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Misconceptions of Military Service

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Jorah, Dec 30, 2002.

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  1. Jorah

    Jorah Member

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    I've found it common for people to think that everyone who has been in the military has had combat training.

    I was in the Navy, and got some stock control training, and a lot of OTJ training as a Mop Jockey.

    In Starship Troopers all troopers were fighters; I've heard that the Marines say that "every Marine is a rifleman... (OWTTE)" and I think those are good ideas.

    In the Navy, the closest thing you could say to that was "every sailor is a fireman," being as there ain't nowhere to run when things catch on fire.

    What other assumptions have you noticed about military service or about people who have been in the service?

    -J.
     
  2. Jmurman

    Jmurman Member

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    As an ex Air Force, Viet Nam era. Most people thaink that we are all drones...non thinkers, you know?
     
  3. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Member

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    I've run into people who thought that because I flew jet aircraft I was in the Air Force, even though I flew off of aircraft carriers.

    I've argued with people who thought that service members didn't pay income taxes.

    I've even met people who thought when we went to the commissary we received free food.
     
  4. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    I believe that in the gun culture the biggest misconception is that everyone in the militree is some sort of crack shot. I can tell you that's not true.:D But just watch me dial a phone.;)
     
  5. Bullshooter

    Bullshooter Member

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    Misconceptions....

    Sorta the same thing, when I tell people I was in the Navy during Vietnam they immediately think I spent my time riding a haze gray ship. When I (seldom) try to explain that I was in the Seabees and spent three tours in northern I Corps building roads, bridges, air strips and SEA huts, they get the familiar glazed look, kinda like they're wondering what to have for lunch.
     
  6. Boats

    Boats member

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    Ironically, I have found one misconception to be that no one but the SEALS receives any combat training in the US Navy.

    Far from Jorah's experience, I got to handle firearms extensively while in the Navy from 85-89. First of all, things happened after I got my crow for Boatswain's Mate Third. The smaller a ship's crew is, the more generalist its crew needs to be and there are likely to be no Marines aboard. Because I served on a destroyer, and because my weapons officer liked me, I was on the ship's reaction force and qualified to stand armed roving patrol. This watch and reaction force position got me acquainted with the M1911 and the Remmy 870.

    When we were assigned to go on a WestPac in '86 and again in '88, we were ordered by CINCPAC to form a ship's contingent for dynamic boarding of suspicious vessels and whatnot in the Persian Gulf. We trained in basic small unit tactics with the 25th Infantry Div. at Schofield Barracks Hawaii. We got fatigues and the whole nine yards, playing with blanks and MILES gear against some of their troopers, but using M-14s instead of 16s. We routinely got killed in the beginning, but then given a clean bill of health when we could hold our own against them after a few weeks.

    We also got introduced to MaDeuce because we were mounting some dual rigs to our ship to tag Iranian motorboats.

    The training was nice, and I still remember many of the hand signals for small unit tactics and know the basic formations and maneuvers. However, all we ever really shot with small arms were magnetic mines. We did get some .50s onto some Iranian motorboats
     
  7. piccolo

    piccolo Member

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    One assumption made by a personnel guy at a Tugboat outfit is that EVERYONE in the Navy knows EVERYTHING about working on the water.

    He'd hire ANYONE that had been in the Navy with pretty sad results.

    It never occurred to him that he'd hired, for example, a Hospitalman that had spent his entire hitch with FMF, or some guy that had been a clerk stationed in Crane Depot in Indianna for 4 years. After all, didn't the Navy teach their guys everything about the water?

    He also hired retired career guys that had a VERY hard time adapting to the way civvies do things. A lot of the guys took savage and perverse satisfaction watching one retired Chief get the pomposity knocked out of him on an almost daily basis.

    Oddly enough, the HM turned out fine.
    The clerk quit and got a job on the beach
    It took the Chief a few years of sheer hell, but he finally turned out all right.

    The personnel guy finally saw the light and lerned to ask the simple question: WHAT DID YOU DO IN THE MILITARY?
     
  8. HABU

    HABU Member

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    I have heard that in order to be accepted into the Coast guard, one needs to be at least six feet tall.


    In case the boat sinks!:D :D
     
  9. Hkmp5sd

    Hkmp5sd Member

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    1. Submarines have windows so you can see out.

    2. Submarines have headlights to see where you are going.

    3. If the Submarine sinks, the DSRV will come and rescue you from the bottom. (The bottom is a lot deeper than crush depth in most of the world's oceans)

    4. That a submarine can stop and sit on the bottom. (Go to a beach at the ocean and stand in the water a few feet deep for a couple of minutes, then try to move. Plus, all suction and discharge piping are on the bottom of the sub)

    5. That US surface ships can track US Submarines. Nope. No way. Uh-uh. Not in this lifetime. Never Happened. We actually installed "noise makers" on the boat to allow surface ships to track us during excercises.

    6. That US submarines do not enter the territorial waters of foriegn nations without permission.
     
  10. NewShooter78

    NewShooter78 Member

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    I've heard a few growing up in a military family, but with all my friends being in civvy families. Most have to do with people not knowing just how active the Coast Guard really is.
     
  11. Betty

    Betty Member

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    misconception: Some college kids who join the military to pay for college think they're getting the money for free.

    I remember a TV crew interviewing some anti-war college army reserves during Desert Storm, and the college kids were saying, "I joined the military for the scholarship money, not to fight. I'm not going to fight."

    Ummmmm. :rolleyes: When you sign your butt over to Uncle Sam.....
     
  12. Jorah

    Jorah Member

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    Small boats, big boats

    Boats: I was on a sub tender, so that would explain a lot of the difference. There were guys on my boat that did weapons... the nuke guard team. We had subrocs below decks.

    One night, I was quietly waxing the mess deck and this very agitated squad of guys with carbines, .45s, and shotguns, all wearing underwear, came charging in, told me to STAND STILL (I did) and then did a very graceful entry into the weapons storage area under the mess deck. Very impressive.

    Turned out to be an unannounced drill, but they didn't know that, as far as I know. They looked very worried and very competent.

    -J.


    PS: runt, you are so right...
     
  13. sm

    sm member

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    Dad spent 35 + years in Army National Guard.

    have heard "Weekend Warriors , don't /can't do squat"

    OK- I can't tell you what he did those times he was Federalized, gone along time,didn't know if and when he'd back...I do know he wasn't sitting around on his duff.
     
  14. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Member

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    Another big misconception about current and former military is that they are all pro gun, conservatives/constitutionalists.

    Some of the biggest blissninny socialists I've ever met wear the uniform of one of our armed services. :(
     
  15. HSMITH

    HSMITH Member

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    I had the same basic experience a few years later on the east coast. I was the ships armorer though, and rangemaster.
     
  16. Wakal

    Wakal Member

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    All Air Farce types are pilots.

    Umm....no, they go fly over enemy airspace and get shot at while I stay in the back and drink beer. That is why we pay officers more :D





    Alex
     
  17. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Member

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    Common misconceptions...

    If you're military, and somebody finds out in the course of a conversation, they assume you know everybody else in the military. "Hey, you're in the Air Force, do you know so-and-so stationed at Yokota AB, Japan?" Yeah, sure. Saw him just last week. He says "Hi!". :banghead:
     
  18. UnknownSailor

    UnknownSailor Member

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    Agreed. What "combat" training you receive in the Navy varies greatly with what rate you are, and what ship or shore station you're at.

    For instance, the Gunner's Mates I work with, get to shoot all the time. As for myself, I can count the number of times I've gotten trigger time on the government's dime on one hand.

    Of course, I'm just a brown shoe, so what do I know. :D
     
  19. Hkmp5sd

    Hkmp5sd Member

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    That's for sure. Our total firearm training in boot camp consisted of firing six rounds through a worn out 1911. We receieved better training once assigned to a submarine so we could "repel boarders." Once we started carrying nuclear weapons, we got some pretty good training.

    One thing I remember distinctly, even after all of these years, if someone takes hostages and tries to use them to hold you at bay while they messed with nuclear weapons, shoot everybody.
     
  20. UnknownSailor

    UnknownSailor Member

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    Hey, at least you got to use a genuine 1911. I had to use the Ace .22 LR knockoff, that jammed every 5th round.

    I hear that they use rifles now, and even award the rifle ribbon if you qualify expert.
     
  21. Redlg155

    Redlg155 Member

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    I don't know about the other branches of services but in the Army EVERYONE is a "grunt" sooner or later. You may ride a fancy tank or hummer into battle, but chances are you just might be walking back. :D

    Instant "Grunt"

    Good Shooting
    RED
     
  22. Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler Member

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    That if the military uses it it must be the best gear around.

    Had a fellow in Basic simply insist- insist! ...that the USGI kevlar helmet would stop a .50 Browning round, but it would still kill you because it would break your neck.

    Of course, helmet or no, if you take an M2HB round to the head your noggin isn't going to be there anymore.

    Our drill sergeants (a couple of them) insisted that the kelvar helmet would stop a rifle round. From tests I've seen, this is a falsehood.


    Another one: that everyone in the military is some kind of lethal killing machine. I'm in the National Guard, right? I had a kid ask me "you could kick my ***, then?".

    I replied "yes", of course. I had all of four hours of hand-to-hand training in basic, which even the drill sergeants admitted was just enough to get your butt whooped in a fight.

    But the way I see it, I agree with what my senior drill, SFC Hemmingway, said. Something to the effect of that if somebody's giving you trouble, you don't take them on one on one. You go get Bubba, you go get Leroy, and you beat 'em down. :cool:
     
  23. Bob A

    Bob A Member

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    That all Marines are stupid.

    That all Marines are tough.

    That basic training teaches you how to fight/kill. (It did teach me to shoot a rifle, but mostly how to march, iron a uniform, polish boots and be yelled at by everybody who had something on their sleeve or collar)

    That if you are military, you get loans for cars/jewelry/stereos and such from the government, or that these things are free.

    That you can go to college in your "off time"

    That you will receive "valuable training" for a future job on civie street

    That if you are "only a Corporal" you didn't have anything valuable to add

    That the Marine Corps does everything better than the Army

    That the MC is part of the Navy. It's in the Department of the Navy. the Men's department :D

    That polishing a scuttlebutt (water fountain) and it's supply and drain pipes has a legitimate military purpose

    That it is important to train the way you fight, just so you can go to war and find out that you do everything differently because there's a "war" and we are under combat conditions. I can't tell you how many dummies almost got shot coming through our positions at night with lights on because they never trained driving tactical vehicles with blackout lights. Ditto for NVGs and PVS4s because the batteries were expensive.

    That chow sucks no matter where you are. The Navy, Air Force and Army all ate better during Desert Storm than we did at Camp Lejeune in garrison. :(

    That the guys in Supply/Motor T./Admin/Cooks have easy jobs. These guys get to do all the grunt stuff, then work 60 hours at their MOS while the grunts go on liberty. That and all these jobs promote slower also. :mad:

    That Reservists are not real Soldiers. Huh! I had D Battery, 2d Battalion, 14th Marines with my unit in DS. These guys were awesome. Good morale, good leadership, and well trained. Not as proficient at first as the AD troops, but much better discipline and initiative. Ditto for my own reserve unit later on. I guess the difference is that they want to be there.

    That once you get out the VA will help you get a house, and take care of your medical needs.

    That it matters to somebody that you have ever worn a uniform.

    That all military people want to overthrow the government and institute a dictatorship.

    That they all want to go to war also.

    That you only go into the military if you can't find a job

    That civilian employers know what a DD214 is or what it means.

    That all troops in combat get to sleep in portable buildings, have real toilets and get warm meals and showers every day.

    That just because the Navy put you on the USS G.W. which is 300 miles from the MLR, you are safe.

    That an Airman who is safely in the rear with the gear is in no danger (even though a large amount of that "gear" is high order explosive ordinance made by the lowest bidder, and damaged planes come back to the base to land. ... or crash)

    But the absolute worst is that these poor slobs will ...

    ... go do what silliness it takes to earn the uniform they chose,
    ... be sent off to train for and possibly make war,
    ... face death from hundreds of different ways,
    ... be separated for days, weeks, and months at a time from their families who often qualify for food stamps so the rest of this wonderful country can sleep at night without worrying about anything more important than the Jerry Springer show, not asking for recognition or reward...

    and do it all knowing that most people never even notice, much less say "thank you."

    I am ashamed to say that this is the first Christmas since 1986 that I forgot to add in my prayers the members of our armed forces who cannot be with their families.
     
  24. Hkmp5sd

    Hkmp5sd Member

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    That's not true? :) I know a fellow that was a marine stationed in Japan during the '60s. He got busted for unauthorized absence a few times and wound up with 30 days in the brig at hard labor.

    He says that after banging on this rock with his sledgehammer a few times, he walked over to the guard, set the hammer down and informed him he'd have to find something else for him to do because busting rocks was too hard.

    Apparently the guard had never had this occur before because he stood there with his eyes popping out. After they discussed it among themselves, the guards provided this fellow with a little physical persuasion involving his head and their feet, after which he was allowed to remain in his new cell for a few days. The new cell was rather poorly furnished, containing nothing but a concrete floor and tin walls with an overall size of about 30 cu. ft.

    This fellow was a marine, dumb and tough.:)
     
  25. KMKeller

    KMKeller Member

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    My experience was the same as boats, except I went to "Rambo" school (SSEW/SSET). Assigned to the reaction force and got to be the team leader for the six man entry team. I think boats probably had more intense training than I, but I guarantee mine was just as fun! :D

    I think one of the biggest misconceptions is the advertising. Join the Navy, see the world!?! Join the Navy, see the third world. It's not just a job, it's an adventure!?! It's not just a job, it's an indenture.:uhoh:

    I did have a bit of fun though. It was most definitely, not what I expected.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2002
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