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Old 07-14-2004, 04:49   #16
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Good post Hognose. The only thing I'd add is to comment on new technologies that we now have the $ to buy. Choose the technology that makes sense from FORCEMOD and try it in an FTX environment. Maintain the shoot, move, and communicate, but also train that new technologies that give us the edge over the enemy.

I remember in the early 90's every ODA got a handheld GPS, but could navigate or use it to find their way out of the desert. I got one per man, took their compasses, and made them rely on the GPS for a navigation course. It gave them the confidence needed...the next year we went back to our old way, but many wanted the GPS back that year.
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Old 07-14-2004, 07:31   #17
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Everything Hog said is true, however his dream list is just that -- dreams. Who is left to beautify the Post. They may not have pine cones at all posts but there is always something. At Flinht Kaserne a rotary snow plow blew all of the snow into a huge mountain in the center of the quad. In preparation for a visit from the USAREUR CG we had to go out and break up and melt the mountain. I do, however agree with his priorities.

My wife has been in the States for thirty years. She seldom has the opportunity to speak Thai, but you should hear her when she meets another Thai. Some of us haven't been on a bike for years, maybe decades, but we can still get on one and ride without dieing.

I believe that thirty days of intense, full immersion language training will indeed bring one back up to speed. You say that there is no time for that but it could be incorporated into normal mission prep. Very seldom are SF deployed on the spur of the moment.

The goal of language is to communicate not to learn words and grammar. DLI frequently rotates instructors because there is the danger of graduating and being able to only understand the instructor. Teams speak a language in their team rooms and end up only understanding and being understood by their teammates. You need exposure to others. Bringing in people from the target area would help. This was an advantage to Groups residing in Germany, Panama, Okinawa and other places. One could speak the native language with natives as much as he desired.

I'm not familiar with the present system of training and testing used in SF today. While in Germany, our team attended Czech training. Although we had to take and were rated by the ALPT the real final test was more realistic. They brought in Czechs whom we had never met before. One at a time we were placed in front of a complete stranger. We were given a scenario to communicate to the Czech who in turn asked us questions. We could do anything in the book communicate our scenario, as long as it was Czech . It wasn't a test of vocabulary. We do the same in english, if we can't think of a particular word we talk around it. The Czech person then related our scenario to the head of the language department. I still remember my test. I had just infiltrated into the area and was to introduce myself to the G-chief. He had several questions about our capabilities and how we were to benefit him. I thought it was realistic. One man in the class, Jim Sweeney, had a low ALPT but scored very high on the final test which I felt was much more realistic than vocab and grammar.

BTW Hognose, did you receive my P/M?

Pain and suffering are inevitable,
misery is optional.


Last edited by QRQ 30; 07-14-2004 at 09:26.
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Old 07-14-2004, 09:13   #18
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Originally posted by Hognose

So... if I was king, I'd stress:

1) cultural/language orientation & area studies.
2) Instructional training & preparation.
3) Combat training. .
4) Next in priority is infiltration and movement skills.
5) Finally, special skills. SOTIC, ASOT, climbing, CIF type stuff, parachuting (s/l and halo), SCUBA.

This is just my opinion, and we all know what opinions are like....


First off, excellent post "nose" and welcome to the board and this community!

I have to respecftully disagree about the order of priorities you've suggested. Of course I"m one of "those guys" that would rather spend time on the range than studiing a language, because as a very good friend and former Team Sergeant of mine once said "noone has ever been killed in SF because they couldnt find the embassy".

I think that you have to place your basic combat skills (shoot, move, and communicate) at the top of the list, those in my opinion are true survivability tasks in todays environment. I absolutely agree with you that all members of the team must be able to pick up and employ all weapons found in the SOA, as guys are doing today in Iraq and Afganistan.

These skills are followed closely, if not connected to, our infiltration and movement skills. Many guys today dont like to train on basic dismounted tactics because they feel we'll never get to use them, and want to focus on more specialized skills (CQB, Mounted ops). I think that just like basic markmanship lays the foundation for advanced, so does the basic drills set forth in FM7-8 provide a foundation for more advanced SOP development so you must train hard in this.

Next I'd place your training/teaching/briefing requirement, as it is important but not a survivability skill. It certainly is happening with the ICDC daily becaue in most areas SF teams are the guys that initially organized and trained them, and continue to use them.......teaching abilities are a must!

Then I'd have to lump special skils and languae/cultural training last to take place after those survivability skills have been addressed........

probably not the most popular opinion on this board, or in the community for that matter.......but my .02



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Old 07-14-2004, 12:16   #19
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There are a lot of good points here in all these posts but the bottom line, IMHO, is that it all depends on your mission(s), the assessement of the tasks required to accomplish the mission, the level of training you currently possess, the time required to get to the level needed to minimum level necessary to successfully accomplish the tasks required, and the resources available to you to do so. One mission does not fit all as you well know and each requires different tasks and I know each of you can make a good argument for whatever mission you might have to execute. There is no cookie cutter approach to anything in this business and the priorities in training will be driven by whatever your assessment shows. I think you can make an argument for each point of view here depending on your focus and experience. Just another opinion from a geriatric warrior whose priorities were different for different mission and different organizations based on many variables but who is comfortable with the fact that each and everyone of you would be capable of achieving any of the tasks put before you given the right intelligence, resources, and support.

Jack Moroney

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Old 10-24-2004, 12:13   #20
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I would have to agree with both... In one sense the cultural/language priority is a way of keeping you informed and alive in a hostile environment. But IADs must be a daily tasking. Most people don't see it, it a lot of takes work and gets boring. But a well trained team that really understand what each man's moves will be in any situation is absolutely essential to survial in a high threat environment. It is this ability that allows a small team to take on large enemy forces and clean their plow. Loose that and you loose you life quicker than you can say Aw Shoot..

We spent 2 weeks running IADs before every mission, it paid off - I'm still here and my enemiers aren't.
Robert "Bru" Taylor

"Fortune Favors the Bold!"
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