Arm our Armed Forces

It was decades ago when I first said it… A pistol and a fixed blade knife should be part of the Uniform.  If you are in Uniform, you should be armed.
Our Military Bases are essentially Gun Free Zones.  Most bases are like small cities, lots of traffic in and out.  And the MP’s or DOD Police are too few and far between to be effective at insuring people’s safety.   It’s asinine that we expect our Military to “Protect our Freedom” when we do not allow them to even protect themselves. This has always been the greatest hypocrisy and injustice.

When a soldier graduates their AIT… not boot camp, their Advanced Individual Training, and are officially trained in their MOS… Part of that graduation ceremony should be that they are bestowed their weapon of office.  A pistol and a knife.  These items should be given to them with the expectation that they are now part of their uniform and should be maintained and cared for and that while in uniform they should be worn at all times.

I’ve been told that my idea is “extreme”.  Really?

At Ft. Hood, 2009, an Officer shot and killed 13 other soldiers and wounded 30 others.  Now at Ft. Hood, April 2014, a soldier shot and killed 4 other soldiers and wounded 16 others.    The Navy has had a couple recently as well.  Let’s ask those people and their families if my idea is too extreme.  I bet there are a great many soldiers – trained warriors – who would have given anything to be able to defend not themselves, but their brothers and sisters in arms.   How many of the loved ones of those killed and wounded would have wanted their servicemen to have been able to defend themselves?  Ask them if my idea is too extreme.

I heard a pundit on the radio say that they need to have been searches at the Base Gates.   Search every car and ever person coming on base.  This person is an idiot.  We can’t even keep contraband out of Prisons, let alone a busy military base.  This person has obviously never been near a military base.   Let’s take a look at a small one.   I happen to live right close to a small Marine base.  And every morning I am in the traffic flow heading into that base.  I turn off before the gate, thank heavens.  It’s bad enough as it is.   Seriously… the traffic is hell on wheels.  And a detailed search of everything going in?  That’s just flat out unrealistic.  Getting on base would take hours.  And for what?  You take all the problems of the TSA at Air Ports and magnify that to controlling the incoming traffic into city sized areas?

How about we trust our Armed Forces with Arms?  Considering that we train them to use them, it seems like a pretty simple solution.   A pistol and knife is a lot cheaper than hiring and training an army of TSA type security people to secure every gate and every fence-line at every military base.   And you’ll keep the traffic flowing.  No one wants to go to work 3 hours early just to get through security to get into work.  That’s just stupid and short sighted.  Because you only serve to maintain the gun free zone inside.  You would have a hard shell on the outside… and inside would be just as gooey and soft as it’s been and a mass shooting could still happen.  Because like I said before – we can’t even keep contraband items out of our prisons.

To make this worse, even the Base Commander at Ft. Hood is against the idea of his soldiers being armed.   Think about that for a moment.  He feels like he can’t trust his own soldiers?  Isn’t that an indication that maybe he shouldn’t be a Commander of any base?   Here’s a question to you Officers out there… If you can’t trust your own men, what does that say about your Leadership?

Think of the disconnect of logic here… Civilians are protecting our Armed Forces, because we don’t trust them to protect themselves. Yet we trust them to protect the Civilians.  Where is the logic in this?  Just thinking about that gives me a migraine.

Also note – The shooter in this case was rampaging for 15 to 20 minutes.  This has been repeated in the media’s news coverage.  So now would be copycat maniacs and terrorists now know the response time at Ft. Hood and probably other bases.  And they know our bases are essentially great Gun Free Zones.  Which means that situations like this are more likely to happen in the future than before.  We’ve already had 3 this year?  We’re going to see this happen again and again.

Why?  Why are our soldiers good enough to Protect America yet the troops are too inept to be allowed to protect themselves?  I’ve heard even other Military Guys say that they would hate to see a PFC packing.   Come on.  I’ve seen plenty of PFC’s with more sense than many Lieutenants and yet “Officers” automatically get a pass?  So an Officer’s Rights according to the Bill of Rights is more important that a PFC’s?    That’s bullshit.  Utter bullshit.   And don’t talk to me about the antics of the younger Enlisted – That’s a direct reflection of their Leadership and you know it.

A few days of pistol training, as a part of BASIC TRAINING is not too much to ask for.   You could pay for the cost of a Battalion’s worth of pistols for the price of a couple Javelin Missiles.  Here is the extreme part.  When the Soldier leaves the service… They keep the knife and the pistol as a token of their Oath.  Because that Oath doesn’t expire.

We can roll this out easily.  Start by arming our Officers and NCO’s.  E5’s and above.  Then cycle the rest through training and issuing sidearms as the training is complete.  Then issue sidearms at AIT Graduations moving forward.

Arm our Armed Forces.

14 thoughts on “Arm our Armed Forces”

  1. Back in the Stone Age, when I was an Army MP, we’d periodically engage in an activity known as a “full court press”.

    This was a post-wide search for contraband, mainly drugs. It was directed by command, to occur on a specific date and time frame. Units would conduct their own searches of barracks rooms and parking lots, with K9 assisting as required.

    MPs would search vehicles LEAVING post DURING that time frame (which never, EVER, coincided with end of business). And that STILL required a company plus of MPs, and took several hours, and backed up traffic like you wouldn’t believe.

    The nimrod’s idea is not sustainable.

  2. “How about we trust our Armed Forces with Arms? Considering that we train them to use them, it seems like a pretty simple solution.”

    Stop using logic, you’ll give people the feelbads.

    Decentralized systems have a lot of pros over centralized systems; e.g. they are more robust, can respond quicker, can adapt faster.

    Security and defense should be decentralized. With the backing of a centralized command center, any threat would be faced with immediate response with mediated responses coming from HQ command. Quick containment and neutralization would be a matter of policy, not an ad hoc emergency response, with all that entails.

    And I’m a friggin’ civilian working as cog for a big business, what’s keeping people who have honed their skills doing this professionally under life or death circumstances from implementing this? Inertia? Bureaucracy?

  3. When I was stationed in NC I was fapped to PMO for awhile. More often than not I was searching vehicles, and we searched all vehicles that didn’t have a current DOD decal or current visitors pass (which is good for 24 hours IIRC). The process of finding the DOD decal and determining if it was up to date (and then whether or not to salute it) takes about two seconds. But even that was enough to back traffic up on Highway 17 further than I could see from the post. Now instead of two seconds per car, this guy is suggesting we search every car coming onto the base? That would literally take all day.

    What nonsense. At least give the barracks duties keys to a shotgun locker or something. Not much would make less sense than what that dude was saying.

  4. Having been a slick sleeve myself and having watched some of my son’s mates as they progressed from E-1 to E-4 (or not, or back down again) in the Marines the past few years…

    At least make your proposal apply to part of the NCO initiation for stateside posts. E-4 and up got the duty.

  5. Agree 100%. I’m a reservist currently in Kabul. If we’re trusted here to be armed and represent the United States, why are we not trusted to carry a personal defense sidearm while in uniform at home? I’d like to see that change, but I’m doubtful having seen the same reaction to yet another of these tragedies.

    You’re idea is about as extreme as any American wanting, and having the right, to be able to protect themself.

  6. (George, I hope this doesn’t double post, I forgot my registration is with an older, no longer used, email address)

    Agree 100%. I’m a reservist currently in Kabul. If we’re trusted here to be armed and represent the United States, why are we not trusted to carry a personal defense sidearm while in uniform at home? I’d like to see that change, but I’m doubtful having seen the same reaction to yet another of these tragedies.

    You’re idea is about as extreme as any American wanting, and having the right, to be able to protect themself.

  7. Just think that in Switzerland every able bodied man is issued a SIG550 rifle with a brick of ammunition to keep in their home and it’s common to see people with rifles slung across their backs while they bike through the countryside to and from the many rifle ranges. While not exactly the same thing, but it just goes to show that the Swiss government trusts their regular citizens a hell of a lot more than our government does of our own trained & vetted service members. What a shame.

  8. A few months ago I went TDY to the Pentagon. When I used to be stationed there the knife blade limit was 3″. I was going as a visitor and had to go thru TSA-like security, so I was packing a blade of 2 3/4″. Unbeknown to me, they had changed the blade length to 2 1/2″! Now, I’m an O-6 in uniform and the Pentagon cops pull me aside and start to detain me. Long story short, an older cop realizes this is dumb and let’s me go…with the knife and an admonishment not to bring it back. I retired 3 wks ago and while I had a great career, stupid crap like that makes me realize it was time to go.

    1. Stupid stuff like that is the way of Government now, no matter where you are. If you deal with a Government Office of any sort – you are dealing with that same mentality.

  9. “Essentially” hell. Bases are weapon-free zones. Period. Only people allowed to carry at all are the MPs, and only then while on duty.

    Right outside the gates to NAS Jax, there are huge signs that say “FIREARMS NOT ALLOWED.” Yes, still.

    If we get attacked, my options are try and sneak up behind him and whack him with a wrench, or hide and hope he gets bored and goes away. I live and work on a game preserve for psychopaths and it’s hard for anyone not to feel a little jittery about that.

    1. And yes, i did mean *weapon* free. Fixed-blade knives are banned as well, and i think locking-blades have to be under 3″.

  10. George your 100 percent right. Military bases, schools and government buildings all share the target rich environment that attracts degenerates.
    Perhaps we should change the dynamics and allow Americans the freedom to defend themselves, and we should start with the military.

    1. I’d argue that we should start with the civilian population. Members of the military chose that profession, knowing they would be dealing with being in many criminal-empowerment zones.

      On the other hand, civilians made no such choice, and are simply being forced to obey laws which violate their fundamental human rights, in many jurisdiction.s

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