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Quixotic
02-13-2013, 07:39 PM
"Pentagon creates medal for cyber, drone wars."

http://www.militarytimes.com/news/2013/02/ap-pentagon-creates-new-medal-for-cyber-drone-wars-021313/

"But unlike other combat medals, it does not require the recipient [to] risk his or her life to get it."

A 'combat' medal you don't have to risk your life, in any way shape or form, to earn? Seriously? Can we find any more ways to cheapen the recognition that those who do assume personal risk in combat have earned?

"A recognition of the evolving 21st Century warfare, the medal will be considered a bit higher in ranking than the Bronze Star, but is lower than the Silver Star, defense officials said."

I would suggest a better way of recognizing 21st Century warfare would be to remove the word 'warrior' from the Airman's Creed.

Patton is having an aneurism right now.

JD2780
02-13-2013, 07:54 PM
Are you serious? While they do have a vital role, it shouldnt be in between a BSM and SSM. Fucking PC give everybody a trophy AF.

SomeRandomGuy
02-13-2013, 07:57 PM
"Pentagon creates medal for cyber, drone wars."

http://www.militarytimes.com/news/2013/02/ap-pentagon-creates-new-medal-for-cyber-drone-wars-021313/

"But unlike other combat medals, it does not require the recipient [to] risk his or her life to get it."

A 'combat' medal you don't have to risk your life, in any way shape or form, to earn? Seriously? Can we find any more ways to cheapen the recognition that those who do assume personal risk in combat have earned?

"A recognition of the evolving 21st Century warfare, the medal will be considered a bit higher in ranking than the Bronze Star, but is lower than the Silver Star, defense officials said."

I would suggest a better way of recognizing 21st Century warfare would be to remove the word 'warrior' from the Airman's Creed.

Patton is having an aneurism right now.

This is totally unfair! How can this be worth more than a bronze star that a hard working finance person can win?

BRUWIN
02-13-2013, 07:57 PM
RPA crews were getting bronze stars....not sure why they need another medal. Maybe it's to replace the flight suits.

JD2780
02-13-2013, 07:58 PM
RPA crews were getting bronze stars....not sure why they need another medal. Maybe it's to replace the flight suits.

We did get you on a roll this morning didnt we?

Absinthe Anecdote
02-13-2013, 07:58 PM
As recognition of the evolving 21st Century warfare, the medal will be considered a bit higher in ranking than the Bronze Star, but is lower than the Silver Star, defense officials said.

What does “a bit higher” mean?

Sounds like a Bronze Star equivalent for cyber and RPA folks to me.

Bronze is made from mixing copper and tin.

Brass is made from mixing copper and zinc.

Maybe we could call this thing a Brass Star or a Brass Asterisk (sounds more cyberish).

Quixotic
02-13-2013, 08:00 PM
RPA crews were getting bronze stars....not sure why they need another medal. Maybe it's to replace the flight suits.

The flight suits weren't good enough, given that any staff tour putz can wear one too, so this how they'll one-up them.

Banned
02-13-2013, 08:05 PM
I think if you are a cyber warfighter... you should get cyber medals. You earn "points" for various accomplishments (like for example killing 3 or more combatants with one hellfire.) Then when you earn enough points, you unlock "achievements" which unlocks upgrades - which you can wear on your uniform.

Just like in Call of Duty.

BRUWIN
02-13-2013, 08:07 PM
This is totally unfair! How can this be worth more than a bronze star that a hard working finance person can win?

There are numerous eligibility requirements for the bronze star...but I'm not sure hard work is one of them.

Quixotic
02-13-2013, 08:07 PM
As recognition of the evolving 21st Century warfare, the medal will be considered a bit higher in ranking than the Bronze Star, but is lower than the Silver Star, defense officials said.

What does “a bit higher” mean?

Sounds like a Bronze Star equivalent for cyber and RPA folks to me.

Bronze is made from mixing copper and tin.

Brass is made from mixing copper and zinc.

Maybe we could call this thing a Brass Star or a Brass Asterisk (sounds more cyberish).

It'll come with a 'V' if the person is at least on the same side of the planet as the event or an asterisk it they're stateside.

Quixotic
02-13-2013, 08:08 PM
I think if you are a cyber warfighter... you should get cyber medals. You earn "points" for various accomplishments (like for example killing 3 or more combatants with one hellfire.) Then when you earn enough points, you unlock "achievements" which unlocks upgrades - which you can wear on your uniform.

Just like in Call of Duty.

I like it, however, the word 'cyber' and 'warfighter' should never appear in the same sentence together.

Quixotic
02-13-2013, 10:50 PM
"The new medal will rank just below the Distinguished Flying Cross. It will have precedence over — and be worn on a uniform above — the Bronze Star with Valor device, a medal awarded to troops for specific heroic acts performed under fire in combat."

http://www.militarytimes.com/news/2013/02/military-new-medal-for-drone-pilots-outranks-bronze-star-021313/

Here it is, stateside drone operators can now 'officially' be more heroic on the battlefield than any true warrior who 'only' earned a bronze star with V.

I wonder if it ever occurred to the SECDEF that some of these bronze stars with V have been awarded posthumously...

I'm so glad it's my day off because I'd be as embarrassed as hell to be wearing my uniform today.

I feel like lowering my flag to half staff for some reason....

I think I'll just go puke instead...

Capt Alfredo
02-14-2013, 01:09 AM
This has to be a Duffleblog post misinterpreted...

KellyinAvon
02-14-2013, 01:13 AM
This has to be a Duffleblog post misinterpreted...

MT.com got punked?

raider8169
02-14-2013, 01:32 AM
Im curious to see what the requirements for the medal are. I support RPA's does that mean I can get one too.

BURAWSKI
02-14-2013, 01:33 AM
There always could be other ways to recognize UAV pilots. Creating another medal isn't the answer. They are not actually in physical combat or in any imminent danger so any type of valor award would be inapproriate in my book. There are enough medals already that could be used to recognize these individuals. It looks like there are too many shirts with too much time on their hands. I agree with you though, it is totally ridiculous and insane.

efmbman
02-14-2013, 01:40 AM
MT.com got punked?

Does appear to be real... it is covered on the DoD Press Releases:

http://www.defense.gov/releases/release.aspx?releaseid=15817

OtisRNeedleman
02-14-2013, 02:07 AM
Wonder where they'll get the money to administer this. All we're hearing these days is of the end of the world if sequestration hits.

Quixotic
02-14-2013, 02:19 AM
Standby: Word on the street is that there's a new 36-2903 coming down the pipe that allows RPA operators to wear their ribbon rack on their flight duty uniforms.*

I guess it finally dawned on them that they don't have to worry about FOD like the rest of us.



*Humor

imported_DannyJ
02-14-2013, 02:32 AM
Dear lord almighty... What a travesty. YES, they deserve recognition. NO, it should NOT be above BSM.

hugomk
02-14-2013, 03:01 AM
Don't be hating us. We did not ask for this medals. And I agree that we don't need another medal. I thought the one we are getting now is a bit much but this one?

Quixotic
02-14-2013, 03:23 AM
Don't be hating us. We did not ask for this medals. And I agree that we don't need another medal. I thought the one we are getting now is a bit much but this one?

I'm going to make a wild a** assumption here that if somebody(s) in your community didn't push for this, then it wouldn't be happening.

The article didn't address that, but it will be interesting to see what eventually floats to the surface over this, if anything.

Capt Alfredo
02-14-2013, 03:26 AM
I guess the salient point here is that the medal is *authorized*. That doesn't mean it will be awarded very often. I guess "they" were looking for a way to acknowledge an act that has a huge impact, but does not put the actor in harm's way. All the other battlefield awards require physical presence and (presumably) courage. I guess I see the requirement for a new paradigm, but I can't imagine this one will get awarded very often.

imported_AFKILO7
02-14-2013, 04:01 AM
Maybe just maybe this new award is a force shaping tool. Perhaps "leadership" (and I am using the word VERY loosely) sits in a room and says, "We need something stupid, something so god awful that people would want to just say fuck it and separate."

From the standpoint of a MWD Handler that has friends who have lost limbs, searched for HVT, found roadside bombs, pulled triggers next to Infantry and SOF members and didn't get shit because it was, "their job" and the Full Bird at some MOB flippantly waives it off...this really pisses me off. I could give a shit less if it were sparingly awarded. The fact that some useless piece of shit even thought of, promoted the idea, and approved this shit, is yet another reason other branches laugh their asses off at the AF.

If I wasn't so close to 20 I'd separate. But I figure I have sacrificed quite a bit and despite the fact that on the inside I'm acting out and casting aside any and all military bearing...I will continue to drink water, press on and remain professional. Then when I get my blue ID card I'll throw up the deuces and talk about the days when the Air Force wasn't infected with (blue) cum guzzlers.

CrustySMSgt
02-14-2013, 04:23 AM
I had to check my calendar; I thought maybe April 1st had snuck up on me. This is a travesty.

hugomk
02-14-2013, 06:12 AM
I'm going to make a wild a** assumption here that if somebody(s) in your community didn't push for this, then it wouldn't be happening.

The article didn't address that, but it will be interesting to see what eventually floats to the surface over this, if anything.

Maybe you're right. I heard there was a leadership meeting (Pilot and SO) in the Wing building and rumor has it that they talked about the community not having enough recognition and something has to be done. Maybe this is what that came out from that meeting. Now it make sense.

loggie94
02-14-2013, 06:45 AM
Dear lord almighty... What a travesty. YES, they deserve recognition. NO, it should NOT be above BSM.


My thoughts, exactly.

On the bright side, the odds of them receiving both the BSM (especially with a V) and this award are slim, so we won't have to see it on anything but the PME posters.

Personally, I'd be pretty f**n embarrased to put this on a rack above a BSM....

CrustySMSgt
02-14-2013, 07:09 AM
My thoughts, exactly.

On the bright side, the odds of them receiving both the BSM (especially with a V) and this award are slim, so we won't have to see it on anything but the PME posters.

Personally, I'd be pretty f**n embarrased to put this on a rack above a BSM....

Actually I wouldn't bet money on that... this medal appears to be for a single event; if they're over here on a 6 month tour, they could easily get both.

technomage1
02-14-2013, 08:02 AM
Times change and so does the nature of warfare. I can deal with the medal existing, but I do not feel it should be above the bronze star. Below, sure. But not above.

loggie94
02-14-2013, 08:11 AM
Actually I wouldn't bet money on that... this medal appears to be for a single event; if they're over here on a 6 month tour, they could easily get both.

You're probably right...and they've probably already received a BSM or two along the way.


Warfare has changed... UAV's have changed the way we do things, and have an amazing stratigic value... and those that do something with them deserve some recognition, but putting it above the BSM just baffles me. (and not much in the way of stupid things that lack common sense baffle me any more).

FLAPS
02-14-2013, 11:10 AM
I like it, however, the word 'cyber' and 'warfighter' should never appear in the same sentence together.

Interesting. What's the definition of "warfighter?" Is it the missileer in Wyoming launching a Minuteman II, one of the most devasting weapons known to mankind? Is it the B-52 crew launching a stand-off long range cruise missile? How about the guys in a sub? Perhaps it's just the rifleman on the ground attacking with a fixed bayonet? Just how far from the enemy can you be when you kill him? One foot away? 30,000 feet? 6,000 miles?

If a hacker can one day shut down an entire nation's electrical grid via the internet, killing thousands (if not more) over a given period of time, then surely we can call them "warfighters" too, don't you think?

Back to the topic, I have mixed feelings over where this medal should be placed...especially after meeting a CMSgt who won the Bronze Star after spending an entire year at Al Udeid, having never stepped foot off base except to buy jewelry and stare at "ninjas" running around the Doha shopping mall.

BRUWIN
02-14-2013, 11:54 AM
Don't be hating us. We did not ask for this medals.

Is it true you guys are going to be authorized the wear of ceremonial swords with the flight suit?

tiredretiredE7
02-14-2013, 12:25 PM
Then when I get my blue ID card I'll throw up the deuces and talk about the days when the Air Force wasn't infected with (blue) cum guzzlers.

I just had the worst week of my life; family member terminally ill, 2 year old car's sunroof leaking causing $4K in damages (covered under warranty but will happen again due to a design flaw) college is being sued for accreditation issues, fell and injured my wrist and lower back on an icy sidewalk, treadmill in gym broke injuring both of my knees (can't walk, icing both knees as I type this), only getting half of my anticipated income tax return, dog is sick and I will still take all of these issues over being in the AF. I should be very depressed due to all of these issues hitting me at once but I simply remind myself that this is much better than being in the AF.

I despised the people who continually gave up their integrity, dignity, sold out their subordinates just to get a chance at being promoted. Careerism is ruining the AF enlisted structure to the point of the focus being “me” rather than “we”.

CrustySMSgt
02-14-2013, 01:20 PM
I just had the worst week of my life; family member terminally ill, 2 year old car's sunroof leaking causing $4K in damages (covered under warranty but will happen again due to a design flaw) college is being sued for accreditation issues, fell and injured my wrist and lower back on an icy sidewalk, treadmill in gym broke injuring both of my knees (can't walk, icing both knees as I type this), only getting half of my anticipated income tax return, dog is sick and I will still take all of these issues over being in the AF. I should be very depressed due to all of these issues hitting me at once but I simply remind myself that this is much better than being in the AF.



Had to read this 3 times before I stopped thinking... why does his 2 year old have a car?!? :doh
(What kind of car, so anyone thinking of getting one can avoid it?)

That is a bad week. Up side, next week should be better!!

Brewhound
02-14-2013, 01:45 PM
3.4 years left and I will try and figure out what I want to be when I grow up.

technomage1
02-14-2013, 01:50 PM
I just had the worst week of my life; family member terminally ill, 2 year old car's sunroof leaking causing $4K in damages (covered under warranty but will happen again due to a design flaw) college is being sued for accreditation issues, fell and injured my wrist and lower back on an icy sidewalk, treadmill in gym broke injuring both of my knees (can't walk, icing both knees as I type this), only getting half of my anticipated income tax return, dog is sick and I will still take all of these issues over being in the AF. I should be very depressed due to all of these issues hitting me at once but I simply remind myself that this is much better than being in the AF.

I despised the people who continually gave up their integrity, dignity, sold out their subordinates just to get a chance at being promoted. Careerism is ruining the AF enlisted structure to the point of the focus being “me” rather than “we”.

100% agree with the last statement. It's every man for himself nowadays and the people who continue to live by the little brown book and core values are marginalized and not promoted. Then we wind up with weak as water yes men in positions they have no business being in.

That's why it will be 20 and done with me.

CrustySMSgt
02-14-2013, 02:32 PM
Just got this extra bit of info: Period of eligibility is 11 Sept 2001 to present

This is going to be a CF to sort out... because if they've already gotten a decoration for the event in question, they'll have to pull the previous dec and re-write it... or they'll just get a pass and get both decs.


3.4 years left and I will try and figure out what I want to be when I grow up.

I've got anywhere between 12-32 months... the only thing I know for sure? I don't plan on growing up!! :)

hugomk
02-14-2013, 02:46 PM
Is it true you guys are going to be authorized the wear of ceremonial swords with the flight suit?

I think that will be with the ABUs not the flight suits.

Kalbo607
02-14-2013, 03:48 PM
Don't agree with the medal, current medals should be used. Air Medals are already handed out like candy to RPA crews.

If period will be dated back to 2001 that will be a CF!

Sec Def is certainly leaving his mark before he departs.

ROTAX
02-14-2013, 04:12 PM
Personally, I'd be pretty f**n embarrased to put this on a rack above a BSM....

While I am a little surprised by the medal's place, it does make sense when the BSM's criteria allows that it can be awarded to admin troops as well as to guys on the ground. Below that, you have the Master Sergeant's Medal (MSM) and the Air Medal, which can be awarded to civilians but RPA guys have been excluded from...

A RPA crew that takes out a senior Taliban leader or eliminates an entire cell with a missile strike should get something besides the usual AAMs that we get. The same would and should be said for the guy in the F-16 or the B-1, so it shouldn't matter where the guys and gals were when the act happened.

Anyways, you guys will probably only hear about the first one awarded (if that) since our names aren't released to the media. So you can just pretend it doesn't exist and go on complaining about our flight pay and flight suits. :baby

Quixotic
02-14-2013, 05:46 PM
[QUOTE]Interesting. What's the definition of "warfighter?" Is it the missileer in Wyoming launching a Minuteman II, one of the most devasting weapons known to mankind? Is it the B-52 crew launching a stand-off long range cruise missile? How about the guys in a sub? Perhaps it's just the rifleman on the ground attacking with a fixed bayonet? Just how far from the enemy can you be when you kill him? One foot away? 30,000 feet? 6,000 miles?

The rifleman on the ground who assumes great personal risk to stand on a piece of ground with a flag in one hand and a rifle in the other, yes. All those others, f*ck no, anybody can push a button.


If a hacker can one day shut down an entire nation's electrical grid via the internet, killing thousands (if not more) over a given period of time, then surely we can call them "warfighters" too, don't you think?

No, we like to call them terrorists in this day and age. Furthermore, see above about button pushers.


Back to the topic, I have mixed feelings over where this medal should be placed...especially after meeting a CMSgt who won the Bronze Star after spending an entire year at Al Udeid, having never stepped foot off base except to buy jewelry and stare at "ninjas" running around the Doha shopping mall.

It's the fact that the medal is being placed over the Bronze Star with a V that is so outrageous. I wonder how many of the above examples you mentioned even know what that means, or that a combat V for valor even exists.

TJMAC77SP
02-14-2013, 05:59 PM
This has to be a Duffleblog post misinterpreted...

That is what I was hoping.

JD2780
02-14-2013, 06:34 PM
[QUOTE=FLAPS;607208]

The rifleman on the ground who assumes great personal risk to stand on a piece of ground with a flag in one hand and a rifle in the other, yes. All those others, f*ck no, anybody can push a button.



No, we like to call them terrorists in this day and age. Furthermore, see above about button pushers.



It's the fact that the medal is being placed over the Bronze Star with a V that is so outrageous. I wonder how many of the above examples you mentioned even know what that means, or that a combat V for valor even exists.

At my last unit one of our guys got his spurs from the cav unit he supported. Our officers (aircrew of various airframes) felt it was dumb and didnt warrant being part of the commanders call. However, the rest of us JTACs did. They also thought it was over the top for an E-6 to have 5 BSMs with V. They wondered if an E-6 JTAC that did nothing but work on SOF teams for every one of his deployments really deserved a BSM. The award system is screwed up. On top of the system being screwed and many folks not understanding what the awards actually mean, now we introduce an silly medal.

Quixotic
02-14-2013, 06:34 PM
[QUOTE]While I am a little surprised by the medal's place, it does make sense when the BSM's criteria allows that it can be awarded to admin troops as well as to guys on the ground. Below that, you have the Master Sergeant's Medal (MSM) and the Air Medal, which can be awarded to civilians but RPA guys have been excluded from...

We're not talking about any old BSM, we're talking about a BSM with a V, do you have a clue what that means?


A RPA crew that takes out a senior Taliban leader or eliminates an entire cell with a missile strike should get something besides the usual AAMs that we get.

No, you shouldn't.


The same would and should be said for the guy in the F-16 or the B-1, so it shouldn't matter where the guys and gals were when the act happened.

It does matter, they get in an airplane (a real one), and assume risk (real risk).


Anyways, you guys will probably only hear about the first one awarded (if that) since our names aren't released to the media. So you can just pretend it doesn't exist and go on complaining about our flight pay and flight suits. :baby

Yes, your flight pay and flight suits are a bit humorous, obviously, since you don't fly. But what really fires people up is your "we're so awesome" attitude that you wear on your sleeve. This awards existence, and being placed above the BSM with a V, is being perceived as your community thumbing it's nose at all the real 'warriors' who fight, get dirty, bleed and die on the battlefield. It is absolutely shameful, and then you all sit around and wonder why you have such a "me-to, whiney cry baby, a** clown" reputation.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go fly my remote control helicopter drone around the office here so I can go tell everyone what a great helicopter pilot I am. Demand a flight suit, maybe some flight pay, maybe a set of wings, and whatever else I can talk the chain of command into to make me feel better about myself.

P.S. What the f*ck is a Master Sergeant's Medal?

TJMAC77SP
02-14-2013, 06:34 PM
While I am a little surprised by the medal's place, it does make sense when the BSM's criteria allows that it can be awarded to admin troops as well as to guys on the ground. Below that, you have the Master Sergeant's Medal (MSM) and the Air Medal, which can be awarded to civilians but RPA guys have been excluded from...

A RPA crew that takes out a senior Taliban leader or eliminates an entire cell with a missile strike should get something besides the usual AAMs that we get. The same would and should be said for the guy in the F-16 or the B-1, so it shouldn't matter where the guys and gals were when the act happened.

Anyways, you guys will probably only hear about the first one awarded (if that) since our names aren't released to the media. So you can just pretend it doesn't exist and go on complaining about our flight pay and flight suits. :baby

I hear and understand your point.............but until the RPA crew is directly exposed to actual or threat of return fire the comparison to manned airframes is moot.

JD2780
02-14-2013, 06:42 PM
I hear and understand your point.............but until the RPA crew is directly exposed to actual or threat of return fire the comparison to manned airframes is moot.

Hey now, they're targets of terrorists driving to and from work on that massive stretch of road that you can see for miles on.

loadsmith
02-14-2013, 08:17 PM
[QUOTE=ROTAX;607267] Yes, your flight pay and flight suits are a bit humorous, obviously, since you don't fly. But what really fires people up is your "we're so awesome" attitude that you wear on your sleeve. This awards existence, and being placed above the BSM with a V, is being perceived as your community thumbing it's nose at all the real 'warriors' who fight, get dirty, bleed and die on the battlefield. It is absolutely shameful, and then you all sit around and wonder why you have such a "me-to, whiney cry baby, a** clown" reputation.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go fly my remote control helicopter drone around the office here so I can go tell everyone what a great helicopter pilot I am. Demand a flight suit, maybe some flight pay, maybe a set of wings, and whatever else I can talk the chain of command into to make me feel better about myself.

P.S. What the f*ck is a Master Sergeant's Medal?

I agree 100% that someone far, far removed from the battlefield should be getting an award that is above a BSM with Valor. I am not sure that the RPA community is "thumbing" their noses at anyone, I am sure they have a no shit care in the fight and feel deeply about those that they provide over watch for and protect on the ground.
Are you solely getting your opinion of these guys based on what you have read on here or have you actually spent time with them and know some folks personally to feel the way you do?

As to your last question, If you are truly serious -- it stands for Meritorious Service Medal -- most times, if not always awarded only to MSgts and above.

ROTAX
02-14-2013, 08:25 PM
We're not talking about any old BSM, we're talking about a BSM with a V, do you have a clue what that means?

Sure do, but the order is relevant because the BSM'S can be awarded for acts other than acts of valor. Heroic acts deserve a medal besides a pin tacked on another medal.




No, you shouldn't.

That's your opinion, but I doubt you have had an open mind to the accomplishments of the armed RPA community.



It does matter, they get in an airplane (a real one), and assume risk (real risk).

They won't have to worry about that in the next few decades, will they?



But what really fires people up is your "we're so awesome" attitude that you wear on your sleeve. This awards existence, and being placed above the BSM with a V, is being perceived as your community thumbing it's nose at all the real 'warriors' who fight, get dirty, bleed and die on the battlefield. It is absolutely shameful, and then you all sit around and wonder why you have such a "me-to, whiney cry baby, a** clown" reputation.

Considering AF leadership has done everything they could to marginalize and underman our community in the past, I wouldn't say it's a "we are so awesome" attitude as it is a "time to take us serious" attitude. Armed RPAs have saved lives, they've eliminated the enemy during firefights, and they've taken out enemy leaders without having to send in the guys on the ground. These are all efforts that have afforded other aircrews of awards higher than AAMs. While the rumor is that our leadership lobbied for other awards, I highly doubt the intent was for a new medal to be created. To me, it seems that higher brass would not open up Air Medals or higher to RPA guys, so the secretary opted to propose a new medal.

I will be the first to say that the most important thing I've ever done doesn't compare to someone who has taken fire on the ground or put themselves in danger; I will, however, say that if you think our jobs compare to video games and flying a little RC plane in circles around an office you are woefully narrow-minded.


P.S. What the f*ck is a Master Sergeant's Medal?

The joking reference to the Meritorious Service Medal that gets handed out to SNCOs just for deploying.

BRUWIN
02-14-2013, 08:40 PM
Don't forget, RPA operators are subject to terrorist attack by the high level terrorist organization "Code Pink." I will never forget the RPA guy that came onto this forum claiming RPA operators had a target on their backs and their safety was more in question than the average AF dude.

TJMAC77SP
02-14-2013, 08:45 PM
Hey now, they're targets of terrorists driving to and from work on that massive stretch of road that you can see for miles on.

That is a point. I have driven Rt 95 from Vegas to Indian Springs many times. Of course the prison has always been a threat as well so maybe this move is long overdue.

Quixotic
02-14-2013, 08:56 PM
[QUOTE]Sure do, but the order is relevant because the BSM'S can be awarded for acts other than acts of valor. Heroic acts deserve a medal besides a pin tacked on another medal.

BSMs can be awarded for acts other than valor, but BSMs with a V can't.




That's your opinion, but I doubt you have had an open mind to the accomplishments of the armed RPA community.

I am fully aware of the RPA communities contributions, many have been great, but you are still button pushers who assume no risk.



They won't have to worry about that in the next few decades, will they?

No we won't, and hopefully they won't be getting any combat medals either.



Considering AF leadership has done everything they could to marginalize and underman our community in the past, I wouldn't say it's a "we are so awesome" attitude as it is a "time to take us serious" attitude. Armed RPAs have saved lives, they've eliminated the enemy during firefights, and they've taken out enemy leaders without having to send in the guys on the ground. These are all efforts that have afforded other aircrews of awards higher than AAMs. While the rumor is that our leadership lobbied for other awards, I highly doubt the intent was for a new medal to be created. To me, it seems that higher brass would not open up Air Medals or higher to RPA guys, so the secretary opted to propose a new medal.

Right, because they assume risk.

If you guys want your own special medal great, but you do not, and never will, rank with those that have earned the BSM with V.


I will be the first to say that the most important thing I've ever done doesn't compare to someone who has taken fire on the ground or put themselves in danger; I will, however, say that if you think our jobs compare to video games and flying a little RC plane in circles around an office you are woefully narrow-minded.

And I bet you think the good people at Space-X are astronauts too.

Take your 'flight time' to an airline, or any regional air carrier, to get a job, and see what happens.

ROTAX
02-14-2013, 09:26 PM
Take your 'flight time' to an airline, or any regional air carrier, to get a job, and see what happens.

The beautiful thing about this community is that I don't have to fly a bus. I could leave to a couple of dozen defense companies who pay handsomely for experienced RPA guys, then there are jobs available due to our clearances.

Quixotic
02-14-2013, 09:35 PM
The beautiful thing about this community is that I don't have to fly a bus. I could leave to a couple of dozen defense companies who pay handsomely for experienced RPA guys, then there are jobs available due to our clearances.

Yes, you are so exclusive in that respect.

BRUWIN
02-14-2013, 09:38 PM
The beautiful thing about this community is that I don't have to fly a bus. I could leave to a couple of dozen defense companies who pay handsomely for experienced RPA guys, then there are jobs available due to our clearances.

Don't get cocky. A clearance isn't the ticket to job security that it once was. We have 60 people possessing SCI clearances being laid off 1 Mar and that's just in the squadron I currently work for. Defense contractor layoffs are AF wide. Maybe you could find a "secure" GS job. I'm a GS with an SCI clearance and I'll still be working 1 Mar...but I will lose 8 hours a week pay. And guess what...I was told yesterday I would still be required to work that 8 hours because me and my GS co-horts are in mission critical civilian billets. So basically....I lose 8 hours pay but still work. That's not a furlough, that's a drastic 20% paycut...about $1,000 a month. Make no mistake, all this is only the beginning. Once Afghanistan winds down it will only get cut further.

I support the RPA mission and it ain't all roses out here...might want read some newspapers, get out of the bubble you live in, and rethink your perspective. I was looking at contactor gigs with big money being offerred but I saw all this coming. I'm ok with my current situation since I didn't take this current job for the money...hope you will be ok with it when your time comes.

hugomk
02-15-2013, 01:18 AM
[QUOTE=ROTAX;607267]

We're not talking about any old BSM, we're talking about a BSM with a V, do you have a clue what that means?



No, you shouldn't.



It does matter, they get in an airplane (a real one), and assume risk (real risk).



Yes, your flight pay and flight suits are a bit humorous, obviously, since you don't fly. But what really fires people up is your "we're so awesome" attitude that you wear on your sleeve. This awards existence, and being placed above the BSM with a V, is being perceived as your community thumbing it's nose at all the real 'warriors' who fight, get dirty, bleed and die on the battlefield. It is absolutely shameful, and then you all sit around and wonder why you have such a "me-to, whiney cry baby, a** clown" reputation.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go fly my remote control helicopter drone around the office here so I can go tell everyone what a great helicopter pilot I am. Demand a flight suit, maybe some flight pay, maybe a set of wings, and whatever else I can talk the chain of command into to make me feel better about myself.

P.S. What the f*ck is a Master Sergeant's Medal?

Wow I did not know that was on my sleeves.

hugomk
02-15-2013, 01:20 AM
[QUOTE=ROTAX;607308]

BSMs can be awarded for acts other than valor, but BSMs with a V can't.





I am fully aware of the RPA communities contributions, many have been great, but you are still button pushers who assume no risk.




No we won't, and hopefully they won't be getting any combat medals either.




Right, because they assume risk.

If you guys want your own special medal great, but you do not, and never will, rank with those that have earned the BSM with V.



And I bet you think the good people at Space-X are astronauts too.

Take your 'flight time' to an airline, or any regional air carrier, to get a job, and see what happens.

You really hate us RPA guys huh?

hugomk
02-15-2013, 01:39 AM
“It’s a boneheaded decision,” VFW spokesman Joe Davis told FoxNews.com. “This is going to affect morale and it’s sending troops in the field a horrible message.”

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/02/14/medal-misfire-pentagon-new-off-site-medal/#ixzz2KvZlMLg5

sandsjames
02-15-2013, 03:23 AM
These award and decs all stem from the misinterpretation of survey results. The leaders assume that when we say we want recognition for what we do that it has to be some big todo when , in actuality all we want is for the boss to say "You've worked your ass of this week and it's now noon on Friday and we have nothing pressing. Go home!". Instead, we get more decs we have to write and daily/weekly bullet statements that have to be turned in. They always take something simple and fuck it up.

loadsmith
02-15-2013, 04:31 AM
Most the Ops/aircrew haters on here can and probably will watch this on mute. Either way I am sure the comments will not revolve around the video content but more to do with the flight suit wearing while performing their non-flying duties.

The video already provides the perspective that most of us already have discussed but it is still worth the 4 minutes to watch:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=gU75dB0HfvM

TJMAC77SP
02-15-2013, 12:46 PM
We need to keep factual with our various posts and retorts. Here and on the other RPA threads.

No one can justifiably state that RPA crews don't provide valuable service to the fight and particularly to the troops on the ground.

Those that are stating that here are wrong.

Equally wrong are those whose position is that they are ‘equal’ in the threat they face and the implied math being that they therefore deserve the accolades and decorations of their fellow rated aircrew members who do fly directly into harm’s way. This is a massive failure of logic and credibility. Continuing to do so simply adds to the argument the naysayers are offering.

I am uncomfortable when trying to quantify various contributions of those in harm’s way. It seems obvious that a troop on the ground directly engaged in contact with the enemy is more at threat than an aircraft circling several thousand feet above the battlefield but without a doubt they are both facing a direct threat.

To extend that and state an RPA crew at Creech is also facing that same threat is again, just plain silly. Even RPA crews who are physically deployed to the AOR are facing no more threat than the airman who cooked their breakfast omelet.

Can they face PTSD? I believe they can and do. The human mind processes stress in all sorts of ways. Watching and being part of the killing of people is not a natural nor common act, regardless of whether the killing was justified or not. There is a reason that the worst question you can ask a combat vet is “Did you kill anyone”? The suffering of PTSD or not should not the acid test on whether or not one has earned a decoration for valor or any such accolade. It is an irrelevant and disingenuous argument.

I for one have posted a lot of stuff here on various threads which highlights what I have always believed to be a sometimes elitist attitude among some aircrew. I do this because much of it grates on me personally. I don’t believe this to be universal and have never worried over it to the point that it affected my job or my interactions with said aircrew. I have also NEVER denigrated their contribution nor their value to the mission. Then again I think everyone who dons the uniform contributes.

Let’s all be reasonable. Examine the motivations for a particular position and be honest about your adherence to that position.

CrustySMSgt
02-15-2013, 01:17 PM
I for one have posted a lot of stuff here on various threads which highlights what I have always believed to be a sometimes elitist attitude among some aircrew. I do this because much of it grates on me personally. I don’t believe this to be universal and have never worried over it to the point that it affected my job or my interactions with said aircrew. I have also NEVER denigrated their contribution nor their value to the mission. Then again I think everyone who dons the uniform contributes.

Let’s all be reasonable. Examine the motivations for a particular position and be honest about your adherence to that position.

Well said! I vented a little to a senior Chief in a key leadership position and he gave me a bit of perspective. As someone who has numerous deployments out doing convoys, he EARNED a Bronze Star. So of course I figured he'd be just as emotional regarding this issue as most people are. He surprised me. He said he recognized the strategic importance of the support these positions provide; not having them overwatching the convoys, interdicting ambushed, identifying IEDs or IED emplacers places his Airmen in harms way and if the event is significant enough, the impact of their actions would warrant such recognition.

He isn't a dispenser of blue koolaid and he's a straight shooter. I respect him immensly and his perspective matters. If an RPA crew's actions are so significant to disrupt the enemy and prevent someone with boot's on the ground from having to earn a BSM with Valor or be wounded and recieve a Purple Heart, shouldn't their contributions be recognized? So I'm willing to give the issue a bit more thought. Not sure I agree 100%, but his opinion does have merit.

technomage1
02-15-2013, 01:28 PM
Well said! I vented a little to a senior Chief in a key leadership position and he gave me a bit of perspective. As someone who has numerous deployments out doing convoys, he EARNED a Bronze Star. So of course I figured he'd be just as emotional regarding this issue as most people are. He surprised me. He said he recognized the strategic importance of the support these positions provide; not having them overwatching the convoys, interdicting ambushed, identifying IEDs or IED emplacers places his Airmen in harms way and if the event is significant enough, the impact of their actions would warrant such recognition.

He isn't a dispenser of blue koolaid and he's a straight shooter. I respect him immensly and his perspective matters. If an RPA crew's actions are so significant to disrupt the enemy and prevent someone with boot's on the ground from having to earn a BSM with Valor or be wounded and recieve a Purple Heart, shouldn't their contributions be recognized? So I'm willing to give the issue a bit more thought. Not sure I agree 100%, but his opinion does have merit.

I 100% agree With the medal existing and the role RPAs play. No doubt its important. But the bottom line is they don't have blood on the line. Ground troops do. Nature of the business. So the only thing I disagree with is rear medals being above forward ones. Those in direct combat deserve more than those of us who are not.

I once was instrumental in building multiple ac ramps that directly supported drone, SOF, and other OIF missions. Those ramps saved convoy lives, no doubt. i got a commendation medal for it. Never would it cross my mind to get a higher award than those who directly placed themselves in harms way in those convoys.

JD2780
02-15-2013, 01:30 PM
That is a point. I have driven Rt 95 from Vegas to Indian Springs many times. Of course the prison has always been a threat as well so maybe this move is long overdue.

Exactly, its a dangerous place. Inmates might target the SO and uav pilot to make them his boyfriends.

CrustySMSgt
02-15-2013, 02:02 PM
I 100% agree With the medal existing and the role RPAs play. No doubt its important. But the bottom line is they don't have blood on the line. Ground troops do. Nature of the business. So the only thing I disagree with is rear medals being above forward ones. Those in direct combat deserve more than those of us who are not.


I'm still leaning in that direction... but with less emotion that I initially had about the issue.

Stalwart
02-15-2013, 02:54 PM
A Bronze Star alone (without the combat distinguishing device) is pretty much a Meritorious Service Medal earned in a combat zone. When I see a Bronze Star with no combat device, due to the decline in the standard to award the Bronze Star makes me think in my head “MSM”. I wish it wasn’t the case, but seeing Bronze Stars awarded to service members (of all services) who never engaged the enemy but were classified as being in a combat zone because they were in Al Udeid or a similiar location diminishes the award.

Different services have different expectations for awards (the criteria in the Air Force for a Commendation Medal is different than for one in the Marine Corps). While I don’t believe in hard and fast rank requirements for awards, the Meritorious Service Medal is typically an end of tour award for senior Non-Commissioned Officers and field grade Officers (in the Navy it is the standard EOT for a submarine or small ship Commander at the end of his command tour). The Distinguished Warfare Medal ranking in precedence over the award you give the Commander of an infantry battalion, fighter squadron or a nuclear submarine is not proportionate.

The Distinguished Warfare Medal would be senior in precedence to a Bronze Star, combat device or not. Regardless of how important the UAV mission they are flying that is a disservice to those who put themselves in harm’s way.

MilPhD
02-15-2013, 03:14 PM
Most of you fail to realize. In the near future the majority of all combat aircraft will be controlled remotely.

How else will future pilots receive medals?

giggawatt
02-15-2013, 03:24 PM
If I was joking I would say "What do you do with an elephant with 3 balls?" "Walk him and pitch to the rhino."

wxjumper
02-15-2013, 10:31 PM
I laughed at this when it first came out, but then thought why not let those model airplane flyers have their medal.

Then today I found out that it will be placed above the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart in the order of merit. What a fucken travesty and embarrassment. Just another example of the work the political correctness "do gooders" plaguing the halls of the Pentagon today.

Banned
02-15-2013, 11:57 PM
I laughed at this when it first came out, but then thought why not let those model airplane flyers have their medal.

Then today I found out that it will be placed above the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart in the order of merit. What a fucken travesty and embarrassment. Just another example of the work the political correctness "do gooders" plaguing the halls of the Pentagon today.

"Political correctness" seems to have become a term for all things bad. This has nothing to do with being PC... this is about a particular career field manipulating the award system to their own benefit.

chevyman
02-16-2013, 12:44 AM
So will they get Oak Clusters for every level of Prestige like Call of Duty?

hugomk
02-16-2013, 01:01 AM
"Political correctness" seems to have become a term for all things bad. This has nothing to do with being PC... this is about a particular career field manipulating the award system to their own benefit.

Wow. You are giving the career field to much credit. There is no way a certain career field can manipulate anything.

Quixotic
02-16-2013, 01:07 AM
Wow. You are giving the career field to much credit. There is no way a certain career field can manipulate anything.

Sure they can, but 'community' would have been a better choice of words - it's also the cyber 'warriors' that want it too.

hugomk
02-16-2013, 08:19 AM
Sure they can, but 'community' would have been a better choice of words - it's also the cyber 'warriors' that want it too.

No way. No community can do that.

CrustySMSgt
02-16-2013, 10:17 AM
Just read the official memo announcing the decoration. At least the approval authority is the service secretary and can't be delegated to lower levels. This will hopefully keep the bar set VERY high and ensure this doesn't become another gimme decoration, especially given the precedence.

CrustySMSgt
02-16-2013, 04:02 PM
Duffleblog is all over it! lol



Heroic Predator Drone Is First Recipient of Distinguished Warfare Medal

“I hate to say it, but my human counterpart is a droneopotamus. He sits around in the Ground Control Station all day, eating Doritos, and posts a sticker on the door that says ‘Predator Pilot: Toughest Job in the Air Force.’”

THX-1138 spat and said, “Fuck that, I’d like to see his fat ass spend a few years of his life in this hell-hole.”

But thanks to the testimony of the troops THX-1138 saved, Air Force leaders reconsidered. Instead, THX-1138 is to be the first recipient of the Distinguished Warfare Medal. His human counterpart will get a Bronze Star with “V” device, a much less prestigious award.


Read more: http://www.duffelblog.com/2013/02/predator-drone-is-first-recipient-of-distinguished-warfare-medal/#ixzz2L4ubWBhP

Quixotic
02-16-2013, 05:16 PM
I can't wait for the "U.S. Drone Operator assassinates U.S. Citizen, earns Distinguished Warfare Medal" headline.*




*Humor

hugomk
02-16-2013, 06:22 PM
Maybe they already did.

Absinthe Anecdote
02-16-2013, 07:25 PM
I can't wait for the "U.S. Drone Operator assassinates U.S. Citizen, earns Distinguished Warfare Medal" headline.*

*Humor

Anwar al-Aulaqi and his son, both American citizens and both linked to al-Qaeda, where killed by RPA strikes in Yemen in 2011, but I don’t know if they were CIA or Air Force operated.

There are some sketchy claims floating around about that kid from Alabama that joined al-Shabaab being killed by and RPA as well. However, he might still be alive or was killed by rival al-Shabaab factions.


I generally don't have a problem with killing Americans who have joined a terrorist group.

I could care even less about our guys getting medals.

I think we should do away with medals and give out cash awards.

hugomk
02-16-2013, 10:11 PM
Anwar al-Aulaqi and his son, both American citizens and both linked to al-Qaeda, where killed by RPA strikes in Yemen in 2011, but I don’t know if they were CIA or Air Force operated.

There are some sketchy claims floating around about that kid from Alabama that joined al-Shabaab being killed by and RPA as well. However, he might still be alive or was killed by rival al-Shabaab factions.


I generally don't have a problem with killing Americans who have joined a terrorist group.

I could care even less about our guys getting medals.

I think we should do away with medals and give out cash awards.


I'm all for cash. But that will make us mercenaries right?

efmbman
02-16-2013, 10:14 PM
I'm all for cash. But that will make us mercenaries right?

We already get paid in money, what's the difference. If another country paid us then we might be mercenaries. That was an issue at the end of Desert Storm when the Kuwaiti government wanted to pay soldiers.

BURAWSKI
02-16-2013, 11:19 PM
There is no justice in this combat "award". How can you give a higher order of precedence, much less designation as a a combat award, when there is no requirement for participating in actual combat. Ironic that a UAV pilot can be regarded as a equal with those that are in actual harms way engaging in an actual combat environment. I picture these UAV pilots sipping on their Starbuck's latte's in their air-conditiioned cubicles while the true combat warriers are out in the desert in constant danger of attack. Hey it kind of reminds me of the whole military establishment giving the middle finger to those who really are in danger of getting killed. Maybe no one who has ever served in a forward area will ever know what I'm talking about anyway. So much for this new and improved military.

CrustySMSgt
02-17-2013, 07:56 AM
Anwar al-Aulaqi and his son, both American citizens and both linked to al-Qaeda, where killed by RPA strikes in Yemen in 2011, but I don’t know if they were CIA or Air Force operated.

There are some sketchy claims floating around about that kid from Alabama that joined al-Shabaab being killed by and RPA as well. However, he might still be alive or was killed by rival al-Shabaab factions.


I generally don't have a problem with killing Americans who have joined a terrorist group.

I could care even less about our guys getting medals.

I think we should do away with medals and give out cash awards.

AMEN! If a US citizen is hanging out in an AQ training camp in Yemen, Pakistan, asscrackistan... light their asses up.


There is no justice in this combat "award". How can you give a higher order of precedence, much less designation as a a combat award, when there is no requirement for participating in actual combat. Ironic that a UAV pilot can be regarded as a equal with those that are in actual harms way engaging in an actual combat environment. I picture these UAV pilots sipping on their Starbuck's latte's in their air-conditiioned cubicles while the true combat warriers are out in the desert in constant danger of attack. Hey it kind of reminds me of the whole military establishment giving the middle finger to those who really are in danger of getting killed. Maybe no one who has ever served in a forward area will ever know what I'm talking about anyway. So much for this new and improved military.

Not disputing your overall point, but just to clarify, it isn't a "combat" decoration, it is for, "extraordinary achievements that directly impact on combat operations"

The Distinguished Flying Cross, which is above the Distinguished Warfare Medal, also doesn't include combat; in fact, it has been awarded for breaking flying records, was awarded to Lindbergh, and even retroactivle awarded to the Wright Brothers. So the decoration that WAS just above the Bronze Star was already a non-combat decoration. Just a bit of perspective on what was in place before this became an issue.

Absinthe Anecdote
02-17-2013, 08:57 AM
There is no justice in this combat "award". How can you give a higher order of precedence, much less designation as a a combat award, when there is no requirement for participating in actual combat. Ironic that a UAV pilot can be regarded as a equal with those that are in actual harms way engaging in an actual combat environment. I picture these UAV pilots sipping on their Starbuck's latte's in their air-conditiioned cubicles while the true combat warriers are out in the desert in constant danger of attack. Hey it kind of reminds me of the whole military establishment giving the middle finger to those who really are in danger of getting killed. Maybe no one who has ever served in a forward area will ever know what I'm talking about anyway. So much for this new and improved military.

I get your point but you are laying it on a little thick. Besides, it will all work out in a few years when we start fielding ground combat drones.

It's only a matter of time before these things start to become semi-autonomous then fully autonomous.

Then we will be giving out medals to guys who write lines of computer code.

Robert F. Dorr
02-17-2013, 10:54 AM
Actually, it is only a matter of time until this fad passes and unmanned aircraft begin to disappear from the scene. Robert Gates' infatuation with these mostly useless vehicles can't hold sway forever. This is just another fad, like fighters that don't need guns or combat aircraft with variable-geometry wings. While things could change in the future, there is no mission that a drone can perform today that isn't many times costlier than using a manned aircraft.

The award, which is not a combat award, is a reasonable way to grant recognition in a military force whose job functions and duties are evolving. I like the idea of an award more than I like the idea of a UAS operator wearing wings or a flight suit. As long as we recognize that this is something different, it's fine. The justification for creating this award is similar to the justification for creating the Bronze Star and the Distinguished Flying Cross. Neither of those, when given without "V" device, is a combat award.

CJSmith
02-17-2013, 11:45 AM
WAPS points = ?

CrustySMSgt
02-17-2013, 02:08 PM
Actually, it is only a matter of time until this fad passes and unmanned aircraft begin to disappear from the scene. Robert Gates' infatuation with these mostly useless vehicles can't hold sway forever. This is just another fad, like fighters that don't need guns or combat aircraft with variable-geometry wings. While things could change in the future, there is no mission that a drone can perform today that isn't many times costlier than using a manned aircraft.


At some point everyone must realize they have finally crested the hill of life and start heading down hill and must understand they no longer have firm grasp on what's going on NOW, chosing to hold on to the way things used to be. Mr. Dorr, I hate to point out the obvious, but I think this post should be that light bulb moment for you.

JD2780
02-17-2013, 02:12 PM
Actually, it is only a matter of time until this fad passes and unmanned aircraft begin to disappear from the scene. Robert Gates' infatuation with these mostly useless vehicles can't hold sway forever. This is just another fad, like fighters that don't need guns or combat aircraft with variable-geometry wings. While things could change in the future, there is no mission that a drone can perform today that isn't many times costlier than using a manned aircraft.

The award, which is not a combat award, is a reasonable way to grant recognition in a military force whose job functions and duties are evolving. I like the idea of an award more than I like the idea of a UAS operator wearing wings or a flight suit. As long as we recognize that this is something different, it's fine. The justification for creating this award is similar to the justification for creating the Bronze Star and the Distinguished Flying Cross. Neither of those, when given without "V" device, is a combat award.

I believe you have it backwards. I think it will be more and more prelevant. Mostly useless? In my experience I found many used for them. Thats based of my extensive experience as a JTAC that had to incorporate these systems into my air plan. If want to know what I've done with them please go ahead and PM me.

Mr. Happy
02-17-2013, 03:03 PM
The way I see it, they give enlisted people a medal every 3 years for basically behaving. So I have no problem with awarding a medal to someone who takes out high value terrorists or saves ground troops with a RPA. The level of precedence over a BSM can be debated I guess. Remember also, the Legion of Merit is even higher than both of these medals, and they award these most often to wing commanders and command chiefs for just completing a tour of duty at a wing or command.

Absinthe Anecdote
02-17-2013, 04:30 PM
Actually, it is only a matter of time until this fad passes and unmanned aircraft begin to disappear from the scene. Robert Gates' infatuation with these mostly useless vehicles can't hold sway forever. This is just another fad, like fighters that don't need guns or combat aircraft with variable-geometry wings. While things could change in the future, there is no mission that a drone can perform today that isn't many times costlier than using a manned aircraft.

The award, which is not a combat award, is a reasonable way to grant recognition in a military force whose job functions and duties are evolving. I like the idea of an award more than I like the idea of a UAS operator wearing wings or a flight suit. As long as we recognize that this is something different, it's fine. The justification for creating this award is similar to the justification for creating the Bronze Star and the Distinguished Flying Cross. Neither of those, when given without "V" device, is a combat award.

You remind me of a WWI cavalry officer scoffing at observation balloons and those damned flying machines.

Fully autonomous air superiority drones aren’t that far off.

I say we are on the verge of a whole new revolution in robotic technology, for both civilian and military uses.

Take a look at this thing!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40gECrmuCaU&feature=player_embedded#!

They designed this as a pack mule to follow a squad of infantry. It won’t be long before they improve the design, arm it with weapons and teach it how to fight.

hugomk
02-17-2013, 05:15 PM
Actually, it is only a matter of time until this fad passes and unmanned aircraft begin to disappear from the scene. Robert Gates' infatuation with these mostly useless vehicles can't hold sway forever. This is just another fad, like fighters that don't need guns or combat aircraft with variable-geometry wings. While things could change in the future, there is no mission that a drone can perform today that isn't many times costlier than using a manned aircraft.

The award, which is not a combat award, is a reasonable way to grant recognition in a military force whose job functions and duties are evolving. I like the idea of an award more than I like the idea of a UAS operator wearing wings or a flight suit. As long as we recognize that this is something different, it's fine. The justification for creating this award is similar to the justification for creating the Bronze Star and the Distinguished Flying Cross. Neither of those, when given without "V" device, is a combat award.

Really? I guess it was useless when it killed all those high ranking Al-Qaeda and from what I heard helped in the recon when the SEAL got Bin Lade. Yup those things are useless.

Quixotic
02-17-2013, 05:23 PM
Now now, everyone knows that drones are a useful and important combat suppport tool to have around.

They're just not as important of a tool as some tools would like us to believe.

JD2780
02-17-2013, 05:52 PM
Now now, everyone knows that drones are a useful and important combat suppport tool to have around.

They're just not as important of a tool as some tools would like us to believe.

True. They are certainly a support tool, and a good one at that. Then again, these days ALL aircraft are simply support tools. Helping the ground guy.

Not only have they taken out HVTs with little to no noise signature, they have also provided invaluable security to ground troops. It doesnt require yo-yo ops, is able to stay on station WAY longer than ANY other asset RFD just felt a disturbance in the force.

JD2780
02-17-2013, 05:54 PM
The way I see it, they give enlisted people a medal every 3 years for basically behaving. So I have no problem with awarding a medal to someone who takes out high value terrorists or saves ground troops with a RPA. The level of precedence over a BSM can be debated I guess. Remember also, the Legion of Merit is even higher than both of these medals, and they award these most often to wing commanders and command chiefs for just completing a tour of duty at a wing or command.

Yes the good conduct medal should've been lead out to pasture as well. There are many medals and ribbons that shouldnt be around, or should be given out when earned. Not for simply coming to work and behaving for 3 yrs then getting orders.

Capt Alfredo
02-17-2013, 06:01 PM
AMEN! If a US citizen is hanging out in an AQ training camp in Yemen, Pakistan, asscrackistan... light their asses up.

The problem, as always, is who gets to decide what constitutes "an AQ training camp" since that criteria is shrouded in mystery and "top secret" smoke. We shouldn't be targeting US citizens with military power in 99.99/100 instances, unless DIRECTLY and ACTIVELY engaged with friendly forces. Alleged planning isn't enough.

Banned
02-17-2013, 06:41 PM
Not sure if I'm a huge fan of being replaced by a robot.

From Day #1 of boot camp, I've been told that our enemies are "cowards" - its cowardly to shoot at heavily armored convoys, plant bombs near American bases, or launch a suicide attack.

However, killing your enemy hundreds of miles away from the safety of an air conditioned trailer is extremely heroic, and deserves a medal.


The problem, as always, is who gets to decide what constitutes "an AQ training camp" since that criteria is shrouded in mystery and "top secret" smoke. We shouldn't be targeting US citizens with military power in 99.99/100 instances, unless DIRECTLY and ACTIVELY engaged with friendly forces. Alleged planning isn't enough.

Exactly. From what I understand, this is also an ongoing ACLU case... but essentially, the government has declared the ENTIRE WORLD a combat zone... in other words, we can kill anyone, anywhere, anytime, for any reason.

Quixotic
02-17-2013, 07:01 PM
[QUOTE]Not sure if I'm a huge fan of being replaced by a robot.

From Day #1 of boot camp, I've been told that our enemies are "cowards" - its cowardly to shoot at heavily armored convoys, plant bombs near American bases, or launch a suicide attack.

However, killing your enemy hundreds of miles away from the safety of an air conditioned trailer is extremely heroic, and deserves a medal.


Whoa whoa whoa! Come on now, don't be chucking spears at the Air Force's Warrior Ethos! That's just mean...


Exactly. From what I understand, this is also an ongoing ACLU case... but essentially, the government has declared the ENTIRE WORLD a combat zone... in other words, we can kill anyone, anywhere, anytime, for any reason.

There is one little trivial matter, you have to slap the 'terrorist' label on them, which isn't hard since we get to define that label. Again, a trivial matter...

Absinthe Anecdote
02-17-2013, 07:35 PM
Not sure if I'm a huge fan of being replaced by a robot.
From Day #1 of boot camp, I've been told that our enemies are "cowards" - its cowardly to shoot at heavily armored convoys, plant bombs near American bases, or launch a suicide attack.

However, killing your enemy hundreds of miles away from the safety of an air conditioned trailer is extremely heroic, and deserves a medal.

I'm all in favor of replacing you with a robot. We wouldn’t even need a robot; we could just use an automated script to randomly post ACLU talking points into threads. :)




Exactly. From what I understand, this is also an ongoing ACLU case... but essentially, the government has declared the ENTIRE WORLD a combat zone... in other words, we can kill anyone, anywhere, anytime, for any reason.

Seriously Joe,

While I might share a few reservations about the targeted killing of Americans your statement is grossly exaggerated.

From the two cases I cited earlier both individuals had openly declared themselves at war with the United States and were actively involved with the day to day operations of a known terrorist organization.

I concede that a clear policy on counterterrorism operations, including targeted killings of American terrorists hasn’t been released and that is something to be concerned about.

However, that is a long way from declaring the whole world a combat zone and killing you for any reason.

Banned
02-17-2013, 07:47 PM
[QUOTE=Joe Bonham;607902]

Whoa whoa whoa! Come on now, don't be chucking spears at the Air Force's Warrior Ethos! That's just mean...



There is one little trivial matter, you have to slap the 'terrorist' label on them, which isn't hard since we get to define that label. Again, a trivial matter...

And let's take a look at the DOD definition of "terrorism"

"The unlawful use of violence or threat of violence to instill fear and coerce governments or societies. Terrorism is often motivated by religious, political, or other ideological beliefs and committed in the pursuit of goals that are usually political."

This definition is so broad, that any act of war for any reason could be defined as "terrorism"... notice that cute little modifier "unlawful". So if we do it, its all good. If someone else we don't like does it, that's TERRORISM!


I'm all in favor of replacing you with a robot. We wouldn’t even need a robot; we could just use an automated script to randomly post ACLU talking points into threads. :)

Seriously Joe,

While I might share a few reservations about the targeted killing of Americans your statement is grossly exaggerated.

From the two cases I cited earlier both individuals had openly declared themselves at war with the United States and were actively involved with the day to day operations of a known terrorist organization.

I concede that a clear policy on counterterrorism operations, including targeted killings of American terrorists hasn’t been released and that is something to be concerned about.

However, that is a long way from declaring the whole world a combat zone and killing you for any reason.

So the USA can be "at war" with individual people now? Did Congress declare war on him? He was not a nation at war with us... he was a suspected criminal. A suspected criminal murdered without any pretense of justice or due process.

The wole world is a combat zone - in other words, you don't have to be anywhere close to combat operations to be killed by the American government. That is exactly what I'm talking about.

We not only killed Anwar, we denied him a fair hearing in court. Yes, literally - the ACLU appeal filed by his father was denied, because the evidence was "secret" and could not be released... and that any appeals couldn't be filed without Anwar's presence. Which is a hilarious ruling, because any time Anwar went out in public, or even so much as used a cell phone, he was in danger of being immediately killed.

Absinthe Anecdote
02-17-2013, 09:13 PM
[QUOTE=Quixotic;607904]



So the USA can be "at war" with individual people now? Did Congress declare war on him? He was not a nation at war with us... he was a suspected criminal. A suspected criminal murdered without any pretense of justice or due process.The wole world is a combat zone - in other words, you don't have to be anywhere close to combat operations to be killed by the American government. That is exactly what I'm talking about.

We not only killed Anwar, we denied him a fair hearing in court. Yes, literally - the ACLU appeal filed by his father was denied, because the evidence was "secret" and could not be released... and that any appeals couldn't be filed without Anwar's presence. Which is a hilarious ruling, because any time Anwar went out in public, or even so much as used a cell phone, he was in danger of being immediately killed.

According to the leaked DOJ white paper that MSNBC published, “a targeted killing of a US citizen who has joined al-Qa’ida or its associated forces would be lawful under U.S. and international law.”

In my opinion and apparently the government’s opinion, you forfeit your rights to trial when you join an enemy force.
Anwar al-Awlaki had publicly stated his status a leader and member in al-Qa’ida.

Again, I consider your statements to be gross exaggerations of the policy and what happened in al-Awaki’s case.

Here is a link to the white paper, isn’t the official policy but it does shed light on their rationale and guidelines.

http://msnbcmedia.msn.com/i/msnbc/sections/news/020413_DOJ_White_Paper.pdf

Absinthe Anecdote
02-17-2013, 09:15 PM
And let's take a look at the DOD definition of "terrorism"

"The unlawful use of violence or threat of violence to instill fear and coerce governments or societies. Terrorism is often motivated by religious, political, or other ideological beliefs and committed in the pursuit of goals that are usually political."

This definition is so broad, that any act of war for any reason could be defined as "terrorism"... notice that cute little modifier "unlawful". So if we do it, its all good. If someone else we don't like does it, that's TERRORISM!



So the USA can be "at war" with individual people now? Did Congress declare war on him? He was not a nation at war with us... he was a suspected criminal. A suspected criminal murdered without any pretense of justice or due process.

The wole world is a combat zone - in other words, you don't have to be anywhere close to combat operations to be killed by the American government. That is exactly what I'm talking about.

We not only killed Anwar, we denied him a fair hearing in court. Yes, literally - the ACLU appeal filed by his father was denied, because the evidence was "secret" and could not be released... and that any appeals couldn't be filed without Anwar's presence. Which is a hilarious ruling, because any time Anwar went out in public, or even so much as used a cell phone, he was in danger of being immediately killed.

According to the leaked DOJ white paper that MSNBC published, “a targeted killing of a US citizen who has joined al-Qa’ida or its associated forces would be lawful under U.S. and international law.”

In my opinion and apparently the government’s opinion, you forfeit your rights to trial when you join an enemy force.

Anwar al-Awlaki had publicly stated his status a leader and member in al-Qa’ida.

Again, I consider your statements to be gross exaggerations of the policy and what happened in al-Awaki’s case.

Here is a link to the white paper, isn’t the official policy but it does shed light on their rationale and guidelines.

http://msnbcmedia.msn.com/i/msnbc/sections/news/020413_DOJ_White_Paper.pdf

BURAWSKI
02-17-2013, 11:34 PM
[QUOTE=Joe Bonham;607908]

According to the leaked DOJ white paper that MSNBC published, “a targeted killing of a US citizen who has joined al-Qa’ida or its associated forces would be lawful under U.S. and international law.”

In my opinion and apparently the government’s opinion, you forfeit your rights to trial when you join an enemy force.

Anwar al-Awlaki had publicly stated his status a leader and member in al-Qa’ida.

Again, I consider your statements to be gross exaggerations of the policy and what happened in al-Awaki’s case.

Here is a link to the white paper, isn’t the official policy but it does shed light on their rationale and guidelines.

http://msnbcmedia.msn.com/i/msnbc/sections/news/020413_DOJ_White_Paper.pdf


Just my opinion but the decision to do this is a step back in the area of our civil rights. But before you jump on me for saying that I am only pointing out that the government is not infallable; I mean they do make mistakes. Suppose you have a case of mistaken identity? I mean it could happen somehow as mistakes do happen. Think about it.

Absinthe Anecdote
02-18-2013, 02:08 AM
Just my opinion but the decision to do this is a step back in the area of our civil rights. But before you jump on me for saying that I am only pointing out that the government is not infallable; I mean they do make mistakes. Suppose you have a case of mistaken identity? I mean it could happen somehow as mistakes do happen. Think about it.

Yes, you are right, mistakes do happen. Not unlike the mistake you made using the "Reply with quote" function.

Say, are you that Chief that wrote that really long email about 5MTs and the airmen's creed a few years ago?

Banned
02-18-2013, 02:16 AM
According to the leaked DOJ white paper that MSNBC published, “a targeted killing of a US citizen who has joined al-Qa’ida or its associated forces would be lawful under U.S. and international law.”

In my opinion and apparently the government’s opinion, you forfeit your rights to trial when you join an enemy force.

Anwar al-Awlaki had publicly stated his status a leader and member in al-Qa’ida.

Again, I consider your statements to be gross exaggerations of the policy and what happened in al-Awaki’s case.

Here is a link to the white paper, isn’t the official policy but it does shed light on their rationale and guidelines.

http://msnbcmedia.msn.com/i/msnbc/sections/news/020413_DOJ_White_Paper.pdf


While your submissive attitude towards government authority is touching... I'm not sure a "high-level government official" deciding I'm a combatant and that "capture is infeasible" (AKA inconvenient) should be enough grounds to have me killed.

Also note that simply being a member of an organization is sufficient grounds to be killed is shady at best... so if an AQ member (combatant or not) can be killed on sight, does that mean any German citizen can be killed if we're at war with Germany?

akruse
02-18-2013, 02:19 AM
While your submissive attitude towards government authority is touching... I'm not sure a "high-level government official" deciding I'm a combatant and that "capture is infeasible" (AKA inconvenient) should be enough grounds to have me killed.

Also note that simply being a member of an organization is sufficient grounds to be killed is shady at best... so if an AQ member (combatant or not) can be killed on sight, does that mean any German citizen can be killed if we're at war with Germany?

Where is PYB when you need him

CrustySMSgt
02-18-2013, 06:26 AM
All right, to try and get this train :focus :wave

So as I was on my 8.75 mile "Sunday stroll" around Kandahar, I thought of another "what if" situation regarding the award of this medal. So, since the criteria includes cyber (and the network IS a "weapons sytem"), say some computer goob locked away somewhere works through a complex hack on an enemies air defenses, shutting them down and clearing the way for an air attack, "potentially" saving numerous lives and a few hundred million dollars in hardware. Do you think his/her actions would warrant this decoration? (Of course that would mean admitting we employ cyber as an offensive weapon)

Absinthe Anecdote
02-18-2013, 12:51 PM
All right, to try and get this train :focus :wave

So as I was on my 8.75 mile "Sunday stroll" around Kandahar, I thought of another "what if" situation regarding the award of this medal. So, since the criteria includes cyber (and the network IS a "weapons sytem"), say some computer goob locked away somewhere works through a complex hack on an enemies air defenses, shutting them down and clearing the way for an air attack, "potentially" saving numerous lives and a few hundred million dollars in hardware. Do you think his/her actions would warrant this decoration? (Of course that would mean admitting we employ cyber as an offensive weapon)

I think the scenario would warrant the award. However, the person who did the actual hacking probably wouldn't be military but a contractor.

You would have military in supervisory roles, so they would get the medal and not the actual cyber warrior.

It's a damn shame to! They get these medals and all they did was sit around the break room drinking coffeee.

While the REAL cyber warriors are out there writing lines upon lines of C++ and Python code. Try asking your average military officer to find a Zero Day exploit in Adobe Flash. They just stare at you and blink their stupid eyes.

Are we mad, Bro?

Yes, we very mad, Bro.

I fixed them because I came up with a hack that causes those curly dispensing arms in the vending machines to jam unless you press and hold the coin return for five seconds prior to putting your money in.

God damn "nunners"! That's what we call people who work in cyber and don't know a programming language.

Banned
02-18-2013, 10:12 PM
All right, to try and get this train :focus :wave

So as I was on my 8.75 mile "Sunday stroll" around Kandahar, I thought of another "what if" situation regarding the award of this medal. So, since the criteria includes cyber (and the network IS a "weapons sytem"), say some computer goob locked away somewhere works through a complex hack on an enemies air defenses, shutting them down and clearing the way for an air attack, "potentially" saving numerous lives and a few hundred million dollars in hardware. Do you think his/her actions would warrant this decoration? (Of course that would mean admitting we employ cyber as an offensive weapon)

The point is moot... because if this scenario happened, the survivors would be too busy gathering up sticks and stones for the NEXT war to be issuing cyber warrior medals. ;)

MACHINE666
02-18-2013, 10:28 PM
What's great is those RPA guys will NEVER be able to pull trim the way fighter pilots have and always will!

:D :D :D :D :D :D

BURAWSKI
02-18-2013, 10:58 PM
It looks like the battlefields later in the 21st Century will will be fought on the keyboard instead of in the trenches.

FLAPS
02-19-2013, 10:43 AM
Try asking your average military officer to find a Zero Day exploit in Adobe Flash. They just stare at you and blink their stupid eyes.


For every one officer who doesn't have a clue what a "Zero Day exploit" is, and I'll find you 10 enlisted guys who don't seem to have a clue either.

Robert F. Dorr
02-19-2013, 12:36 PM
Interesting. What's the definition of "warfighter?" Is it the missileer in Wyoming launching a Minuteman II, one of the most devasting weapons known to mankind? Is it the B-52 crew launching a stand-off long range cruise missile? How about the guys in a sub? Perhaps it's just the rifleman on the ground attacking with a fixed bayonet? Just how far from the enemy can you be when you kill him? One foot away? 30,000 feet? 6,000 miles?

If a hacker can one day shut down an entire nation's electrical grid via the internet, killing thousands (if not more) over a given period of time, then surely we can call them "warfighters" too, don't you think?

Back to the topic, I have mixed feelings over where this medal should be placed...especially after meeting a CMSgt who won the Bronze Star after spending an entire year at Al Udeid, having never stepped foot off base except to buy jewelry and stare at "ninjas" running around the Doha shopping mall.

This post by FLAPS contains some pretty good thinking. I wanted to quote the kine in the middle of the post (about cyber) but I'm stymied by the grammar.

sandsjames
02-19-2013, 03:56 PM
Any person doing nothing more than the job they are assigned should NOT merit a medal/dec. Awards should be reserved for those who go above and beyond their specific duties.

Just as a child should not receive an "award" (money, etc) from their parents for doing chores, coming home on time, passing classes, a military should not receive an award for doing what they're supposed to do.

Banned
02-19-2013, 08:22 PM
Any person doing nothing more than the job they are assigned should NOT merit a medal/dec. Awards should be reserved for those who go above and beyond their specific duties.

Just as a child should not receive an "award" (money, etc) from their parents for doing chores, coming home on time, passing classes, a military should not receive an award for doing what they're supposed to do.

Depends on the award. Good Conduct medal? Combat Action Ribbon/Badge? The notorious National Defense Ribbon?

sandsjames
02-19-2013, 08:44 PM
Depends on the award. Good Conduct medal? Combat Action Ribbon/Badge? The notorious National Defense Ribbon?

Just my opinion, but those ribbons are a waste an unneeded. Ribbons should mean something. Getting one for being in a certain amount of time or being stationed at a specific base/location seems stupid to me. Ribbons should be worn to show awards received. Awards should be given to those who do something out of the ordinary. Completing basic training, being in for 3 years, being at an overseas location for a short/long tour, etc, do not merit any sort of decoration/ribbon. It dilutes the important ones.

efmbman
02-19-2013, 09:44 PM
Depends on the award. Good Conduct medal? Combat Action Ribbon/Badge? The notorious National Defense Ribbon?

Terminology... there are different categories to decribe those pretty ribbons:

Service Medals & Ribbons
Individual Decorations
Campaign Ribbons
Badges

There are publications that describe all of these at length. In your post above, the Good Conduct Medal is a "Service Medal". Combat Action Badge is a... you guessed it... a "Badge".
National Defense Service Medal is a "Service Medal" (just like in the name).

The subject of this thread is a DOD-level Individual Decoration.

sandsjames
02-19-2013, 10:08 PM
I just think it's all a little "give the kid a gold star"-ish. Just got my 9th "Outstanding Unit", which means I now have to wear two identicle ribbons side by side. It looks crappy, it looks like I screwed up putting them on, and it's something that means absolutely nothing (especially not enough to take up two spots on a rack).

efmbman
02-19-2013, 10:34 PM
I just think it's all a little "give the kid a gold star"-ish. Just got my 9th "Outstanding Unit", which means I now have to wear two identicle ribbons side by side. It looks crappy, it looks like I screwed up putting them on, and it's something that means absolutely nothing (especially not enough to take up two spots on a rack).

They are over-produced to be sure. I called them "get on the truck" ribbons because everyone that got on the truck got one. I hated having to redo my rack and badges everytime a new one was given out.

sandsjames
02-19-2013, 10:56 PM
They are over-produced to be sure. I called them "get on the truck" ribbons because everyone that got on the truck got one. I hated having to redo my rack and badges everytime a new one was given out.

I can't comprehend the basic training ribbon. WTF is that for? If you're in uniform you obviously completed it. The only recognition for that should be that you're getting a paycheck and not sitting back home in Mom's basement.

Banned
02-20-2013, 12:01 AM
Just my opinion, but those ribbons are a waste an unneeded. Ribbons should mean something. Getting one for being in a certain amount of time or being stationed at a specific base/location seems stupid to me. Ribbons should be worn to show awards received. Awards should be given to those who do something out of the ordinary. Completing basic training, being in for 3 years, being at an overseas location for a short/long tour, etc, do not merit any sort of decoration/ribbon. It dilutes the important ones.

They DO mean something. I deploy to Afghanistan, I get an Afghan campaign ribbon. I deploy with ISAF, I get an ISAF ribbon. I perform my duties during a firefight or IED incident, I get a combat action ribbon. I serve for 3 years without an Article 15, I get a good cookie. This in no way invalidates more prestigious awards like a purple heart or bronze star.

Your stack is a sort of "personal history"... hence why it needs to be visible in DA photos.

I don't have an objection with recognizing "cyber warriors". I really don't. What I do have an objection to is giving that award more precedence than a bronze star.

efmbman
02-20-2013, 12:07 AM
They DO mean something. I deploy to Afghanistan, I get an Afghan campaign ribbon. I deploy with ISAF, I get an ISAF ribbon.

I do agree with named campaign ribbons to denote participation. Basic training - unneeded. Good conduct medal? I would think that good conduct is expected of all service members, so why the need for a ribbon for it?

Banned
02-20-2013, 12:10 AM
I do agree with named campaign ribbons to denote participation. Basic training - unneeded. Good conduct medal? I would think that good conduct is expected of all service members, so why the need for a ribbon for it?

I can see that argument, but it boils down to trivia, IMO. From a historical viewpoint, people will be looking back at photos from the early 2000s, and saying "Look, there's my great grandfather after boot camp, you can tell it was during the GWOT, because he's got his national defense ribbon".

sandsjames
02-20-2013, 12:19 AM
My records show where I've been. I don't need a bunch of ribbons so I can feel validated when others view them. It's kind of like the Aaron Rogers State Farm classroom commercial: "Mr Hubble says trophies are for people with low self esteem."

sandsjames
02-20-2013, 12:20 AM
I can see that argument, but it boils down to trivia, IMO. From a historical viewpoint, people will be looking back at photos from the early 2000s, and saying "Look, there's my great grandfather after boot camp, you can tell it was during the GWOT, because he's got his national defense ribbon".

Actually, the GWOT ribbin is what shows you were in during GWOT. The National Defense ribbon can be for several different time frames/campaigns.

Banned
02-20-2013, 12:22 AM
Actually, the GWOT ribbin is what shows you were in during GWOT. The National Defense ribbon can be for several different time frames/campaigns.

I get the two mixed up.

sandsjames
02-20-2013, 12:23 AM
They DO mean something. I deploy to Afghanistan, I get an Afghan campaign ribbon. I deploy with ISAF, I get an ISAF ribbon. I perform my duties during a firefight or IED incident, I get a combat action ribbon. I serve for 3 years without an Article 15, I get a good cookie.

I make it to work on time, I get an Achievement Award. I complete all my tasks, I get a Commendation. I complete all my tasks and make sure others complete all theirs, I get an MSM. I tie my shoes properly, I win performer of the month.

efmbman
02-20-2013, 12:23 AM
I can see that argument, but it boils down to trivia, IMO. From a historical viewpoint, people will be looking back at photos from the early 2000s, and saying "Look, there's my great grandfather after boot camp, you can tell it was during the GWOT, because he's got his national defense ribbon".


Actually, the GWOT ribbin is what shows you were in during GWOT. The National Defense ribbon can be for several different time frames/campaigns.

Agreed - and there is also the GWOTEM which shows a deployment to an area not covered by a named campaign (Iraq / Afghanistan)

sandsjames
02-20-2013, 12:29 AM
I get the two mixed up.

And that shows how messed up and diluted the system is. I went to Kuwait for 110 days. Assuming I didn't already have a couple, that could have earned me 4 ribbons. GWOT, exped GWOT, Iraqi Campaign and OEF. 4 ribbons for 1 "deployment" to an area with almost zero threat. Way too many. It's almost embarrassing:

Them: "What did you get that one for?"

Me: "Kuwait"

Them: "And what about that one?"

Me: "Kuwait"

Them: "And that one?"

Me: "Yup, you guessed it."

efmbman
02-20-2013, 12:31 AM
And that shows how messed up and diluted the system is. I went to Kuwait for 110 days. Assuming I didn't already have a couple, that could have earned me 4 ribbons. GWOT, exped GWOT, Iraqi Campaign and OEF. 4 ribbons for 1 "deployment" to an area with almost zero threat.

Hold the phone... I thought the GWOTEM could not be awarded if you also qualified for either the Afghan or Iraq campaign medals... I was not aware of a ribbon for OEF.

sandsjames
02-20-2013, 12:51 AM
Hold the phone... I thought the GWOTEM could not be awarded if you also qualified for either the Afghan or Iraq campaign medals... I was not aware of a ribbon for OEF.

They've since changed the ribbons around. When I was there, I was allowed to choose between the OEF and OIF ribbon, since Kuwait supported both. That has since changed. So at the time I received the GWOTEM and the OEF (could have taken the Iraqi campaign) . I'm not sure what the new combination is. This was in '08. Looking at it now it appears you would get the "Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon" along with the Afghan Campaign medal.

edit: Again, though, this shows how screwed up the system is.

efmbman
02-20-2013, 01:01 AM
They've since changed the ribbons around. When I was there, I was allowed to choose between the OEF and OIF ribbon, since Kuwait supported both. That has since changed. So at the time I received the GWOTEM and the OEF (could have taken the Iraqi campaign) . I'm not sure what the new combination is. This was in '08. Looking at it now it appears you would get the "Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon" along with the Afghan Campaign medal.

edit: Again, though, this shows how screwed up the system is.

Man alive... if an A1C can't understand what ribbons he/she is supposed to wear, the system is bloated.

I did the invasion of Aghaniland back in Oct 2001. Back then, it was just the GWOTEM. Then they created the Afghan Campaign Medal, so the GWOTEM was revoked and ACM awarded. Whatever... Then I got sent to Qatar and viola!! Got the GWOTEM back lol. I decided to just wait until I retired to get a ribbon mount - no telling what was gonna happen next. Finished up with 17 ribbons and 17 appurtances. One would think I was GEN Patton or something. My family gets a kick out of it and I did use it to my advantage when I was recruiting :yo . Chances are, after 11+ years of war I bet there are E4s out there with a rack that would challenge the CJCS.

CrustySMSgt
02-20-2013, 06:52 AM
What's great is those RPA guys will NEVER be able to pull trim the way fighter pilots have and always will!

:D :D :D :D :D :D

Especially when they take away their flight suits! At least now by appearance you can't tell the differene.


I just think it's all a little "give the kid a gold star"-ish. Just got my 9th "Outstanding Unit", which means I now have to wear two identicle ribbons side by side. It looks crappy, it looks like I screwed up putting them on, and it's something that means absolutely nothing (especially not enough to take up two spots on a rack).

Have that issue as well; with 10 and a V. One more and I go back to one ribbon. Given I'm assigned to a MAJCOM HQ, and will probably be until I retire, that probably won't happen.


I do agree with named campaign ribbons to denote participation. Basic training - unneeded. Good conduct medal? I would think that good conduct is expected of all service members, so why the need for a ribbon for it?

Agreed... there was a lot of drama when they did away with it last time, but everyone got over it. Then in true "Semper Gumby" Air Force style, we changed and brought it back. That, basic training, PME (do you REALLY need to know how many levels of PME someone has attended by looking at their rack? If they are a SSgt, they went to ALS [I know, I know... not 100% true. but really, who cares?], if they are a a MSgt they went to SNCOA and if they are a Chief, they went to SNCOA... and questions?) could all go. Longevity... I'd rather have a ribbon than gaudy hashmarks on a dress uniform, but in the end, what does it really say?


Man alive... if an A1C can't understand what ribbons he/she is supposed to wear, the system is bloated.

I did the invasion of Aghaniland back in Oct 2001. Back then, it was just the GWOTEM. Then they created the Afghan Campaign Medal, so the GWOTEM was revoked and ACM awarded. Whatever... Then I got sent to Qatar and viola!! Got the GWOTEM back lol. I decided to just wait until I retired to get a ribbon mount - no telling what was gonna happen next. Finished up with 17 ribbons and 17 appurtances. One would think I was GEN Patton or something. My family gets a kick out of it and I did use it to my advantage when I was recruiting :yo . Chances are, after 11+ years of war I bet there are E4s out there with a rack that would challenge the CJCS.

The longer you hang out, the bigger it gets... leaving this deployment I'll be at 29 (16 medals). I have deployed 9 times in 27 years (5 since 9/11). Just saw a picture of an old troop of mine on Facebook at his "Chief recognition ceremony." He's been a cop in some of the higher-end units and has deployed a lot! I think he has 24 MEDALS; he's not a tall fella, so they literally almost went from his shoulder to his waist on his mess dress!

MACHINE666
02-20-2013, 07:45 PM
Those RPA guys need to really exploit the technology by flying over the beaches in Europe, as well as any remaining drive-in movie theaters out there! Although...watch out for the Dutch beaches...the only women there who are topless are over the age of 50!


:D :D :D :D :D

TJMAC77SP
02-20-2013, 08:49 PM
Those RPA guys need to really exploit the technology by flying over the beaches in Europe, as well as any remaining drive-in movie theaters out there! Although...watch out for the Dutch beaches...the only women there who are topless are over the age of 50!


:D :D :D :D :D

Oh, I would be willing to bet that this happens wherever and whenever possible.

When there was a Jolly Green unit at Tyndall back in the 80's they did all sorts of low level flights just off shore up and down the desolate stretches of beach on Tyndall property (and in Panama City Beach) where people wore all kinds of things (and all kinds of nothing).

JD2780
02-20-2013, 10:33 PM
Man alive... if an A1C can't understand what ribbons he/she is supposed to wear, the system is bloated.

I did the invasion of Aghaniland back in Oct 2001. Back then, it was just the GWOTEM. Then they created the Afghan Campaign Medal, so the GWOTEM was revoked and ACM awarded. Whatever... Then I got sent to Qatar and viola!! Got the GWOTEM back lol. I decided to just wait until I retired to get a ribbon mount - no telling what was gonna happen next. Finished up with 17 ribbons and 17 appurtances. One would think I was GEN Patton or something. My family gets a kick out of it and I did use it to my advantage when I was recruiting :yo . Chances are, after 11+ years of war I bet there are E4s out there with a rack that would challenge the CJCS.

Go to an ASOS, STS or RQS. The E-4 ribbon racks weigh down the shirts. ALS is always fun when you're a TACP CCT or PJ. The instructors have to look at your paperwork to make sure you're not pulling one over on them. I separated after 10 yrs with 21 ribbons. I also did 4 yrs as an instructor not deploying. My buddies at operational units had deployed 3-4 times in the 4 yrs I was instructing. They had more hardware than they knew what to do with.

During blues mondays most of us just wore our badges anyhow. Some guys rocked the ribbons, but I thought it was just one more thing to snag on the seatbelt when getting out.

hugomk
02-21-2013, 12:40 AM
Those RPA guys need to really exploit the technology by flying over the beaches in Europe, as well as any remaining drive-in movie theaters out there! Although...watch out for the Dutch beaches...the only women there who are topless are over the age of 50!


:D :D :D :D :D

Exploited. Back in the late 90's a beach somewhere in Europe.

Chief_KO
02-21-2013, 01:09 PM
President Bush and the DoD had it right (regarding medals) in the beginning. The Global War on Terrorism (the only correct name IMO) was to have only 2 medals (GWOT-E & GWOT-S). But soon whining started from the ranks than those serving in Afghanistan or Iraq or (fill in the blank for future hot spots) would only have the same medal as one who served in Qatar, UAE, etc. So, thanks to "public demand" we have created today's lopsided look. Should have stuck with the GWOT-E and added campaign stars. But, we had to have OEF, OIF, OND, OCO, etc. etc. etc. Those should have been campaign stars...
My Dad was a WWII vet, had Good Conduct, Bronze Star, Purple Heat, Presidential Unit citation, & European campaign medal with 3 campaign stars (D-Day, Battle of Bulge, and not sure of the third one).

JD2780
02-21-2013, 03:53 PM
President Bush and the DoD had it right (regarding medals) in the beginning. The Global War on Terrorism (the only correct name IMO) was to have only 2 medals (GWOT-E & GWOT-S). But soon whining started from the ranks than those serving in Afghanistan or Iraq or (fill in the blank for future hot spots) would only have the same medal as one who served in Qatar, UAE, etc. So, thanks to "public demand" we have created today's lopsided look. Should have stuck with the GWOT-E and added campaign stars. But, we had to have OEF, OIF, OND, OCO, etc. etc. etc. Those should have been campaign stars...
My Dad was a WWII vet, had Good Conduct, Bronze Star, Purple Heat, Presidential Unit citation, & European campaign medal with 3 campaign stars (D-Day, Battle of Bulge, and not sure of the third one).

Sounds like my wife's grandfather. Retired Lt Col passed away 2 Novermbers ago. When we put together his shadow box, he had 9 ribbons after 20 some odd years of service spanning korea and vietnam as a pilot. Did all sorts of secret stuff from what I heard from his buddies at his funeral. Crazy. I looked like a mexican general compared to those guys back in the day that did a thousand time more than I can even fathom.

imported_097
02-22-2013, 03:42 AM
Hold the phone... I thought the GWOTEM could not be awarded if you also qualified for either the Afghan or Iraq campaign medals... I was not aware of a ribbon for OEF.

Same here. Also the GWOT medal is not for deployed locations, thats a stateside medal. They should have stoped giving that out a long time ago as it really only applied for a short time after 9/11. Kuwait must have been special to offer that combination of awards. That would be the only location I've heard of that you could be out of country and get the campaign medal.
RPA guys with thousands of flight hours cant even get the Iraqi campaign medal unless they were in country.

Pullinteeth
02-22-2013, 05:52 PM
Same here. Also the GWOT medal is not for deployed locations, thats a stateside medal. They should have stoped giving that out a long time ago as it really only applied for a short time after 9/11. Kuwait must have been special to offer that combination of awards. That would be the only location I've heard of that you could be out of country and get the campaign medal.
RPA guys with thousands of flight hours cant even get the Iraqi campaign medal unless they were in country.

You are confusing your medals....efmbman was referring to the GWOT-E medal not the GWOT. GWOT is essentially the National Defense Medal (which you also get), just for serving during GWOT. GWOT-E you get for deploying-you cannot get the GWOT-E AND the Iraq or Afghan medal for the same deployment but if you already have the GWOT-E you can get the second for a subsequent deployment (or vice versa). To qualify for the campaign specific ones you had to go there OR be at a unit "in direct support of..."

So...

For service now;
National Defense AND GWOT

For deployment;
AF Expeditionary AND GWOT-E OR Iraq campaign OR Afghan campaign
If you are a Reservist, you also get the Reserve Service Medal with "M"

Subsequent deployments;
GWOT-E OR Iraq OR Afghan

Not saying it is particularly relevant but anyone else find it odd that they took away the short tour for those that deploy for 180+ and create a new medal for those that don't deploy?

BRUWIN
02-22-2013, 07:59 PM
This explains everything.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lF1mx-Dcek8&sns=fb

sandsjames
02-22-2013, 09:32 PM
. Kuwait must have been special to offer that combination of awards. That would be the only location I've heard of that you could be out of country and get the campaign medal.


Yeah, special is the perfect word for it. Since we "directly supported" both OEF and OIF, we were allowed to choose which one of those we received. It's pretty lame if you ask me. I played no part (contrary to the bullshit leaders may try to feed) in either operation yet had my pick.

sandsjames
02-22-2013, 09:40 PM
GWOT-E you get for deploying-you cannot get the GWOT-E AND the Iraq or Afghan medal for the same deployment but if you already have the GWOT-E you can get the second for a subsequent deployment (or vice versa). To qualify for the campaign specific ones you had to go there OR be at a unit "in direct support of..."



Just looking through my paperwork, vMPF, and called the awards and dec section. I did indeed receive the AF Expeditionary, GWOT-E AND Afghan campaign for my Kuwait "deployment". All 3. I'm doing some more checking because, as you stated, it shouldn't be that way. I can't imagine that any section of MPS could make an error, but I'll follow up.

hugomk
02-23-2013, 06:15 PM
This explains everything.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lF1mx-Dcek8&sns=fb

Darn I did not sign any release form on those videos they took. Who can I sue?

JD2780
02-24-2013, 12:30 AM
Darn I did not sign any release form on those videos they took. Who can I sue?

Dude you look like a pimp!!

hugomk
02-24-2013, 03:57 AM
Dude you look like a pimp!!

Hey now. I have to blame the donuts.

JD2780
02-24-2013, 06:42 PM
Hey now. I have to blame the donuts.

Not blame, but give credit to the donuts!!!

Stormy431
03-04-2013, 03:24 PM
Having served 27 years in USAF it still amazes me that along with performance reports the awards and decs program is a shambles. USAF is a laughing stock not only amongst the sister services but throughout the world. There are several awards that are higher in precedence than the Purple Heart but yet do not necessarily require oneself to go in harms way.

I had a person who worked for me get injured during the Khobar Towers attack, he received a slight laceration on the arm he received the Purple Heart.

I had the privilege of talking to a soldier who was severely injured during an IED attack in AFghanistan, he received the Purple Heart.

I also talked to the wife of a young marine who gave the ultimate sacrifice he was awarded the Purple Heart posthumously.


Draw your own conclusions but I believe that the people in the puzzle palace do a great disservice to the armed forces.

Robert F. Dorr
03-07-2013, 12:05 PM
Having served 27 years in USAF it still amazes me that along with performance reports the awards and decs program is a shambles. USAF is a laughing stock not only amongst the sister services but throughout the world. There are several awards that are higher in precedence than the Purple Heart but yet do not necessarily require oneself to go in harms way.

I had a person who worked for me get injured during the Khobar Towers attack, he received a slight laceration on the arm he received the Purple Heart.

I had the privilege of talking to a soldier who was severely injured during an IED attack in AFghanistan, he received the Purple Heart.

I also talked to the wife of a young marine who gave the ultimate sacrifice he was awarded the Purple Heart posthumously.

Draw your own conclusions but I believe that the people in the puzzle palace do a great disservice to the armed forces.

By tradition, as you know, the Purple Heart is awarded for being wounded or killed as a result of enemy action. It was initially awarded for other purposes as well and that practice could be resumed at any time.

It's not fair for you to cherry-pick among different kinds of wounds and decide that one person's wounds justify a Purple Heart while another's wounds do not. Khobar Towers was an attack on the American military, apparently by elements supported by Iran (not by al-Qaeda). It was an act of war. A wound from that attack warrants a Purple Heart. You can't say to someone: "Oh, you weren't wounded badly enough."

There is an argument against receiving an award for something you can't control. If that argument were to prevail, you would not receive an award for being wounded or for being a prisoner of war. It's a pretty weak argument and it isn't going to go anywhere.

Chief_KO
03-07-2013, 01:21 PM
Classic episode of MASH...Frank Burns gets a Purple Heat (I think for a tiny scratch). Hawkeye & (I forget if it was Trapper John or BJ) end up taking the medal and pinning it on an injured Korean baby.

efmbman
03-07-2013, 11:07 PM
Here is another new example of awarding of the Purple Heart:

http://www.duffelblog.com/2013/03/department-of-defense-to-award-purple-heart-for-butthurt/

Robert F. Dorr
03-08-2013, 10:57 PM
Here is another new example of awarding of the Purple Heart:

http://www.duffelblog.com/2013/03/department-of-defense-to-award-purple-heart-for-butthurt/

Yeah. Well, this one is. It really is. A joke, that is.

wxjumper
03-11-2013, 10:56 PM
"Political correctness" seems to have become a term for all things bad. This has nothing to do with being PC... this is about a particular career field manipulating the award system to their own benefit.

Yes it has, and that distinction is well deserved.

*My late reply was due to the fact that I didn't receive an email that there was a reply to my post until today.

JD2780
03-11-2013, 11:00 PM
Yes it has, and that distinction is well deserved.

*My late reply was due to the fact that I didn't receive an email that there was a reply to my post until today.

Deserved but the precedence is screwed up.

grimreaper
03-12-2013, 04:57 AM
Deserved but the precedence is screwed up.

What the hell is wrong with Hagel? I would figure that he of all people would understand why everyone is pissed.

http://www.military.com/daily-news/2013/03/08/hagel-will-not-reduce-drone-medals-precedence.html?col=7000023435630&comp=7000023435630&rank=5


Hagel Will Not Reduce Drone Medal's Precedence
Mar 08, 2013
Military.com| by Bryant Jordan


Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will not alter the ranking of the recently announced Distinguished Warfare Medal, intended for drone pilots that has drawn controversy because it takes precedence over the Bronze Star for valor and the Purple Heart.

In a letter to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the first group to come out against the new medal's ranking, Hagel said he is satisfied with the criteria and placement of the new medal. The medal is intended for drone pilots and cyber warfare specialists whose actions have a direct impact on combat operations.

"I have discussed at length the reasoning and process leading up to establishing the DWM with the [service secretaries and chiefs] and accept their judgment that the award is at the appropriate level," Hagel said in his letter.

Hagel is currently visiting troops in Afghanistan. A Pentagon spokesman said the secretary acknowledged the issues that veterans group have with the medal, but does not plan to change its order of precedence.

"The medal was unanimously recommended by the Chairman and the Joint Chiefs of Staff to the Secretary. We understand the concerns of veteran's groups, but at this time, there's no plan to change the DWM's order of precedence," said Navy Lt. Cmdr. Nate Christensen, a Pentagon spokesman.

VFW Commander-in-Chief John Hamilton is now calling on its members across the country to "light up Congress' phone lines and emails" to demand legislation downgrading the medal.

"I cannot tell you how displeased I am with the new defense secretary for not overruling what has proven to be an extremely divisive decision by his predecessor," Hamilton wrote in a letter Friday to all VFW department, district and post commanders.

He said "the buck hasn't stopped yet."

"We have many friends in Congress who agree 100 percent with our position to lower the medal's precedence to below the Purple Heart -- and they have introduced companion bills in both the House and Senate to do just that," he said.

The House filed legislation in late February and a bill was introduced into the Senate on March 7 to reduce the ranking of the new medal.

Lawmakers from both houses of Congress had written to Hagel asking him to lower the ranking of the DWM. Rep. Joe Wilson, R-SC, sent a letter on March 4 co-signed by 48 members of Congress, both Republicans and Democrats.

The Pentagon notified Wilson and Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa. -- who also asked the Defense Department to lower the medal's ranking -- on Friday.

As established, the DWM directly follows the Distinguished Flying Cross, a valor award, which places it higher than the Bronze Star, which may be awarded for valor, and the Purple Heart, which is awarded only for combat wounds or injuries.

Class5Kayaker
03-12-2013, 09:08 PM
Looks like SecDef has had a chnge of heart.

Hagel to order review of drone medal precedence (http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/2013/03/ap-officials-say-hagel-to-order-drone-medal-review-031213/)

RobotChicken
03-12-2013, 09:42 PM
:doh Took looooong enough,must of had a 'butt hurt' moment. :hug

efmbman
03-12-2013, 09:55 PM
Flip-flopping on this will make him weaker in the long run. While I think the DWM stinks, he should pick a position and stick to it.

Stormy431
03-13-2013, 10:26 AM
In response to Mr. Dorr you jumped to the wrong conclusion as usual. I gave you 3 first hand examples of a Purple Heart yet you accuse me of cherry picking...please get a grip. I will further state that a person that makes the ultimate sacrifice for their nation that their family should be better taken care of. In fact anyone that spills blood should be better taken care of.

In reference to the distinguished warfare medal, there are several medals higher in precedence than the Purple Heart (LEgion of merit, distinguished service medal and others) that do not necessarily require combat. So is it fair that a person who gives their life is awarded a lesser medal than some perfumed prince?

Lastly, do not state what I should know or not know , I find that quite condescending.