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Thread: Another CSM with no combat patch

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    Another CSM with no combat patch

    This guy's actually been in the job well over a year:

    http://www.usma.edu/CSM/CSMbio.asp

    OK, now I will say that he's been recruiting and in USAREC jobs over 20 years, but how do you go from a recruiting command job to West Point? If they were looking at putting him somewhere, maybe downrange would have been a good idea.

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    Perhaps it was a matter of what jobs were open at the time this one came up. I know that, in the Navy, even if you wanted to go to a deployable unit, if there were no vacancies projected for your transfer month, you would be sent wherever there was a slot.

    Could he have fought for one ? Sure. If he was that gung ho. But think about it. He's already a CSM. He can't get promoted any higher. What is the career enhancement incentive for him to be close to retirement and voluntarily head off to somewhere where he could be severely injured or killed ? That he missed his combat tours early in his career is something to talk about, but at this stage, why push your luck ? I'll bet his family was putting pressure on him to stay out of the hot zone for his (possibly) last tour, also.
    Disclaimer: All of the above statements may/may not be based on true events. Your comprehension will vary, based upon literacy, basic understanding of the English language, and most recent bowel movement (or lack thereof). No resemblance to any persons living, dead, undead or co-existing in a parallel universe is intended.

    "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    Quote Originally Posted by SailorDave View Post
    Perhaps it was a matter of what jobs were open at the time this one came up. I know that, in the Navy, even if you wanted to go to a deployable unit, if there were no vacancies projected for your transfer month, you would be sent wherever there was a slot.

    Could he have fought for one ? Sure. If he was that gung ho. But think about it. He's already a CSM. He can't get promoted any higher. What is the career enhancement incentive for him to be close to retirement and voluntarily head off to somewhere where he could be severely injured or killed ? That he missed his combat tours early in his career is something to talk about, but at this stage, why push your luck ? I'll bet his family was putting pressure on him to stay out of the hot zone for his (possibly) last tour, also.
    I agree with what you're saying, but I think the Army made a bad decision by putting him in this position, just as I do with the CSM who's the commandant of the US Army's drill sergeant school. In this case, this guy is the CSM at West Point, where upon graduation, cadets are commissioned and sent to units with which they will likely deploy into harm's way. What kind of impression does it leave on a 22-year-old West Point graduate, now a new 2LT, when the CSM at your school has done well over 20 years without a deployment?

    I'm not knocking this guy's resume when it comes to all the time he's spent as a recruiter and in recruiting commands, as that is a thankless job that often demands long duty hours. But if he was due to PCS and didn't want to retire, the Army should have put him somewhere that wouldn't have been as much in the limelight as the position at the USMA.

    I will dispute one point you made: If he wasn't ready to retire, you asked why he should voluntarily put himself in harm's way. Well, many Soldiers (and servicemembers in the other branches, as well) don't get the "choice" of whether they deploy or not; it is decided for them. Whether he's actively dodging deployments is up for debate, but if the impression is there in somebody's mind that this is the case, that's all that matters; perception is reality. No senior leader in the Army who is fully capable of deploying should not have at least one OIF or OEF deployment to his or her credit. If they don't, they leave themselves open for criticism because so many others have multiple deployments to their names. A basic leadership tenet is not asking one of your Soldiers to do something you're not willing to do yourself. When this CSM is in this position, at a school where future Army officers are being trained and groomed for eventual deployment into harm's way, it gives the "do as I say, not as I do" impression.

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    Quote Originally Posted by Creaminess View Post
    I will dispute one point you made: If he wasn't ready to retire, you asked why he should voluntarily put himself in harm's way. Well, many Soldiers (and servicemembers in the other branches, as well) don't get the "choice" of whether they deploy or not; it is decided for them. Whether he's actively dodging deployments is up for debate, but if the impression is there in somebody's mind that this is the case, that's all that matters; perception is reality. No senior leader in the Army who is fully capable of deploying should not have at least one OIF or OEF deployment to his or her credit. If they don't, they leave themselves open for criticism because so many others have multiple deployments to their names. A basic leadership tenet is not asking one of your Soldiers to do something you're not willing to do yourself. When this CSM is in this position, at a school where future Army officers are being trained and groomed for eventual deployment into harm's way, it gives the "do as I say, not as I do" impression.
    What I'm getting at is that if he had a choice, which he must have or he'd have been on his way to the desert, why would he voluntarily take the desert over a cushy job at West Point ? Assuming he had a choice.
    Disclaimer: All of the above statements may/may not be based on true events. Your comprehension will vary, based upon literacy, basic understanding of the English language, and most recent bowel movement (or lack thereof). No resemblance to any persons living, dead, undead or co-existing in a parallel universe is intended.

    "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    Quote Originally Posted by SailorDave View Post
    What I'm getting at is that if he had a choice, which he must have or he'd have been on his way to the desert, why would he voluntarily take the desert over a cushy job at West Point ? Assuming he had a choice.
    That's the problem: He shouldn't have had a choice. And I should clarify that I'm not stating he chose that job. For all I know, he was just told he was going there and that was that. I have no idea whether he was given any options.

    My whole point is that when you put a senior leader, such as this guy or the CSM at the drill sergeant school, into high-visibility positions and they have never deployed, they should expect some Soldiers to question those assignments. I think it's a bad idea for the Army to put people into jobs where we're developing the next generation of leaders (West Point) or Soldiers (basic combat training), who should expect to be sent downrange, when those senior leaders themselves have never been there.

    I don't care how long somebody has served or what positions they've held. There is absolutely no substitute for deployments, and there is no number of NTC/JRTC/JMTC rotations that can realistically replicate deployments.

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    I am a hater with the best of them but I disagree with calling this guy out for not being a combat vet.

    In all fairness to this guy, if you read his bio he converted to the recuiter MOS over a decade ago. That MOS is a non-deployable MOS.

    The only other options would be:
    1. USAREC deploys personnel to combat zones (I don't know, maybe to be unit re-up personnel?) ... but again, that's echelons above this guy
    2. This guy would reclass to a deployable MOS as a sergeant major so he could get deployed.
    3. It's not really realistic / fair to have the recruiter MOS somehow capped at E-8 or something. I don't see why anyone / anyone good would convert to that MOS if they couldn't get promoted in it.

    So, I don't think it's really reasonable or fair to hate on THIS guy, but this a unique situation.

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    Quote Originally Posted by MSMUROTC View Post
    I am a hater with the best of them but I disagree with calling this guy out for not being a combat vet.

    In all fairness to this guy, if you read his bio he converted to the recuiter MOS over a decade ago. That MOS is a non-deployable MOS.

    The only other options would be:
    1. USAREC deploys personnel to combat zones (I don't know, maybe to be unit re-up personnel?) ... but again, that's echelons above this guy
    2. This guy would reclass to a deployable MOS as a sergeant major so he could get deployed.
    3. It's not really realistic / fair to have the recruiter MOS somehow capped at E-8 or something. I don't see why anyone / anyone good would convert to that MOS if they couldn't get promoted in it.

    So, I don't think it's really reasonable or fair to hate on THIS guy, but this a unique situation.
    I realize he's held a recruiter MOS for a number of years. Believe it's actually closer to 20 years, and I tip my hat to the guy for sticking with that field for so long. As I stated in one of my previous posts on this thread, recruiting is a tough, thankless job and I'm glad I never had to do it. So from that standpoint, yes, the guy HAS done a lot in his career.

    I also realize that recruiters do not deploy. Totally understand that. But I don't think it was the right choice to put him in this position, nor for CSM King to be the drill sergeant school commandant. Again, if you're the senior NCO in a job that is producing the latest crop of officers for the Army, as this man is, then you should have deployment experience. Similarly, CSM King doesn't directly instruct basic combat training Soldiers, but she is in charge of the school that develops the drill sergeants who do that job. I'm willing to bet the overwhelming number of drill sergeants on the trail now, as well as those who have been selected for the course and will be going through it in the near future, have at least one deployment.

    I'm sure there are plenty of other CSMs who don't have patches from OIF or OEF, and it's likely that many of them are also in the recruiting field. I don't begrudge them that. It's when the Army makes decisions to put these senior leader into high-visibility positions where an NCO of equal rank who has deployed and is at least as qualified for the position, if not moreso, that I think is unfortunate. I will say that perhaps these positions were offered to other CSMs who chose to stay in deployable units prior to these CSMs being placed in those positions. I don't know that and I never will know, and it's not my business. I just don't have love for senior leaders (officer, warrant officer, or NCO) who haven't been downrange. Ask around and you'll find I'm not alone in feeling this way.

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    That's funny, I could have sworn we had a recruiting/retention NCO (Master Sergeant) in my Regiment last time we were down range.
    No matter what you do some will always find fault because that is their only focus/goal and source of joy. They are negative by nature and weak in character. These people are the losers of society. Avoid them like the plague.

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    Quote Originally Posted by MCGYVER View Post
    That's funny, I could have sworn we had a recruiting/retention NCO (Master Sergeant) in my Regiment last time we were down range.
    Likely you had a retention NCO. Recruiters are MOS 79R, but retention NCOs are MOS 79S. Or that's what it used to be. Think it's maybe 42-series now. Either way, they're different MOSs. Recruiters don't deploy, but I believe (and I could be wrong) that you have to have previously been a recruiter to become a retention NCO. I'm not talking like battalion reenlistment NCOs, who can be any MOS; I'm talking about those with the actual retention NCO MOS.

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    Re: Another CSM with no combat patch

    Like JFK said about WW2, "Life is unfair." Some served in the USA the entire time, others served in the South Pacific.

    This CSM's destiny was unusual due to his recruiting career, which I don't envy. Good luck to him at USMA. Sounds like a great assignment for anyone.

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