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Some Scary thoughts The Green Machine

‘The Big One Is Coming’ and the U.S. Military Isn’t Ready A U.S. flag officer talks candidly about the fading U.S. deterrent. by The WSJ

WSJ Opinion: The U.S. Military’s Growing Weakness
Review and Outlook: The Heritage Foundation’s latest ‘Index of U.S. Military Strength’ warns of declining power in the U.S. Navy and Air Force. Images: Department of Defence/Heritage Foundation Composite: Mark Kelly
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Russia’s invasion of Ukraine revealed the fading power of America’s military deterrent, a fact that too few of our leaders seem willing to admit in public. So it is encouraging to hear a senior flag officer acknowledge the danger in a way that we hope is the start of a campaign to educate the American public.

OPINION: FREE EXPRESSION

“This Ukraine crisis that we’re in right now, this is just the warmup,” Navy Admiral Charles Richard, commander of U.S. Strategic Command, said this week at a conference. “The big one is coming. And it isn’t going to be very long before we’re going to get tested in ways that we haven’t been tested” for “a long time.”

How bad is it? Well, the admiral said, “As I assess our level of deterrence against China, the ship is slowly sinking. It is sinking slowly, but it is sinking, as fundamentally they are putting capability in the field faster than we are.” Sinking slowly is hardly a consolation. As “those curves keep going,” it won’t matter “how good our commanders are, or how good our horses are—we’re not going to have enough of them. And that is a very near-term problem.”

Note that modifier “near-term.” This is a more urgent vulnerability than most of the political class cares to recognize.

Adm. Richard noted that America retains an advantage in submarines—“maybe the only true asymmetric advantage we still have”—but even that may erode unless America picks up the pace “getting our maintenance problems fixed, getting new construction going.” Building three Virginia-class fast-attack submarines a year would be a good place to start.

The news last year that China tested a hypersonic missile that flew around the world and landed at home should have raised more alarms than it did. It means China can put any U.S. city or facility at risk and perhaps without being detected. The fact that the test took the U.S. by surprise and that it surpassed America’s hypersonic capabilities makes it worse. How we lost the hypersonic race to China and Russia deserves hearings in Congress.

“We used to know how to move fast, and we have lost the art of that,” the admiral added. The military talks “about how we are going to mitigate our assumed eventual failure” to field new ballistic submarines, bombers or long-range weapons, instead of flipping the question to ask: “What’s it going to take? Is it money? Is it people? Do you need authorities?” That’s “how we got to the Moon by 1969.”

Educating the public about U.S. military weaknesses runs the risk of encouraging adversaries to exploit them. But the greater risk today is slouching ahead in blind complacency until China invades Taiwan or takes some other action that damages U.S. interests or allies because Bejiing thinks the U.S. can do nothing about it.

A U.S. Navy walks on the deck of aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan where F-18 fighter jets are parked during a goodwill visit in Manila, Philippines, Oct. 14.PHOTO: ELOISA LOPEZ/REUTERS

Appeared in the November 5, 2022, print edition as ‘‘The Big One Is Coming’’.

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All About Guns The Green Machine

War Trophies: Bring Back Guns Gaining in Value

The deadliest and most violent war in human history led to the production of millions and millions of guns.

Guns like the much revered M1 Garand and M1911 ended up as surplus weapons, distributed through the Civilian Marksmanship program or, like the Garand and M1 Carbine, were sold out of barrels at the local sporting goods and gun stores for hunting.

But some guns ended up as trophies in the homes of the soldiers, sailors, and airmen who fought in the war after being carried home in a duffle bag or foot locker — “the bring back gun.”

Surrender-Nambu-on-background-3This Nambu Type 14 pistol was surrendered by a Japanese general at Ie Shima in World War 2. It is available as Lot 2471 in the June 22-24 Sporting and Collector Auction.

War Souvenirs

Napoleon promoted taking war trophies. Today, Ukrainian farmers tow away Russian tanks. The Hague Convention of 1907 put limitations on war trophies including municipal property, religious articles, arts and science related articles, and state property. World War II British Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery discouraged the practice but that didn’t stop his men from doing it.

War trophies could be a patch, a coat, a helmet, a dagger, or, alas, more grisly stuff. Firearms are the focus here — the exotic weapon of a foreign military taken off a soldier, found in a factory, or simply rooting around. Not all of these bring back guns are created equal.

While many were non-descript LugerNambu, or Walther pistols or rifles like the Gewehr 41, Karabiner 98k, or Type 38, some rose above. They were special — or infamous — guns due to a historical connection.

Beretta-on-background-2This Beretta 1934 pistol has World War 2 bring back documentation. It is part of Lot 413 in the June 22-24 Sporting and Collector Auction.

WW2 war Trophies

Several Japanese World War 2 era pistols are available in the June 22-24 Sporting and Collectors Auction but one rises above them. More than 400,000 Nambu Type 14 pistols were made for World War 2. A Type 14 surrendered by a general at Ie Shima, off the coast of Okinawa, accompanied by bring back paperwork is expected to draw more interest than the other Japanese pistols in the auction.

In RIAC’s May Premier Auction a pair of engraved presentation Walther PPs that had personal engraving done at the request of GIs at the firearms factory that included soldiers’ names and the 90th Infantry Division’s “Tough Ombre” logo. One was one serial number away from a similar Walther PP given to Gen. George Patton. They sold for $41,125 and $47,000 respectively.

Compare those to Walther pistols connected to Nazi leaders that sold well into the six figures. A Walther PPK carried by Herman Goering at the time of his surrender sold for $230,000 at a Premier Auction in September 2018, but was topped by a chrome-plated and engraved Walther PP attributed to SS Chief Heinrich Himmler that sold for $356,500 at RIAC’s May 2019 Premier Auction.

While many soldiers were simply looking for a memento of their service in the war, be it a pistol, a rifle, a patch, or helmet, some discovered souvenirs with significant history attached to them that can launch a bring back gun into a rarefied class of weapon.

Himmler-pistol-on-backgroundThis chrome-plated Walther PP pistol attributed to SS Chief Heinrich Himmler sold for $356,500 in Rock Island Auction Company’s 2018 Premier Auction.

Cold War Trophies

By the end of the Korean War, the U.S. military frowned on war trophies to avoid looking like looters. In recent conflicts the goal is to appear as liberators and not conquerors. Certain items were still allowed but required the approval of a superior officer and a completed DD Form 603-1 to present at customs.

The military also prohibited returning weapons to the United States that were prohibited under the National Firearms Act of 1934. These included items like full-auto machine guns and silencers. That didn’t stop AK-47s and SKS rifles from getting into the United States as contraband during the Vietnam War. However, a person caught with this contraband could face criminal charges. One lot in the upcoming Sporting and Collector Auction includes Chinese semi-automatic rifles brought back from Vietnam.

Chinese-trioThese three Chinese military rifles were brought back from Vietnam. Lot 364 includes a M21 Type 56 semi-automatic rifle (top), Type 56 semi-automatic rifle, and a Type 53 carbine.

Prohibited weapons were only part of the concern of war trophies. Items that a soldier might see as a trophy, like a claymore mine or grenade are dangerous to ship, as this U.S. Army fact sheet from January 1968 lays out the dangers of war trophies. One scenario puts soldiers headed home on a Boeing 707 troop flight, and one turns to the soldier sitting next to him and says he’s got an RPG round in his bag as a souvenir.

The fact sheet states: “A Fairy Tale? Not on your life! That’s a scene which has been repeated for real more than once. Customs and postal officials have actually found, among other dangerous items, C4 plastic explosives, claymore mines with arming mechanisms, TNT, rifle grenades, flares, fireworks, and M72 rockets complete with launchers! These things and countless others have been in baggage or mail being flown to the U.S. aboard returning planes carrying 165 happy — and unsuspecting — soldiers home from a year of dodging VC bullets.”

A 1968 amnesty allowed veterans to register NFA items they brought back.

In 1991, the United States rules for engagement during Desert Storm stated “The taking of war trophies (is) prohibited.” During the later Iraq and Afghanistan wars, souvenirs had to go in front of a reviewing officer. Among firearms sold by Rock Island Auction from the Iraq war included a CIA-seized Ruger M77 bolt action Mannlicher rifle of Saddam Hussein and gold-plated pistols attributed to Saddam Hussein and Uday Hussein.

Udday-pistol-on-backgroundThis gold-plated Tariq pistol was among weapons seized from the home of Uday Hussein, son of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. It sold for $23,000 in RIAC’s June 2020, Premier Auction.

In 2005, a Minnesota National Guardsman was charged with shipping home two AK-47s from Iraq. In 2006, A U.S. Marine was also charged for possessing an illegal AK.

Permissible firearms are still allowed but require proper paperwork, including a receipt showing the date, place, and source of purchase, and the importer’s identity. War trophy firearms that are permitted can’t be mailed or shipped but must be personally transported to the United States.

Saddam-Ruger-on-backgroundThis Ruger bolt action rifle is seen in news footage of Saddam Hussein firing it in the air in celebration. It realized a price of $48,875 in RIAC’s September 2013 Premier Auction.

Martini-Henry Rifles

Gone are the days of the Luger, Walther, or Nambu bring back gun, but that doesn’t mean they no longer exist. It just means they are of a different type. In Rock Island Auction Company’s June Sporting and Collector Auction, numerous lots include bring back guns. Some are World War 2 trophies while a number are antique British rifles acquired in Afghanistan with bring back papers from Bagram Air Force Base.

They aren’t AKs or heavily engraved Walther pistols coming back from Afghanistan, but instead are single-shot Martini-Henry rifles and muzzle loading Enfield rifles. The 19th century guns date back to when the British Empire ruled the region. Most are considered in fair condition and came through Bagram Air Base in 2016.

Martini-Henry-on-background-2Antique British rifles are the bring back guns of Afghanistan. There are several lots in the June 22-24 Sporting and Collector Auction that include Martini-Henry and Enfield rifles that passed through Bagram Air Base on the way back to the United States.

War trophies are as old as war itself, but as war has changed so has the attitude and ability to take home souvenirs of combat. Fighting isn’t close in like it once was in the jungles of Vietnam or the hedgerows of Europe and countries don’t want to be seen as conquerors that can take whatever they please. Collecting militaria will always exist, but what will be collectible won’t likely be a gun taken from a factory assembly line in Germany, the pistol of a world leader, or the helmet of a fallen foe, making the war souvenirs of World War II and military actions on into the 21st century even more scarce and valuable. Check out the bring back guns in the June 22-24 Sporting and Collector Auction.

Sources

Will New Regulations limit the future of the Hobby, by Peter Suciu

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Ammo The Green Machine

Depleted Uranium Tank Ammunition | DEADLY DARTS 💀☄️

I have seen this puppies used at the NTC and they are just awesome! It is just a pity that the tanks of Large Tank battles is fading from the battle Fields!

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The Green Machine

“American Uniforms of the World Wars – The Evolution” 1941-1943

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The Green Machine This great Nation & Its People War

11th Airborne Division Facts in 11 Minutes

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Soldiering The Green Machine

Sureeeeeee!

May be an image of 5 people and text that says '.AND THEN THEY SAID OFFICERS ARE HELD TO A HIGHER STANDARD THAN ENLISTED!'

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Some Scary thoughts The Green Machine

More Scary Stuff to ponder upon

The U.S. Army’s Operating Concept 2016-2028 was issued in August 2010 with three goals.  First, it aims to portray how future Army forces will conduct operations as part of a joint force to deter conflict, prevail in war, and succeed in a range of contingencies, at home and abroad.  Second, the concept describes the employment of Army forces at the tactical and operational levels of war between 2016 and 2028.  Third, in broad terms the concept describes how Army headquarters, from theater army to division, organize and use their forces.  The concept goes on to describe the major categories of Army operations, identify the capabilities required of Army forces, and guide how force development should be prioritized. The goal of this concept is to establish a common frame of reference for thinking about how the US Army will conduct full spectrum operations in the coming two decades (US Army Training and Doctrine Command, The Army Operating Concept 2016 – 2028, TRADOC Pamphlet 525-3-1, dated 19 August 2010, p. iii.  Hereafter cited as TD Pam 525-3-1.  The Army defines full spectrum operations as the combination of offensive, defensive, and either stability operations overseas or civil support operations on U.S. soil).

A key and understudied aspect of full spectrum operations is how to conduct these operations within American borders.  If we face a period of persistent global conflict as outlined in successive National Security Strategy documents, then Army officers are professionally obligated to consider the conduct of operations on U.S. soil.  Army capstone and operating concepts must provide guidance concerning how the Army will conduct the range of operations required to defend the republic at home.  In this paper, we posit a scenario in which a group of political reactionaries take over a strategically positioned town and have the tacit support of not only local law enforcement but also state government officials, right up to the governor.  Under present law, which initially stemmed from bad feelings about Reconstruction, the military’s domestic role is highly circumscribed.  In the situation we lay out below, even though the governor refuses to seek federal help to quell the uprising (the usual channel for military assistance), the Constitution allows the president broad leeway in times of insurrection.  Citing the precedents of Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War and Dwight D. Eisenhower sending troops to Little Rock in 1957, the president mobilizes the military and the Department of Homeland Security, to regain control of the city.  This scenario requires us to consider how domestic intelligence is gathered and shared, the role of local law enforcement (to the extent that it supports the operation), the scope and limits of the Insurrection Act–for example maintaining a military chain of command but in support of the Attorney General as the Department of Justice is the Lead Federal Agency (LFA) under the conditions of the Act–and the roles of the local, national, and international media.

The Scenario (2016) 

The Great Recession of the early twenty-first century lasts far longer than anyone anticipated.  After a change in control of the White House and Congress in 2012, the governing party cuts off all funding that had been dedicated to boosting the economy or toward relief.  The United States economy has flatlined, much like Japan’s in the 1990s, for the better part of a decade.  By 2016, the economy shows signs of reawakening, but the middle and lower-middle classes have yet to experience much in the way of job growth or pay raises.  Unemployment continues to hover perilously close to double digits, small businesses cannot meet bankers’ terms to borrow money, and taxes on the middle class remain relatively high.  A high-profile and vocal minority has directed the public’s fear and frustration at nonwhites and immigrants.  After almost ten years of race-baiting and immigrant-bashing by right-wing demagogues, nearly one in five Americans reports being vehemently opposed to immigration, legal or illegal, and even U.S.-born nonwhites have become occasional targets for mobs of angry whites.

In May 2016 an extremist militia motivated by the goals of the “tea party” movement takes over the government of Darlington, South Carolina, occupying City Hall, disbanding the city council, and placing the mayor under house arrest.  Activists remove the chief of police and either disarm local police and county sheriff departments or discourage them from interfering.  In truth, this is hardly necessary.  Many law enforcement officials already are sympathetic to the tea party’s agenda, know many of the people involved, and have made clear they will not challenge the takeover.  The militia members are organized and have a relatively well thought-out plan of action.

With Darlington under their control, militia members quickly move beyond the city limits to establish “check points” – in reality, something more like choke points — on major transportation lines.  Traffic on I-95, the East Coast’s main north-south artery; I-20; and commercial and passenger rail lines are stopped and searched, allegedly for “illegal aliens.”  Citizens who complain are immediately detained.  Activists also collect “tolls” from drivers, ostensibly to maintain public schools and various city and county programs, but evidence suggests the money is actually going toward quickly increasing stores of heavy weapons and ammunition.  They also take over the town web site and use social media sites to get their message out unrestricted.

When the leaders of the group hold a press conference to announce their goals, they invoke the Declaration of Independence and argue that the current form of the federal government is not deriving its “just powers from the consent of the governed” but is actually “destructive to these ends.”  Therefore, they say, the people can alter or abolish the existing government and replace it with another that, in the words of the Declaration, “shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.”  While mainstream politicians and citizens react with alarm, the “tea party” insurrectionists in South Carolina enjoy a groundswell of support from other tea party groups, militias, racist organizations such as the Ku Klux Klan, anti-immigrant associations such as the Minutemen, and other right-wing groups.  At the press conference the masked militia members’ uniforms sport a unit seal with a man wearing a tricorn hat and carrying a musket over the motto “Today’s Minutemen.”  When a reporter asked the leaders who are the “red coats” the spokesman answered, “I don’t know who the redcoats are…it could be federal troops.” Experts warn that while these groups heretofore have been considered weak and marginal, the rapid coalescence among them poses a genuine national threat.

The mayor of Darlington calls the governor and his congressman.  He cannot act to counter the efforts of the local tea party because he is confined to his home and under guard.  The governor, who ran on a platform that professed sympathy with tea party goals, is reluctant to confront the militia directly.  He refuses to call out the National Guard.  He has the State Police monitor the roadblocks and checkpoints on the interstate and state roads but does not order the authorities to take further action.  In public the governor calls for calm and proposes talks with the local tea party to resolve issues.  Privately, he sends word through aides asking the federal government to act to restore order.  Due to his previous stance and the appearance of being “pro” tea party goals the governor has little political room to maneuver.

The Department of Homeland Security responds to the governor’s request by asking for defense support to civil law enforcement.  After the Department of Justice states that the conditions in Darlington and surrounding areas meet the conditions necessary to invoke the Insurrection Act, the President invokes it.

(From Title 10 US Code the President may use the militia or Armed Forces to:

§ 331 – Suppress an insurrection against a State government at the request of the Legislature or, if not in session, the Governor.

§ 332 – Suppress unlawful obstruction or rebellion against the U.S.

§ 333 – Suppress insurrection or domestic violence if it (1) hinders the execution of the laws to the extent that a part or class of citizens are deprived of Constitutional rights and the State is unable or refuses to protect those rights or (2) obstructs the execution of any Federal law or impedes the course of justice under Federal laws.)

By proclamation he calls on the insurrectionists to disperse peacefully within 15 days.  There is no violation of the Posse Comitatus Act.  The President appoints the Attorney General and the Department of Justice as the lead federal agency to deal with the crisis.  The President calls the South Carolina National Guard to federal service.  The Joint Staff in Washington, D.C., alerts U.S. Northern Command, the headquarters responsible for the defense of North America, to begin crisis action planning.  Northern Command in turn alerts U.S. Army North/Fifth U.S. Army for operations as a Joint Task Force headquarters.  Army units at Fort Bragg, N.C.; Fort Stewart, Ga.; and Marines at Camp Lejuene, N.C. go on alert.  The full range of media, national and international, is on scene.

“Fix Darlington, but don’t destroy it!”

Upon receiving the alert for possible operations in Darlington, the Fifth Army staff begins the military decision making process with mission analysis and intelligence preparation of the battlefield. (Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield is the term applied to the procedures performed by the intelligence staff of all Army unit headquarters in the development of bases of information on the enemy, terrain and weather, critical buildings and facilities in a region and other points.  Army units conduct operations on the basis of this information.  The term is in Army doctrine and could be problematic when conducted in advance of operations on U.S. soil. The general form of the initial intelligence estimate is in figure 1.)  In developing the intelligence estimate military intelligence planners will confront the first constraints on the conduct of full spectrum operations in the United States, as well as constraints on supporting law enforcement.  The analytical steps of the Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield, or IPB, must be modified in preparing for and conducting operations in the homeland.

The steps of the IPB process are: define the operational environment/battlespace, describe environmental effects on operations/describe battlespace effects, evaluate the threat/adversary, and determine threat/adversary courses of action. (PSYOP was changed to Military Information Support Operations, MISO, by Secretary of Defense directive in June 2010.)

While preparing terrain and weather data do not pose a major problem to the G-2, gathering data on the threat and under civil considerations for intelligence and operational purposes is problematic to say the least.

Figure 1: The Intelligence Estimate (FM 2-01.3, p. 7, chapter 1)

Executive Order 12333, United States Intelligence Activities, dated 4 December 1981, relates mostly to intelligence gathering outside the continental United States. However, it also outlines in broad terms permissible information-gathering within the United States and on American citizens and permanent resident aliens, categorized as United States persons. (The executive order included in its definition of “United States persons” unincorporated associations mostly comprising American citizens or permanent resident aliens; or a corporation incorporated in the United States, except for a corporation directed and controlled by a foreign government or governments.  The basic thrust of the rules and regulations concerning intelligence collection and dissemination are focused on protecting American citizens’ Constitutional rights.  These rules and regulations are focused, properly, on support to law enforcement.  They do not contain much guidance concerning the conduct of full spectrum operations such as the situation facing the corps.  While the best practice as described in FM 3-28 is to retain just enough for situational awareness and force protection the situation facing the corps strains the limits of situational awareness and could place the G2 and commanders at some risk once the dust has settled in the aftermath of an operation within the homeland.) The Fifth Army intelligence analysts will have a great deal of difficulty determining tea party members’ legal status.  Because the Defense Department does not collect or store information on American civilians or civilian groups during peacetime, the military will have to rely on local and state law enforcement officials at the start of operations to establish intelligence data-bases and ultimately restore the rule of law in Darlington.

Using all intelligence disciplines from human intelligence to signals intelligence, the Fifth Army G2 and his staff section will collect as much information as they need to accomplish the mission.  Once the rule of law is restored the Fifth Army G2 must ensure that it destroys information gathered during the operation within 90 days unless the law or the Secretary of Defense requires the Fifth Army to keep it for use in legal cases (Field Manual 3-28, Civil Support Operations, pp. 7-13.  The FM cites Department of Defense Directive, DODD, 5200.27).  Because of the legal constraints on the military’s involvement in domestic affairs and the sympathies of local law enforcement, developing the initial intelligence, a continuing estimate, and potential adversary courses of action (what the insurrectionists holding Darlington and surrounding areas might do in response to Army operations) will be difficult. (The closest guidance on handling information collected in the course of civil disturbance operations is in Department of Defense Directive 5200.27 and Department of Defense Directive 5240.1R.  These directives state: “Operations Related to Civil Disturbance. The Attorney General is the chief civilian officer in charge of coordinating all federal government activities relating to civil disturbances. Upon specific prior authorization of the Secretary of Defense or his designee, information may be acquired that is essential to meet operational requirements flowing from the mission as to DOD to assist civil authorities in dealing with civil disturbances. Such authorization will only be granted when there is a distinct threat of a civil disturbance exceeding the law enforcement capabilities of State and local authorities.”)

Fifth Army terrain analysts continue using open sources ranging from Google maps to Map-quest.  Federal legal restrictions on assembling databases remain in effect and even incidental imagery, aerial photos gathered in the conduct of previously conducted training missions, cannot be used.  Surveillance of the tea party roadblocks and checkpoints around Darlington proceeds carefully.  Developing legal data-bases is one effort, but support for local law enforcement is hindered because of problems in determining how to share this information and with whom.

Despite these problems, receiving support from local law enforcement is critical to restoring the rule of law in Darlington.  City police officers, county sheriff deputies and state troopers can contribute valuable local knowledge of personalities, customs and terrain beyond what can be found in data-bases and observation.  Liaison officers and non-commissioned officers, with appropriate communications equipment must be exchanged.  Given the suspicion that local police are sympathetic to the tea party members’ goals special consideration to operational security must be incorporated into planning.  Informally communicating to the insurrectionists the determination of federal forces to restore local government can materially improve the likelihood of success.  However, informants sympathetic to the tea party could easily compromise the element of surprise.  The fact that a federal court must authorize wire taps in every instance also complicate the monitoring of communications into and out of Darlington.  Operations in Darlington specifically and in the homeland generally must also take into account the possibility of increased violence and the range of responses to violence.

All federal military forces involved in civil support must follow the standing rules for the use of force (SRUF) specified by the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff.  Much like the rules of force issued to the 7th Infantry Division during operations in Los Angeles in 1992 the underlying principle involves a continuum of force, a graduated level of response determined by civilians’ behavior.  Fifth Army must assume that every incident of gunfire will be investigated. (Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Instruction, CJCSI, 3121.01B, Standing Rules of Engagement/Standing Rules for the Use of Force for US Forces.  There are many similarities between rules for the use of force and rules of engagement, the right of self-defense for example.  The fundamental difference is rules of engagement are by nature permissive measures intended to allow the maximum use of destructive combat power appropriate for the mission.  Rules for the use of force are restrictive measures intended to allow only the minimum force necessary to accomplish the mission.) All units involved must also realize that operations will be conducted under the close scrutiny of the media.

Operating under media scrutiny is not a new phenomenon for the U.S. military.  What is new and newsworthy about this operation is that it is taking place in the continental United States.  Commanders and staffs must think about the effect of this attention and be alert when considering how to use the media.  The media will broadcast the President’s proclamation and cover military preparations for operations in Darlington.  Their reports will be as available to tea party leaders in Darlington as they are to a family watching the evening news in San Francisco.  Coupled with a gradual build-up of federal forces in the local area, all covered by the media, the effect of this pressure will compound over time and quite possibly cause doubt about the correctness of the events in Darlington in the minds of its’ citizens and the insurrectionists who control the town.  The Joint Task Force commander, staff and subordinate units must operate as transparently as possible, while still giving due consideration to operational security.   Commanders must manage these issues even as they increase pressure on the insurrectionists.

The design of this plan to restore the rule of law to Darlington will include information/influence operations designed to present a picture of the federal response and the inevitable defeat of the insurrection.  The concept of the joint plan includes a phased deployment of selected forces into the area beginning with reconnaissance and military intelligence units.  Once the Fifth Army commander determines he has a complete picture of activity within the town and especially of the insurrectionists’ patterns of behavior, deployment of combat, combat support and combat service support forces will begin from Forts Bragg and Stewart, and Camp Lejuene.  Commanders will need to consider how the insurrectionists will respond.  Soldiers and Marines involved in this operation, and especially their families will be subject to electronic mail, Facebook messages, Twitters, and all manner of information and source of pressure.  Given that Soldiers and Marines stationed at Forts Bragg and Stewart as well as Camp Lejuene live relatively nearby and that many come from this region, chances are they will know someone who lives in or near Darlington.  Countering Al Qaeda web-based propaganda is one thing, countering domestic information bombardments is another effort entirely.

The design and execution of operations to restore the rule of law in Darlington will be complicated.  The Fifth Army will retain a military chain of command for regular Army and Marine Corps units along with the federalized South Carolina National Guard, but will be in support of the Department of Justice as the Lead Federal Agency, LFA.  The Attorney General may designate a Senior Civilian Representative of the Attorney General (SCRAG) to coordinate the efforts of all Federal agencies.  The SCRAG has the authority to assign missions to federal military forces.  The Attorney General may also appoint a Senior Federal Law Enforcement Officer (SFLEO) to coordinate all Federal law enforcement activities.

The pace of the operation needs to be deliberate and controlled.  Combat units will conduct overt Show of Force operations to remind the insurrectionists they are now facing professional military forces, with all the training and equipment that implies.  Army and Marine units will remove road blocks and check points both overtly and covertly with minimum essential force to ratchet up pressure continually on insurrectionist leadership.  Representatives of state and local government as well as federalized South Carolina National Guard units will care for residents choosing to flee Darlington.  A focus on the humanitarian aspect of the effort will be politically more palatable for the state and local officials.  Federal forces continue to tighten the noose as troops seize and secure power and water stations, radio and TV stations, and hospitals.  The final phase of the operation, restoring order and returning properly elected officials to their offices, will be the most sensitive.

Movements must be planned and executed more carefully than the operations that established the conditions for handover.  At this point military operations will be on the downturn but the need for more politically aware military advice will not.  War, and the use of federal military force on U.S. soil, remains an extension of policy by other means.  Given the invocation of the Insurrection Act, the federal government must defeat the insurrection, preferably with minimum force.  Insurrectionists and their sympathizers must have no doubt that an uprising against the Constitution will be defeated.  Dealing with the leaders of the insurrection can be left to the proper authorities, but drawing from America history, military advice would suggest an amnesty for individual members of the militia and prosecution for leaders of the movement who broke the law.  This fictional scenario leads not to conclusions but points to ponder when considering 21st century full spectrum operations in the continental United States.

The Insurrection Act does not need to be changed for the 21st century.  Because it is broadly written, the law allows the flexibility needed to address a range of threats to the Republic.

What we must consider in the design of homeland defense or security exercises is translating the Act into action.  The Army Operating Concept describes Homeland Defense as the protection of “U.S. sovereignty, territory, domestic population, and critical defense infrastructure against external threats and aggression, or other threats as directed by the president” (TD Pam 525-3-1, p. 27.  Emphasis added.) Neither the operating concept nor recently published Army doctrine, FM 3-28 Civil Support Operations, goes into detail when considering the range of “other threats.”  While invoking the Insurrection Act must be a last resort, once it is put into play Americans will expect the military to execute without pause and as professionally as if it were acting overseas.  The Army cannot disappoint the American people, especially in such a moment.  While real problems and real difficulties of such operations may not be perceived until the point of execution preparation will afford the Army the ability to not be too badly wrong at the outset.

Being not too badly wrong at the outset requires focused military education on the nuances of operations in the homeland.  Army doctrine defines full spectrum operations as a mix of offense, defense and either stability or civil support operations.  Curriculum development is a true zero sum game; when a subject is added another must be removed.  Given the array of threats and adversaries; from “commando-style” raids such as Mumbai, the changing face of militias in the United States, rising unrest in Mexico, and the tendency to the extreme in American politics the subject of how American armed forces will conduct security and defense operations within the continental U.S. must be addressed in the curricula of our Staff and War Colleges. (The Kansas City Star, 12 September 2010, “The New Militia.”  The front page story concerns the changing tactics of militia movements and how militias now focus on community service and away from violence against the government.  Law enforcement agencies feel this is camouflage for true intentions.  The story covered armed paramilitary militias in Missouri and Kansas.)

The Army must address the how to of intelligence/information gathering and sharing, liaison with local law enforcement and conduct of Information Operations in focused exercises, such as UNIFIED QUEST, given a wider range of invited participants.  The real question of how to educate the Army on full spectrum operations under homeland security and defense conditions must be a part of an overall review of professional military education for the 21st century.  We cannot discount the agility of an external threat, the evolution of Al Qaeda for example, and its ability to take advantage of a “Darlington event” within U.S. borders.  How would we respond to this type of action?  What if border violence from Mexico crosses into the United States?  The pressure for action will be enormous and the expectation of professional, disciplined military action will be equally so given the faith the American people have in their armed forces.  The simple fact is that while the Department of Justice is the Lead Federal Agency in these operations the public face of the operation will be uniformed American Soldiers.  On a TV camera a civilian is a civilian but here is no mistaking the mottled battle dress of a Soldier with the U.S. flag on his or her right sleeve.

The table of organization and equipment of Fifth U.S. Army/Army North must be scrutinized.  The range of liaison parties that must be exchanged in the conduct of operations on American soil is extensive.  Coordination with federal, state and local civil law enforcement and security agencies is a vital element in concluding homeland operations successfully.  The liaison parties cannot be ad hoc or last minute additions to the headquarters.  At a minimum such parties must routinely exercise with the headquarters.

In 1933 then Colonel George Marshall criticized the education that the Army Command and General Staff College provided as inadequate to “the chaotic state of affairs in the first few months of a campaign with a major power” (From a 1933 letter from COL GC Marshall to MG Stewart Heintzelman, cited in a report on the US Army Command and General Staff College conducted in 1982 by MG Guy Meloy.  The report is held in the Special Collections section of the Combined Arms Research Library, Fort Leavenworth, KS.) We must continue on the path of ensuring the avoidance of the “chaotic state of affairs” in the opening moments of future campaigns, defending the nation from within and without.  As Dr. Sebastian L. v. Gorka wrote in Joint Forces Quarterly (p. 33), “[N]o concepts are immune to critique and reappraisal when it comes to securing the homeland.”

Categories: insurrection – insurgency – homeland security – full spectrum operations – counter-insurgency – civil war

About the Author(s)

Kevin Benson, Ph.D., Colonel, U.S. Army, Retired, is currently a seminar leader at the University of Foreign Military and Cultural Studies at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.  He holds a B.S. from the United States Military Academy, an M.S. from The Catholic University of America, an MMAS from the School of Advanced Military Studies and a Ph.D. from the University of Kansas.  During his career, COL Benson served with the 5th Infantry Division, the 1st Armored Division, the 1st Cavalry Division, the 2nd Cavalry Regiment, XVIII Airborne Corps and Third U.S. Army. He also served as the Director, School of Advanced Military Studies. These are his own opinions and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Army or Department of Defense.

Jennifer Weber is an Associate Professor of History (Ph.D. Princeton, 2003) at the University of Kansas.  Jennifer Weber specializes in the Civil War, especially the seams where political, social, and military history meet. She has active interests as well in Abraham Lincoln, the 19th century U.S., war and society, and the American presidency.  Her first book, Copperheads (Oxford University Press, 2006), about the antiwar movement in the Civil War North, was widely reviewed and has become a highly regarded study of Civil War politics and society.  Professor Weber is committed to reaching out to the general public and to young people in her work. Summer’s Bloodiest Days (National Geographic), is a children’s book about the Battle of Gettysburg and its aftermath. The National Council for Social Studies in 2011 named Bloodiest Days a Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People. Dr. Weber is very active in the field of Lincoln studies.  She has spoken extensively around the country on Lincoln, politics, and other aspects of the Civil War.

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Interesting stuff The Green Machine

5 awesome foreign awards US troops are allowed to wear

 5 awesome foreign awards US troops are allowed to wear
You may be looking fresh with that stack of awards and badges, but cool flashy medals are reserved for the most prestigious of US military awards.
But how do you stand out at your next unit ball or dress inspection? Rock some foreign ones, that’s how.
Everything on this list is subjective and doesn’t cover every single foreign award authorized for troops.
Even if you do, regulations dictate you’re only authorized to wear one foreign badge with other decorations in order of presentation. The award also falls under the original nation’s regulations and some badges are purely honorary awards (meaning you can’t wear them).

Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) and Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)

Ever wondered what was at the bottom right of the medals of your salty senior non-commissioned officer who has been in since the Persian Gulf War? Technically these two are the same medal and technically they’re foreign awards.
The Kuwait Liberation Medal was given by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to members of the armed forces who served in Operation Desert Storm between Jan. 17 and Feb. 28, 1991. It still holds the condition that the troop must have served 30 consecutive days (which gives you only 17 days of wiggle room), but given instantly if they saw combat
The Government of Kuwait awarded one to all members of the U.S. Armed Forces who deployed in support of Operation Desert Shield or Desert Storm between Aug. 2, 1990 and Aug. 31, 1993.

(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jamal D. Sutter)

French Commando Badge

No matter what jokes people say about the French military, their commandos are beasts. This badge is adorned by those bad asses and their foreign graduates, and it’s a rare opportunity for American troops to get accepted into French Commando schools.
The training is a grueling three weeks that tests your survival skills in the field. If you can get in and graduate, the badge is one of the coolest designed badges of all American allies.

(Image via Eaglehorse)

Any foreign jump wings

Foreign jump wings are awarded to U.S. parachutists when they complete training in a foreign country under a foreign commanding officer. In order to qualify, you must already have the U.S. Parachutist Basic Badge. Then it all depends on your unit to do a joint jump between American troops and their military.
A lot of the awards have a similar design to the U.S. badge. Hands down, the coolest design goes to Polish Parachute badge.Image result for Polish Parachute badge
First worn by the Cichociemni (WWII Special Operations paratrooper literally called “The Silent Unseen”) the diving eagle has several variations like those worn by Poland’s GROM and other troops.

(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Brandon Anderson, 13th Public Affairs Detachment)

Fourragères

These ones are more unit citations than personal awards. This has the easy benefit of just being lucky enough to be in a unit that was awarded a fourragère in the past but it also means that you won’t stand out against anyone who’s also in your unit. These are decorative cords with golden aglets (tips).
Awarded to units that served gallantly in the eyes of French, Belgian, Portuguese, and South Vietnamese armies (Luxembourg also has fourragères but they never authorized foreign units to wear one), the color denotes mentions and honors. Just like with normal unit citations, if you are in the unit when it was awarded, you keep it for life.
Don’t expect to see anyone wearing one outside of a designated unit, though, because these were last given in 1944.
Related: This is why some Marines wear the ‘French Fourragere,’ and some don’t

(Photo by Sgt. Jon Haugen, North Dakota National Guard Public Affairs)

German Armed Forces Badge of Marksmanship

I didn’t want to make this in a ranking order, but the Schützenschnur (Sharpshooter Rope) is by far the coolest and most sought after. I managed to earn one in gold when I was stationed in Baumholder, Germany.
In order to earn one, you need to perform a marksmanship qualification with German weapons. Round One is pistol, round two is rifle, and round three is heavy weapons. I was given the P8, G36, and MG3 for my qualification.
At the end, you are awarded the badge in bronze, silver, or gold. If you shoot gold with the pistol and rifle but botched the machine gun in bronze, you earn a bronze “Schütz”. You are awarded according to your lowest score. I pulled off gold in all of them.
I will openly admit that I have no idea how I made gold with the MG3 but hey! I’ll take it.
 (Screen grab of video by Cpl. Clay Beyersdorfer)

(Bonus) Order of St. Gregory the Great

This one isn’t authorized to wear on a U.S. Military uniform because it goes with an entirely new uniform that comes with it.
The Order of St. Gregory the Great is bestowed upon a soldier by the Vatican and the Pope himself. You are knighted and given the title of Gonfalonier (Standard-bearer) of the Church.
A famous U.S. soldier to have been knighted by the pope was Brevet Lt. Col. Myles Keogh, when he rallied to the defense of Pope Pius IX against the Kingdom of Sardinia. Keogh held his own until his capture.
After release, he was awarded the Pro Petro Sede Medal and admitted into the Order.

(Painting via wikicommons)

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All About Guns Hard Nosed Folks Both Good & Bad The Green Machine War

The Bayonet-Loving Captain who Gave Communists NIGHTMARES in the Korean War: Lewis Millett

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The Green Machine Well I thought it was neat!

The 6 Types Of Lieutenants That You Just Can’t Avoid In The Military BY CARL FORSLING 

Lieutenants never get much respect. What do you expect, though? You send a 22-year-old new college grad to officer candidates…

Lieutenants never get much respect. What do you expect, though? You send a 22-year-old new college grad to officer candidates school for a few weeks and expect him to be in charge of a platoon of grizzled combat veterans… What could possibly go wrong? It’s the brain-damaged leading the blind. Every rank has some major archetypes, and lieutenants are no different. Here are six types you’re probably already familiar with.

1. Lt. Clueless

Quote: “If that’s not how we’re supposed to use a compass, then why did they teach it at The Basic School?”

The conventional view is that ALL lieutenants are clueless, but that can’t really be the case, or else the service would be even more screwed than it already is. All LTs take a while to get up to speed, but Lt. Clueless seems to be coming more undone every day, not less.

He’s smart enough to graduate college in basket weaving, phys ed, criminal justice, or some similar bullshit degree, but not smart enough to keep track of his own rifle. The upside of that is that stealing his firing pin will be easier.

Everyone under Clueless is counting the hours until the company commander finally figures out that one of his platoon commanders spends his free time chewing crayons. They just hope it comes before deployment, when some of them might have to patrol with him.

2. Lt. Tacticool

Quote: “I got this kickass rig online at Brigade Quartermaster. Yeah, it’s Kydex.”

One of the best things about the military is that it lets you play with cool toys. Don’t tell Lt. Tacticool that the the gear he’s issued is really all he needs, because that’s not the point. The point is to be just a little better equipped than anyone else. He spends his entire paycheck shopping online for the same gear used by Delta Force. Lt. Tacticool works in admin or in logistics or as a pilot. That doesn’t stop him from needing dumbass items like a drop holster that can’t be worn on a walk longer than 100 meters but looks absolutely badass.

If the gun doesn’t work, though, he’s got three concealed punch knives as backup. Don’t worry. He’ll make up for all the extra weight with $200 custom gel boot inserts.

That isn’t to say that there aren’t Tacticools in the infantry, but the laughter of their fellow lieutenants usually shames them into relative normalcy before too many enlisted grunts join in on the ribbing. These LTs live in closeted gear-queerness, wasting their paychecks in more subtle ways, like snatching up $1,000 GPS altimeter watches.

3. Lt. Beast

Quote: “I can’t believe they pay me to do this shit! HELLS YEAH!”

The Beast, on the other hand, does reside disproportionately in the combat arms. It’s just as well, because if he was in logistics, all his troops would be hiding under their desks by the end of the day. Everyone else groans when a unit hump is announced. The Beast adds extra weight to his pack. He says “If it ain’t rainin’, we ain’t trainin’!” unironically.

The Beast honestly can’t figure why others don’t enjoy it when things suck. He thinks “embrace the suck” is a religion, not a sarcastic comment. He’s into Crossfit, because of course he is. He’s also signed up for Tough Mudder, Spartan Race, and some obscure event involving dragging one’s testicles through broken glass for 26.2 miles in the Sierra Nevadas.

The Beast is absolutely the perfect individual to have around in the middle of a close-quarters battle. Unfortunately, he’s also the last individual you want anywhere that isn’t in the middle of an active firefight.

4. Lt. Nerd

Quote: “My paper on military organization based on fractal principles is getting published in Joint Forces Quarterly next month!”

Lt. Nerd is, on paper, the perfect military officer. He went to a good school and was near the top of his class in all of his training. He’s read the Professional Military Education reading list through colonel. He’s working on his master’s degree. He’s even starting a new podcast next week, called Tactics Talk, so he can share his hard-earned wisdom with upwards of half a dozen people.

He is doing great, at least in his own mind. Unfortunately, the military is basically high school. The jocks run the school. Even though he has bars on his collar, the nerd gets no respect.

5. Lt. Mustang

Quote: “Gunny, really? What. The. Fuck.”

The prior-enlisted officer or “mustang” is definitely a little different than the typical lieutenant, not least because he’s nearly a decade years older than most of his peers. He has a few more tattoos than them, too.

Knowing the ropes is his superpower. PT, usually not so much. He’s gained a few pounds and and lost a few steps compared to his new young friends in the officer corps.

Most of the enlisted think it’s great that their lieutenant was once one of them. The platoon sergeant isn’t necessarily so thrilled. He’s pleased to get a lieutenant that he doesn’t need to hide sharp objects from. On the other hand, he can’t get rid of his lieutenant for a whole day by asking him to pick up a box of grid squares.

6. Lt. Niedermeyer

Quote: “Is THAT a wrinkle…ON YOUR UNIFORM!”

Military life naturally attracts those with attention to detail and a desire for order. Unfortunately, there can always be too much of a good thing.

You can generally find Lt. Niedermeyer in the parking lot, trolling for salutes — or, rather, for those missing salutes — so he can joyfully berate them. Of course, a true Niedermeyer counsels like a drill instructor — loudly, yet sans profanity, because profanity would be contrary to regulations. Doggone it, devildog!

The good thing about Niedermeyer is that he always follows the rules. The bad thing about Niedermeyer is that he always follows the rules. The worst thing is that if you want to know who your commanding general will be in 20 years or so, look no further, because Niedermeyer is going places.