"If the Earth kills you because you cannot survive against the elements--you are not going to do much against the human enemy."
The 800 km journey to Ladakh is notorious for accidents: "In the land of the Lama, do not be a Gama (name of a famous wrestler)."
The difference between soldier and a mass murderer: Mass Murderers feel they have no prospects for the future and were influenced by radical ideology. All of them see their victims as nothing more than fodder to absorb their rage and think mass murder would give their lives meaning. They idolized previous mass killers.
Motivation and self-discipline are important in the military, where making mistakes can be fatal. There are currently 34 million Americans of prime military age (17-24). But because of bad lifestyle choices, only 28% of them (9.5 million) are physically eligible for service. Over a third of the people of military age are considered obese. Most soldiers, especially those in jobs requiring a lot of physical activity have closer to 15% body fat (22% for women). Each year the armed forces have to recruit 150,000 new troops. Male recruits could not have a body fat percentage higher than 24% (it used to be 26%) and for females was 30% (it used to be 32%). Most men with 24% (and women with 30%) body fat would appear chubby. This is not just an American problem. All Western nations (including Japan and South Korea) have similar problems with recruiting and maintaining training standards after recruit training. Even China is having the problem.
As per the latest official data, the authorised strength of officers in Indian Army in March 2018 was 50,028. However, even four months later, there were only 42,734 officers. The shortage of 7,294 officers (14.57%) of the authorised strength. In case of Indian Navy as of October 2018, there were only 9,925 naval officers against the authorised strength of 11,415 officers, this is a shortage of 1,457 officers (12.76%) in Indian Navy. It appears that among the 3 branches of Indian military, Indian Air Force is the only force that is able to attract the talent in a much better manner. As on 1st July 2018, Indian Air Force had 12,392 officers as against the sanctioned strength of 12,584 officers, a shortfall of just 192 officers (1.52%).
An army marches on its stomach." Napoleon Bonaparte. It means that for an army to be effective, it relies on good and plentiful food. Therefore, target to cut off food supplies (as the Russians did both in the 19th and 20th centuries against the French and Nazis) and the enemy will crumble.
The Israeli war in Lebanon in 2006, which mostly relied on its vastly superior air power, did not give it the results it expected. But even this very short war cost Israel $1.6 billion and shaved off about 1% from its annual economic growth.
PLA outposts has been equipped with oxygen stations and set-up high-pressure oxygen (for troops to recover stamina, reduce breathing difficulties and altitude stress), which are specially designed portable barracks for its troops stationed in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau to boost combat capability in the high-altitude ranges where oxygen levels are low. PLA has also been equipping Tibetan military bases with portable barracks, specifically designed for plateau areas. The barracks’ design and material make them sturdy, moisture-proof and cold-resistant, even keep the room temperature at 15 degrees Celsius even during bad snow storms.
In a gas piston system the propellant gases push a solid rod that pushes the carrier to the rear. That makes for a cleaner running rifle.
"God and a soldier all people adore in time of war, but not before; And when war is over and all things are righted, God is neglected and an old soldier forgotten."
Special Forces and Drug Abuse: The military and Special Forces are pushed to the limit during intensive training programs for maximum combat efficiency. However, there are only few that meet Special Forces requirement. Extended deployments, psychologically exhausted, troubled family life, and problems related to PTSD, all factor into why substance abuse is having a disproportionate effect on Special Forces operators. While programs and money has been budgeted to address these problems, they will only work if Special Forces are not used as regular Army or member must be allowed back in the unit after successfully completing rehab, instead of being pensioned off to some remote part of the military bureaucracy until he can be discharged. Within Special Forces subculture, members protect and care for one another. Special Forces units will cover for a team member who battles substance abuse by saying "He's a good operator, and the unit can't afford to lose him." Instead of receiving the help they need, operators suffering from substance abuse are often shuffled around until they can be honorably discharged. However, upon being discharged, the support group which they had while in service disappears.
In India, since 2014, according to a defence ministry submission in Parliament, 310 officers have committed suicide and 11 cases of fratricide were reported in this period.
Italian ‘Ndrangheta mafia is peddling tramadol tablets for ISIS and Boko Haram fighters. They end up in the hands of the desperate in Gaza, the prostitutes in Amman, and child laborers in Turkey. In Europe and North Africa, peddling the pills, which have a street value of around $5 a piece, is fast becoming one of the Calabrian ‘Ndrangheta crime syndicate’s most successful enterprises. Most of the illegal goods are hidden in shipments of pineapples, frozen fish and coconut milk, which often are rushed through because of their shorter shelf life.
Nazi Germany rejected recreational drugs but Pervitin (a methamphetamine-based drug) was manufactured and distributed among its armed forces to keep them alert and motivated. To ensure that millions of German housewives on the home front were not left out, the Nazis even developed chocolates containing the drug. Hitler himself was growing dependence on a pain-killing narcotic injection drug called “Eukodal”.
Defence Ministry of India has cleared a decade-long proposal to create 3 new military institutions involving the Army, Navy and Air Force for special tasks: (1) The Armed Forces Special Operations Division; (2) The Defence Cyber Agency; (3) The Defence Space Agency.
The Indian Air Force's Garud commandos will be training in "electronic warfare" for a week with Israeli Air Force's elite units - Unit 5101 (more commonly referred to as the Shaldag Commando unit) who undergo the longest training phase of any unit in the IDF, lasting 22 months, and training has a heavy emphasis on navigation.
Six 122 mm Chinese howitzers of the Pakistani battery were creating trouble for Indian infantry brigades. Indian Army’s special-forces unit, 9 Parachute Regiment, was sent 15-to-20 kilometres deep behind Pakistan lines, crossing neck-deep water of the Poonch river to reach Mandhol, to destroyed its artillery guns. After locating the guns, the party split into six groups, one to take down each target. In a fierce battle with the enemy, we blew up all its guns with 3-to-5 kg timer explosives powered by pencil cells and put inside the barrels. Nearly 60 Pakistani troops were killed and those who fled their posts were court martialled. This first raid behind the enemy lines, which the future leaders of the army read about in military academies, forced the Pakistan army to raise a second line of defence for its artillery, changing its military doctrine. One of the founders of the Indian special forces, Colonel Pathak said most difficult task was to return safely with 20 wounded soldiers and the bodies of two fallen soldiers. After the war, even the military delegation from Pakistan praised the professionalism of the Indian troops who had carried out the operation. The success of 9 Para was recognised only when the Pakistan Army delegation narrated after the ceasefire what damage the unit had done at Mandhol.
U.S. SEAL Team 6 was created in the 1980s as an elite of the elite commando unit. The United States currently has about 3,500 SEALs, divided among eight SEAL Teams (each with about 120 SEALs and about 200 support personnel), plus DEVGRU (the official designation for SEAL Team 6). Most SEAL Teams are trained for operations worldwide, while Team 3 and 10 specialize in Middle Eastern operations. It was also confirmed that there is one special espionage unit of about a hundred SEALs, some of them female.
U.S. Infantry Squad (when fighting with air-support or artillery cover) will have 12 soldier during peacetime (15 soldiers only during wartime i.e. 4 X fire teams):- The All Rifle Squad consists of 3 x Fire Teams + 1 x Squad Leader, 1 x Asst. Squad Leader who is the Navigator, 1 x NEW Systems Operator (excluding Medic and Driver). The Army has an additional squad in each platoon, called the Infantry Weapons Squad. This squad has teams dedicated to the machine gun and man-portable missile/rocket support.
Each Fire Team consists of 4 x Riflemen (includes 1 x Team Leader, 1 x Automatic Gunner,1 x Light Machine Gunner, 1 x Scout-Sniper or Riflemen for "close combat" defence). 2 x (a Asst. Automatic Gunner and a Riflemen) are also Ammo carriers. Army Squad uses a dedicated high explosive (HE) Grenadier in place of an Asst. Automatic Gunner. One member in each Squad will also be “designated sharpshooter” carrying a Limited Long-Range Sniper or Marksman Rifle (with suppressor). Sufficient Man-Portable rocket launcher (anti-armor, anti-personnel) is given with each Squad (also 1 ISR Mini Drone shared amongst the 3 teams). The Fire Team Leader typically carries the grenade launcher slung under his rifle.
The Army companies can get mortar (mortarman = indirect fire infantryman), heavy machine gun, and man-portable missile/rocket support from the Weapons Company.
While all U.S. Marines train for amphibious warfare, few soldiers do. Instead, most soldiers pick or are assigned a terrain or warfare specialty such as airborne, Ranger, mountain, or mechanized infantry.
7.62x51 ammo (military) = Winchester 308 round (civilians)
New recruits present another problem. Bad diet and lack of exercise have become a major problem with American children since 1990. Thus the army was getting recruits who were chubbier and less fit (low bone density and iron levels) than ever before. This resulted in more injuries during training and combat. These troops were more prone to suffer physical injuries. And there has also been a new pattern of combat losses. These days, most of the serious casualties (about half) are for physical (31 percent) or mental (19 percent) stress. Only 14% of the casualties have been from the direct effects of combat. This decade of fighting has killed 6,000 American troops and wounded 45,000. But over 100,000 have been badly hurt by accidents, mental stress and disease.
While the risk of getting killed in combat is now a third of what it was in Vietnam & WW2, the incidence of physical and mental strain appears to have more than doubled. This is largely because troops are in combat for so much longer than in past wars. This makes it much more likely for troops to eventually develop PTSD, and the kinds of stress injuries (often accompanied by chronic pain) amateur and professional athletes suffer from as they get older. The lower death rate came about partly because of much more effective, and heavier body armor. Then there was all the weight of additional equipment.
Statistical analysis by the US Army of rifle engagements in WW II, Korea and Vietnam revealed that 90% of them were at ranges less than 300 metres and 70% at 200 metres and less. Therefore, the emphasis on long-range accuracy of 300-800 metres was found somewhat redundant. The propensity to consume ammunition reached the astounding rate of 50,000 rounds per kill in the Korean War. This obviously means that the soldier now needs to carry greater quantities of ammunition.
In 1933, about 2,600 vets had accepted FDR’s offer of work in a New Deal public works program called the Civilian Conservation Corps, though many others rejected the $1-a-day wage, calling it slavery. The marchers were devastated and as many of them had nowhere to go, they remained in their makeshift camps despite the fact that Congress had adjourned for summer. Attorney General Mitchell finally ordered Bonus Army leaders to evacuate the women and children within an hour, and after some failed attempts by the police, General Douglas MacArthur and his cavalry and tanks stormed the camps. The veterans were driven out and their tents and belongings set on fire. In 1942, soon after Pearl Harbor, Congress passed the Adjusted Compensation Payment Act in 1936, paying over $2 billion to veterans of WW1. The “Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944,” as the G.I. Bill was then called was also signed.
US had established the Veterans Administration in 1930. After 2001, US entered its first period of sustained combat since the 1960s and began to realize that the costs of war. Over a million American military personnel have gone to Afghanistan and Iraq since 2001, most of them for the army, and as more of them came back wounded, sick or injured. From 2007 to 2012 the U.S Army health care system grew rapidly — with little central coordination — to meet the surging care needs from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. At that point, the army was ordered to reduce over 7% of soldiers. Consequently, in 2012 the Army focused on reducing that variation and implemented a redesigned performance management system to address key cost and performance drivers. Here are the principles it employed:
- Specification of a standardized system of care consisting of 11 "microsystems" and unified administrative accounting codes in different locations.
- Provider-performance standards for both clinical care and occupational health (including leader consultation and education). For health systems transitioning to value-based care, it is critical to refine workload standards that account for the nonclinical workload with the same fidelity as clinical-workload standards. Workload specifications must incorporate key non-clinical care activities.
- Combine structure (for example, staffing levels in Army clinics) and processes as proxies for measuring performance. Systematically collecting reports on patient outcomes and experiences.
- Service-line-management process to systematically connect goals to actual clinical care; and create learning cycle for senior leaders and chiefs to make better decisions to align day-to-day care with overarching strategic goals. As health care systems transition from an encounter-based view of health care to a value-based focus on improved patient outcomes and satisfaction and reduced costs.
The MultiCam pattern, which was used on most uniforms for soldiers deployed to Iraq in 2010, is privately owned by a company called Crye Precision and is said to be useful for concealment in a variety of environments and terrains, including urban, desert and green settings.
National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal 2014 called on the Pentagon to put an end to the services branding their ranks with unique camouflage uniforms.
In addition to Crye, the other finalists in the Army's Phase IV camouflage testing included ADS Inc., teamed with Hyperstealth, Inc.; Brookwood Companies Inc.; and Kryptek Inc.
Johannes Haller, a qualified master weaver from Europe, invented the new khaki dye from the bark of semicarpus tree at Basel Mission’s weaving establishment in Balmatta in 1851, reveals Jaiprakash Raghavaiah’s doctoral work (‘Basel Mission industries in Malabar and South Canara: 1834-1914’) and reports of German evangelical mission in the department of archives, Karnataka Theological College (KTC), Balmatta.
In 1844, Basal Mission set up a weaving factory staffed by lower caste Christian converts on land donated by Collector H M Blair at Balmatta. Initially the fabrics produced were of poor quality, the documents reveal. The Industrial Commission set up in 1846 to help missionary industrial activities deputed a trained weaving specialist, Johnnes Haller. Archives say that with his arrival, the weaving industry ‘developed by leaps and bounds’. In 1851, he installed a dye house.
How khaki came to be adopted as police and army uniform in many countries is fascinating. British-Indian Army Commander-in-Chief Lord Roberts, during his visit to the weaving factory, was pleased with the colour. He describes khaki as an ‘attractive uniform’ in Rodney Atwood’s The Life of Field Marshal Lord Roberts and introduced it as the everyday uniform of the British Army the world over.
The WPMS is designed using a microcontroller. It is interfaced with wireless communication and global positioning system (GPS) modules. The acquired signals are sent in real-time at a speed of 250samples/second, digitised at 12-bit resolution and transmitted wirelessly along with the geo-location of the wearer. It monitors and issues real-time signals pertaining to electrocardiogram (ECG), photoplethysmogram, body temperature, blood pressure, galvanic skin response and heart rate of each soldier.
The galvanic skin response (GSR) detects a change in the electrical properties of the skin in response to stress or anxiety; and can be measured either by recording the electrical resistance of the skin or through weak currents generated by the body in such circumstances. The photoplethysmogram (PPG) non-invasively screens and relays in real-time valuable information about the performance of each soldier's cardiovascular system. It detects anomalies by illuminating the skin with a light from a light-emitting diode (LED) and then measuring the amount of light either transmitted or reflected to a photodiode attached to the vest.
Offensive operations have 4 types:
- (deploy) movement to (enemy) contact,
- Attacking and widening; and securing the Flanks
- Seizing, exploitation and disrupt, and
- Pursuit to cut-off.
Attack tactic: The enemy MUST be pinned down. Small units MUST fire and move perfectly. This is Extremely important. If not conducted correctly, men will get cutoff and destroyed and the problem is then compounded when other men stop firing to try to recover casualties. Then they also get killed in many cases and combat effectiveness of the entire unit is in danger of being lost.
Counter-attack tactic: (Grab them by the belt buckle) We show very high determination. The closer we hug the enemy forces, the less effective the enemy artillery firepower becomes and make air support impracticable. We destroy combat strength and force them to withdraw.