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This class consists of mainly veterans, and with that being said we know the one thing guaranteed to happen in the Military is change whether it be good or bad; however I believe the one thing that remained constant is our readiness. In the 1980s we had many incidents involving the Persian Gulf, and we even began to escort Kuwaiti oil tankers through the Persian Gulf in order to protect them from Iraqi and Iranian attacks. Due to all of the tensions President Raegan decided to implement Operation Praying Mantis, which was the largest convoy mission since world war II at the time (Naval History and Heritage Command, 2019). In the 1990s we focused on Operation Desert Storm, and we also had other issues such as Operation Provide Promise, which was a humanitarian relief operation that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Furthermore, this operation was the longest running airlift operation in history, lasting from July 1992 to January 1996 (American Forces Press Servic, n.d.). In the 2000s the September 11 attacks took place, and it changed Military operations, because we’ve literally had service members deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan ever since Operation Enduring Freedom was implemented. In the 2010s to present day our Military has accomplished a lot such as killing Osama Bin Laden, intervening in between Syria and Turkey, deploying troops to Africa to search for Joseph Kony, and killing a Baghdad militia leader as retaliation for an attack at an American Embassy that killed one civilian contractor and severely wounded four service members.
Some of the challenges that I see the military face are the rules of engagement, and Use of Force rules. I definitely think it needs to be in place, due to the fact we have ignorant people that like to abuse their power and act too rashly. However, we also have normal, level headed people in the Military who are too scared to do their jobs, because they fear consequences of drawing their fire arms. I arm up and patrol everyday as a Military Policeman, and a few times in my career I’ve either been in a position or seen someone in a position where we should have utilized a baton, taser, or even drew our weapon; however, most of the time we fear the use of force board and leadership, because if they determine you were wrong (even if you were right) your career is done and you can end up in prison. Downrange in a deployed environment such as Iraq or Afghanistan this is even more of a scare, because you fear potentially causing an international incident for doing your job. Other challenges within Military leadership would be getting the approved number of bodies deployed downrange, maintaining the number one Military force through the best equipment and training possible (EXPENSIVE), properly protecting assets, and keeping everyone fit to fight.
The Military gives troops many opportunities through free education, PCSing to other duty stations overseas, deployments, teaching troops a job, and more. It is honestly within every Military members best interest to take full advantage of all of the opportunities that we are given as service members. I believe the Military remains agile, because we have no choice. The Military is always changing at the lowest levels of the chain of command so when another change happens I believe everyone is just used to it. Not to mention we have an influx of fresh new members joining almost every month so when a change happens, and they’re brand new they see it as the original. Furthermore, how the Military deals with enemies on a Strategic level is very complex. It involves the President, the Secretary of Defense, and all of the Chiefs of Staffs. When their decision is made it gets sent down the chain of command.
American Forces Press Service. (n.d.). Defense.gov news article: Operation provide promise: Mission complete. United States Department of Defense (defense.gov). https://archive.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=40545
Naval History and Heritage Command. (2019, September 13). Operation praying mantis. NHHC. https://www.history.navy.mil/browse-by-topic/wars-conflicts-and-operations/middle-east/praying-mantis.html