Soldier Basic Training

Paul B

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Be a Man
Last week I took my wife to California for a medical procedure and on the plane on the way home a young man sat next to me. I knew right away he was in the service because Veterans, like myself can almost always tell who served. I can pick out a combat Vetran every time which amazes my wife as many times I will approach a stranger and welcome him home.
Anyway, this young man was in the Navy. He had short hair, an American Flag on his hat and backpack, and he called me "Sir". When I come upon an older man than myself (there aren't many left) and I know he is a Vet, I also address him as Sir because that shows respect. Something lost on almost everybody today.
We started talking about his service and he told me about his basic training and was actually embarassed that it was so easy. He told me that the drill instructors were not allowed to curse at them. They couldn't hit them, They couldn't train outside if the weather was not perfect, they could only give him 20 minutes of exercize, then had to allow them to rest and they had a card with exercizes on it and that was all the exercizes they could give them. He also told me when people thank him for his service, he says, he really isn't doing much, but Thank You.
If it were not for my seatbelt, I would have fallen off my chair.
He asked me about my training. I told him that in basic training we were not allowed to walk anywhere except Sunday morning. If we wanted to go three feet we had to run. After breakfast, at 4:00am we ran outside for inspection, no matter what the weather. Then we low crawled through a trench filled with soft mud for about 50 yards while drill Sargents kept screaming and stepping on the back of our heads to make sure our face was in the mud. Then we got up and ran through an obstical course before standing on line for breakfast. Three minutes was allowed for breakfast, no talking. Then you ran back to the barracks for a three minute change so you could get inspected. If you failed inspection you ran for most of the rest of the day and if you were over weight, you were put in the "Dune Platoon" which was just running all day with three other guys carrying a telephone pole. If one guy fell, the other three had to carry him, then go back for the pole. Then you got on with whatever you were going to learn for the day. Drill Sargeants had no problem hitting, kicking, punching or in some cases, breaking a leg on you. You didn't get to sue but the Army paid for the cast.
That was the Army then. The Marines did all that just to warm up.
Now, unfortunately, after talking to this fine Sailor, I feel we are turning out Snowflakes.
I hated my Drill Sargents but after a while my feelings changed dramatacaly and I admired the guy.
When I got to Viet Nam that training paid off because all of our fighting was in mud and there were times when that mud wasn't deep enough for me to put my face down into. I was used to the mud and it didn't bother me one bit. The enemy cursed at us while they were shooting, that also didn't bother me nor did the hot climate, snakes, scorpions, leaches, rain or anything else. That is why we trained and trained hard. We are not doing our service men and women any favors by training them like girlscouts.
Our brave fighting Men and Women deserve better and should be trained to fight, not have a bake sale. If they find themselves in combat, they should be ready and in shape.
I am sure this new training regimin is due to lawyers. I think when a lawyer gets involved in a case where we are trying to train Soldiers and not little girls we should gingerly remove that lawyer from the Army base and gently, threaten him to within an inch of his life, or make him go through Old School Basic training. Then we can get on with making Soldiers and let the lawyers stay in college.
If you are interested in what Basic training was like look up "Full Metal Jacket" and watch the Boot Camp part. The rest of the movie is also very realistic.
 
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Thats the navy for you, Im an ex Marine and if it was raining we were training. I remember running in 110 degree weather in 29 Palms California, complete cammies. We would do 5 mile humps with full Flak jacket, kevlar, mollie pack. That was before 2pm. If you were dehydrating, no pouting just whip out your canteen and hydrate. Mountain climbers, push ups, jumping jacks in between transitions of acticivities. While everyone else was graduating we were half way through training.
 

masterswimmer

www.saltwatercritters.com
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@Loose, I'm confused. My understanding has always been, once a Marine ALWAYS a Marine. No such thing as an ex-Marine.

What gives?
 

Paul B

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I love Marines. Our last day of basic we ran to the rifle range 22 miles away with rifle, boots and pack. It was about 90 degrees. Then we ran back
 
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Moderate temperature for Parris Island, the "Crucible" was a good experience. All i remember is sleep walking back to the barracks after 3 days of training on minimum rest. Then "the warriors breakfast". Oh man did inpig out.
 

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