Allegations Ranger Instructors Not Grading Women Fairly

Ranger School combatives training 20 April 20 2015 USA photo by PFC Antonio Lewis

Stars and Stripes reported last week on the three remaining women attempting Ranger school again after failing the first phase twice.  (Not unheard of for male students but it is uncommon.)  My biggest take away from the article was a fundamental misunderstanding about patrols, how we train our leaders and Ranger school. The article put …

Virtual Simulations & Infantry Training

Infantry Silhouette

Below is the first story I ever had published which was in the Fall 2003 issue of Infantry Magazine. I wanted to include it here and rescue it from its pretty ignominious existence buried in the bowls of internet. The title pretty much describes the subject.  Warning, this was written for a professional journal and …

Happy 240th Birthday US Army

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The Army celebrates 14 June, 1775 as its birthday.  On that day, the Continental Congress called for ten companies of expert rifleman to be formed.  The day is also in effect, the birth of America’s first Infantry.   These men came from Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia comprising the 1st Continental Regiment.  Within two months they …

D-Day Remembered 71 Years Later

A fully Equipped paratrooper armed with a Thompson submachine gun M1, climbing into a transport plane 5-6 June 1944.  Center of Military History. U.S. Army

Today is the 71st anniversary of D-Day, one of the largest amphibious invasions in history.  Besides being a prime number, there’s nothing special about the number 71 so you won’t see the wider coverage we enjoyed last year except for some stuff maybe on the History Channel.  It’s admittedly a tough subject.  In the 71 …

The Day a President Cried

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For some reason this Memorial Day Weekend is hitting me exceptionally harder than normal.  I’m having a mental block but like on all Memorial Days I try to make it a point to remember and meditate on the 11 men I knew that lost their lives in the service of this nation.  I’m not the …

Iran reports, “Anti-ISIS” forces shoot down US helicopter supplying ISIS

FARS US Helo shot down

Iran’s Fars News Agency reported the Anti-ISIS Al-Hashad Al-Shabi militia forces shot down a US helicopter supplying ISIS.  It further reported US Apache helicopters airdropped food and arms to ISIS.  Fars published pictures of the shot down helicopter (see above). There are a couple of problems with the report.  First, the helicopter pictured isn’t a …

Fall of Saigon by Yankee Papa

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We are on top of the 40th anniversary of the fall of Saigon.  A civilian (non-obligor reservist actually…) for almost five years when that went down, I still had a dim and very distant connection to that event.   At Marine Corps recruit training in 1968, my initial Series Officer (in charge of four platoons …

LEBANON 1958: Dancing Between The Raindrops By Yankee Papa

U.S. Marines and Lebanese Army personnel debark from the LCT (Landing Craft Tank) with one of the Marine Corps new ONTOS.  Lebanese soldiers expressed keen interest in this manual vehicle with its six 106mm recoilless rifles mounted on their own self-propelled chassis.  Lebanon 1958. USMC Photo

   The American had commandeered a Marine tank and a loudspeaker.  Pulling up to the gate leading to the Moslem section of Beirut he had the tank’s 90mm gun pointed into the quarter.  He announced through an interpreter that those who had taken the Marines hostage had three minutes to release them, their jeep… and …

Iranian raid kills five Americans. US response? Lawsuit

Vahid Salemi AP

Twelve men wearing US Army uniforms, armed with US weapons and riding in black GMC Suburbans passed through three Iraqi security checkpoints in Karbala Iraq.  Upon entering the compound of the joint Iraqi-American headquarters, the group moved with precision and purpose.  They attacked a US HMMWV guarding the entrance mortally wounding one soldier and taking …