Early-warning system tells E-4s when First Sergeant is approaching

“Go figure that they managed to rig it together using duct tape, dip cans, and zip-ties.”

By The Shammer

FORT BENNING, Ga. — Specialists across the U.S. Army have begun testing a new early-warning system that lets them know when a senior noncommissioned officer is inbound to their position.

A trove of leaked hand-scribbled notes, as well as blueprints and photographs, have revealed the existence of the Specialist Hands-free Automated Mobile System for HIgh-ranking Enlisted Leader Detection, a repurposed mobile radar platform. It has been programmed to spot angry senior noncommissioned officers on approach before quickly sending out a notification, similar to an AMBER Alert, informing users of the bogey’s speed, location, and anger-level, according to experts who have reviewed the materials.

A barracks resident who had scribbled sharpie over his still plainly readable nametape showed reporters the current alert on his phone. He then told reporters that he had to “go to dental” and walked off before his first sergeant could spot him.

Further tests by barracks scientists show the SHAMSHIELD increases the average warning lead-time from 2.4 minutes to 3.837 minutes, allowing non-NCO E-4s more precious time to find cover and concealment or pretend to be busy with something else. Developers plan to feed the data into a predictive model that will allow them to forecast the most likely days and times the barracks-dwellers should be on alert.

“Back in the day, we knew to quickly skedaddle or grab our shamming-clipboards because one of the guys would run past and tell us ‘First Sergeant is on his way, and he looks pissed!’” said Ben MacKall, a former soldier who left the service last year. “When smartphones came along, we used mass text-messaging. But based on what we’ve seen in the leaked report, it looks like they’ve perfected the process.

“Go figure that they managed to rig it together using duct tape, dip cans, and zip-ties.”


Development of the device comes as no surprise to NCOs between corporal and staff sergeant, according to Staff Sgt. Ignacio Vidal, a military policeman who discovered one of the SHAMSHIELD emitters mounted on an old military vehicle atop a concrete bunker during a routine patrol. 

“As a young E-4, I was quite good at making myself scarce when I realized ‘Top’ would be paying us a visit shortly,” said Vidal. “But as I’ve climbed the ranks, I’ve become less adept at outsmarting the specialists under my supervision when they try to disappear before it comes time to pick up cigarette-butts or wait in a lengthy formation.

“Generation Z has managed to out-sham the Millennial Army, and we NCOs haven’t got a chance at stopping them.”

Meanwhile, senior Pentagon officials say senior NCOs appear to be clueless that they’re being outmaneuvered by their subordinates.

At press time, a spokesperson for the E-4 Mafia told reporters that once finalized, the SHAMSHIELD should collectively save Army specialists about 4,919 man-years by helping them dodge bullshit work-details. This value-add is expected to skyrocket when the system is obtained by the Lance Corporal Underground of the Marine Corps, which is expected to inherit barely-functioning versions of the device within five to 45 years.

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