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DirkDiggler last won the day on October 31

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  1. Would you be willing to spend a significant chunk of the 50K servicemembers lives that you propose to send to Ukraine? Including mine? Honestly asking. What's your threshold in lives spent/material used to stop Russian aggression? If it helps, I'm honestly leaning towards us taking a stand on this. A phenomenal Estonian officer friend of mine is right on the frontlines of this nonsense. The last time I wished him a happy birthday, he said it would be much more cheerful if more Americans were there (he actually gets American sarcasm), and said he had a great birthday mining bridges and stockpiling weapons in the woods in case Mr. Putin came calling (cause that's actually what he's been doing lately). I'd go stand next to him in a heartbeat. I seriously would, despite the horrid consequences of a full on clash with Russia. If it we reduce to emotional tribalism and the US says the Ukrainians are part of my tribe, I'm all for standing up to and if necessary stomping the the Russians the fuck out.
  2. 3 pages back you you said you'd be a contentious objector after almost 20 years of service if your religious exemption got denied. So after almost 20 years of service, are you a contentious objector or aren't you? Or more direct question, if you're active duty; did your commander give you a direct order to take the Pfizer shot? And if so, did you refuse the direct order? How deep does your dedication to your beliefs on the Constitution (and what your view as an illegal order) go? More importantly, after 49 pages of thrash over the COVID shot, how many active duty members on this forum have actually chosen to separate over the military COVID vaccine mandate? Not asking Reserve or Guard, not asking waiting on a valid religious or medical exemption. I get that BaseOps is place that some come to bitch about military matters in general; if people stop bitching, there's probably something wrong. But I have yet to encounter an actual mass resistance on active duty to the mandate. I literally know of one person out of probably 500+ that has actually chosen to separate over the vaccine mandate. That person will be civilian in a couple weeks. I wish him the best of luck. I don't give a baker's fuck about the civilian side of this argument; I'm not a civilian and won't be for a couple years at least. FWIW, I don't think on the civilian side that the government should be able to go door-to-door sticking a needle in anyone's arms. That's not my farm and not my monkey's. This isn't even close to the dumbest vaccine the military has made me get (JEV and Anthrax would take that trophy). Seriously, how many on active duty on this forum have actually directly refused the order to get vaccine? And how many people, besides Negatory (noted exception, good for you), have actually changed their beliefs based on the dialogue on this thread?
  3. You're immediately gonna know whether you guessed well once the gumjob starts, blindfold or not......but since that's a pretty tough qual to get probably still worth it!!
  4. That’s enough Internet for today.
  5. I partially agree with your assessment of our inability to play the long game; Russia and China tend to do it better than we do, especially lately. I think the truth is more nuanced. We still maintain a military presence and are committed to Korea's defense almost 70 years since the armistice, we've also been heavily involved in Colombia's internal defense for going on 50 years. Those are just two examples outside of Japan and NATO that we've actually stuck to post-WWII. There's probably others but I'd have to research that more. I think the greater strategic blunder we've made since the early '90s has been falsely assuming that Russia and China want what we want, and given enough exposure to the liberal international system would want to play by the rules. This is and has always been patently incorrect I've often wondered how things in Ukraine would've turned out had not persuaded them to give up the nuclear weapons they inherited from the fall of the USSR. In our rush to ensure non-proliferation we ignored some pretty obvious geographic/military realities regarding conventional warfare in that area of the world. I don't know that Ukraine having nukes would have ultimately made the current crisis better, but I firmly believe it wouldn't have made it worse. I'm also a believer that the possession of nuclear weapons actually decreases the possibility for large scale conflict in some ways, but that's a discussion for another thread. I don't believe that any US administration has handled US foreign policy and crises in that area of the world very well. Clinton did nothing when the Russians literally flattened Chechnya in '99. Bush did nothing when the Russian's invaded Georgia in '08. Obama did nothing in '14 about Crimea as mentioned above. Trump providing lethal aid in the form of Javelin's was somewhat different, but mostly symbolic. One of the provisions of the Javelin transfer was that they had to be stored in warehouses hundreds of miles away from the frontline with Russian back separatists and Russia itself (similar to what we did recently with the Kurds). As to the COA of putting US forces in the Ukraine, I think that would have to be handled extremely carefully. Putting something that could actually impact a Russian invasion there, like an ABCT or armored division, would probably send the Russians right over the edge/trip their red lines and maybe force a conflict. In their defense, looking at through their eyes, I maybe wouldn't blame them. If all of the sudden Mexico became an ally of Russia and Russia deployed a BTG on our border, we'd lose our shit. Maybe conducting a large scale, no notice SOF exercise focusing on asymmetric/guerilla warfare? Puts boots on the ground and also is something the Russians historically associate with bad memories and lots of casualties. Or maybe a DFE of 5th gen in country with bombers to another NATO country? We still hold an advantage there and would remind Mr. Putin that there's no certainty in conflict. As you said, not a lot of great COAs to choose from though.
  6. Honest question; what COAs do you think we should consider going forward. I have a conflicted view on this. Russia (really Putin's, since he calls all the shots) actions are towards Ukraine are pretty much unceasingly hostile/coercive, and a full blown invasion would violate pretty much any international standard/law. The realist in me says any US military intervention on Ukraine's behalf in the event of a Russian invasion would be illogical. They're not a member of NATO so therefore not entitled to Article 5 status, they're not a powerful conventional or nuclear ally, and they're not integral to US national security. The liberal in me says they're a struggling democracy under threat from an autocratic enemy of the US, they're making honest efforts to be a part of the international order, and most of their people want freedom/don't want to be a part of Russia thus we shouldn't allow Russia to invade its neighbor. I went to ACSC with a couple of Ukrainian servicemembers, they all came across as solid dudes who were proud of their country and willing to fight for it. One of them completed ACSC and was immediately deployed to the frontlines on his return to Ukraine. I think about those guys and my Estonian buddy a lot when I think about this problem. The blunt reality of this is that Russia plainly sees Ukraine becoming closer to the West/member of NATO a direct threat to their national security. The US and probably most of Europe doesn't see things that way, nor does most the US population care about Ukrainian sovereignty. We are not currently in a conventional military position to deter or defeat a Russian invasion of Ukraine, unless we start a force buildup now. If we would intervene in the event of Russian invasion (talking right of bang) we'd have to face the very likely possibility of high casualties and an adversary that may employ tactical nuclear weapons if they feel they're threatened with a loss. All that said if the order's given I'll go without hesitation, would be nice to have a clear goal to fight for for a change.
  7. https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2021/12/03/russias_military_buildup_reveals_stone-cold_reality_ukrainian_entry_into_nato_would_make_war_more_not_less_likely_806307.html Well written article from RCD on the current tensions in Ukraine.
  8. My community has had several guys (both O & E) do this program and haven't heard a bad review yet (at least before the change to the rules). We even had an O-5 pilot type do an internship with a classic car restoration company; he got hired at the end of it and now has a full time "job" doing his life's passion. Pretty cool program for anyone that can make it work.
  9. Sorry that the AF isn't being straight with you guys but good on you for volunteering and swinging with the punches.
  10. I know I'm way more cynical than most, but I honestly can't remember a time in my 18+ years in the AF when I even knew who the Air Force Under Secretary was. Political appointees like that, as mentioned above, don't require any prior military experience. Does anyone really care about this?
  11. There's a retired O-6 instructor at my current location who was in an O-6 leadership position when I was a captain. I kept called him sir or Col XX the first couple events we had scheduled (just felt normal). He finally laughed the next time I did it and said "hey, its just --insert first name-- now). Super down to earth and a really good instructor pilot.
  12. Meh, I've seen this go both ways. Some O-6s get out, get a GS-15 or contractor job, and are just happy to continue to serve/contribute (several great retired O-6s working as J model instructors here at ABQ). Others engage in the douchebaggery you described above. FWIW, I've personally witnessed similar behavior from retired E-8/9s. Some get out, get a GS-12-14 or contractor job, and are happy to serve/contribute (since you've been at CVS for a long time I'm assuming you know/knew Rich Lewis when he was out there, phenomenal dude). Others act like they still wear their stripes and treat junior enlisted/young officers like shit. There's always O-6s and E-9s that think they're god's gift to the AF, they're never wrong, and that those below them are somehow lesser beings that need to show subservience. Then there's O-6s and Chiefs that work hard to get the mission done, truly care about their people, and want to make things better in their respective corner. BLUF is that if someone was an ineffective twat on AD, the same behavior generally follows them into their post AF career.
  13. The full IQ/MQ course is 151 training days, ends up being 8-9 calendar months at KABQ.
  14. Wait, you're telling me AFSOC A3T's staff processes aren't up to snuff?, or that the different floors of AFSOC HQ aren't talking to one another, shocked I tell you, just shocked! /s
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