Guns in the park...


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Preacherman
March 3, 2006, 10:16 PM
From the Laramie Boomerang (love that name! :D ) ( http://www.laramieboomerang.com/news/more.asp?StoryID=104766 ):

Practice in the park

By Adam Gangelhoff
Boomerang Staff Writer


http://www.laramieboomerang.com/images/photos/army%20in%20the%20park%203-rd.jpg

Cadet Jeremy Chuhralya watches as a passer-by walks his dog during ROTC training in Washington Park Wednesday afternoon.


The playground at Washington Park was ambushed Wednesday. Children who had gathered to run off some enegery did just that as they fled the scene screaming after the University of Wyoming ROTC had the area surrounded. Once the ROTC got their guy, they secured the area and the children were safe to return.

Every Wednesday afternoon, the junior cadets of the UW ROTC go to Washington Park to practice what they have learned in the classroom in what is called their Leadership Lab. Dressed in full fatigues, carrying backpacks and weapons, the cadets stick out in a park filled with joggers and children.

“They have two classes during the week, either Monday-Wednesday or Tuesday-Thursday. It’s an hour long, and they cover operations orders, which is basically how you brief the mission you are going to conduct,” Cadet Maj. Zach Busenbark said. “They go over how to actually conduct the mission itself. They go over how to brief the mission, the different parts of the mission, the different responsibilities and the personel within the mission.

“Then every Wednesday is our lab. It’s kind of like in chemistry class, you have a chemistry lab. It’s kind of the same thing. They come back here and demonstrate what they know, and that gives us the opportunity to correct them as they go.”

There are 62 cadets in the UW ROTC program, and 36 were out practicing on Wednesday. Very few were in ROTC in high school, but many of them are members of the National Guard, including several who are members of the 133rd Engineering Co. that just returned from Iraq. For the excercises, they split up into three squads, with two evaluators per squad and one Op-4, the enemy.

Busenbark is a senior along with the other leaders and most of the cadets are juniors with a few sophomores. The freshman practice by themselves as an introduction into the military. They cover small remedial tasks to get used to the process and they are then thrown into exercises their sophomore year, Busenbark said.

Some days the group does fun activities, next week they are playing dodgeball. Wednesday, they were doing point ambush.

The point ambush mission begins with the group walking over to their objective rally point, which is a base camp a short distance from the actual ambush area. They then move up and lay down their assault line and get everybody in place. Then one of the MS-4 cadets, a senior cadet, walks through imitating the enemy. The assault line then initiates the ambush and kills the enemy. Then they clear the EPW, enemy prisoner of war, destroy weapons and then pull back and reorganize.

All weapons used are fake. Some of them were real at one point but have since been retired. They have had the actions taken out and a rod placed down the barrel of the gun. The rocket launchers, called AT-4s, are built to be fired only once and the AT-4s the cadets were using have already seen their one shot come and go.

“The reason why we do infantry tactics at the platoon squad level, is that’s the easiest way to assess leadership,” Busenbark said. “It’s not just the tactics part, it’s operations orders, it’s land navigation, knowing how to use a map, knowing how to shoot, being physically fit, taking the PT test. So its four years of getting your degree, because you have to have at least your bachelor’s to become a second lieutenant and an officer. Hopefully they’ll all be officers some day.”

During the summer, the junior class goes to Fort Lewis, Washington to take part in a 33-day training cycle with all the other junior classes in the country. They are assigned a platoon and they do mock exercises in which they get graded on how well they complete an exercise, like the ambush mission.

All the training the cadets do prepares them for real-life action. Several members of the platoon have already seen action in Iraq and more could possibly be commissioned. The terrain of Washington Park may be the exact opposite of the terrain in Iraq, but the lessons these cadets are learning could be put to use anywhere.

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Hardtarget
March 3, 2006, 11:58 PM
Cool they get to practice...I'm surprised about the park setting. You'd think all the sheep would be whinning about it.

When I saw the photo I thought it was "pop-the-pooch" time. :D
Mark.

Mauserguy
March 4, 2006, 12:11 AM
I've seen the ROTC assault Alumni Park at USC a few times, though without any firearms (it is California after all). It is good to see college students show an interest in public service.
Mauserguy

RevDisk
March 4, 2006, 01:15 AM
For a while, I assisted the ROTC at my college. One of the things I did was go to the armory, sign out weapons, and bring them onto university property for the labs. Yes, the irony of being allowed to bring belt-feds onto university property, but not my CCW, was not lost on me.

Oddly enough, I don't recall anyone freaking out when I walked around campus with a couple MG's. Mind you, more often than not I was wearing civvies. I do recall tons of students wanting to have their photo taken with me. :confused:

gunsmith
March 4, 2006, 05:36 AM
hardly teaches safety to have weapons pointing at dog walkers

DunedinDragon
March 4, 2006, 09:47 AM
I grew up in Wyoming (Cheyenne...50 miles from Laramie), and that's what I like about it. The old pioneer spirit. Take it all with a grain of salt. No big deal. Nothing to be alarmed about.

I can't imagine the kind of angst and gnashing of teeth that would occur if this sort of thing were done in a more populated state. You have to bear in mind that there are fewer people that live in the entire state of Wyoming than live in the city of Tampa..or most other large cities.

Everyone leaves each other alone and they just don't sweat the little stuff. Typical Wyoming attitude.....:)

pwolfman
March 5, 2006, 09:01 PM
When I went through ROTC Back in the mid 90's in Iowa (People's Republic of Johnson County), we were forced to move from the park in the middle of the city to one at the edge of town. People called and complained about "guys in fatigues running around with weapons" in the park.

I still remember one guy frowning when he saw me next to a tree just like the guy in the picture. I just smiled back :neener:

It worked out better for us in the long run, as we went to a more wooded area and we had more fun out there. We were actually able to fire smoke grenades out there.

pwolfman

XLMiguel
March 5, 2006, 09:13 PM
So, the dweebs cant't handle [let alone appreciate] some college boys playing [training] army in the park.

Sad.

Mauserguy
March 5, 2006, 09:22 PM
"I don't like it


hardly teaches safety to have weapons pointing at dog walkers"

Based on the photograph, I think that the cadet is varmit hunting.
Mauserguy

CAS700850
March 6, 2006, 10:47 AM
When I was in law school, there wass a very large cemetary next to campus, which was a favorite jogging area for students. As I found out one night, out for a late evening jog, it was also the training ground for the ROTC. Quite a surprise when a guy pops out from behind a tree with a rifle. Of course, he was just as surprised to see me running up from behind. Glad I recognized the uniform, and that he was only carrying a rubber training rifle.

natewill
March 6, 2006, 10:57 AM
the thing that reallt concerns me about this, and I'm kinda surprised nobody else brought this up, is that running military training ops in broad daylight in populated areas may be meant to condition the sheep to see the soldiers in their line of duty. Sort of getting everybody used to the idea that it's okay to have soldiers running around the cities doing what they do. So when martial law hits, the sheeple are less likely to panic, more likely to go along with everything, give up all their guns, etc...?

I think that China was accused of doing that with their bomb shelters last year. Using the shelters as cool off areas during their heat wave, and as a side benefit, getting everybody used to the idea of going to a bomb shelter, and scrambling our intel when we see the populace moving in swarms to shelters.

RevDisk
March 7, 2006, 07:56 AM
the thing that reallt concerns me about this, and I'm kinda surprised nobody else brought this up, is that running military training ops in broad daylight in populated areas may be meant to condition the sheep to see the soldiers in their line of duty. Sort of getting everybody used to the idea that it's okay to have soldiers running around the cities doing what they do. So when martial law hits, the sheeple are less likely to panic, more likely to go along with everything, give up all their guns, etc...?

No, this is not a case of the military doing psyop experiments on the civilian population. We do that for entertainment, anyways.

ROTC programs have a 'lab' portion of their classes. It's not very easy to go to a military base once or twice a week to do common task training. It's a heck of a lot easier to just do the lab in some large field somewhere on the campus.

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