Friday, October 19, 2007
Training Hard for the War on Terror
The troops are training hard in a variety of areas: firing ranges, convoys, improvised explosive devices and other things that will affect their upcoming tour in one of the war zones. (The above picture is from the M9 pistol range.)
They are working long days – up sometimes at 4 a.m. and training into the night. The classes and training will only get tougher, but we are preparing warriors for battle. The importance of that task is always before us. As observer/controller/trainers, it is our duty to make sure they are ready for whatever they may face at war.
We are also getting to know them as individuals. It is easy to pick out the leaders, the followers and those who are figuring out which one they will become. Man, are they young. I have jump boots older than virtually all of them. In fact, most of them weren’t even born when I was in Vietnam. Hell, most of their parents hadn’t even met!
It is a blessing to be able to watch the current generation as they prepare to defend all of us. Some of them have asked me if there is a difference between the soldiers then and the soldiers now.
I have told them that some of my fellow soldiers didn’t want to be in the Army, but they fought hard to defend their country. Still, the new "greatest generation" is the best-trained and best-equipped force in the world. Even as they are stretched thin, tasked beyond what they should be or sent forth for the second, third or fourth tour, they still perform with professionalism, dedication and a never-ending faith in their country.
I am so proud of all of them.
SFC Chuck Grist