Thou Shalt Not
By Robert Bateman
Back in late 1991, my battalion deployed to the Sinai Desert as a part of the Multinational Force and Observers. This force, consisting of military forces from eleven different nations, stands on the border between Egypt and Israel and ensures that both sides are adhering to the terms of the Camp David Accords. The mission is to "Observe, Report, and Verify" any violations or potential violations. It is an appropriate application of military resources, but it is also boring. Extremely boring.
During that six-month tour in the desert, I had a lot of time on my hands. We all did. But I did learn a few things over the course of the deployment. I learned, for example, about chief warrant officers, two of which deployed with us.
Warrant officers are a special breed in the United States military. Technically they are officers, but instead of a having commissions granted by Congress, they have a "warrant" issued by the secretary of their respective military service or by the president. They are specialists in particular skills and generally older than many other ranks, which contributes to a certain self-confidence. Also, as soldiers who stand somewhat apart from both the Non-Commissioned Officer Corps and the Regular Officer Corps, they tend to be a little more outspoken than your average bear.
I was reminded of this when Phil Carter's favorite Air Force lawyer, Major Gen. Charles Dunlap, got a faceful of buckshot from Chief Warrant Officer John Robinson of the United States Army in yesterday's Atlanta Journal Constitution.
Robinson apparently took some exception to MG Dunlap's op-ed last week in the same paper. Dunlap essentially contended that in Afghanistan/Pakistan: Airpower is the solution. Robinson comes back at him, on full auto, suggesting that a "better way is probably something other than the way that just resulted in the deaths of between five and 90 Afghan civilians." Take a look at both essays. Don't be drinking coffee when you do. Computer screens are expensive.
Oh, and another lesson I learned on that long-ago deployment? Thou shalt not, ever, under any circumstances, play poker for money with a warrant officer.
(P.S. Mom and Dad, I promise I'll get you your house back. Someday.)
Please email us to report offensive comments.
Posted by: DM_Inf | September 26, 2008 12:32 PM
Posted by: IRRSoldier | September 26, 2008 12:40 PM
Posted by: IRRSoldier | September 26, 2008 12:50 PM
Posted by: OllieD | September 26, 2008 4:12 PM
Posted by: PFM1 | September 27, 2008 4:28 AM
Posted by: DM_Inf | September 27, 2008 1:50 PM
Posted by: mauronia | September 29, 2008 10:55 AM
Posted by: IRRSoldier | September 29, 2008 11:18 AM
Posted by: DM_Inf | September 29, 2008 11:44 AM
Posted by: ceflynline | September 29, 2008 9:29 PM
Posted by: MilitaryCommonSense | October 2, 2008 1:29 AM
The comments to this entry are closed.