Terror in the Military

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by Ben Huot


You are now in the 4th Generation Subsection of the Writing Section

January 6, 2022

There is a difference between agreeing to something
And doing it because you don’t have a choice

Sometimes you are forced to make the better of 2 bad choices
There are many times you just do something
Without fully accepting both the rationale
And the inevitable consequences

The military is much like this
The concept of the military is basically this
We destroy things and kill people
When we are told to
Because worse things will happen if we do not

Many join the military
Because their alternative option is worse
There is less of that today in recruits
This is likely why the Army chose to
Motivate us by the you have no options route

My infantry training also known as basic training
Was for people who were not foot soldiers by specialty
Many of us could have gone on to college successfully
We were likely less gullible than those they were used to
Quickly we realized this was not what we signed up for

We were promised a 9 to 5 job in an office
This was true technically but not in spirit
The hard part of the military is not your specialty

The hard part of the military its that everyone
Is put on the front lines
To support the foot soldiers better
Regardless of their specialty

The Army constantly has you on call
And continually has you do infantry training
For every specialty in your free time

The Army goes to the gas chamber once a year
They prove they can shoot their rifle once a year
They do training in some sort of combat survival skills
Every month at least

The Army is not like the Navy
The Navy gets a specialty connected to their rank
And they do little else
Except for maintenance for the first few weeks

The Army are janitors as well the whole time
Think of the Army as cleaning in the middle of combat

Again the hard part is the risk you take on
And the even harder part is the pain you might experience
Just doing your job

For the past 30 plus years in combat
The Army, Marines, and unlucky Navy and Air Force
Have had to breathe in toxic smoke
From open burn piles
That our military decided to use
To get rid of any and all waste products

Almost any military specialty
Will expose you to toxic chemicals
I had no trouble getting a partial disability
For chronic allergic pink eye
Shortly after I left the military

So no one in their right mind
Would choose this over college
One they know the details

Especially as you can change the world
Or serve your country
Much more through college
Than with an Army enlistment

At the bottom your effect on the system is non-existent
You are lucky if you are allowed to
Increase your efficiency doing your assigned mission

I think the key point that changed my mind
About how the military is different
From what the military recruiter said
Was when I had to go into the gas chamber

My recruiter was an Army Ranger
Who served during the first gulf war
He claimed the no one uses chemical weapons anymore
And all that would happen in the gas chamber
Is you would have trouble breathing for 30 seconds

Either he was lying about the first part or the second
The third part is believable
As there is so much tear gas in Army Ranger training

The Army is incredibly hard physically and mentally
But it was the emotional part that broke me
I never accepted what was happening was always ok with me
I never bought in to the mission of the US in the world

I never was asked to do anything immoral to anyone
But what is expected of you by the military never ends

I think one of the reasons why my battalion commander
Signed off on my early release
Was I refused to let up and not give 150%
When the lower enlisted in the battalion begged me to

I knew from the beginning
Despite my poor understanding of the military
That I had to do whatever I was told
And always give 150%

My Drill Sergeant in advanced training said
If I continue doing those 2 things
I would do well wherever I was assigned

There are no secrets or what we call privacy in the military
There is no safety or comfort for those
Who guarantee this for the other Americans

You have no rights in the military
The military justice system is at least twice as bad as ours
For punishments alone

The military is the kind of dictatorship
That it fights against

It is something to think about
Before signing up for anything
That you think of the worst cast scenarios

And the simulated drowning and confinement
Are not the worse things that can happen
After you sign up for the military

The biggest things that got to me
Were the lack of sleep and constant terror