Author Topic: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority  (Read 1434 times)

0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic.

Offline Ford289HiPo

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 987
  • Don't take life seriously; No one gets out alive
'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« on: January 14, 2013, 01:38:50 PM »
http://www.cnn.com/2013/01/12/us/troops-cultural-training/?utm_source=Jan+12+BTW&utm_campaign=BTW+Jan+13&utm_medium=email

'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority



(CNN) -- Chemical weapons engulf soldiers carrying 60-pound rucksacks, their mud-filled boots trenching through a river dividing simulated enemy lines.

Troops run in the desert to acclimate to harsh conditions with winter temperatures as low as 8 degrees, summer as high as 120.
The training becomes increasingly realistic in the weeks before deployment, mirroring the topography they may endure, but not necessarily the human terrain -- the cultures they'll be dealing with. And in a foreign land, something as seemingly innocuous as a thumbs-up sign or shaking a woman's hand can land a soldier in trouble.

While physical conditioning and live-fire exercises certainly help prepare troops for deployment, they're culturally blind if they don't understand the people among whom they'll be fighting. In the 21st century, when the U.S. is at war with ideals as much as -- if not more than -- foreign armies, this blind side can be as dangerous as your M249 jamming.

This makes warfare a lot more complex. So we have to be much more expeditionary. We have to be more intelligence-minded, more people-minded. We have to understand the populations that we're operating in and among," said Nick Dowling, a former National Security Council director who runs the culture-training company, IDS International.

The past decade has taught the U.S. Army many lessons. According to Gen. Ray Odierno, Army chief of staff, the biggest takeaway from Iraq and Afghanistan is the importance of "understanding the prevailing culture and values."

To address tomorrow's conflicts, Odierno revealed an initiative in March 2012 to regionally align brigades with the six unified command zones. The plan aims to create brigades better equipped to operate in specific regions by establishing language and cultural proficiency programs in their assigned territory.

Currently, anthropology, language and 10,000 years of heritage are squeezed into troops' curricula a few weeks before deployment, what Dowling calls "cultural training on steroids." Between pre-deployment paperwork and drills, they are handed a small pamphlet outlining some history and cultural no-nos to avoid.

Former soldier Joseph Hurst recalled there was sparse cultural training before his 2003 deployment to Iraq.

*************************************************************

This is an excerpt. Read more at the link
I wonder when the lies will stop and truth begin, even as grim as the truth may be. And then I remember that for 70 years, the reign of terror in Russia called itself "the people's government." We have so far to fall, yet we are falling fast and Hell yawns to receive us.

Offline Ford289HiPo

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 987
  • Don't take life seriously; No one gets out alive
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2013, 01:43:06 PM »
This may be a good thing for the COIN guys or trainers who interface with local inhabitants, but overall may be a waste of time for the military as a whole.

Sometimes, you just need to walk in with a big stick and beat the enemy into submission.
I wonder when the lies will stop and truth begin, even as grim as the truth may be. And then I remember that for 70 years, the reign of terror in Russia called itself "the people's government." We have so far to fall, yet we are falling fast and Hell yawns to receive us.

Offline truth_seeker

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 19,420
  • Common Sense Results Oriented Conservative Veteran
    • The place where argument addicts can go
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2013, 02:01:11 PM »
Unable to win in Afghanistan in over 11 years, allowing "insider" attacks there, over and over, indicates to me the US military is far, far from "smart."
"God must love the common man, he made so many of them.�  Abe Lincoln

Online andy58-in-nh

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 6,173
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2013, 02:01:51 PM »
You know, the last time we actually won a war, our GI's didn't give much of a crap about anybody's cultural sensitivity.

The purpose of the military is to break things and kill people, not to win hearts and minds. Does it help to know the local language, and customs? Absolutely. But that's no reason to make a fetish out of it. Teach the troops what is necessary to help achieve their mission. But first make sure they know what the hell their mission is.

Liberalism isn't really about making the world a better place. It's about reassuring the elites that they are good people for wanting to rule over it.

Offline Rapunzel

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 71,719
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2013, 02:17:13 PM »
You know, the last time we actually won a war, our GI's didn't give much of a crap about anybody's cultural sensitivity.
 

word!

famousdayandyear

  • Guest
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2013, 02:17:48 PM »
Kumbaya, my lord, kumba..............BOOM!
« Last Edit: January 14, 2013, 02:43:10 PM by famousdayandyear »

Offline 240B

  • Lord of all things Orange!
  • TBR Advisory Committee
  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 8,385
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2013, 02:36:22 PM »
When we were preparing to deploy at White Sands about three years ago, every time we had to attack a village they would always play loud Allah Akbar music. We had a Muslim guy in our squad and while the music was playing he would tell us what the music is, i.e., he would say that is the Aka-Daka-DooDoo played at sunset and such like that.

We were doing a 'breach' and we were nuttobutt. We had the kick and move guy, the Muslim as the first to enter, one guy behind him, and I was rear guard. We started rocking 1 2 3, the door gets kicked and the Muslim froze up. We had the momentum and could not stop so we pushed him. He made like a cat at the door and wouldn't go in, then he turned and started punching, and mean this was a big guy, anyone he reach. He was yelling, Don't ever push me! Don't ever push me! punching everyone in sight. We gave him a few punches back until he stopped. He had lost his helmet was bent over holding his knees and he was panting and drooling with his face bright red. The guy was out his mind. He had freaked.

We surrounded him with ready 'weapons' from about 10ft. The Staff Sergeant comes out and says, Ok knock it off. Let's go! In an amazing case of group action, nobody, not one person moved or even blinked. Finally the sergeant looked at the guy and of course took him away. As we were leaving the compound on the bus back to barracks and I saw him sitting out front under watch. He looked at me as we drove by and I can see face even now. He was grimaced, fist clenched, and ready to kill someone. He was even still breathing hard. We never saw him again.

To this day, I wonder if that was not a premature detonation? What was his intent in theater? Weird. That was all the cultural training I needed.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2013, 02:44:26 PM by 240B »
You cannot "COEXIST" with people who want to kill you.

Offline PzLdr

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 3,421
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2013, 11:53:13 PM »
Cultural training was the hallmark of both the Roman and Mongol Armies. It was the key to their success.  :smokin:
Hillary's Self-announced Qualifications: She Stood Up To Putin...She Sits to Pee

Online andy58-in-nh

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 6,173
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2013, 10:03:39 AM »
Cultural training was the hallmark of both the Roman and Mongol Armies. It was the key to their success.  :smokin:




"What do you mean we're being sent back for 'Sensitivity Training'????"

Liberalism isn't really about making the world a better place. It's about reassuring the elites that they are good people for wanting to rule over it.

Offline 240B

  • Lord of all things Orange!
  • TBR Advisory Committee
  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 8,385
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2013, 11:15:16 AM »



"What do you mean we're being sent back for 'Sensitivity Training'????"


Made me chuckle...lol. But seriously, how much of this 'cultural training' is going to be nothing more than a prostylization exercise and Islamic sermons more than anything else. I am very dubious when it comes to the government and Islam. They do not seem to be able to distinguish between a tolerance of Islam and outright partnership with it. Surly these cultural classes will convert more than a few soldiers to Islam.

I read about some wacko school in California which had students actually observing Islam in a very real way with real worship in order for them to understand Islam. They essentially became Islamic for a week or month or whatever it was. The wore garb the prayed the prayers and ate the food. No school in California would endorse or even allow such a program if applied to Christians, Catholics, Mormons, or Jews.

So why? Why do Muslims seem to be exempt from all the rules and laws of religion and government. It is blatant bias toward Islam. Why? They have a horrible record toward how treat women, homosexuals, and people of other beliefs. Of all the religions I know of, Islam is the most violent, warlike, and xenophobic. Why are they getting all this special treatment in the last few years?
« Last Edit: January 15, 2013, 11:24:29 AM by 240B »
You cannot "COEXIST" with people who want to kill you.

Online andy58-in-nh

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 6,173
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2013, 08:44:10 PM »
Of all the religions I know of, Islam is the most violent, warlike, and xenophobic. Why are they getting all this special treatment in the last few years?

Why? Hatred of the self and love of "the other". Denial of the existence of objective truth. Contempt for virtue.

Western Civilization and its works are defined for all time by their flaws. Others are to be judged only by their promises, presumed worthy in their claims, and instantly forgiven for behavior we would rightly deplore amongst ourselves.

It's pathological liberalism. And it is winning.
Liberalism isn't really about making the world a better place. It's about reassuring the elites that they are good people for wanting to rule over it.

Offline 240B

  • Lord of all things Orange!
  • TBR Advisory Committee
  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 8,385
Re: 'Smart power': Army making cultural training a priority
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2013, 09:46:07 PM »
Why? Hatred of the self and love of "the other". Denial of the existence of objective truth. Contempt for virtue.

Western Civilization and its works are defined for all time by their flaws. Others are to be judged only by their promises, presumed worthy in their claims, and instantly forgiven for behavior we would rightly deplore amongst ourselves.

It's pathological liberalism. And it is winning.

Wow! That was very, very, eloquent and correct. I'll remember that.
You cannot "COEXIST" with people who want to kill you.


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf