are no longer in harms way, bring the leadership up on charges, castigate them in the press, destroy their Party. In the simplest terms Dad says NO, Mom says YES, the kids are going to do everything they can to support Mom until Dad gives in.

Please take time to read the following:

OPEN LETTER TO ANTI-WAR PROTESTERS

As one that has a son in the Marine Corp, I fear our enemies are bolstered by anti-war protesters. I'll talk with my friends, work with the party of my choice, but I will never publicly insult the current leadership, or call for an immediate withdrawal of troops. To do so, I believe, gives our enemies hope.
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Old 10-01-2007, 10:00 PM   #46
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Wags,
but I will never publicly insult the current leadership, . . . To do so, I believe, gives our enemies hope.
Oh, please. You, like me, took an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic. You did not take an oath to support the greater glory of the House of Bush. The current war is illegitimate, ill-conceived, poorly conducted and doomed to failure. The way to support our troops, including your son, is to get their asses out of Iraq. People who say opposition to the war is a failure to support our troops are simply full of crap.
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Old 10-01-2007, 10:51 PM   #47
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After college, why sign up for the military.

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Originally Posted by Rustic23 View Post
Wags,
You have yourself a conundrum. How do you speak out against a war you feel is unjust, and at the same time not give aid and comfort to the same people that are killing our solders daily?

The time to speak out is before the first soldier is deployed. If you, and others in the population can not stop the deployment of troops, then it is time, IMHO, to cease and desist. When the battles are over, and the soldiers and sailors are no longer in harms way, bring the leadership up on charges, castigate them in the press, destroy their Party. In the simplest terms Dad says NO, Mom says YES, the kids are going to do everything they can to support Mom until Dad gives in.

Please take time to read the following:

OPEN LETTER TO ANTI-WAR PROTESTERS

As one that has a son in the Marine Corp, I fear our enemies are bolstered by anti-war protesters. I'll talk with my friends, work with the party of my choice, but I will never publicly insult the current leadership, or call for an immediate withdrawal of troops. To do so, I believe, gives our enemies hope.
Before the Iraq War there were plenty of people who spoke out against attacking Iraq and just like now Old George W is not listening to the MAJORITY of the American people who disagree with his Iraq War policy. HE DID NOT LISTEN THEN AND HE IS NOT LISTENING NOW.

The only ones who are giving the enemy HOPE are Old George W and Cheney with their failed Iraq War policies. After 9/11 Old George W had various photo ops and news conferences stating that we were going to get Osama Bin Laden (remember the WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE posters). Osama Bin Laden is still running around free, holding news conferences and making videos. Bin Laden has made Old George W look like an incompetent JACKA$$ and he continues to mock the U>S and the world. This along with Old George W's failed Iraq War policies have given more comfort and aid to the enemy then anything that the advocators for PEACE can do or say. The bottomline is that Bin Laden has made the "GREAT SATAN" look like a toothless tiger.

As for those who say that we give aid and comfort to the enemy who are killing OUR TROOPS - would you instead suggest that we remain quiet so that Old George W can continue with HIS same old failed Iraq War policies which are costing the U.S billions of $$$$ if not trillions of $$$$ (mortgaged our children's future to China) and/or would you prefer that we continue to have OUR TROOPS and the Iraqi people killed, wounded and maimed?

Would you prefer that Old George W continue with his saber rattling against Syria and Iran? If he does start a WAR with Iran and Syria the DRAFT will be implemented and then OUR CHILDREN will be forced to go fight in HIS WARS, while Old George W leaves office and hands off HIS WARS to the next President to take care of.

As for bringing up the leaders on charges we all know that it is not going to happen. Neither party will let the other do what is needed. I believe that the last election sent a clear message to the Republicans that they are failing the American people with their continued support of Old George W's failed Iraq War policies. The REPUBLICANS AND THE DEMOCRATS JUST LIKE OLD GEORGE W ARE NOT LISTENING TO THE WANTS AND NEEDS OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. It is time to END the Iraq War and bring OUR TROOPS home.
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Old 10-02-2007, 01:49 PM   #48
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Back to Orchidflower's original question:

I've read most of the responses, however, being an officer in the military can be a better experience at times than being enlisted -at least that's what my husband says who started out enlisted and is now an officer. The comment was: "I doubled my salary in one day from SSgt to 2Lt." I myself have been alternatively an active and reserve officer now for 20+ years in the Air Force.

I also have a very strong civilian career that I nurse on my way to ER - I'll tell you the significant differences I see between those with and without the military experience:
1) Most if not all can get up in front of a group of people and succinctly speak about something
2) Most understand the difference between leadership and management
3) Most understand what the word commitment means
4) Most understand the difference between strategy and tactics and how they are related

My background is that I had a ROTC scholarship in engineering, got trained in Space Ops and then did military acquisition among many disciplines (telecommunications, satellite groudn systems, healthcare informatics, airplanes). I also had the outstanding opportunity to live in Europe and do political-military analysis for four years - I know of no other way to get that opportunity as easily as one could get in the military. I've had the opportunity to take professional military education (SOS, ACSC, AWC, NDU RCNSC, leadership seminars) that spans not just the military but history, leadership, international relations, and technology to name a few. In short, they've done their best to make sure I am a well-rounded, well-educated member of my society--and they've paid for most of it.

What's interesting is I didn't have these aspirations when I first started on this journey and put up my hand with the oath to receive my scholarship.

And like, Nords, I don't begrudge anyone their beliefs - I just want to make sure that somehow we maintain the freedom in this country to allow those beliefs to be aired. I've visited many places where that is not true.

Your son could make a lesser choice in my opinion - or even your daughter.
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Old 10-02-2007, 04:04 PM   #49
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How many of us "lifers" came in once upon a time ago supposedly for one hitch and have since retired, or are closing in on 20 plus years of service?

19 year, 4 mos and counting here Retirement party ceremony next fall!!
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Old 10-02-2007, 04:47 PM   #50
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How many of us "lifers" came in once upon a time ago supposedly for one hitch and have since retired, or are closing in on 20 plus years of service?
In 1984 when I was a young LTJG standing engineering watches, a machinist's mate used to poke his head into the compartment and say "You're a lifer!"

Let's just say that although he was good at his job, "Booger" wasn't one of the more highly-ranked E-5s. He was expected to leave the microsecond his enlistment was up, so everyone tolerated his attitude attacks.

Today he's a CWO3 and he's still on active duty...
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Old 10-02-2007, 07:13 PM   #51
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When I was at Monterey at the height of the Evil Empire portion of the Cold War, the Defense Language Institute students used to wear t-shirts proclaiming in big letters on the front "We're learning Russian..." and on the back in even bigger letters "... so you don't have to!"

Having said that, the U.S. military is one of the world's larger thoughtless heartless soul-sucking money-wasting bureaucracies. Look at the paperwork required to obtain a military contract, and see how long your small business would survive with the military's "pay within 30 days unless we need 90 days but maybe longer sometimes".

Wal-Mart and Microsoft may be evil personified, but they don't get to use near as much fuel & ordnance. The Hawaiian island of Kaho'olawe was bombed literally to death for five decades and $500M later there's still no guarantee that all the ordnance has been found/removed. Plenty of Hawaiian religious & archeological sites have been trampled & burned in the name of combat training and many communities have had their water supplies poisoned and their land contaminated. (Pearl Harbor land is so saturated with 90 years of diesel fuel spills that after every heavy rain the harbor shines with the oily runoff.) Farmers & ranchers have lost livestock to military "oopsies" accidental weapons releases. Military exercises & maneuvers cause noise pollution, damage the roads & land, and inconvenience the communities that have grown up in the area.

Look at all the veterans & families who've suffered from military medical malpractice, pay problems, arbitrary enforcement of administrative requirements, and fickle civil-service changes. Then there's the whole fumbling dysfunctional military-media relationship.

I'm sure there are dozens of other issues I've overlooked that, collected into a crowd and handled with bad publicity, could cause a lot of people to become vociferously anti-military.
Hey Nords, that reminds me, I have watched a couple of things in the news about depleted Uranium poisoning on that island being pretty bad, have you read or heard anything locally about that?

Kinda made me sad hearing that was happening to paradise :-(
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Old 10-02-2007, 07:53 PM   #52
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Hey Nords, that reminds me, I have watched a couple of things in the news about depleted Uranium poisoning on that island being pretty bad, have you read or heard anything locally about that?

Kinda made me sad hearing that was happening to paradise :-(

Ask any Viequense how they feel about the US Navy on that score.
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:13 PM   #53
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Hey Nords, that reminds me, I have watched a couple of things in the news about depleted Uranium poisoning on that island being pretty bad, have you read or heard anything locally about that?
Better than that, a shipmate of my spouse's is an EOD Reserve officer who's spent quite a few months (and quite a few million of the govt's dollars) on that island. It's paying for a lot of his retirement. A shipmate of mine also camped there one weekend in the late 1990s to help replant.

There's a lot of concern about the medical/human effects of depleted uranium but they're mostly chemical/biological, not radiological. I'm not aware of anyone affected by the Kaho'olawe cleanup but if it was a widespread problem then I'd hope we'd be hearing the scuttlebutt. Let me know if you have a link.

Depleted uranium is a minor distraction. The biggest problem is that the island has lost a lot of topsoil (fires, erosion, wind) and what's left is hardpan & gullies. It's hard to get through it with ground-penetrating radar or electromagnetic loops and after 60+ years it's anyone's guess how deep some of the older stuff is buried or whether it's even detectable. It's not as dangerous as traipsing around the Afghan mountains but there are lots of steep slopes where they couldn't even get up there, let alone do a good search.

Depleted uranium pales in significance to the island's other issues. There's no pier-- landings are via helicopter or by taking a boat to a lee of the surf zone and wading in (with your belongings in heavy trash bags). There's no fresh water on the island so you bring your own or set up distillation & reverse-osmosis rigs. The soil has been stripped bare by feral goats/pigs (long since died out) and erosion, so ironically the only way to plant is to use explosives to blow a hole in the hardpan and break up the soil. When my friend was camping they were overwhelmed by a herd of feral cats, although I have no idea how they feed when the humans aren't around.

OTOH I've been told the fishing is very very good and the surf is unbelievable... in 20-30 years we'll probably be eco-touring there.
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why sign up for the military?
Old 10-04-2007, 07:18 AM   #54
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why sign up for the military?

E-9 with 22 years retired 6 months ago.

Ummm Lets see....

- Almost free college, had to pay for books. Received my BS and Masters on government dime. In work on PHD with still no out of pocket expense. (working for DoD agency)

- Other free training. DoD sent me to aquisition/procurement/contracting classes that allowed me to land 6 figure salary the day after I retired.

- My wife and I enjoyed having our 3 boys with absolutely no out of pocket health care expenses. No complaints about healthcare here. Wife actually had to have 2 major surgeries. I think out of pocket expense was $40.

- While retired I pay a whopping $640 dollars a year for healthcare coverage for my entire family.

- Travel. I have been to London three times and Paris twice as well as a host of others. Also been to some not so nice ones. Utilized free space a travel for family to go on vacation.(Keywest and Disney)

- Allowed to use on base commissary and exchange privileges. Much cheaper than out in town for groceries. If you live close to a military base.

- used VA benefits to purchase 1st home. Exact out of pocket expense to move in was $1.

- 30 days paid vacation from the git go, not counting regular holidays.

- oh yeah, decent retirement salary that I don't even touch at age 41, except to buy IRA's for myself and my wife every year.

I could go on.
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Old 10-04-2007, 04:16 PM   #55
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Welcome to the board, Bayfritz.

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- oh yeah, decent retirement salary that I don't even touch at age 41, except to buy IRA's for myself and my wife every year.
Ruh-roh... that pension is 1099-R income, not W-2 earned income. But I understand if you're saying that there's enough leftover cash above earned income to fully fund your IRAs.
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Old 10-08-2007, 11:26 AM   #56
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There are good reasons to join and good reasons not to. A college degree is required to be considered for commissioning as an officer.

A minority of officers earn their degrees at the service academies. Most officers have civilian educations, some augmented by ROTC, others not. A small minority enlist, earn degrees while on active duty, and get commissioned later. Although I took that latter route, I’m in favor of the military’s continued acceptance of persons who attended college prior to joining. I see why you might object to it. I concede that a college degree may show that its holder has spent years in an atmosphere where the military is despised and disdained, and the US is viewed as a racist, oppressive, imperialist entity. And that the degree itself may prove nothing other than attendance with no actual knowledge or ability gained. And that the classes attended may have often had a strong element of indoctrination into the notion that facts inconsistent with a nice worldview are not really facts and could only be believed by mean and bad people. Nevertheless, some people learn valuable things in college; things of use to the military. And the spirit of independent thought is hard enough to kill that some people graduate from college with their individuality and ability to think for themselves still intact. Some of them come to believe that the US is great country, that the system of limited government and individual rights mandated by the constitution and bill of rights are worth preserving, and that serving in the US military is an honorable, worthwhile, and rewarding way to help preserve them. And it’s good to have the military drawn from a broad cross section of society. Doing otherwise would reinforce caste separatism that can grow out of a civil-military divide and make for bad civil-military relations in a republic whose constitution mandates civil control of the military. Plus lieutenants with no military experience other than 90 days of training can be entertaining.

Waste of talent? Leaving aside the issue of whether or not it’s a waste, whose talent is it? If it belongs to society (what’s that line in the declaration of independence? … life, liberty, and the pursuit of putting one’s talents to use in a way that someone else thinks is most beneficial to society…), what authority decides how to best employ it?

Besides all that, chicks dig military dudes.
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Old 10-08-2007, 11:32 AM   #57
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Besides all that, chicks dig military dudes.
My spouse of 21 years, a Navy Reservist, is laughing too hard right now to explain why she finds this sentiment so funny...

Deserat? Fireup2025? Caroline? J-Lu? Care to step into this one?
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Old 10-08-2007, 12:26 PM   #58
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My spouse of 21 years, a Navy Reservist, is laughing too hard right now to explain why she finds this sentiment so funny...

Deserat? Fireup2025? Caroline? J-Lu? Care to step into this one?
Shaking head and laughing hard enough to rival your DW - or rather, I'm laughing with her!
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Old 10-08-2007, 01:23 PM   #59
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Besides all that, chicks dig military dudes.
I don't know ... the whole uniform thing never worked out all that well for me. I scored the young wife despite my being in the military, certainly not because of it.
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Old 10-08-2007, 06:23 PM   #60
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Besides all that, chicks dig military dudes.

Yeah...that's what I'm talkin' about! I knew that had to be the reason I was always beatin' 'em off with a stick! It works, even for us lowly enlisted guys, too!
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