agill
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Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 4:26 pm



Are they doing stuff like this or is Senator Obama just making this stuff up? That US troops need to take weapons from talebans because they lack ammunition seems very strange.
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:09 pm

Sounds fishy. First of all, how come a platoon-sized unit is split up, a few men to Iraq, and and a few elsewhere? Small units like that stay together in every case I can think of. And as far as having to use captured ammo, that stinks pretty bad too. I would ask Obama for backup.
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agill
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:33 pm



Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 1):
Sounds fishy

Something about the way he tells it too. Sounds a bit like my niece when she's making up some story. "And then...I...saw..... ehhmm... a bear... that was.. eating.. a... banana"
 
MD11Engineer
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:33 pm



Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 1):
And as far as having to use captured ammo, that stinks pretty bad too.

This has happened before, when a particular unit ran out of ammo for their own weapons while in battle (with no way to resupply them). I know of a British army company at German-Dutch border in 1945, which faced a German armoured attack and had no anti-tank weapons of their own left. A few days before they had captured a German ammo dump full of German Panzerfaust recoilless AT guns and used them instead with good success to hold off the German tanks.
This unit had a few (German and Austrian born refugee) members of 3 troop 10 Interallied Commando attached (mainly for interrogating prisoners and reconnaissance), who translated the instructions and taught the ordinary Tommies how to use those Panzerfausts.

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co777er
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:38 pm

I like how it's Bush's fault.
 
agill
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:51 pm



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 3):
This has happened before

No doubt it has happened before, the question was if it's a problem in the US army now.
 
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:57 pm



Quoting Agill (Reply 5):
Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 3):
This has happened before

No doubt it has happened before, the question was if it's a problem in the US army now.

I'm quite sure that there happened battle situations, where a platoon sized unit ran out off ammo during battle and had to use captured AK-47's and RPG's instead until they got resupplied, but with all the reputation the US military have concerning logistics, I doubt that it would be a regular occurance. This is the one thing the US always excelled: Plenty of everything.

Jan
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mt99
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:01 pm



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 6):
. This is the one thing the US always excelled: Plenty of everything.

Except armored Humvees'...
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:06 pm



Quoting Agill (Reply 2):
Something about the way he tells it too. Sounds a bit like my niece when she's making up some story. "And then...I...saw..... ehhmm... a bear... that was.. eating.. a... banana"

Sounded sort of like Harry Reids Tommy boy story ... " Tommy said to me.... dont let my mother die Mr Reid .. "
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:39 pm



Quoting CO777ER (Reply 4):
I like how it's Bush's fault.

It always Bush's fault.

This will be the first of many whoppers from this guy. Here he is, telling us about the testimony from an anonymous source, about an anonymous Army platoon in dire straits with no weapons, and having to resort some outrageously clandestine war tactics. Next we'll hear about an anonymous soldier confiding in Senator Obama about war atrocities of Haditha-like proportions. And of course no one in the mainstream media will ask him for proof of these claims and his supporters will eat this stuff up. Let's see some evidence of this. Stay tuned.
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MDorBust
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:41 pm

Quoting Mt99 (Reply 7):
Except armored Humvees'...

I never saw a single armored HMMWV while I was in the service. 1995-2001. They didn't exist in any numbers. The doors were nylon mesh. Let me tell you, not fun in the winter. The HMMWV was never intended or designed to be an armored combat vehicle. It's a general purpose utility vehicle. No one seems to have noticed that the GPs they replaced weren't armored either.    I'm still not sure why the Army hasn't taken a heavy frame like the LAV, put a quad 20mm cannon turret on the sucker and used that as a counter-insurgency/patrol vehicle.

There may be some truth to what Obama says. There are units that operate as fragmented platoons. Of course, those are all SPECOPS units. And they may use local firearms, not because US firearms are unobtainable but because using native weapons has certain operational advantages.

I think his story is a load of   

[Edited 2008-02-22 11:42:58]
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Dreadnought
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 10:37 pm



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 3):
This has happened before, when a particular unit ran out of ammo for their own weapons while in battle

That's understandable in a sustained, pitched battle, where units can be completely cut off for days or weeks. But as far as I know, such battles have not happened with the US military since Korea, or maybe Vietnam.
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threeifbyair
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 11:05 pm

I don't think Obama has the story's details all there. And, I don't understand why he is talking about this in a debate with Clinton.

Perhaps the platoon was undermanned becaue new troops were filling units destined for Iraq, but I can't imagine breaking regular units apart is a normal occurance.

Quoting MDorBust (Reply 10):
There may be some truth to what Obama says. There are units that operate as fragmented platoons. Of course, those are all SPECOPS units. And they may use local firearms, not because US firearms are unobtainable but because using native weapons has certain operational advantages.

 checkmark 

Also, weapons break down, especially in hostile environments like Afghanistan. Helicopters also break down - no way to deliver supplies. Perhaps this unit was in such a situation - there's not a lot that any president can do in the short term. More helicopters, but that takes time and $$$$.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 11):
That's understandable in a sustained, pitched battle, where units can be completely cut off for days or weeks. But as far as I know, such battles have not happened with the US military since Korea, or maybe Vietnam.

Not sure what news you have been reading - there have been plenty of gun battles in Afghanistan, not to mention Vietnam. Not weeks long, of course, but that doesn't matter. When units are on patrol, carrying their own ammo, they don't have days or weeks worth packed away in the truck. A few hours worth in a sustained firefight, maybe. In Afghanistan, you're basically cut off if a helicopter can't reach you, which is a whole lot of territory.
 
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Fri Feb 22, 2008 11:14 pm



Quoting ThreeIfByAir (Reply 12):
And, I don't understand why he is talking about this in a debate with Clinton.

He played into her hands last night ... she forced him to shed the rock star and don the politician ... never count the Clinton's out man. Obama needs to stay with the .. Change .. want some change routine .. keep it light keep it fresh and dont ever talk about the 1st Cav .. please dont talk about the 1st Cav like he know what the hell their about .. please
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Dreadnought
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 3:14 am



Quoting ThreeIfByAir (Reply 12):
Not sure what news you have been reading - there have been plenty of gun battles in Afghanistan, not to mention Vietnam. Not weeks long, of course, but that doesn't matter. When units are on patrol, carrying their own ammo, they don't have days or weeks worth packed away in the truck. A few hours worth in a sustained firefight, maybe. In Afghanistan, you're basically cut off if a helicopter can't reach you, which is a whole lot of territory.

Gun battles, yes, but battles where US forces were cut off for so long from supply lines that they had to scavange for ammo? I can understand that occasionally (very occasionally) happening with small unit patrols that found themselves in some unsuspected crap, but Obama is clearly implying that this is happening on a regular basis - that troops are being sent into battle with less-than-full ammo loads because of shortages.

Unless Obama can come up with some support for this, I'm afraid I have to respond by calling Obama a liar.
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 3:16 am

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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 7:20 am


This oughta be good.
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UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 8:04 am



Quoting Agill (Thread starter):
That US troops need to take weapons from talebans because they lack ammunition seems very strange.

Yes and no.

Do we have an ammo shortage? No.

Are there moments where troops use non-US issued ammo to fight? Yes.

The whole point is to survive, while maintaining the fight. Sometimes it's easier to grab the nearest dropped AK, than expose yourself to run back to the HMMWV for more ammo. But don't forget, insurgents typically don't carry a large amount of ammo on them. Typically they'll have one, maybe two, clips of ammo. They'll pop out from around their hiding position, spray a few poorly aimed bursts, and run. So scavenging from insurgents isn't a guaranteed gold mine! Also, don't forget that they're firing a 7.62 round, while we fire a 5.56.

But yes, soldiers are resourceful people. If they're engaged with the enemy, they're not going to break contact because they're running low on ammo. They'll do what they have to do, in order to stay alive and kill the enemy.

Quoting Mt99 (Reply 7):

Except armored Humvees'...

Give me a fucking break. The HMMWV was never intended to be a frontline combat vehicle. No one could have foresaw the need for making it into a battle wagon. Throughout the history of warfare, combat realities have dictated equipment needs.

You will never have an invincible combat vehicle. Insurgents have even taken out M1A2 Abram tanks. Are you going to give us shit for not having better armored tanks!?  crazy 

Quoting ThreeIfByAir (Reply 12):
Perhaps the platoon was undermanned becaue new troops were filling units destined for Iraq, but I can't imagine breaking regular units apart is a normal occurance.

That's not how it works.

The Army deploys BCTs to specific combat theaters, and the troops are not pulled from one to another to augment each other. Units scheduled to go to Afghanistan go to Afghanistan, and units going to Iraq go to Iraq. You won't pull companies, let alone platoons from BCTs in Afghanistan to go to Iraq.

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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 8:57 am



Quoting Mt99 (Reply 7):
Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 6):
. This is the one thing the US always excelled: Plenty of everything.

Except armored Humvees'...

In 2003, there was no requirement for "up-armored" Humvees in Afghanistan.

Quoting ThreeIfByAir (Reply 12):
I don't think Obama has the story's details all there.

That's because he hasn't made up all the details, yet

Quoting ThreeIfByAir (Reply 12):
Also, weapons break down, especially in hostile environments like Afghanistan

In a platoon, one or two, maybe. I'll even double that (though that doesn't happen), but Obama implied all the weapons broke. That is a lie.
 
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 12:27 pm



Quoting MDorBust (Reply 10):
And they may use local firearms, not because US firearms are unobtainable but because using native weapons has certain operational advantages.

Advantages and disadvantages. Different firearms have distinctive sounds, an AK-47 sounds different from an M-16 and a Bren gun sounds different from an MG-42.
The advantage for special ops troops is that if they are using enemy guns somewhere in enemy territory behind the frontline, they are not giving away their presence by the noise of their weapons. On the other hand in the frontline Schuetze Arsch (Private @rse, German equivalent of Tommy Tentpeg) might think that every AK-47 he hears just MUST belong to an enemy and accordingly will open fire, leading to blue on blue incidents.
But, back to WW2, in Russia it was quite common for German soldiers to dump their MP-40 (in English speaking countries falsely known as Schmeisser), which was prone to jam at the slightest ingress of dirt, and get themselves a captured Russian PPsH or PPS. Russian semiautomatic rifles were also very popular (SVT-41). The German army actually started to rebarrel captured PPsH submachine guns to 9mm PARA to be used with MP-40 magazines, but the original proved to be more popular and Russian ammo was readily available.

BTW, during the war the German military used huge amounts of captured weaponry, for example whole divisional artillery units in Northern Africa were equipped with captured British 25Pdr. gun-howitzers and at some time the whole Africa Corps was running on captured British trucks. On the other hand, the British made lots of use off captured Italian and German vehicles. Everything was used, (I have a book about it), from smallarms to tanks and ships.

Jan
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AGM100
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 2:29 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 17):
The Army deploys BCTs to specific combat theaters, and the troops are not pulled from one to another to augment each other. Units scheduled to go to Afghanistan go to Afghanistan, and units going to Iraq go to Iraq. You won't pull companies, let alone platoons from BCTs in Afghanistan to go to Iraq.

Well IMO ... that pretty much flushes Mr.Obamas little moment as commander in chief down the drain. Sad thing is.... how many people out their believe him ....

I really was hoping in a way that he had actually spoke to guys from 1st Cav and had gotten down with the program. He Probably had a Latte with some battalion press spokesman or something....
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dl021
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 3:28 pm



Quoting Mt99 (Reply 7):
Except armored Humvees'...

They had them....just not armored enough to defeat IEDs. They were intended to defend against light MG fire as well as shrapnel. Not direct rocket fire nor underside mines.

Quoting MDorBust (Reply 10):
I never saw a single armored HMMWV while I was in the service. 1995-2001. They didn't exist in any numbers

I think that you may be forgetting all those MP and TOW2 vehicles which had Kevlar and aluminum armor which did what I described above. The gun and TOW2 vehicles had armor....they just aren't convoy vehicles.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 17):
Are there moments where troops use non-US issued ammo to fight? Yes.

The whole point is to survive, while maintaining the fight. Sometimes it's easier to grab the nearest dropped AK, than expose yourself to run back to the HMMWV for more ammo

I don't think that anyone commenting here has any infantry experience. You can only carry so much ammunition before you get bogged down. UH60 is entirely correct in that it's alot easier to pick up a dropped AK and pull the ammo off its former owner than it is to go back for more during a firefight, and it's alot better to use what's available when you run out of ammo because you left carrying only your basic load and got cut off from easy re-supply.

The Army is huge, so I'll bet that there's been a few instances of units running out of ammo due to supply chain issues or poor planning, or even because they used so much more than they planned on a day.....but if anyone needs ammunition it's available and will be delivered by ground vehicle, aircraft or freaking 11B SLE if that's what it takes.

Senator Obama is using some apocryphal story to make a point that I'm certain he believes, but he's not ever been around the Army and doesn't really know what he's talking about.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 17):
The HMMWV was never intended to be a frontline combat vehicle.

Well, in some ways they tried to use it as such, especially during the wave of "light" infantry division mania. The wanted to make the TLAT units first line of defense against tanks using mobility and speed as the primary means of defense as opposed to armor. All the armor on the Humvees (again) was intended to do was defend against light small arms fire and shrapnel as from a hand grenade or small mortar near miss. Not against direct heavy MG fire or rocketry.
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ANCFlyer
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 4:16 pm



Quoting ThreeIfByAir (Reply 12):
I don't think Obama has the story's details all there.

There's an understatement . . .

Quoting DL021 (Reply 21):
Senator Obama is using some apocryphal story to make a point that I'm certain he believes, but he's not ever been around the Army and doesn't really know what he's talking about.

At the end of the day, this is the bottom line . . .

More Arm Chair General  redflag .

"President" Obama will be dangerous for the military . . . much more dangerous than his Democrat predecessor . . .

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 17):
The whole point is to survive, while maintaining the fight. Sometimes it's easier to grab the nearest dropped AK, than expose yourself to run back to the HMMWV for more ammo.

If your Hummer is still in one piece . . .

Quoting DL021 (Reply 21):
I don't think that anyone commenting here has any infantry experience.

You get that impression don't ya  sarcastic 
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 4:40 pm



Quoting MDorBust (Reply 10):
And they may use local firearms, not because US firearms are unobtainable but because using native weapons has certain operational advantages.

Well, the M-16, has a terrible record of jamming if not properly maintained, and the dusty environment in Afghanistan and Iraq can't be of much help. Do any of you think this could just be the case of one unit using AKs out of personal preference, because they believe them to be more suitable for the environment? As MD11Engineer said, it wouldn't be the first time this happened.
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CaptOveur
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 6:36 pm



Quoting Mt99 (Reply 7):
Except armored Humvees'...

You do know those are a new invention and you can't just wave a magic wand and get 10,000 of anything that large and complex.

Bullets on the other hand take virtually no time to make. I can't imagine our military running short on ammunition- even the more expensive types (like multi-million dollar per shot SM-3 missiles)

the increased weight of adding armor to an unarmored vehicle (essentially a Jeep replacement) caused some other issues- like roll over problems because the CG shifted quite a bit.
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dl021
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 10:23 pm



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 22):
Quoting DL021 (Reply 21):
I don't think that anyone commenting here has any infantry experience.

You get that impression don't ya

I gotta say that reading how I wrote that I may have made it seem that combat experience by other branches is not worthy or valorous, and that flat wasn't the intent. My point was simply to say that it appeared that none of the commenters had ever had to make a decision about how much ammo to carry (and you can ask anyone who went into Grenada how much shit they carried versus guys who jumped into Panama with the lessons learned from Grenada).

You have a basic load of around 210 rounds per man plus more in bandoleers (pulled from ammo cans, but the bandoleers are merely for reloading magazines in a safe area...it would be a serious emergency to try and reload mags under fire). Machinegunners generally carry somewhere around 400 to 600 rounds with them, plus whatever their AG can carry. Ammo weighs a shitload, and the groundpounding line doggie has got to carry with them not only ammo but water (can't survive to fight without water) as well as the body armor, the accessories (knife, etool, scopes/binos/radios, etc) that you get bogged down with. Now you're talking about the average soldier carrying between 30 and 40lbs of gear at a minimum at all times when you count the helmet and body armor, and you have to walk around all day in that shit.

In a firefight you are going to win by putting more rounds into the enemy than they can put into you, and to do that you have to shoot. Sometimes you have to shoot alot to keep the enemy's heads down (suppressive fires) or to beat through a wall or window or whatever. With modern semi-auto and full auto weapons you run through ammo FAST.

It's not unrealistic to see how a platoon of men could run low on ammo after one firefight and could be motivated to pick up some enemy weapons from the dead or captured and use them.

It was also fairly common to see our guys picking up AK's for use in MOUT environments as this is an excellent house clearing weapon, and has some advantages over the M-4s in these situations (although the M-4s have advantages over the AKs).

So..there it is. I hope I didn't offend anyone with how I put the earlier statement. The combat experience of any soldier is valued by me in one way or another, and I put no serviceman or woman down for their service in the military.

I just value the opinions of an experienced rifleman in an infantry squad over some senator who doesn't know the difference between shit and shinola in this situation, and will listen to the infantryman about ammo consumption and conservation just as I would listen to the supply specialist talking about how to best coordinate with depot level supply to order more ammo.
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ANCFlyer
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 10:31 pm



Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):


Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 22):
Quoting DL021 (Reply 21):
I don't think that anyone commenting here has any infantry experience.

You get that impression don't ya

I gotta say that reading how I wrote that I may have made it seem that combat experience by other branches is not worthy or valorous, and that flat wasn't the intent

I didn't take it that way at all . . . don't think anyone else did either. . . .

Once you get your truck shot from underneath you, or you bail outta your chopper, or the airplane in which you were flying is now a lawndart - EVERYONE is Infantry . . .
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Dreadnought
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 10:35 pm



Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
Now you're talking about the average soldier carrying between 30 and 40lbs of gear at a minimum at all times when you count the helmet and body armor, and you have to walk around all day in that shit.

I don't think there is any argument about that. A man can't walk around carrying thousands of rounds. What Obama clearly said however is that men are going into combat with less ammo than they should have - i.e. that they would want to carry, i.e that regulations would require them to carry, because of Bush's policies leading to a chronic ammo shortage. Along the lines of, say, in Stalingrad when some Russian troops were sent into the city with no weapon at all, and told to pick one up off a dead soldier. And that is a load of BS. Somebody correct me iff I'm wrong, but if a US marine asked for a few extra mags in his loadout, they would be available, right?
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MD11Engineer
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 10:43 pm



Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
You have a basic load of around 210 rounds per man plus more in bandoleers (pulled from ammo cans, but the bandoleers are merely for reloading magazines in a safe area...it would be a serious emergency to try and reload mags under fire). Machinegunners generally carry somewhere around 400 to 600 rounds with them, plus whatever their AG can carry. Ammo weighs a shitload, and the groundpounding line doggie has got to carry with them not only ammo but water (can't survive to fight without water) as well as the body armor, the accessories (knife, etool, scopes/binos/radios, etc) that you get bogged down with. Now you're talking about the average soldier carrying between 30 and 40lbs of gear at a minimum at all times when you count the helmet and body armor, and you have to walk around all day in that shit.

Definitely does not count as combat experience: With our living history group we tried some physical activity (fast marches over distances of 15-25 km and practising some basic infantry tactics at platoon level under the instructions of a former RAF Regiment sergeant, a veteran of both the Falkland war and Northern Ireland, as well as under a former British army infantry captain), carrying what a British WW2 Tommy had to carry (me, being a right fool, volunteered to carry the section MG, a Bren gun). I was quite surprised how much physical stamina and strength was required to carry out the tasks. I'm past 40 now, I'm not an athlete, but I'm also not a lard@rseand reasonably fit, but to do this every day I would seriously have to work out.
And this was without having anybody shoot at us.
And in WW2, the soldier's basic kit was much smaller and lighter (I wonder today whenever I see them humping those huge Bergen rucksacks), but additionally to the personal equipment each soldier had to carry tools (e.g. a shovel or a pick), empty sandbags or ammo for some crew served weapon, like a mortar or a medium MG.
Body armour was also not yet introduced at this time, though the woolen uniform was defintely less comfortable and the steel helmet heavier.

Jan
Jan
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Stealthz
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sat Feb 23, 2008 10:55 pm

Whilst not really related to the Senator's comments.
A thought crossed my mind about picking up an AK-47 and it's ammo and using it... a side benefit is that every 7.62 round you launch into space(or into a bad guy) is one more round the bad guys cannot fire at you.

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dl021
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 4:02 am



Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 26):
Once you get your truck shot from underneath you, or you bail outta your chopper, or the airplane in which you were flying is now a lawndart - EVERYONE is Infantry . .

and cooks and bakers, too.....
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L-188
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 4:41 am



Quoting StealthZ (Reply 29):
Whilst not really related to the Senator's comments.
A thought crossed my mind about picking up an AK-47 and it's ammo and using it... a side benefit is that every 7.62 round you launch into space(or into a bad guy) is one more round the bad guys cannot fire at you

True, but I doubt that is a primary concern.

I know a lot of tankers and truck drivers wanted the shorter AK-47's for use out of the cabs of the trucks they where running. The M4 was ok but the M-16 was a bit longer. That and the Kalishikov action isn't as clean happy as the Stoner action.

At this time I think I should point out that in the Falklands a lot of troops traded "up" to captured FN-FAL's from their issued L1A1 Weapons. They where based on the same weapons, but the FN-FAL's retained full auto capablity while the L1A1 lacked this.
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 10:32 am



Quoting L-188 (Reply 31):
I know a lot of tankers and truck drivers wanted the shorter AK-47's for use out of the cabs of the trucks they where running

And at the risk of again hijacking the thread, isn't that the very reason Comrade K invented the thing in the first place?

Quoting L-188 (Reply 31):
True, but I doubt that is a primary concern.

Agreed,

Cheers
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MDorBust
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Sun Feb 24, 2008 11:56 pm



Quoting DL021 (Reply 21):
I think that you may be forgetting all those MP and TOW2 vehicles which had Kevlar and aluminum armor which did what I described above.

What paperwork do I need to file to retroactively have kevlar doors added to the MP HMMWVs we operated? Of course, our vehicles consisted of whatever got pulled out of the depot and shipped down to us with "MP" stenciled on it in black paint... so they may not have been really up to spec for the assigned duty.
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UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 8:45 am



Quoting MDorBust (Reply 33):
What paperwork do I need to file to retroactively have kevlar doors added to the MP HMMWVs we operated? Of course, our vehicles consisted of whatever got pulled out of the depot and shipped down to us with "MP" stenciled on it in black paint... so they may not have been really up to spec for the assigned duty.

I don't think Ian was saying that all MP HMMWVs were equipped with Kevlar and aluminum armor, but that the ones serving in Light Infantry Divisions, did.

The whole love affair with the LID was that the brass could stand up an entire "division" -- but not have to pay for all of the heavy equipment. Instead they could send in this division armed with vehicles like the HMMWV. Except it would be modified with increased armor and more powerful weapons like TOWs and Stingers. The division would also have less fire support but more air assault support, etc...

-UH60
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kc135topboom
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:18 pm

Since Obama cannot back up this accusation, I believe he made it up to help his anti-war and pro-surrender positions.
 
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:29 pm



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 35):
Since Obama cannot back up this accusation, I believe he made it up to help his anti-war and pro-surrender positions.

I'll be perfectly honest. I like the guy. He's extremely well spoken, and his message is something we haven't heard in over two decades. His positive, upbeat message actually comes across as genuinely sincere! When you listen to him talk, it can be very inspirational, and actually excited about the future. That whole negative doom-and-gloom approach simply isn't there, and it's such a refreshing change from the Clinton and Bush years... you can't help but like him.

With that said, it makes me wonder what will happen to the military, should he get elected. I fear he's just going to do what Clinton and the republican congress did in the 1990s... gut the military. And that is scary. Because if you look at a lot of our problems today, they directly relate to the very bad decisions made in the 1990s.

If we hadn't been gutted during the 1990s, many of our fiscal problems today would have been avoided. The F-22, the C-17s and C-5s, the new gen satellites, army aviation, the surface fleet... and even the war in Iraq. In 1991 we put a half a million men on the ground to retake the tiny country of Kuwait. In 2003, we didn't even have a half a million men in the active army, let alone enough to send to take Iraq!!!

We're finally making progress, and recouping from our losses during the 1990s. Another 4-8yrs of neglect and under funding would be disastrous.

-UH60
Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
WesternA318
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:38 pm



Quoting Jetjack74 (Reply 9):
Stay tuned.

I'm sure this'll be on oprah here soon...
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Klaus
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 1:04 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 36):
With that said, it makes me wonder what will happen to the military, should he get elected. I fear he's just going to do what Clinton and the republican congress did in the 1990s... gut the military. And that is scary. Because if you look at a lot of our problems today, they directly relate to the very bad decisions made in the 1990s.

And a certain disastrous decision made in 2002/2003 has absolutely nothing to do with it, even though it was entirely deliberate?  eyebrow 
 
MD11Engineer
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 1:26 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 36):
With that said, it makes me wonder what will happen to the military, should he get elected. I fear he's just going to do what Clinton and the republican congress did in the 1990s... gut the military. And that is scary. Because if you look at a lot of our problems today, they directly relate to the very bad decisions made in the 1990s.

Maybe he is just misinformed. After all, he largely depends on what his advisers are telling him. I understand also that outside a few garrison towns few American citizens ever come into regular contact with the military. What about young idealistic soldiers (like you) getting into contact with him to discuss military matters with him?
This might give him a refreshing insight, away from the usual lobbyist crowd.

Jan
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UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 1:27 pm

Quoting Klaus (Reply 38):
And a certain disastrous decision made in 2002/2003 has absolutely nothing to do with it, even though it was entirely deliberate?

**sigh**

No Klaus, you're obviously not privy to the events that I was referring too. I'm sorry - I know this breaks your heart - but I was not opening a door for more war/Bush bashing.

Let me school you.

I was talking about the "generation stall". After the Gulf War, both Republicans and Democrats (again, I'm sorry but as you can see, this isn't a political issue with an agenda to bash a particular side, so I know that takes the wind right out of your sails. Sorry.) Anyway, both the Democratic and Republican politicians in the executive and legislature branches gutted the military. The overall force was cut down nearly 40%, with some branches of the services seeing more than a 60% cut. The school of thought was that technology would win the next war, and that our technical edge was so great, that we could afford to slow the rate of advancement, and thus keep costs lower, while still keeping our enemies from having to overcome an untenable distance to gain parody with us.

So because of this, many programs that would have occurred, were either dramatically slashed, or cut all together. The problem came in this decade, when many of those delayed programs became urgent programs. Fighter aircraft that would have been otherwise replaced, were kept longer, since no replacement existed. They eventually reached their current status of structural limits, lifetime limits, operational limits, etc. We're currently fixing these problems, but what we're learning is that it's very expensive, and would have simply been cheaper had we done them - like we were suppose to - in the 1990s. Another example - the aerial tanker. Had planing remained steady, the plane would have started being fielding in the late part of the decade. Instead, we still do not have a decision, and costs are exponentially greater, while we border on the brink of a crisis with the current fleet reaching dangerous age limits.

We literally stalled an entire generation of replacement and repair. A lot of what we're doing today was suppose to happen during the 1990s, but because of the massive decrease, those plans were simply impossible to fund, or man. Yet now, issues that were once minor annoyances, are becoming major crisis flash points. And to overcome this missing generation gap is requiring a lot of time, effort and money.

Think of it this way, people who live in very cold areas properly prepare their vehicles, prior to the cold season. And during very cold weeks, even though they may not need to go somewhere, they still start their vehicles to keep the engine healthy. But, if they neglect their vehicle for too long, and they go out a month later to start it... the battery is dead, the tires are flat, and there is water in fuel system. It would have been worth braving the cold, and a lot cheaper, to simply go out and maintain the vehicle.

...The same goes for the US military. I know you like to politicize issues, a lot. But that's not appropriate here, so please refrain. There are a multitude of issues we're seeing come to fruition... and they would have done so regardless of the Iraq War. This is one of those issues you ought to defer to more knowledged individuals.

-UH60

[Edited 2008-02-25 05:33:14]
Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
Klaus
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 1:45 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 40):
I know you like to politicize issues, a lot. But that's not appropriate here, so please refrain. There are a multitude of issues we're seeing come to fruition... and they would have done so regardless of the Iraq War. This is one of those issues you ought to defer to more knowledged individuals.

I have no doubt that there were and still are problems with planning, administration and in many other areas.

There is also an obvious tendency for those in the military to not complain about additional missions but only about insufficient resources.

But are you really telling us that the added demands and attrition caused by the deliberately added Iraq campaign are completely irrelevant and the decision to stay with Afghanistan would not have made anything any easier? (Let's unrealistically assume for a moment that the political environment would have been exactly the same.)

Supply and demand need to be in a proper (or at least manageable) balance. I don't see how that fundamental rule suddenly doesn't apply to military resources even though it applies to everything else.

Either provide additional supply or reduce demand. Or live with the resulting squeeze. Which other option is there?
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 3:40 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 41):
There is also an obvious tendency for those in the military to not complain about additional missions but only about insufficient resources.

Because they are men, and don't complain when they are told to do a job. It is not their place to decide whether or not to perform a mission (other than tactically, of course). That is the politician's job. Would you prefer that the military have the right to tell the political leadership what it will or will not do?

Quoting Klaus (Reply 41):
Either provide additional supply or reduce demand.

Demand is what it is. In the 90s, we should have anticipated that the 21st century would demand a strong conventional military capability, because of the rise of Islamic fundementalism and the decline of the Soviet ability to keep their side of the Cold War in check, but we didn't. We are paying for it. If you think that we can somehow reduce this demand, I'd be pleased to hear it. But if it's another example of saying that we should bow to their demands, that somehow it is our own fault that they have elected to act like savages, you don't have much of an argument.
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Klaus
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 3:58 pm



Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 42):
Because they are men, and don't complain when they are told to do a job. It is not their place to decide whether or not to perform a mission (other than tactically, of course). That is the politician's job. Would you prefer that the military have the right to tell the political leadership what it will or will not do?

No. But when we're talking about the wider issues - such as the politial decisions behind the current state of the armed forces - in the role as a soldier you simply couldn't participate.

When talking about the political context of the armed forces, you either need to step into your role as a citizen and participate in the discussion or stay in your role as a soldier and shut up about politics at all.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 42):
Demand is what it is.

From within with your military hat on, sure.

But when you've already made the crossover into political territory, both financing of the military and political decisions about peace and war are both highly relevant.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 42):
If you think that we can somehow reduce this demand, I'd be pleased to hear it.

Not starting deliberate wars of aggression frees huge amounts of resources. Plus it keeps the allies at your side. Even more so in the aftermath of 9/11 when almost all countries on the planet are lining up to help you. Major multipliers at work.

Giant difference all in all. Unfortunately thrown away by incompetent political decisions. And as you can see today, the material and human costs of that political decision to (ab)use the military that way are enormous. The USA would need to have twice the budget and might still not be able to compensate.

Throwing good money (and people!) after bad decisions is a crappy way to go about business, don't you think?

Staying with the Afghanistan campaign and really making it work would have done wonders to discourage people from listening to terrorist recruiters, especially without the highly inflammatory Iraq invasion. But largely abandoning the former and nedlessly starting the latter has boosted terrorism beyond their wildest dreams.

Smart political decisions about how to use the army (especially when not to use it!) by far outscale any fiddling with the budget in the net consequences.
 
MDorBust
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 4:20 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 34):
I don't think Ian was saying that all MP HMMWVs were equipped with Kevlar and aluminum armor, but that the ones serving in Light Infantry Divisions, did.

Oh I know what he was saying. After all, when was the last time you ever saw a division in the field where all of the equipment was exactly what it was supposed to be? I'm sure the equipment was at least theoretically assigned to our unit.. It was probably in Georgia though.. while we were in Europe.

But, I can't pass up giving Ian a rub when I can get one in.
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dl021
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 10:37 pm



Quoting MDorBust (Reply 44):
But, I can't pass up giving Ian a rub when I can get one in.

That's quite possibly the least heterosexual thing you've ever said. I feel dirty.


As far as Light Infantry Divisions.....well, in the period where our main concern for armed conflict was the jungles and fields of central America they made some real sense. A light infantry division wasn't ever really contemplated for service in Europe or the Middle East on it's own. I do know that they involved lots of walking and carrying EVERYTHING on your back. Gave me an early appreciation for the soldiers from before the time of mechanization. And made me a little intolerant of mechanized soldiers....but we're off topic.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 43):
No. But when we're talking about the wider issues - such as the politial decisions behind the current state of the armed forces - in the role as a soldier you simply couldn't participate.

I beg to differ....in ones role as a citizen soldier we have the right to participate in the political process (as well as the responsibility to obey the orders of whomever wins) and we vote as well as campaign. High level officers don't do it out of tradition and an image issue....the military can't be seen to support one candidate over another, but there's no law that orders this. Nor does any law prevent the military from exerting pressure towards whatever direction it as an entity or individual servicemen and women feel is needed to accomplish the missions assigned.

Your point about not starting wars (although I disagree about who started the war) is not really addressing UHs point about the desperate situation our military was in vis-a-vis spares and manning. Years of deliberate neglect, combined with an uptempo operational utilisation left the current administration with a coming train wreck in terms of equipment and manning. The manning issue had been initially addressed and the equipment issues were being addressed, and then we were attacked. The rest goes from there.

Our military was stripped in the early 90s by this incredible rush for a "Peace Dividend" and both parties jumped in. The military suffered, especially under the intentional neglect of the Clinton Administration (who even refused to send equipment we had to troops they deployed when they were told by the troops that they had to have the equipment to accomplish the mission).

That's the point. Of course engaging in open warfare costs money. How does that imact the ignorance of Senator Obama?
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MD11Engineer
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 10:53 pm

Ian,

But concering Sen. Obama, wouldn't it make sense if somebody in the know would take the senator to the side and quietly tell him that he was talking b*ll*cks?
And then give him the real facts.
IMO, some younger mid-ranking officers and NCO's would be best for it.

Jan
Je Suis Charlie et je suis Ahmet aussi
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Mon Feb 25, 2008 11:02 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 41):
But are you really telling us that the added demands and attrition caused by the deliberately added Iraq campaign are completely irrelevant and the decision to stay with Afghanistan would not have made anything any easier? (Let's unrealistically assume for a moment that the political environment would have been exactly the same.)

I am simply not interested in letting you make yet another thread into a battleground over Iraq. You do this far too often. I'll try and continue to educate you on this subject, that you apparently have very little knowledge about.

When the military buys a piece of equipment, they factor into the decision an estimated service life. So lets say in 1975 the military bought truck X, and they expected a minor overhaul of the fleet at 8yrs, a major overhaul at 15yrs, and phased retirement and replacement at 20yrs.

Well come 1995, when the vehicle was suppose to be replaced, there was not enough money to replace an entire class of vehicle, so the military decides to pay for the cheaper option - extend the service life. This is fine, but it's also understood that you are kicking the ball down the road for the next guy to deal with. And come 2005, ten years after the estimated retirement, the vehicle is still in service, and desperately needs to be replaced. The cost of replacement is now double of what it once was.

....This happened to countless different pieces of equipment in the US military. The 1990s had always been planned as a natural generation marker, and phase point. Look at the majority of equipment - a lot of it originated in the 1970s. And it was always intended to serve until the next generation marker (mid 90s) and then be replaced. Well it never happened. We skipped the replacement, and chose to extend the life of a lot of equipment.

So we're now forced to replace everything that was suppose to happen in the 1990s, and also everything that had been planned for replacement during the first decade of the 21st century! So we're getting hit twice.

Klaus, this simply isn't an appropriate place for you to rehash the tired debate over Iraq. Our situation goes deeper than simply the past 5 years, and my point was that another decade of neglect would be back breaking. So please, leave your agenda at the door.

-UH60
Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
dl021
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:01 pm



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 46):
But concering Sen. Obama, wouldn't it make sense if somebody in the know would take the senator to the side and quietly tell him that he was talking b*ll*cks?
And then give him the real facts.
IMO, some younger mid-ranking officers and NCO's would be best for it.

Jan,

Of course it would. But it's unlikely to happen anytime soon. Most of the people around him will be fairly anti-military in attitude (although they'll claim to support the soldiers, you can ask them what they've generally done other than pay taxes).

UH...you realize that you're asking the impossible?
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AirCop
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RE: Obamas Claims About Army Platoon?

Wed Feb 27, 2008 2:38 am

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...itics/p093918S89.DTL&type=politics

Looks like based on Gen. Casey testimony before Congress today (2/26) that Obama's claim could be plausible.

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