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Marine Corps

Non-Rates Angered At ‘Rank Profiling’, Demand Court-Martial Of NCO

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Junior Marines

Camp Pendleton, CA – Marines across the Corps are still trying to cope with the fallout from an incident that some say demonstrates a rash of “rank profiling.”

The incident near Camp Horno involving a Private First Class and a Corporal happened last Friday evening. Some believe it was just a simple mistake on the part of the NCO, but others claim it was done out of pure anger.

On July 20th, 2012, Corporal Jason Valdez of 1st Battalion, 4th Marines—who was corporal of the guard that night—was walking near Basilone Road when he spotted a “suspicious male” walking towards the barracks later identified as PFC Terrell Washington, 18, of 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment.

Washington was wearing a pair of penny loafers, khaki slacks, and a black unit hoodie tucked into his pants.

“I immediately felt there was something wrong with this Marine, considering he was wearing proper libo attire and all,” said Valdez.

Corporal Valdez decided to confront Washington.

“I got up to him and asked him what unit he was with, but he was hesitant to answer me. He had something protruding from his pockets, so I was a little scared because I didn’t know what it was.”

Valdez claims that PFC Washington then turned around and started walking away from him.

“I raised my voice and told him to stop,” said Valdez. “Then he turned around and said something really lippy to me, something about him just coming from training at the pool, which seemed really doubtful to me because… you know. I immediately took that as an affront to my leadership and began chewing him out.”

Witnesses say they could hear Valdez yelling at Washington all the way from the south end of the camp.

“It was extremely loud,” said Lance Corporal Dustin Ball of 1/4. “We all came out of our barracks rooms and saw the one Marine yelling at the other. We couldn’t believe what we were witnessing.”

Following the ass chewing in which Washington was visibly shaken after standing at parade rest for more than five minutes, it was revealed that the suspicious items Washington was carrying was a can of Busch Light and a tin of Cherry Skoal.

“He just didn’t want to get into trouble,” says Washington’s roommate, PFC Gary Shaw. “That’s why Terrell was walking away. He didn’t want to get NJP’ed [non-judicial punishment] for underage drinking. Corporal Valdez completely overreacted. Rankism is still alive and well out here.”

Shaw’s defense of his roomate seems to correlate with the overall sentiment of the non-rate community.  The recent incident has revived the long debate about rank in the Marine Corps, with the non-rate community vocally angered about this latest ass chewing. Sales of Busch Light and Cherry Skoal have skyrocketed in many PX’s on Marine Corps installations as the junior Marine community has come together to demonstrate solidarity with Washington.

But recent polls show that many members of the NCO community are coming to the side of Corporal Valdez.

“Look, Corporal Valdez had every right to stand his ground and chew that fuckin’ boot out,” said Sergeant Jeff Choi of 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion. “I know if it was between maintaining the good order of the Corps and appealing to the sensitivities of a boot, I’d choose discipline without question.”

In the wake of the mounting tension between the NCO and non-rate communities, many officers are stressing to their Marines that they must show caution and avoid jumping to any conclusions.

“The only people who know what really happened were PFC Washington and Corporal Valdez,” says 1st Lieutenant Seth Tracewski of 2nd Tank Battalion.  “We can’t jump to any conclusions. Not everything is black-green and white-green, sometimes it’s just gray-green. We have to let NCIS do their investigation and have trust in the UCMJ. Justice will prevail.”

While many of PFC Washington’s fellow boots have been eager to paint their comrade as your average junior Marine who’s never done anything to harm anyone, recent facebook photos showing Washington posing in the field at the School of Infantry give a different impression.

In one photo, Washington appears in full uniform, clutching an unloaded SAW with a BFA on it.

“You see that?” asks Sergeant Choi. “That doesn’t seem to me like the badass Marine everyone is making him out to be. Who the fuck tries to look moto with a BFA on their rifle?”

Regardless, there has been a public outcry among non-rates concerning investigators’ unwillingness to court martial Valdez. Many are calling for brig time.

Lt. Tracewski adds:  “This whole incident has caused a lot of tension between my Marines. It just seems like the Marine Corps will always struggle with the question of rank and what to do. And while we’re all sitting here on the sidelines giving our opinions on the matter, we forget that the biggest travesty was two Marines lost their innocence that day.”

Marine Corps

Helicopter parents won’t insert son at hot LZ

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CAMP DWYER, Afghanistan — A Marine infantryman scrambled to link up with his squad after his parents refused to insert him at a hot landing, sources confirmed today.

Pfc. Martin Sikorsky pushed out on a QRF mission for the ANA his unit is training when his parents became concerned about the state of the LZ.

“Martin knows the rules of our hangar. No screen time after 4 p.m., no driving over 45 knots and no firefights. I think any parent would agree I’m being reasonable,” Sirkorsky’s father, Huey, told reporters.

Huey’s wife Lakota looked up from the baby monitor she has in her cockpit with a live feed from a GoPro on Sikorsky’s chest rig.

“If Martin is having problems with the Taliban, all he has to do is give me a CAS 9-line, and I will speak to their mothers to get this sorted out,” Lakota said.

Sikorsky’s parents were going to allow him on the mission until they received word of an enemy RPK team in the northwest corner of the hasty LZ. Normally, they are fine with their son being exposed to medium machine gun fire. Although he is not vaccinated against 7.62, Huey and Lakota rely on a mix of essential oils to keep Sikorsky safe. However, since arriving in Afghanistan, they have been unable to find a Whole Foods that sells coconut and eucalyptus oil.

Sikorsky said he was heartbroken he could not insert with his guys and get in on the TIC. Like most 18-year-olds, he worries about the effects of his protective parents.

“How am I supposed to have a social life without my own CAR?” he said.

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Marine Corps

New Marine Commandant to bring back rolled trousers

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WASHINGTON — The next Commandant of the Marine Corps has announced that the first policy he’ll instate when he takes the helm this summer is to bring back the beloved tradition of rolling trouser legs.

“From the Halls of Montezuma to the Shores of Tripoli, Marines have proudly rolled their pantaloons on many a foreign shore,” said Lt. Gen. David Berger. “I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked, ‘Sir, when will we go back to trousers up?’ Well, Marines, your leadership has listened. It’s high time to show off those calves.”

This isn’t the first time a long-standing Marine tradition has been cancelled, only to be brought back years later. In 2011, then-Commandant Gen. James Amos infamously got rid of rolled sleeves for the entire Corps. Amid complaints from the rank-and-file, he brought them back in 2014.

“Trousers up is clearly what sets us apart visually as Marines,” said Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Ronald Green. “And now there will be no more skipping leg day. Any Marines who have been doing their squats and calf raises will welcome this change, I’m sure.”

Marines will be required to roll their trousers in the spring and summer months and will revert to “trousers down” in the winter.

“I remember during the Gulf War, if the Iraqis saw a flash of trouser cuff and shin they would instantly retreat,” said Berger. “If we’re going to win against near-peer competitors, that’s what we need to get back to.”

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Marine Corps

Make-A-Wish kid spends day as a Marine standing in line at the armory

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TWENTYNINE PALMS, California — When eight year-old Conrad Greeley found out his leukemia was terminal, his family immediately contacted the Make-A-Wish foundation since he always wanted to spend a day living out his childhood dream of joining the Marine Corps.

Luckily, Make-A-Wish came through, and on Tuesday, Conrad met up with 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment’s Easy Company at 0400 outside the armory. The company was drawing weapons to verify serial numbers for the third time that week.

As per his family’s request, the Marines treated Conrad just like any other Junior Enlisted Warrior, with Cpl. Sean Casey assigned as his team leader for the day. He took the boy under his wing immediately, officials said.

“I tried to teach him how to spin up a CASEVAC 9-line but he couldn’t figure it out,” Casey said. “At least his hair is in regs.”

At 0630, the armory gates opened and Marines flooded in. As the smallest and newest boot, Conrad dutifully assumed his place at the back of the line. At 1100, just as he was getting close to the window, the armorers cut for chow.

When they came back at 1300, Conrad was informed they couldn’t issue him a rifle because Gunny hadn’t signed his weapons cards. After standing by aimlessly until 1700 for his team leader to tell him what to do, it was time for Conrad to head home.

Conrad walked away from his short time in the Marine Corps with a new perspective on life.

“Today made me feel a lot better. I used to be sad I would never get to grow up and be a Marine. Now I’d rather just die.”

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Marine Corps

JLTVs deadlined due to faulty cassette deck

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QUANTICO, Va. — Brig. Gen. Arthur J. Pasagian, commander of Marine Corps Systems Command, announced today that all Joint Tactical Vehicles (JLTVs), the replacement for the Humvee, would be deadlined across the service after field testing revealed a dangerous defect with their cassette decks.

This decision comes after reports that cassette tape decks in new JLTVs were spontaneously combusting after three or four uses.

Oshkosh Defense, who holds the contract to make JLTVs, released a statement claiming that they “are not liable for this issue.”

“We wanted to equip the JLTV with an aux cord and Bluetooth technology, but the geniuses at DOD Acquisitions insisted we go with a tape deck because ‘that’s how the kids like to listen these days,’” the statement reads.

Lance Cpl. Conrad Gardner of 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines was injured in an incident with a JLTV’s tape deck.

“My driver and I were listening to some Raffi, because those are the only cassettes I own,” he drawled. “Then, out of nowhere, that cassette player just exploded in our faces. These vehicles are dangerous. I’d be safer flying in an Osprey.

The effects of downing so many JLTVs at once are being felt far beyond the motor pool and the decision makers in Quantico. Marines arriving at the 7th Regiment Command Post in Twentynine Palms today encountered a Jonestown-like scene. Dozens of staff officers were sprawled dead on the ground, unable to cope with the atrocious vehicle readiness numbers.

The JLTV program cost $23 billion, with a per unit sticker price of nearly $450,000.

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Marine Corps

Marine Corps predicts future drinking incidents will be caused by near-peer pressure

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The Marine Corps published a strategic document today that predicts future alcohol-related incidents will be caused primarily by near-peer pressure.

“We need to think beyond the small-scale drinking incidents of the past 20 years of counterinsurgency and start looking at major intoxicating threats,” reads a forward from Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Robert Neller. “In the future, near-peer adversaries like Russia and China will pressure us to enter into high intensity, testosterone-fueled benders. If we’re not prepared, they may even drink us under the table.”

The document claims that high tech weapons and advanced sensors on the battlefield will mean that Marines have to disperse into several smaller barracks parties if they want to get plastered. Small units seeking to close with and destroy the local nightlife will have to rethink their tactics.

“We’ve gotten too used to robust logistical support providing us all the booze we need whenever we want to tie one on,” Neller continues. “But Chinese anti-access/area denial systems will increasingly be checking IDs at the door and may prevent Marines from having easy access to local pubs. Very soon, we may have to conduct forcible entry operations through the side door of the bar just to get a drink.”

In testing, the Corps has had some success in reducing DUIs through the use of unmanned ground vehicles. However, unmanned systems also pose some risk.

“In the Marine Corps,” added Neller, “even the unmanned vehicles get drunk.”

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Marine Corps

Wait training added to Marine PFT

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QUANTICO, Va. — Headquarters Marine Corps will add wait training to the physical fitness test to reflect increased demands on the time of today’s Marines, sources confirmed today.

The test itself will feature a four-hour wait check, and the preparatory program will incorporate lengthy waits in multiple settings.

“We’ve found that Marines spend a significant portion of their day — in garrison, in the field, and on deployment — waiting around for something, and some of them are just not prepared,” said Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Robert Neller. “No hip-pocket classes ready to brief, nothing from my professional reading list and no PME homework. Hell, not even any hydration, tobacco or sunflower seeds.”

The revised training program will require Marines to wait in a classroom for 55 minutes before the instructor shows up. At the close of the classroom portion of the wait training, Marines will divide into groups and proceed to the base clinic, armory, consolidated issue facility and range. There they will participate in round-robin training consisting of sitting, kneeling or standing at each location for 75 minutes before a role player turns them away for lack of ID or appropriate attire. They will finish the training day by waiting on the word for 84 minutes.

As with any change the Corps has introduced in its storied history, there have been vocal objections from those who consider themselves “Old Corps.”

“Those millennials need training for everything. Real Marines already know how to wait. I’ve been waiting for my check-in sheet to be signed since ’89. Chesty would roll over in his …” said Master Gunnery Sgt. Jedediah Smith, before choking on the baseball-sized dip in his mouth.

Some have questioned the feasibility of incorporating so much extra training into the annual training requirements of a force that is continually preparing for war in Afghanistan, North Korea, China and Texas. However, the concerns have largely fallen on the deaf ears of leaders waiting around at DEERS.

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Marine Corps

Recruiters hate him! Marine finishes four-year contract in eight months with one simple trick

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TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. — Pfc. Patrick Boyd is being hailed as a genius after finishing a four-year contract in just eight months

His peers are beyond jealous at Boyd’s amazing feat.

“Boyd and I went through boot camp and ITB together,” Pfc. Hector Gomez said. “Then, we both got orders to 2/7 (2nd Battalion 7th Marine Regiment). I’d also thought we’d EAS around the same time. Now, he’s back home, and I’m stuck in the middle of the desert with my head shaved bald screaming ‘aye lance corporal’ at a bunch of dudes with no combat experience who are like six months older than I am.”

One of those Marines tormenting Gomez is Lance Cpl. Brad Williams. Williams never thought much of Pfc. Boyd while serving as his team leader. But, this turn of events has left him in awe.

“It normally takes four years to fulfill a four-year contract, but the other day I saw Boyd walk by in civvies with his DD-214,” Williams said. “He must be some kind of prodigy.”

Staff Sgt. Jose Ramos, the unit’s substance abuse control officer, was also impressed.

“The Marine Corps considers a urine sample with 100 nanograms of cocaine per milliliter to be positive,” he said. “Pfc. Boyd tested at 1400 ng/mL. He must’ve been railing lines of coke off the top of the urinal while he was pissing. It’s truly motivating to see a Marine so determined to go above and beyond the standard.”

Outside the small rowhouse in Allentown, New Jersey, where Boyd now lives with his parents and younger sister, a line of Marines snakes around the block. All are there to learn how they too can cut their contracts down to a quarter of their original lengths. They’ve drained their leave balances to come speak with a man who’s quickly becoming a prophet-like figure in the lance corporal community.

Boyd doesn’t understand their admiration.

“I went out there yesterday and told them I got an other than honorable discharge, and now I’m going to spend the rest of my life living at home and working at a gas station,” Boyd said. “They still just wanted to know how I got out so quickly.”

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Air Force

Fans excited for final season of Afghanistan

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BAGRAM, Afghanistan — Fans of Afghanistan, already America’s longest running drama, are excited for the premier of the final season of the conflict, whenever that may be.

A media darling at launch, Afghanistan has suffered from low viewership since the first season but remains a powerhouse moneymaker with an annual budget of almost $45 billion. Producers initially promised large, exciting battles and decisive story lines but thus far have had issues delivering consistently. Fans of the show place the blame for many of those issues on producers insisting the show split air time with spinoff drama Iraq.

Despite the small TV audience tuning in, a large number of Americans (about 14,000 at present) physically attend the conflict every year hoping to take part in events as they unfold.

However, many of these participants express discontent over the direction the show has taken and feel the program has been dragging for the last decade or so.

“I was skeptical at first because there had been a Russian drama about Afghanistan, but in the first few seasons, this felt very different. And when they surprised everyone by killing off Bin Laden in season 10, that was amazing,” said Capt Mike Watt, currently deployed to Sharana. “But l feel like lately it’s been the same story line every season. Just lazy writing all around.”

A quick audit of recent years supports Watt’s argument. Plot devices like COIN, blue on green insider attacks, and meeting with local leaders that end up accomplishing nothing have become repetitive. Despite these issues, there remain a strikingly large number of subplots and unanswered questions. So many in fact, that writers and executive producers have expressed that they can’t imagine wrapping this up even if they have 10 plus more seasons.

Regardless, fans remain excited for the final season whenever that may be. An online poll among attendees on who will end up on top received hundreds of thousands of votes and came back with a landslide victory for write in candidate “I don’t give a fuuuuuuck.”

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