Military Service

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  • JoshuaJoshua Posts: 1,138MI6 Agent
    Bond44 wrote:
    No one in the military ever retired a rich man - well not here anyway :D

    Cheers :007)

    Many soldiers coming home who had stayed a long time in the war operations but only as rear duties could buy houses and new cars when they got home! This was much to do with that the active service allowance was paid in US dollars. when this government started to pay the allowance in our currency, the value of the allowance dropped so much that there were no more volunteers to stay! There is one part of one city in my country which has houses bought by soldiers allowance it as its own name!
    I don't think many who were fighting asked to stay after their duty was come to a end. There might have been but i don't now any.
  • Ammo08Ammo08 Missouri, USAPosts: 386MI6 Agent
    When I deployed anywhere I received allowances for food and housing. This was tax free. It wasn't a stupendous amount of money but it helped to offset the loss of income from my regular job. (My last 25 years i was in the Air National Guard.) The amount I received was dependent on where I was. When I deployed to the desert I also received combat pay, hazardous duty pay and separation pay. These were also tax free and were a big help to us.
    "I don't know if the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or imbeciles who mean it."-Mark Twain
    'Just because nobody complains doesn't mean all parachutes are perfect.'- Benny Hill (1924-1992)
  • BondJasonBond006BondJasonBond006 SwitzerlandPosts: 870MI6 Agent
    I'm a Chief Warrant Officer in the Swiss Army. That's the official English term for it according to NATO.

    I started as a Grenadier and became a para-scout later in Swiss Army Special Forces.

    This is a wonderful short film about Para-Scouts in the Swiss Army. It was produced a few years ago and I had the pleasure to be a part of the production of it.

    https://youtu.be/UHQaU_DgBow
    Dalton Rulez™
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    If I was Swiss I think I would have joined the navy. Think of it.... have you ever heard of a battle, skirmish or bar fight lost by the Swiss Navy?
    I've heard the Swiss national service is short. Is that true?
  • BondJasonBond006BondJasonBond006 SwitzerlandPosts: 870MI6 Agent
    Number24 wrote:
    If I was Swiss I think I would have joined the navy. Think of it.... have you ever heard of a battle, skirmish or bar fight lost by the Swiss Navy?
    I've heard the Swiss national service is short. Is that true?


    The recruits school is 18 to 21 weeks. But it depends on the branch of service. Mine was 43 weeks and of course every single year you have to serve for several weeks. Depending on your rank it can be as much as 680 days in total.


    Our Navy is small but proud. I just visited them some weeks ago :) Patrol boats on our lakes.

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    :)) waiting for Italy, Germany, France or Austria to invade us by maritime route and ships :p
    full.jpg
    Dalton Rulez™
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    That sounds more like home guard or militia-type defense, with such a very short basic training and further training every year. Do they keep rifles and basic equipment at home?
  • BondJasonBond006BondJasonBond006 SwitzerlandPosts: 870MI6 Agent
    Number24 wrote:
    That sounds more like home guard or militia-type defense, with such a very short basic training and further training every year. Do they keep rifles and basic equipment at home?


    Yes of course Switzerland is a militia.

    We get to keep the SIG550 at home yes. We have to travel home and back to the base in full uniform with the assault rifle on our back. So if you visit Switzerland you'll see soldiers and recruits "everywhere" really, especially in trains, railway stations and public transport.

    The army is mandatory and so every year twice (summer/winter) new recruits schools begin and the complete male young Swiss population has to serve (if fit for service of course).
    Dalton Rulez™
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    It's very much like how the home guard in Norway was during the cold war. In addition there was the regular army with a full year of basic training and less frequent exercises (perhaps 3-4 years apart) later.

    Para-scout sounds very much like our HJK (Army Jeager Command), based on what I read on Wikipedia.
    They don't require the civilians training first or buying some equipment yourself, but they train for a full year.
    The type of missions they train for and even the number of recruits admited each year sounds very much the same.
    I think it's strange that the Swiss army has such a high level of readiness considering who your neighbours are compared to ours.
  • BondJasonBond006BondJasonBond006 SwitzerlandPosts: 870MI6 Agent
    Well you never know. Especially with the Austrians :))

    The army has a long tradition in Switzerland, it's historically based and that's why we still have this kind of militia.
    Of course I don't expect Angela Merkel invading the north of Switzerland anytime soon.

    I do have to say though that personally I'm not feeling as secure anymore than, say, 10 years ago.
    Look at the Ukraine, sure it's not bordering us but it is quite near and who knows what Turkey will bring us in the next decade.

    The army of course has other functions as well in Switzerland. Like disaster relief, in fact it has a long tradition in doing so.
    Dalton Rulez™
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    Yes, you have to be vigilant with neighbours like the Austrians. Lucky us who only have to worry about the Russians. The only country I know of with a conscript-based army with such a high lever of readiness is Israel, but they also have a much longer basic training and even worse neighbours than Switzerland's....

    I too feel Europe is less safe than it was ten years ago. Norway is strengthening its military now - new fighter jets, submarines, surveilance planes and ships etc. It's sad, but I think we have to.
  • 1panda11panda1 Posts: 1MI6 Agent
    I'm a big fan of military mens caps.

    EDIT: Goodbye, spammer. HB
  • Bond44Bond44 Vauxhall CrossPosts: 1,581MI6 Agent
    Reality is state on state conflict is becoming less likely as globalisation increases. However those who have the fossil fuels may have an advantage in the world order. The lack of access could cause conflict (think Russia and the Ukraine as an example).

    Bigger and growing issue will be the home grown or imported terrorist as extremism grows which it inevitably will unless we can put a lid on it. The amount of attacks around the world is growing but it's a global problem that could just unify the world - time will tell.

    Cheers :007)
    My name is Bond, Basildon Bond - I have letters after my name!
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    Are you saying the access to fossil fuel caused the Russia-Ukraine conflict? Russia has far more fossil fuel, much more than they need for their own use. A few years ago the Russians shut down the natural gas export to Ukraine to black mail them politically. No, the reason for the conflict is mostly the politics of identity. It's because of Russian nationalism and the need they feel to create a buffer zone around them made of regimes they can control. The buffer zone is ment to protect them from what they see as a hostile world.
  • Bond44Bond44 Vauxhall CrossPosts: 1,581MI6 Agent
    Number24 wrote:
    Are you saying the access to fossil fuel caused the Russia-Ukraine conflict? Russia has far more fossil fuel, much more than they need for their own use. A few years ago the Russians shut down the natural gas export to Ukraine to black mail them politically. No, the reason for the conflict is mostly the politics of identity. It's because of Russian nationalism and the need they feel to create a buffer zone around them made of regimes they can control. The buffer zone is ment to protect them from what they see as a hostile world.

    Merely an example of how those with fossil fuels can exercise their power to the detriment of others - which of course could become a flash point for conflict. Agree in that specific case it goes much deeper but you only have to look at the West's involvement in the Middle East and the East's in Africa to see the great fossil fuel hunt is on. Then there are countries like Brazil that found their own oil sources and could be set to move drastically up the world order outstripping the USA within 20 years and as you see it's an interesting future. But like I said state on state is less likely now more than ever due to globalisation as we are all so interconnected.

    But before that we have our immediate threat of global extremism to resolve if we can because this will certainly grow. Look how many incidents there have been (that are publically known) this year so far and there has been a sizeable increase. The interesting dynamic is they are mostly home grown individuals, disenchanted and vulnerable to suggestion. Once converted can be triggered at any time to do their deed. That's why prevention is key - only through identification from within their own communities and intervention do we have a chance of staying ahead of the game - else more attacks will follow. The reality is then you will still not catch them all.

    All good fun and part of the challenge of modern life :D

    Cheers :007)
    My name is Bond, Basildon Bond - I have letters after my name!
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    Yes, obviously fossil fuel is a major resonnement behind wars. You just didn't picked a good example.

    Terrorism is a also a grave concern. Not because of the number of deaths are very high, even though each death is a tragedy. The number of people killed in terrorist attacks in western Europe was high er in the 70's and 80's, and our societies managed to handle that. Terrorism is a greater threath to our societies because of how we sometimes react to it. Some people seem to think the "easy" fixed is to undermine the pilars our countries is buildt on (democracy, human rights, privacy etc). While some sacrifices must be made, we have to be very careful what we do.
    Prevention is the key, just like you wrote. Good inteligence, good integration of immigrant, a smart immigration policy and some good countermeasures can help us handle the threath of terrorism.
  • JoshuaJoshua Posts: 1,138MI6 Agent
    While I am deeply ashamed of how my country is in the grip of the tyrant, I am always proud that I once served as a soldier in the special unit of my army. I was a Corporal with three years of service. I also saw active service in the DRC for nine months where we fought in the war there. This article brings back many memories, some of those that I already have told here. I must say that while I was in the army and even for a long time afterward I was the most arrogant of persons. I used to look down upon peoples because I knew I had done things and been tested and proved myself in things which they could never do. This was more with soldiers of other units. I still felt very different even when I was with civilians.

    I copy this article from a national newspaper of my country who printed it to show the training of the Commando regiment. I leave out some detail on purpose.


    "The .... escarpment of the .... valley, near the border with .... is a terribly hostile area for human beings, not only because of it's inhospitable climate and rugged terrain but also because it is a place where animals of the wild roam free and dangerous.
    It is in this crucible that .... Commandos, the special forces of the national army, are hardened. Whoever goes there does so voluntarily and, as depicted by the name, some die and some are seriously injured during the training. Wild animals add an extra threat.
    The place is not habitable to human beings, it is a wildlife jungle and no crops survive there as it is rocky. Only drought resistant plants such as the cactus thrive there.
    As you arrive at the entrance to the training camp you are met by a signpost in bold green and white letters WELCOME TO .... THE HOME OF THE COMMANDOS. NO MISSION IS IMPOSSIBLE UNTIL ONE DROPS DEAD.
    This means that once you are in battle you will never surrender, retreat or run away from the enemy. You will have to fight on with everything at your disposal until you drop dead.
    Not many of us if any will dare to join such a group of individuals who sacrifice their lives for the defence of their motherland not just ordinarily but serving with the best force on earth.
    The world over they are known as the green family or Commandos. those who know their mettle accord them great respect wherever they go. It all starts off with a month long selection period where volunteers physical and mental stamina are tested to the extreme.
    Colonel .... said that Commando training builds character, courage and positive attitude in the soldier.
    "The training kicks off with a four week selection phase where volunteers are subjected to fitness tests and battle marches with weights. The phase is so demanding and stretches to 24 hour non stop action. Sleepless nights and fatigue are the order of the day. In this phase many volunteers fall by the wayside as they fail to catch up with the daunting tasks." he said.
    The selection phase once complete will culminate in the endurance phase which is regarded as the ultimate test of physical and mental endurance and stamina designed to separate the men from the boys.
    In this phase, students navigate through the rugged .... valley terrain for a distance of 120km while carrying a 20kg load on their backs. this phase is to be completed in 48 hours and marks the end of selection phase. In this phase volunteers are subjected to severe dehydration and body fatigue, situations they will face in real battles.
    Volunteer Commandos then graduate to a more demanding skills phase meant to mould them into proficient, multi talented and fully fledged troops who are highly reliable. During the skills phase the trainees must still navigate across hostile terrain for 82km marches.
    The trainees also undergo three week watermanship training where they swim while firing their rifles, rubbing shoulders with crocodiles which are plenty in lake ....
    It is spine chilling to know that there is a crocodile at a certain water point but the Commandos get into the water while the crocodiles are wagging their tongues by their side.
    They are also taught urban warfare, covert operations, long range reconnaissance patrols, tracking down the enemy using its spoor, use of explosives, sniping, anti hijacking, hostage rescue, armed and unarmed combat, radio procedure, water assaults, abseiling from helicopters and cliffs.
    In a recent interview, Major .... said that the unit was not for the faint hearted but the home of the brave.
    "The training a Commando has here he will never find anywhere else. If you survive this place, then you will survive anywhere on this earth. The most challenging phase when I trained here years back is the dry and hot terrain. There is no water and one needs water discipline to survive. All of the five big animals except the rhino are found here. we had an encounter where one trainees was trampled by a buffalo. Another group was attacked by a lion. the area is very dangerous." He said. "The training make Commandos lethal weapons, even if they are not armed."
    "The next time you see a soldier wearing the coveted green beret and dagger, accord him great respect. They are the cream of our army. Their training is aimed at creating hardened soldiers who will survive under any conditions. This was proved so when our Commandos did their tour of duty in the DRC."
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    Interesting. Thanks for the post :)
  • JoshuaJoshua Posts: 1,138MI6 Agent
    Number24 wrote:
    Interesting. Thanks for the post :)

    Thank you. I read it only a few days ago. I think that many of the lessons I learned during my military service stay with me for ever. By this I mean i know I have been tested as a man, many men have not been tested to the limit to find out how much they can do. This makes me have the different attitude. It changes since I was in the army, because I was trained to be aggressive of nature, but to control the aggressive nature also. I would fight any body any time and have no fear of any body because I know what I do. This is not so now as the training wears away.
    I must also just say that in the article it says that all Commando soldiers are trained as snipers. This I never did. Much training happens after you become the fully trained Commando and join the regiment. I was classed as a marksman, but this is different to a sniper, I did not do the sniper course as I was not in the army long enough and there was no need by my officers to send me and other soldiers onto the course. We worked in sub unit of four men, this was the 'stick'. Each of the Commando stick would have two different skills so that we could do each others jobs if one man was killed. My special skills was radio operating (this is difficult in much of the terrain, especially the voice transmission, because the terrain and other things interferes with signals) and the other skill was using the explosive. We had no snipers in my stick when I was stick commander.
  • Bond44Bond44 Vauxhall CrossPosts: 1,581MI6 Agent
    Military service changes most people, you train hard to conquer in adversity and sometimes you get to deploy on operations to do it for real. Every trained soldier wonders how they would react and if they could cut it for real. Those fortunate enough to find out will discover more about themselves than the average Joe on the street ever will.

    But it does not make them any better or worse just different. Our life experiences define our left and right of arc and our benchmarks in life that we compare everything too. Those who have served on operations just have different bench marks we have seen the best and worst the human race can do to itself.

    The one thing I learnt over time is that we all live in our own gold fish bowls. My experiences in life may be different or extreme compared to others but that does not give me any right to belittle what happens in someone else's gold fish bowl. I have learnt to judge less and listen more - but it took me many years for the penny to drop - sadly arrogance is not the best trait we like in anyone but it rarely goes hand in hand with self awareness.

    Cheers :007)
    My name is Bond, Basildon Bond - I have letters after my name!
  • ChriscoopChriscoop Belize Posts: 10,449MI6 Agent
    ^ very true and well put -{
    I'm interested to hear of any members who were injured during service, obviously the where's and why fors cant be discussed in many cases but maybe a jaws like scar competition may ensue?
    It was either that.....or the priesthood
  • HigginsHiggins GermanyPosts: 16,618MI6 Agent
    Asp9mm once shot himself in the foot :)) :))
    Does that count?
    President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.

    Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!
  • ChriscoopChriscoop Belize Posts: 10,449MI6 Agent
    Higgins wrote:
    Asp9mm once shot himself in the foot :)) :))
    Does that count?
    :))
    It was either that.....or the priesthood
  • JoshuaJoshua Posts: 1,138MI6 Agent
    It took me a long time from leaving the army to lose the arrogant nature. I was not a nice person as I could not turn my self off to be the civilian again even after only three years of service.
    Despite this service my own real battles came after I left the army and this was the tests of my own which was harder than anything I had done, even in the army. This is what brought me to the united kingdom.
  • Bond44Bond44 Vauxhall CrossPosts: 1,581MI6 Agent
    Chriscoop wrote:
    ^ very true and well put -{
    I'm interested to hear of any members who were injured during service, obviously the where's and why fors cant be discussed in many cases but maybe a jaws like scar competition may ensue?
    I injured myself several times on ops - fortunately it was usually my pride and only left some mental scars :D

    Cheers :007)
    My name is Bond, Basildon Bond - I have letters after my name!
  • Asp9mmAsp9mm Over the Hills and Far Away.Posts: 7,475MI6 Agent
    Higgins wrote:
    Asp9mm once shot himself in the foot :)) :))
    Does that count?

    Really? I don't recall that happening. I've often imagined shooting you in the kneecap before kneeing you in the forehead though.
    ..................Asp9mmSIG-1-2.jpg...............
  • HigginsHiggins GermanyPosts: 16,618MI6 Agent
    Yeah but you should fix your signature first :)) :)) :))
    President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.

    Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!
  • JoshuaJoshua Posts: 1,138MI6 Agent
    I think that a few peoples have served with the British army? I tell a little story here you may not have heard of before.

    In my country the leader began I think to believe that the British might invade. I remember the talk about this at times at the depo. I do not know many details and I think that looking back to this times this story was told to take attention of the military. I do know that at least one anti invasion exersise was held because I was part of that exersise. The army was mobilised and deployed including the reserve army. The story for the exersise that the british were going to invade. The army went to defend the airfields to stop landings and to other areas where the invasion might come from the next door country. Also the important things like the power stations were defended. This was done by the GD units of infantry and other units, but also the Parachute Regiment, I think were to be used as infantry at the most vulnerable of points. There were other things also which I won't tell. I was with a stick in the bush. We were positioned under the main flight path to one airport which was the primary target. We were the strela team. The strela is the anti aircraft missile fired from the shoulder. We were to shoot down enemy transport planes as they made to land at the airport. If it had been for real then afterwards our mission was to attack the enemy comunications from behind their lines if they had landed and taken the ground.

    I remember the airport runway would have been mined and also vehicles parked across the open ground to stop any landings. This and the infantry troops to open fire on any parachute landing or aircraft.

    I did know that some stores of ammunition and supplies were hidden in the bush so that we could have resupply if an invasion did ever happen and we were cut off from our own troops. We would not know where these were until an invasion happened. These I think will probably still be there.
  • JoshuaJoshua Posts: 1,138MI6 Agent
    BondJasonBond006 I missed your posts. They are a very good to read. In my army we had the Warrant officer also but I think your rank would be to me Regimental Sergeant Major as it is in my army. I was only a Corporal though.
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,620MI6 Agent
    I don't want to reveal the rank I had. It's private .... :v
  • BondJasonBond006BondJasonBond006 SwitzerlandPosts: 870MI6 Agent
    @Joshua thank you :)
    @Number24 if I was with Norwegian Intelligence, I wouldn't reveal my rank neither....

    As it happens I got my promotion and I am a Lieutenant Colonel since September 1st, 2017. A high ranking field officer.
    It will probably be my last step upwards until I am 50 years old (except for Colonel).
    If I get any further it will be in the General area, starting low at first naturally. Brigadier General for instance. As I said not before the next eight years. And I am not sure I even want to move up that high, because at some point politics will start to play a role and that's not for me I think.

    While this all may sound glamorous I have to remind you Switzerland is a militia and there are a lot of full time army officers, the Army in fact is one of the bigger employers in Switzerland. Being a para-scout of course is special, that can't be denied.
    Dalton Rulez™
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