A few "Bad Apples" Doesn't Equal the Whole Bunch

Army Recruits Quickly Abused in Training

(Hat tip Captain's Quarters Blog, where he covers the aftermath of this incident where the guilty were relieved and punished. Nuff said there. In the Mac'ster's opinion ARMY PAO should call for an immediate correction of the headline, as it is truly slander, and at best totally misleading.

I entered the Army in 1976. Even at that time "physical abuse of trainees" was not tolerated and hadn't been for many years before that. Yes, the discipline at times made you want to run for the hills, but we survived. I remember being late to bed check and having to scrub the inside of a dumster with a toothbrush. I remember doing push ups on hot asphalt in July because I didn't do something right. But this wasn't torture. Yes there were incidents of physical abuse reported around the nation but they were dealt with quickly.

Years later I became Cadre (training personnel) for a Basic Training/AIT company. This was about 1985 and the scrutiny over our training; constant classes on how to handle "new soliders", was immense. Heck, by then we couldn't even call them new recruits " trainees" anymore.

Come to think of it I didn't get called soldier until I graduated basic training! I digress...

In our Cadre training we were taught never to even touch a soldier unless it was in a emergency - e.g. dropped their grenade in the pit during training - always an emergency! Or for instruction purposes ("Here, soldier - tapping on the shoulder and pointing -" shoot over there at the target, not at the ducks flying by!"

We had PC classes before PC was vogue. The purpose of this training? To professionally train soldiers for the serious job they had to do.

The point is that the Army was then keenly aware that abuse was a detriment to moral and order. I can only imagine that the training of Cadre has become even better as the years since I left the service, as evidenced by the professionalism I see in these young men and women fighting for our nation today.

It's time to stop bashing the troops and do it now.