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03 April 2014


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I wish the Army of today, in some respects, was more like the Army of yesterday. I'm not saying we need to go back to four enlisted in a room with everything dress right dress in every closet, but permission to marry is near and dear. I recommended on several occasions to my commander that young E2s should not be given command sponsorship due to shenanigans of the fiance.

An example of the weakness of today's mentality can be seen in how a black female specialist can post a petition to the white house to change AR 670-1 because the new grooming standards are racist, I shit you not. I guess it will take another serious land war toknock the Army out of this self esteem at all costs mode of thinking tthat's been in play for far too long. Witness GEN Allen shamefully going on about "diversity is our strength" after the Hassan attack. That overgilted idiot refused to recognize how the Army's idiotic focus on diversity precipitated the killings!

As an aside, I wonder if the military climate of Hood is conductive to this sort of thing. I've heard some stories about things happening on Bragg, but what I've heard about how fast and loose Hood is sounds unbelievable.

Charles 1

Well its hard to outcry when its military on military and an officer who drew her weapon seems to have precipitated the suicidal ending of the assault.

Ergo, condolences and kudos.

Perhaps an outcry from the veterans services people notwithstanding your observation on the need for claims documentation.


Charles !

It will be interesting to learn;

- Was this person a soldier of the Military Police?
- Was this person enlisted or an officer?
- was this person a civilian civil service post police person and not in the military at all? pl


Tyler: From the Colonel's summary, this appears to be a crime of frustration, i.e., a crime. How can the Army prevent the impossible?

I suspect we will be bombarded by lots of sloppy reporting and shallow commentary over this.

r whitman

Because many of us who participate on this blog have served in the military, we approach this incident as an Army problem. The problem needs to be looked at from a mental health view. How do we keep weapons away from people who exhibit the first sign of mental problems. Mass killings all have one common denominator: a mentally impaired shooter.



" I guess it will take another serious land war ...."

Yes, but it is the politicians who need to have sense knocked into them. For them the most important war is the "war on women". As you know it wasn't a lesbian doing the shooting, so obviously we need more gay women in the combat arms. Problem solved!



He was in a Service Support branch, Transportation. There are a lot of women there, a good many probably prefer other women. pl



John Gavin

That's a hell of a stereotype, COL Lang!

Of course, stereotypes generally exist because they are true. You apparently have the same experience and impressions of the Motor T world as I do...

The Twisted Genius

R Whitman is right. This is not an Army problem. It's a problem of mental health. Although Lopez was not yet diagnosed with PTSD, he was being treated with Ambien for sleep disorders and some kind of medication for depression. That shit is dangerously unpredictable. The danger to one's mind from these drug combinations is probably worse than surviving a roadside bomb on a road in Iraq, which Lopez did not experience.

IMO, treatment of mental illness is far less developed than treatment of physical illness. Diagnosis is still a matter of guesswork and treatment, especially medicinal treatment, is a matter of trying stuff and seeing if it works... or makes matters worse. It's closer to the level of medicine in the early 1800s.


I fail to understand why the wages for a full time job, particularly in the military, might not enough to support a wife and child without financial stress in the worlds most advanced economy - whether this is relevant to this discussion is a moot point.


There's always inane stuff that happens on Army posts, that's just the nature of the beast.

The point has been made before that the public makes up for its lack of involvement with the military by unilateral hero worship. Already the PTSD troupes are being trotted out, when as the good Colonel pointed out, its very likely he never heard a shot fired in anger.

So as you say: sloppy reporting and shallow commentary. Perhaps a call for more money to fix the perpetually wrecked VA that will vanish down a hole to never be seen again.


A 34 year old married spec4 with children cannot be a happy soldier.....


Its going to be a damned mess and people will die in the name of their secular religious insanity called diversity. The same people so smug about science can't get it through their heads that there are fundamental biological differences between men and women.

It got memory holed recently that Obama called the service chiefs into his office, told them gays in the military was a done deal and that if they had a problem with it they could resign their commissions. The days of GEN Marshall are long gone.


Likely. That was my experience as well. That or women who were, to put it politely, "infantry mattresses".

I wonder how he kept his job as an E4 for so long when the Army is looking to chapter out infantrymen who were honorably injured as fast as possible. Got to have room for those new Diverse Soldiers or whatever the new progressive flavor of the month is.



Old thing. Soldiers do not have the opportunity to compete and participate in "the world's greatest economy." They take what the Congress gives them. Would an Australian corporal have the means from pay and allowances to live as well as you say Lopez should have lived? pl


John Gavin

You mean the part about lots of women in the CS and SS branches? Stereotype? That's very funny! Lesbians? Hey that's traditional stuff. It has been that way so long as I can remember and that is a ways back. pl


Mainly because so many of the benefits of the military aren't listed explicitly as pay benefits. You've got the commissary, PX, medical, and housing allowances that add up to a shiny penny.

BUT, according to the latest military pay tables, an E4 with 9 years makes about 2490 a month. I'm not sure how the reserve to active conversion works, but I'll be generous here. As a single E4 getting jump pay with two years of tax free paychecks and pulling combat pay, Alaskan COLA, and the Oil Diff Fund, I was comfortable enough to be able to fly home (or wherever else) on leave, make payments on a car, keep a fridge stocked with beer, take a lady out on the town, and generally live it up a little.

If you're a married E4 living off post with multiple children, I imagine that pay check does not ever stretch far enough. I guess what I'm getting at is that the Army will help you, to a point, but you've got to take some responsibility for your own actions, and part of that is making sure you can take care of your kids.



You should make a thread where us soldiers sit around and tell stories that go "Well there was this one female who..." and see where it goes.



It is a long, long time since I commanded a bunch of E-4s, but I would say that even though they made much less money than you did the single men lived well, the married ones not well at all. pl


"The problem needs to be looked at from a mental health view."

If you can’t be trusted with a weapon what else can you not be trusted with – like your own children, the children at the school you teach at, the car you drive to work? What professions shall you be restricted from? Is this a permanent label or temporary? Who gets to do the diagnosis 'proving' you have a condition that requires such restrictions? How do you prove you are no longer have that condition?

When will we start evaluating the impact of all the drugs issued for stress/depression etc and how they are contributing to suicide and in this case possibly contributing to mass-murder suicide?



ok. will we survive the experience? pl


An E-4 over 6 years grosses $2427.30 monthly and $1157 BAH with dependents. There's a clothing allowance also. Hardly a princely sum but at $44,000+ annually, not too awful bad. About what an experienced OTR truck driver makes. Far too many of the troops have no financial savvy (stereotype alert), fall prey to payday loans, and never heard of a budget, and there are predators lurking aside every gate.


2490/month is $14.65 hr in the civilian world. That is about $1.14 less than the latest UAW contract starting wage in the automotive industry, and they don't get free medical. Don't forget that the cost of living in Texas is allot lower than elsewhere.

The Twisted Genius


In 1976 I lived with my new bride in a shabby apartment complex just outside the gate of Fort Benning in Columbus, Georgia. I taught my wife to shoot my 30-30 lever action when the local sheriff advised us of shootings in the apartment complex. My full monthly take home pay was $666. I remember that figure for obvious reasons. We couldn't afford air conditioning during the Georgia Summer. Military compensation has come a long way since then, but it's still not a path to riches. It should never be.

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