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Radically Inept
Wednesday, May 19, 2004
  I remember the Army...

I remember the Army. I'm an Army Brat and for the first 30 years I remember the Army. I think there was a brief period, somewhere around '83, where I didn't have a dependent ID card. You don't know how much you rely on the ID until you lose it. But, worse is when you lose your right to the privileges it conveyed. So, I do remember the Army in 1971. I lived in 'Fayettenam' and new the term. I guess I was ten. It was a time when going to the 'Fort' was an event. Usually a shopping event, but it could be a Judo class or swim class, or just to hang out at the NCO club pool. There were alot of reasons for going on 'Post'. Oh, and Ft Bragg had the best 4th of July event and fireworks in NC, I'm sure. And rock and roll bands, and funk and country and etc...

And there was tension. Even at age ten you could pick up on it. Besides, the whole neighborhood was military. In hind site, it might only have been 30% percent of the household in La Grange Park, but it was military. I used to play on Chicken Road, and cross over into the army firing range to hunt brass, and get chased by motorcycle riding military police. I used to go to 'rattlesnake rock' and hunt frogs, and well, snakes. I used to here the artillery fire, and the sonic booms from planes heading to and from Pope Air force Base. I remember the Army, and the news on TV, and reading Art Buchwald, and having Christmas in November cause my Dad was going to Vietnam before Christmas. And, getting ready to go to West Berlin to live when he got back. I think I read my first Pogo then.

So, earlier I went from Brad DeLong's Webjournal to Crooked Timber: Comparisons to Vietnam, ye gods to Crooked Timber: Comparisons to Vietnam, ye gods and on a little link called 'here', found an excellent piece by Col. Robert D. Heinl, Jr., from the Armed Forces Journal, 7 June 1971
Heinl: "The Collapse of the Armed Forces" (1971). This is an excellent piece, but it brings back the memories really well. The racial tensions, the war protester who mis-packed my father's parachute to protest US involvement in Vietnam. After my Dad's incident, in which some how he came out un hurt when his chute was a streamer and he was never able to deploy his reserve. "Landed on the softest part of the land zone, and did a perfect fucking PLF (Parachute Landing Fall)." So, yeah I remember what he's talking about, and WE DON'T WANT TO GO BACK!
"In 1966, the Navy discharged 170 drug offenders. Three years later (1969), 3,800 were discharged. Last year in 1970, the total jumped to over 5,000.

Drug abuse in the Pacific Fleet--with Asia on one side, and kinky California on the other--gives the Navy its worst headaches. To cite one example, a destroyer due to sail from the West Coast last year for the Far East nearly had to postpone deployment when, five days before departure, a ring of some 30 drug users (over 10 percent of the crew) was uncovered.

Only last week, eight midshipmen were dismissed from the Naval Academy following disclosure of an alleged drug ring. While the Navy emphatically denies allegations in a copyrighted articles by the Annapolis Capitol that up to 12,000 midshipmen now use marijuana, midshipman sources confirm that pot is anything but unknown at Annapolis.

Yet the Navy is somewhat ahead in the drug game because of the difficulty in concealing addiction at close quarters abroad ship, and because fixes are unobtainable during long deployments at sea.

The Air force, despite 2,715 drug investigations in 1970, is in even better shape: its rate of 3 cases per thousand airmen is the lowest in the services.

By contrast, the Army had 17,742 drug investigations the same year. According to Col. Thomas B. Hauschild, of the medical Command of our Army forces in Europe, some 46 percent of the roughly 200,000 soldiers there had used illegal drugs at least once. In one battalion surveyed in West Germany, over 50 percent of the men smoked marijuana regularly (some on duty), while roughly half of those were using hard drugs of some type.

What these statistics say is that the Armed Forces (like their parent society) are in the grip of a drug pandemic--a conclusion underscored by the one fact that, just since 1968, the total number of verified drug addiction cases throughout the Armed Forces has nearly doubled. One other yardstick: according to military medical sources, needle hepatitis now poses as great a problem among young soldiers as VD.

At Ft. Bragg, the Army's third largest post, adjacent to Fayetteville, N.C. (a garrison town whose conditions one official likened to New York's "East Village" and San Francisco's "Haight-Ashbury") [and which soldiers called "Fayettenam"--DF] a recent survey disclosed that 4% (or over 1,400) of the 36,000 soldiers there are hard-drug (mainly heroin and LSD) addicts. In the 82nd Airborne Division, the strategic-reserve unit that boasts its title of "America's Honor Guard", approximately 450 soldier drug abusers were being treated when this reporter visited the post in April. About a hundred were under intensive treatment in special drug wards."
I remember we had this trailer in the parking lot of the PX, and it was a head shop. Really. It had incense burning, blacklight posters (my first), cool hippie digs (my brother bought this really cool, long leather fringed vest), and there wasn't anything like that off post.

But, that is just some of the problems with the military of the time that he points to in this piece, and those just happen to ring true and hit home. But there's alot there about fragging
"They have set up separate companies," writes an American soldier from Cu Chi, quoted in the New York Times, "for men who refuse to go into the field. Is no big thing to refuse to go. If a man is ordered to go to such and such a place he no longer goes through the hassle of refusing; he just packs his shirt and goes to visit some buddies at another base camp. Operations have become incredibly ragtag. Many guys don't even put on their uniforms any more.... The American garrison on the larger bases are virtually disarmed. The lifers have taken our weapons from us and put them under lock and key.... There have also been quite a few frag incidents in the battalion."
And crime, incompetent leadership,...Yeah, it's the Army I remember. I didn't understand the severity of it at the time, but yeah, remember.

And this is what I'm scared of, really, of our involvement in Iraq. The ideals are so tarnished, and they won't hold water very much longer in any circle, and then what? The Army worked hard to transform and transition itself in the '80s, and succeeded in doing a fair job. Hell, in comparison to '71, they did a great job! But it was costly in many ways. We don't want to repeat the disintergration of an Army. It's not pretty.

I remember the last time. 
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Games & PC Games News - Oct. 15, 2005


PRESS RELEASE: WonderPhone announces Empire Earth® - a made-for-mobile version of the best selling PC strategy game (gamesindustry.biz)
Paris - October 14th, 2005 - WonderPhone today announces the release of its latest java game - Empire Earth ® - a made-for-mobile version of the best selling PC strategy game from Vivendi Universal Games.

Xbox 360's New Media Play Finding Fans (eWeek)
Consumers were impressed by the expanded multimedia features of Microsoft's upcoming Xbox 360 at the Digital Life conference, while gamers were excited to begin using the devices to access other types of services.

Free open-source gamer's treat unleashed (Macworld UK)
The fantasy-themed turn-based strategy game lets players build and train armies, allowing them to create pools of tough warriors to be called-up in crisis. Experienced warriors gain powerful new features and spells.

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Games & PC Games News by www.infopage.cc - Oct. 18, 2005

Beta testers needed for GPS enabled Golf application for Windows Mobile (MS Mobiles)
October 17, 2005 [General] There are many applications for Windows Mobile about game of golf. Not all of them are GPS enabled though. Here comes yet another application about golf, in versions both for Pocket PC and MS Smartphone. (Read More ...)

GameTap download service launches in US (gamesindustry.biz)
Turner Broadcasting System has officially launched GameTap, a new gaming download service which gives subscribers access to more than 300 arcade, console and PC games. (Read More ...)

Today's News about Games & PC Games

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