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Old 25 July 2017, 22:20
jhes160 jhes160 is offline
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Couldn't think of a better place to put it.

Just saw this on FB. It was spoken to new Infantry officers a few years ago, still relevant today and in any branch.

From LTC (Ret) Carlson:

The quiet ones...

Took the war canoe to Ft. Benning Georgia, Home of the Infantry, last week. Was asked to speak to 200 plus Lieutenants. War fighters. Wanted to render a debrief, share what they received and tell on myself. First thing I did after accepting the invite was seek council. From gunfighters. From 3 star general to brothers I know that excelled at gunfighting. Second thing I did was get a wing man. Bob Lyness I got Viking Bob. He's an explosive ordnance disposal technician wizard. I took him to gunfights 13 years ago. Show me your associates and I'll show you your future. We did not get blown up on the trip so

Two items you better have going to a gunfight and coming out of a gunfight. Honesty and Honor. Consider your career a long gunfight.

Two most precious assets you have are your men and your time. You lose either one you'll never get them back. Ever.

Know what your doing. Sounds ridiculous. What are you doing? Truly. Me: I'm killing evil. Right now I'm using you 200 to kill evil for me. Know what your doing. To thine own self be true. It's powerful. You will accomplish every assigned mission to an exacting high standard. Every time. Or you better die trying because death is way more honorable than failure. The future CIA director is sitting in here. Future Chief of Staff. Vice Chief. Commanding Generals, Brigade Commanders, Battalion Commanders. In here. Look around. 330 million Americans and we have you 200. Tip of the spear real small. Know what your doing.

Know what you'll never do. Ahead of time.

Be yourself. Your the bearer of all bad news from here on out. Don't spin it. No Christmas ornaments. Man up, look them in the eye, give it to them straight, they know it's a suck. They have been on the line in a gunfight for 14 straight years. They will be there still after you leave. Tell them straight. Remember. They won't see what you say but they will hear what you do. I don't give a flying flip about morale. We can bring the Dallas cheerleaders in for three days and at some point they're bouncing and we're gonna do work. Now discipline. That's a whole other matter. Soon as you get to one level turn the screws hard and get to a higher level. Discipline wins gunfights. It's not the will to win. Never has been. It's not who wants it more. Their lying to you. It's the will to prepare to win. Go run 3 miles. Carry telephone poles when you do it. Look em in the eye. Go do it with them. Be King Kong.

Your going to a gunfight. Two kinds of infantry platoon leaders. Those who have a tab and those who wished they had a tab. Get a tab. If you don't get it first time go immediately back to day one recycle. It's training for war. If you can't War at Ranger School find a different branch.

Have a sense of humor. It can carry the day. If you have a crappy sense of humor forget I said that.

Your in charge. Those NCO's are pipehitters of the highest order. They will cut you no quarter. You don't warrant any. They will rightly view you as a liability. Prove to them with the consistency of your character over time. Support them 90% of the time, they'll support you that 10% you differ with them. Now. If you have conflict, try to keep King Kong out of it. One of the two of us is gonna change. Your job is to figure out which one of us that is. Be certain. Go King Kong as required and if reason fails.

Honesty. Accountability. Your rank is irrelevant, noise, and potentially distracting. It's a gunfight. That X marks the spot on that screen. That's where the boys are going. To do work. To kill evil. If your not the best in your tribe with your boom stick, your tactics, all weapons systems and delivery platforms, knowing everyone your taking to the fight, willing to be first in and last out, how to find calm in a shit tornado, if your not the best at those and everything else...are you really leading? Forget being a platoon leader. You better get to King Kong right now. Be a Viking. Be a Giant. Be a Lion. Your boys are.

When your boys do good it's their fault. When they don't it's your fault.

Show me an "angry" leader and I'll show you someone whose not doing PT. Be humble. Everyone enjoys someone who wears humble well. Best way to find great humility is to have your ass beaten unmercifully in PT sessions two or three times a day. Those are rough men on the line. Don't get some. Get all of it.

You'll work 28 hour days. 9 days a week. You'll see horror. Hear it too. Don't let anyone lie to you. You'll hear we can't kill an ideology. Yes we can. Ask World War II veterans. We haven't fought Nazis or Imperial Japanese in over 70 years. Be adaptive but know what your doing. Killing evil is a great start.

Fire a dud and you might get a stud. Keep a dud and you got a dud.

On the other side, if still drawing breath and you kept your honesty and your honor, if invited, there is a brotherhood that defies words. Full heart. Clear eyes. I never saw glory once in over 8 years of combat zones / danger zones. I saw honor beyond comprehension always. Today, I see glorious, everyday, from my porch in the woods on the side of a mountain. Lest we forget. There are those who have gone before you. Honor them. In word and deed.
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Old 25 July 2017, 22:58
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The Fat Guy The Fat Guy is offline
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Well said Sir. The humility and honor of being a leader.
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Old 25 July 2017, 23:55
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Gray Rhyno Gray Rhyno is offline
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Tons of truth in there.
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