Monday, April 29, 2013

"Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've constructed. . . "

Audiences in 1977, and pretty much everyone since could tell you the tale of the Death Star.  While we might be left to wonder how this at all seems relevant to the actual world of today (as opposed to a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away) it actually speaks to the entire mindset of people who place WAY too much faith in technology.  The idea that the enemies of the Galactic Empire would be brought in line because of this massive battle station that could easily shrug off attacks from hundreds of fleets, and blow up any planets that happened to disagree. 

But that didn't work.  Millions of people and perhaps a few trillion monetary units were lost in an attack that simply shouldn't have worked.  How could a few dinky little fighters possibly defeat a battle station that had over 100,000 fighters?  While it might seem that this is just pure Hollywood, in all actuality there's precident in this galaxy not so long ago.  In 1921, Brigadier General Billy Mitchell attacked an old WWI battleship Ostfriesland, and after a day of slow attacks sunk the ship.  The battleship, often thought unbeatable except by other battle ships was proved to be very weak against air.  The greatest of all battleships Yamato and Musashi, despite taking a lot of air power to take down still fell to air power. 

But there are other terrors the Empire unleashed.  Take the AT-AT (All Terrain Armored Transport) was a giant hulking walker that had armor that was too strong for the Rebel air power to repel, and made mince meat of the Rebel infantry sequestered in trenches.  Despite being ungainly, slow, and with it's firepower not really mobile enough to act as an anti-air platform, the efficacy of the AT-AT can clearly be seen in the films.  It's a terrifying thing to contemplate.  But we see at least two of the five AT-AT's pictured brought down by relatively simplistic tactics.  It also begs the question, what would have happened if the terrain had been broken?  Suddenly these walking tanks that are not so fast or mobile, don't seem like such a great idea. 

Even the more agile, mobile and seemingly appropriate AT-ST (All Terrain Scout Transport) was proven in the next movie to not be that good of a design.  Despite being very effective against foot mobile infantry, it is easily defeated by loosing its footing, and at one point a few shots from behind actually destroys the whole thing in a very violent catastrophic kill that leaves barely anything left.  Clearly the storage are for the fuel is not armored enough. 

In our own galaxy, the Iraq War makes it clear that the age of the Tank may well be over.  It's not just the EFPs that are so powerful they can separate a turret from the chassis of a tank, but also innovations like the Javelin anti-tank missile make it clear that the flying tank columns that we had trained to fight in the cold war would be just so many targets that one could destroy.  Despite massive amounts of armor, and a lot of tactical maneuverability, all that can be undone by enemy traps that one can not see.  Perhaps if the insurgents in Iraq were cute like Ewoks, or the Coalition as evil as the Empire this fact might actually be cause to celebrate, unfortunately this is not the case.

While we can make certain analogies between the United States and the Empire in terms of weapons development (ok we're not blowing up whole planets, but Nukes are like the Death Star in a way) our over all goals, aims and tactics are different.  While we don't mind instilling a healthy dose of fear in our enemies, and on occasion will field impractical or unwieldy weapons systems, we're not aiming to rule the galaxy.  You also have to know that while the Empire keeps trying to engineer the ultimate crushing victory as seen in all three of the classic trilogy movies, Americans have learned to take whatever tactical victories they can get.  This is a mindset similar to the Rebel Alliance, though devoid the desperation seen in the films. 

While we are still waiting for Lightsabers, and Force wielding Jedi, or hyperspeed, there are lessons we can take from Star Wars.  Lessons we can strangely enough apply to our own galaxy, and our own time.  One of the greatest lessons that Star Wars left us with is to not rely too heavily on our technology, because the Force can always throw a monkey wrench in even the most impenetrable Death Stars we make.  In the end the Rebel Alliance won because of people, not weapons, and that should be something we should always keep in mind moving forward.  

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Time for a Man Card

Ladies and Gentlemen of the male community, I think it is time we demand action.  For too long we have allowed our males’ testicles to wither into small withered ill-used raisins. The Dude, once the bastion for all that is masculine has become an endangered species, and what few Males remain are easily confused to the fact that they are men.  Gone are the days that a great masculine figure of a private would proudly piss on an enemy like a dog marking his territory, proudly proclaiming how much of a pansy that bitch was.  Gone are the days when a Sergeant with a few days growth on his face would tell a politician to go fuck themselves simply because they were too fucking tired to put on a dog and pony show.   

Well I say E-fucking-nough!  We need to reinstate the national Man-Card law!   We need to get rid of all those sissy fucks that dare refer to themselves as man that don’t even know how to change a light bulb.  How can we allow some yuppie hipster to besmirched the giant brass balls of our Soldiers that doesn’t even know how to change the fucking oil on his gay ass Prius!   How can we look ourselves in the mirror and allow these mega douches to continue to sap the awesomeness that comes from going out and killing, cleaning and cooking over a camp fire your own fucking dinner?  I saw if any paper thin armed vegan dares call himself a man he had damn well better be able to prove it!

This is will not be some amorphous card you can buy at Spencer’s as a gag, but a real Man approved card to prove you are well and truly a Dude, and entitled to all the rights and privileges therein.  There will be a clear and easy task list, things every Dude should know how to do.  How to shoot, how to cook (Dude style, none of that gay French cooking with wine), how to build shit, how to destroy shit, and most importantly how to make a woman scream like she’s having sex with the entirety of the United States Army.  There needs to be standards to follow and a testing system that ensures that you can build a fire with nothing but harsh language while your buddies give you shit for the last butter face you slept with.  

We have to recognize that there are some Men out there that are so manly they automatically get one.  For instance the giant balls it takes to strap into a $54 million jet and be fired off a pitching deck into the open air with little time to recover if someone screwed up, or for making a night drop.  I think we can all agree if you somehow make it into one of the Teams in SOCOM you deserve a Man Card.  Likewise, if you rush into burning buildings to rescue fluffy the cat, or calmly treat a dude tweeking on PCP, or chase down a suspect when you’re driving well over 120 MPH, you had damn well EARNED  Man Card. We can also recognize special beard growth (provided said beard growth is not coupled with an instant NO-GO) and any other Manly achievement that brings honor to all that is Man. 
There are of course NO-GO’s in which a Man Card can not only be revoked but forcibly taken by another duly authorized Man.  For instance, if you actually follow any boy band in any way shape or form.  Not only should your Man Card be revoked but you should be required by law to lose at least one testicle.  If you know how to do a dance that is not in some way shape or form awesome, or if you actually know what the moves are that cheer leaders do, you are a NO-GO!  Likewise if you do anything that besmirches the name of Man, for instance becoming a Hippie (yuppie, hipster or a protestor), or you are too fucking fat to do one God Damn push up, you deserve to get your ass kicked, then get your Man Card taken. 
We are Men.  It’s about fucking time we all started acting like it!  When the retard dressed in a vagina suit tells you that you don’t care about the local’s culture you respond “fucking right I don’t, those fuckers are hitting women!”   Then you proceed to hit that prick like you hit that fucking drop zone, Hard and Fast.  When you hear of some shit head that raped a woman you don’t wait for some court to settle things you kick his Lilly ass!  Blow shit up!  Not because it’ll bring greater understanding or science or shit like that, FUCK NO, you blow shit up because it’s fucking cool!  You go shooting just because, and you’re never stingy with ammo when your buddy wants to come with, because that’s what Men fucking do.
Most of all we Men had damned well be fucking awesome in bed.  It’s no fucking wonder there are so many lesbians, all the men are indistinguishable from the dykes!  Seriously if I can’t tell the difference between the chicks the dudes (small d) and the dykes, there’s something fucking wrong here.  Remember what you got between your legs.  Learn how to fucking use it!  Here’s a hint if you get off and she’s still hot to trot, YOU FUCKED UP!!!  And for the love of sweet baby Christ stop acting like you’ve never fucking seen titties before.  Yes they’re awesome, yes we want to play with them, and have them rubbed in our faces, but STOP ACTING LIKE A BITCH TO SEE THEM.  You’re a Man God Dammit!  When you rock out with your Cock out satisfaction should not only be guaranteed, but they should be begging for more.

We need this fucking Man Card.  I don’t give a shit if the limp dicks in Washington (Big D) will never pass the law, we, the fucking Men of America owe it to ourselves, our sons, but perhaps more importantly to the Ladies in our lives, and to make sure the standards of Manhood are being kept.  Shave with a chainsaw, play ping pong with a grenade, kill a deer you head butt.   Why?  Who give a shit why, you’re a man you do awesome shit “just because.”   Enough of the estrogen displays, we need Men to be Men, we need a way to quickly identify who the real Men are  

Friday, April 26, 2013

Loyalty Goes Both Ways

There has been a spat of recent events in the military that have left a majority of the active force and veterans very uneasy with the command structure.  It's most evident in the SOCOM community, because they are the most individualistic, but military wide there are rifts starting to form between "Big" branches (eg. "Big Army") and the grunts and middle management that are actually running things on the ground (at sea in the air or in space). It is not just the Generals or senior Colonels that are a part of the problem.  We have seen a vindictive streak that seems to stem straight from the political class right to the trigger pullers.

Take the example of Carlton Higbie, which for the most part is pretty cut and dried.  Perhaps he wasn't right to publish political manifestos while still serving.  I would argue that it is absolutely wrong for a trigger puller to get into the political debate.  There are actually laws/regulations in the Uniformed Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) that prevent you from expressing anything that is deemed "political" or in a manner that does not reflect well on the service.  The why is easy to explain away with the clear examples we have of people who made jackasses of themselves in the process of expressing their "free speech" when in uniform.  There are appropriate punishments, and usually it is non-judicial punishment, but that also depends on how embarrassed the command is over the "speech" that is made.

There are other examples of Commands failing their duty to their troops.  Take this example of a Sergeant First Class out of Ft Bragg who was diagnosed with PTSD so severe they actually recommended that he be returned and hospitalized.  He stayed and finished out his tour.  When he got back he started acting up, and got 3 back to back demotions.  How a chain of command totally ignores a serious medical condition then punishes a man when it alters his action is beyond me.  Clearly the UCMJ is not being properly employed, nor is the command really taking care of its troops.  There are so many blatant examples that perhaps we should start thinking of treating going to war like diving, we need to allow time to decompress before just plopping them back in "the world."  Regardless of the solutions a unit with a high disciplinary problem looks bad on an OER.  The end result is that these problems are "handled" in such a way to either get them out of the command as quickly as possible, or are swept under the rug without dealing with the underlying problem. 

The fact that the suicide rate is near pandemic level, and the command does "safety stand downs" and "death by powerpoint" presentation that the troops jokingly say make them want to commit suicide.  This makes the command look pretty bad.  Not just the commanders, but the entire organization.  It is something we don't like to face.  The politicians are in a near panic because the news puts their feet to the fire, the command are in a panic because it's affecting readiness. . . but organization wide no one wants to tackle the root issues.  War sucks, and it always has.  There will always be people that just shouldn't be there, but we need to take greater care to make sure that the troops going to war are READY, not just physically but mentally as well.  And we need to make sure they are ready to return. 

Troops will "bare true faith and allegiance" right up till the braking point.  Not returning that loyalty will accelerate the time it takes for that breaking point to come.   the command needs to realize that loyalty goes both ways.  That the trigger pullers can't be thrown under the bus or there will be no one to fight our wars. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

What Boston Taught Us

Any Soldier, Sailor, Airman or Marine that went on patrol in Iraq or Afghanistan found a majority of the events surrounding the bombing of the Boston Marathon very familiar.  Everything from the methods and tactics of the explosions, to the injuries seen and, especially the hunt for those responsible, were almost as if they had been ripped right out of the war they fought.  The mainstream media even started to acknowledge this after a fashion by calling the explosives “IEDs.”  Many veterans were left with very haunting memories coming back full force.  Others were possessed with an almost overwhelming urge to grab service rifles they no longer had, put on body armor that was now belonging to someone else, and go hunt those assholes down.  Regardless of their reaction each veteran felt a moment of horror at the thought that their war had followed them home. 

The video images of runners crossing the finish line and people cheering broken up by a huge plume of dust and flame, followed seconds later by another a few hundred meters away were shockingly familiar to anyone that ever ran a convoy.  Despite the fact that the devises were not command detonated like the troops are used to seeing, the tactics employed, first detonating one device, then another in the direction movement (in this case the opposite direction the runners were traveling) were exactly the kind of tactics that delivered so many casualties in Iraq.  Thankfully the IEDs were not daisy chained, and their overall power was weak compared to some of the anti-vehicle, and anti-personnel  IEDs that have been employed, or the damage would have been a lot worse. 

When News commentators were asking questions as to why BPD told all their officers to stay off the radios and “just head over there”, with great confusion, but any veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan could have told them without thinking that radio signals can set off IEDs that are Command Detonated.  The assumption that the cell service had been shut off (it actually was overwhelmed by people calling, not shut down) had a lot of talking heads scratching those empty skulls, but veterans knew why you would jam cell phones.  The confusion that a majority of the Americans felt at seeing the video that the news ran on continuous loop was not felt by veterans.  They knew exactly what it was.  

The pictures of the injuries were graphic and shocking to the American public.  One showing a man with is tibia completely devoid of flesh, his calf flayed open and hanging was particularly popular, but ask anyone who has gone up to a vehicle that had suffered a catastrophic kill and these types of injuries were sadly common place.  So common in fact that some of the veterans that were at the site, some of whom had just finished the marathon, leapt into action and may have prevented a greater loss of life.  Pictures of the scene, and its aftermath, awash in blood, and bits of detritus that used to be people, are pictures Iraq and Afghanistan veterans have seared into their minds. 
The manhunt that followed was very much a classic example of the counter IED ops that are still being employed in Afghanistan.  Identify persons of note, get public cooperation, and then pile on the pressure.  The use of social media showed the public the kind of SigInt (Signals Intel) that American service members use to narrow in on the cell(s) that are attacking them.  Once the bombers were identified, the HumInt (Human Intel) factor played a role, and every set of eyes in Eastern Massachusetts acted as a force multiplier leaving fewer and fewer options for the would be terrorist masterminds.  In their desperation they attempted to steal a car at a gas station to use as a getaway car. Ultimately their mistakes allowed police to zero in on them and the full force of Federal as well as Massachusetts’s Local and State Law enforcement’s assets came down on them like a ton of bricks, but not before they took one last victim, Officer Sean Collier of the MIT police department.
The final few hours leading to the standoff in a boat were extremely familiar to any veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, because the same cordon and clear tactics are the bread and butter of counter insurgency (COIN).  If one were to see the black or green clad SWAT teams they look almost identical in profile to the Soldiers now overseas.  Telling people in no uncertain terms that they needed to stay in their homes for their own safety, while actively hunting and engaging a shooter is the same thing I myself did while engaging in such missions in Iraq. The only real difference between any of the thousands of knock and clears troops did, were the flashing lights that the troops would never employ. 
The ultimate aim of the police, to capture the suspects is far different from the role the troops take.  For them the mission is usually to kill and if possible capture.  The end of the final standoff that the rest of America saw would probably have ended very differently had a platoon of US Infantry been there.  There would have been no hostage negotiators, and the air assets would have been very well armed.   The Media would also not have been allowed access, and the scanners which everyone were listening into would most definitely not been available to the public.  So, for now at least there is still a line between our military and our police forces. 

One thing any veteran of Iraq of Afghanistan could have told you is that it all could have been a lot worse.  There were as many as five bombs were used the day of the bombing, with only two going off.  Seven more devises were used, or found during the running gun battle with police to include a suicide vest.  Fortunately those additional devices did not cause aditional casualties. The explosives used were not directed, like many of the shaped charges seen in Iraq and Afghanistan.  The IEDs were not designed specifically for fragmentation, so the shrapnel was not as lethal as it could have been.  There were also no attempts made to bomb rescue workers, or to follow up the bomb with a conventional attack.  For this we should all be very thankful.

We must all hope this is an isolated incident.  It doesn’t matter if this was an actual Islamist terror attack or a couple of jack asses looking to make a name for themselves, if this is part of a larger pattern the implications are unsettling.  The war we fought may have followed us home.  The sheltered way the American public views the world may not last.  If that is the case, the veteran community will be called upon to once again serve, to be the guiding light in dark times.  We may have to teach the American people in a very firsthand way the hard lessons we learned “over there”.  The events in Boston taught us that the American people are strong and resilient, but wholly unprepared for the realities of insurgent terrorism on their doorstep.  

Perhaps one of the only silver linings we can pull out of this, is the very injuries that have so scared so many veterans have left us with a prosthetic technology that will help a lot of the victims of the bombing lead next to normal lives.  Any of the people who lost legs may actually be up and running in time for the next Boston marathon, and there are plenty of amputees from OIF/OEF that are on call to help the victims.  The experiences from the traumatic injuries both physical and mental, many service members experienced will go to help many of the victims get back their lives.  We have a whole crop of young men and women that know just what it takes to bring these people back to health, and perhaps by doing so some veterans might find a little healing themselves. 
For 48 hours the people of Boston and America had a front row seat to a little slice of the war millions of its veterans have experienced.  The exemplary work of Boston’s Finest was very reminiscent of the work that often goes unsung by American troops overseas.  For a few hours the residents of Watertown Mass knew what it was like to be a spectator of the war.  Undoubtedly this observation will be noted by some, and quietly forgotten by a majority of the American public, but maybe, just maybe it can be a bridge for people to gain a greater understanding of the things our troops have to deal with. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Tools vs. Scary Death Machines

What is the difference between an axe, a lighter, a gun, a knife, and your bare hands?  On the surface there are a lot of differences, differences of function, of cosmetics, of price it seems that there is only two things that bind all those items together.  The first is that they are all tools, all with different legitimate uses.  The second is that all have been misused, and horrendous things have been done with them. 

Take fire for instance.  There is literally nothing in your life that is not dependent on humanity having mastered fire.  From the food you eat, to the car you drive, without fire we'd still be hairless apes huddled in caves grunting at each other afraid of the dark.  Even our dietary requirements are somewhat dependent on fire.  You literally can not eat raw meat without getting sick.  For all that fire is enormously destructive.  In 1871, 3.3 square miles of Chicago, were destroyed and 125 people killed supposedly because a cow kicked over a lantern in a barn.  Arson claims millions of dollars annually, and hundreds of lives, and yet we all acknowledge that fire is important, we all acknowledge that wile dangerous fire is essential to our way of life.   

It would be such an over statement, to the point of being mildly insulting to list the uses of the hands, and yet human hands have done a lot of terrible things.  The same hands that might raise the most massive of structures or paint an masterpiece that leaves everyone in tears might also be used for almost unimaginable savagery.  So too could axes knives and yes guns.  So why is it that we can accept these tools despite the great harm they might do?  Why do we acknowledge the capacity for good in all these tools except for guns?   

The simplest answer is that guns have a fewer variety of uses.  While one can use a gun as say a hammer, that is neither wise nor really economical.  A gun could be used to light a fire, but only under extremely specific conditions, so specific in fact as to be absurd (although the powder could be sued as an accelerant you'd still have to ignite it).  A gun is, point blank, a tool of power.  From the power of an individual to say defend themselves against the intentions of someone that would wish to do them harm to the power of a government to enforce both legitimate laws, and to coerce obedience.  It is almost impossible to divorce the gun from power.  

This simple explanation is why so many people are uncomfortable with guns.  Power scares people.  Not just the power they might hold but the power that others might hold over them.  The very same tool that liberated Europe also allows the Kim dynasty to hold its iron grip over its starving people.  It is not just the power to free but the power to enslave.  The power to kill, or the power to save.  The same pistol a police officer might use, could also be used by the very criminals he is trying to protect you from.  So what are we to make of this?

Well like all power we need to recognize how to use it.  A gun on its own, much like your hands, a large knife, or any other tool you can think up will do absolutely nothing until it is commanded to do something.  We learn how to properly use fire, and knives because they are an important part of our lives.  We could not cook without either one, and at a very early age we teach our children that they're not to be treated as toys.  Other organizations like the Boy Scouts of America teach children how to properly use these tools.  So why is it we always verge to the knee jerk "scary death machine" reaction when we talk about guns?

We build up an irrational fear surrounding an inanimate object, that is disproportionate to what it can actually do.   This isn't some vial of Ebola virus, or liquid nitro glycerin which is extremely explosive, and unstable.  Most guns won't even go off if you drop them and some are impossible to fire unless a human finger is pulling the trigger.  Because we ascribe so much unreasonable terror to guns we are in a way culpable when they are misused.  The panic spread by mass media in the wake of mass shooting incidents, adds to the hype in the disturbed minds of those that would perpetrate such acts.  whether the dispossessed or the truly insane, our irrational fear, and panicked reactions only throw gasoline on the fire of their rage.

It is suggested that there are 300 million guns in America.  That's almost one for each person.  I wouldn't be surprised if the actual number is much higher.  If there are that many guns in America, if we are quite literally surrounded by guns, why are we so ignorant?  If there are so many guns in America how come most Americans can not tell you the most basic rules for gun safety?  If we all know that you should never cut towards yourself why doesn't everyone know to treat ever gun as loaded until proven otherwise?

The more we continue to treat guns as scary death machines, the more fear we place upon them, the more we pave the way for mass shootings.  We bare responsibility to teach and train our children to treat these tools just as they are, tools.  Taking away guns from the responsible will only leave the guns in the hands of the irresponsible.  Take away the guns, and only the well trained or the most viscous will have power, the weak will be fodder for rampant abuses.  History has made this lesson abundantly clear.  As much as the gun grabbers have noble intentions, should they actually succeed we would all hate the resulting state of affairs.   

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Ethan McCord is STILL a Jackass (and perhaps always was)

You know there are times that I hold my tongue, and there are times that it's just too fucking much to bare.  Ethan McCord, my one time friend, seems to know how to say all the things that ping my Douche Bag meter.  In all honestly every time his name seems to pop up someone says the most retarded ignorant things about the soldiers he once was a part of, and worse he encourages this, and somehow reinforces his "victimhood".  I can accept some of the things said about him by the unknowing, or the fools that sit on their thrones of excrement looking down on soldiers, after all I look down on those unknowing fools because I know if push came to shove Soldiers are the first ones they'd run to to save their worthless skins.  I learned a lot of things in the process of opposing him.  Things that made me wonder how I ever considered him a friend.  What set me off this time?  Well aside from this bulshit article, there's the constant stream of Kool-aid drinkers leaving dumb-ass comments on my last post about him.   

Where should I begin?  Well maybe we should talk about his children.  As far as I can tell he has 7 of them, not the three that all the write ups mention.  At least one of his ex spouses (to my knowledge he has at least two) explained to me that he was $20,000 in the hole for child support, and she will probably not see dollar one of that.  He has zero contact with his children by her, and she is quite happy about that.

She told me that his time in the Navy Reserves was not good time and he joined the Army, not so much because he wanted to go to war, but more because he was about to get the Boot from the Navy and the Army desperate for bodies was willing to take him.  She him the boot, and the same month the divorce papers were finalized he got remarried.  For some odd reason he called her while going through IET (Initial Entry Training) asking for her to fake a Red Cross message saying that one of his children was deathly sick so he could go home.  She (rightly) refused.  I was told a lot of other things about his first marriage but have refrained from mentioning most of those things, mostly because he's the type of jackass that would have minions howling at her door demanding she prove every single thing.

You'd think maybe he learned his lesson right?  No.  See, the wife that he had when I knew him told stories of the kind of emotional abuse that's difficult to really get around.  At one point while at the WTB, he faked a PTSD episode and told her something to the effect that he was going to kill himself.  The "episode" had her in a near panic and frantic to call for help.  Once she actually connected with someone, he "snapped out of it" and was completely fine.  He said something to the effect that he was just playing with her.  While at the WTB he had told me that she was leaving him because of PTSD, and I'm sure that this "episode" sure has a lot to do with the reason he got divorced  (again).  At the time, I felt for him, now I see that he was a manipulative jackass and put his wife through hell. 

Now how do you think I found out about the video "Collateral Murder"?  It was on MSNBC, I was in college and didn't really have time to do more than go to class.  He called me and told me about it.  Now he seemed a lot more calm and collected about it than I was.  I was freaking out, why?  Because I was certain that a vindictive DA would be busting down my door to drag me to jail.  Why?  Because former Marine Jose Luis Nazario, Jr. had gotten pinched under the MEJA (Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act) for something that every account that I'd read boiled down to "shooting guys in a battle".  Certain restive and politically motivated anti-war jack asses were pushing for more trials under this law.  I knew that Bravo Company would be prime targets.  Unpopular BC (Battalion  Commander), unpopular war, shitty situation, and shitty time.  

It was a situation rife for a witch huntUnfortunately I was right.  Despite the fact that the 1-227 Avn pilots did everything right according to the ROE, they, and by extension all soldiers were castigated for their role in the incident.  At the beginning McCord somehow became the de facto mouth piece for the unit.  It was a little odd at the time, but I didn't really want to get involved.  He sought out the attention, and went from explaining what happened to reveling in the attention and even embellishing some of the stories.  In the end There was a film, and after I saw the previews I'd had enough.  I spoke up, and started to challenge, well everything he said about what happened.  

One of his compatriots from 3rd platoon who took the picture of him that has blood all over his IBA, told me at the time McCord thought it was pretty cool.  He was just as guilty of enjoying the "war porn" as everyone else.  He seemed to be always collecting the most horrific things he could find, and most of us didn't really pay any attention to it.  To be honest I don't remember anything serious happening to 3rd Platoon B Co, which is not to say that it didn't happen, just than none of them died or were injured while he was thereB Co's combat deaths came from 1st (SFC Doster) and 2nd (PFC Craig, and PFC Harrelson) platoons.  To my knowledge he didn't even know Craig, or Harrelson, so the "agony" he might feel about Craig's death is probably greatly exaggerated.  I however was there and held him while he died.  

How McCord became the Darling of the Anti-War crowd, the exact sequence of events is unknown to meIt gets kind of sickening some of the things he said about us. For instance the "rotational fire".  I got it straight from the BC at the time, none other than (now) Colonel Ralph Kauzlarich
who said told me in exact words 

"giving an order like that would have landed me in jail. It goes against every fiber in my body as that's not how I do business. Look at the source who said it. Rangers were surgical in how we did business and you were trained to do the right thing always. In a counter-intersurgency you have to influence people to give you information to capture the "bad man." By doing something as stupid as just shooting all over the place in an undisciplined manner would surely not make any friends, only hurt innocent people, and is straight up jackassery. I had to do an AR 15-6 Investigation for every person we hurt/killed - we didn't do a single one because a bomb went off and everyone just started shooting. Rangers didn't fight that way and would have been dealt with if they did."

Col K was a lot of things, but he was always brutally honest.  

He whines about "death threats," but everybody seems to ignore that these rational men, though pissed off would do little more than go Drill Sergeant mode on him.  Indeed he even feeds the meme of the psycho vet and adds to the misinformation about PTSD.  Look PTSD makes life hard.  It sucks.  I don't like to have to relive all the worst moments in my life, nor do I like not having the happy sheep sense of security everyone else seems to have.  The very real reality of PTSD is not the psychopath, or the rampage killer we're made out to be, but rather an individual who has to suffer near constant pain, and tries to deal with it daily.  His feeding the Anti War crowd this BS only makes actually treating the very real condition all the more difficult.  (Personally from me to Ethan: "thanks a lot asshole")

You know what really gets me though?  Despite the fact that I'm perfectly willing to tell anybody what happened, and even post on here exactly what I saw, and how I try to deal with it, everyone seems to assume that he's still a victim.  He's a deadbeat dad.  He claims PTSD I'm not sure he has.  He doesn't pay child support.  He a consummate narcissist who does anything he can to grab the spotlight. And yet, for some reason, he's treated like he's pure as a fresh snow.  He constantly lies about things, yet somehow anyone who calls him on it is deranged.  I bust my ass to make ends meet, and he somehow lives a very comfortable life. 

The constant scorn he shows for men who would have taken a bullet for him once upon a time shows he never got why Soldiers keep fighting.  It's not for Old Glory, the US of A, a great pay check, or almost any of the other happy bullshit people seem to think, Soldiers fight for each other.  It's a brotherhood, and had he ever really tried to be a part of it, had he remained with them, they would have gone to bat for him.  It doesn't matter that he was a substandard soldier that expected to be promoted to E-5 just because, the guys would have gone to hell and back to get him home alive.  McCord you are and always will be a douche bag, my only consolation is I will not have to see you at the reunion.   

I would now like to ass a nicely worded response from one of 2nd Platoon's NCOs to you after seeing the "thank you" Ethan McCord Facebook page

from James Davidson:

"Hello Ethan,

I have read, watched, and listened to your plight and your guilt ridden anguish you have had to endure in these past few years. I must say it does take a special kind of man to stand up and face an established system that may be contrary to what you personally believe in. We all admire the fact that not everyone can stand up and face the big right when the easy wrong is by far the more appealing path to take. But I am overwhelmed by the people on this site, who actually believe everything that is coming out of your mouth.

Try telling all these admirers of yours that you have a dark side. Let them know what kind of father you really are. Let them know how far behind you are in child support because you refuse to take care of your responsibilities as a father. Let them know that you have told over 500 lies just to cover up for one big lie. Let them know you are mentally exhausted because you don’t even know the truth from the lies and deceit you have spun, all for trying to make a profit. Let them know how long it took you to get into the actual combat zone, where all these "incidents" took place. Let the people know you were a below average Soldier who was recognized by most as a person who was just getting his check, and who went out of his way to avoid doing anything, let alone going on a combat patrol. Tell the people the whole story Ethan don’t tell them half truths. How dare you say you knew my Soldier, friend, and my brother Andre Craig. I would not have bothered wasting my time on you as you are not worth any decent person’s time, but you have crossed a line. Sooner or later karma will catch up with you.

But it is OK Ethan I forgive you for the lies you have told about my brothers.

I forgive the fact that I pay taxes every year to make up for the support you fail to provide you own children. I forgive the mindless sheep who admire your strength and think you are a hero without fully questioning or asking why. You all wonder what it is that is wrong with America.... try not being mindless sheep who believe anything, and never question and ask why... try it works.
To all of you who “Salute” this chronic Liar I feel nothing but regret, to know our society has been reduced to sheep that watch television all day and believe everything they read or see, without question.
To you Ethan I salute you for being hands down the most pathetic type of human being I know. You are the type that takes credit for the sadness and suffering of the ones who actually endured it. You will never have Honor, you will never have Integrity, you are a spineless coward and it must chew you up inside at night knowing you are not ¼ of the man you portray yourself as. Maybe one day the doctors will come up with a cure that will heal you of the major disease that you suffer from. But until then I will just call the disease like I see it ……..“You are a PUSSY”