You know when your kid registers to join a team sport, ya
know like soccer or whatever else non-contact touchy feely sport and they give
trophies at the end of the year even though the team sucked and didn’t win a
freaking game? Vomit. “We want everyone to feel like winners” a coach told me
when I asked why they were getting trophies. I just stood there and looked at
him with my cigar in my mouth and thought to myself, “you got beat up a lot as
a kid didn’t you”.
I had a chat (story time) with
some kids there as they gorged themselves on pizza and crap. The tittle of
Maj Pain’s story to those little booger eaters was called was “Loosing sucks”. That’s right kids, life isn’t fair. You’re not
always going to win and get a trophy. Your boss may not even like you when you
grow up, if you even get a job. Your soccer team may not even win a game but if
you try hard, show up to practice, make it a priority to be a positive and
contributing member of the team and then you still lose, at least you can say,
you did your best. But still, loosing
sucks and if you dont like the feeling, do somthing to fix it, crybaby.
This is how I feel about the medal just released. Panetta Announces Distinguished Warfare
The Distinguished Warfare Medal recognizes the changing face of warfare. In
the past, few, if any, service members not actually in a combat zone directly
affected combat operations.
These new capabilities have given American service members the ability to
engage the enemy and change the course of battle, even from afar, Panetta said
at a Pentagon news conference today.
Ohhhhmy goooosh! So here it is in grunt terms. The medal would be between the
Flying Cross and above (higher) than the Bronze Star. Hmmmm. 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
I don’t have a Bronze Star
why? Because I didn’t earn one that’s why and I’m ok with that. During my yearlong
kick ass tour in 2004-2005 (yes a year) which is not usual for Marines, I spent
daily patrols getting hit with IEDs in Ramadi. It was called doing my freaking
job. I was a Capt at the time and what did many Marines notice, some units (MEF
& Div) levels were giving Bronze Star medals as an end of tour award
(without distinguishing device) That means no fancy doodad on the ribbon, just
a Bronze Star ribbon.
I knew Majors who never, ever left the FOB along, nor
ever got shot at or stormed a compound with insurgents in it with high ranking enlisted
as well that departed with the BS medal. This of course made many junior
Marines pissed off especially when they were doing the “hard” work outside the
wire. That’s why to even today (especially at Marine Corps Balls) I have occasionally
been known to tell junior Marines to ask
that Major over there that has a Bronze Star (without a doodad) what he got the
award for. Usually, the young Marine comes back and says that the Major asked in
reply to him asking “who put you up to asking me that question” in turn I buy
the young warrior another drink.
You may be thinking “the Major isn’t happy
about this new medal – (no kidding Capt obvious) (note: the
last person I will blame about any ribbon they receive is the warrior, I blame their
command for poor judgment)
But I digress, now I hear that they are going to give people
in Florida, Arizona etc sitting in air conditioned buildings driving drones a
medal that out ranks a Bronze Star that dignifies flat out heroism, I have to
throw the bullshit flag sports fans.
Some out there (soccer parents) are saying wait Major, you
have inhaled too much cigar smoke and are way off the mark here. . First, that’s
totally impossible because I bleed red American blood and sweat cigar smoke and listen to Ted Nugent cranked in my MRAP,
and second, if you think they haven’t been giving Combat Action, Bronze Star,
Silver Star and Flying Cross medals to drone pilots in the past, you’re naive.
flying a drone important? Yes (as long as it is in Afg and not shooting at
Americans in the US) but again (throwing bullshit flag) there is no way it
compares to the acts your young warriors are doing outside the wire, not even
close. Did that drone pilot leave their family for seven months or more? No.
Did they operate in an air conditioned room? Yes. Were they wearing body armor
defeating IEDs as they walked among the local tribes that wanted to kill them?
No. Were they at risk of being killed in combat? Ummmm No. Why, ask why would they in zeuseious maximus
rate a medal that supersedes the Bronze Star? How is by any means representing
a greater act than that awarded by a Bronze Star with a distinquishing device?
“This new medal recognizes the changing character of warfare
and those who make extraordinary contributions to it,” So does this mean
all of those great Americans that send us care packages are eligible for the
award? I feel they make “extraordinary contributions” to the war effort. Head
to your local base folks and pick up your medal if you have ever sent a care
package. Tell them I sent you 🙂
I could just see it now. “hello, Im here to get my that a boy medal for sending
care packages. Ma’am you don’t rate this because you haven’t contributed to the
war effort” please video your visits for me, they will be a hoot!
The Marine Corps is very stringent on medals they award.
Why, because we have this crazy concept called you have to earn them! That’s why
you don’t see Marines with medals on their chest for graduating boot camp (yes,
the US army gives their soldiers a medal for finishing boot camp, and many
other tough demanding achievements (no offense there army joes, just getting
the facts out there). Look at any soldier and they will have a rack on their
chest. Ask them to tell you about each one (many are mightybad ass mother
scratchers & Im proud as hell to stand next to them) Then, ask a Marine
what he got his for. I think you will see my point. Sorry, Im not going to even
into the mighty blue airforce and their ribbons, badges and dodads. This isn’t about steely eyed airforce drone
pilots getting more medals than Marines, it’s about lowering the value of a
medal awarded. Like that back in Ramadi, the Bronze Star was given out at the
cyclic rate (without dodads) and many that were there would agree, the medal was
There were many times I had senior officers say “let’s give
the Marine the next level medal than what was originaly submitted because he already has
that medal”. I routinely argued that, the Marine should get the medal that fit
the action, not an automatic upgrade because he already had one I had put him
in for. Many times I argued that the Marine desrved the next higher medal as well. Trust me, I didn’t pay for the medals, the command did so its not a
monetary issue, I loved giving medals to Americas heroes. It’s one of the
I guess, the military doesn’t want people to feel left
out, so next, I’m expecting all of my combat hardened Marines to receive soccer trophies after their seven months in Helmond
Province. We don’t want them to feel bad or anything. (que Louis Armstrong & “it’s
a wonderful world) Maybe they can play that song when they award these
medals.I prefer Ted Nugent played at my Marines award ceremony.
Time for a C-Gar