Training, The Real Truth of War
Training is what makes us do what we do. In battle, or at home. That is what makes us better at something or worse at something. When you have less training you have a better chance of messing up what you are doing. But when you have lots of training you know what you are doing. You know what is right and what isn’t. That is why I think that when you join the military your training will help form your truth of war. If you have had lots of training, you will be able to apply your knowledge and training to what you are doing. Each year the U.S military training programs get more intense, but it wasn’t always like this.
In World War 1 and World War II, there was barely any training for the soldiers fighting. In World War 1, there were so many extra men willing to fight that they had to move around soldiers. Due to the disorganization, the men could not be properly trained before heading overseas (U.S Army). Because they had very little training they were not ready for the horror of war and didn’t have the tools to survive. This led to 117,465 Americans dying in just 2 years. This was the case in WWII also. President Roosevelt declared in late 1939 a state of limited emergency. So the training time went from 8 weeks to 4 weeks (Flowers, Mark). Because they were not trained right, 418,500 Americans died within 4 years.
Something that shows that men were not prepared for war back then is shown in a book. That book is All Quiet on the Western Front based during WW1. In chapter three the main character Paul and his friend Kat see a group of new recruits show up. They are scared and don’t know what to do. So instead of the military training them Paul and Kat teach them how to survive in the trenches. But even with that help, they cannot survive, because later in the book the commanding officer takes a head count and only 39 soldiers are left out of 150. But, there are fewer deaths in the Vietnam War.
The Vietnam War was the most protested war in the history of the United States. It went on for 4 years for the U.S and escalated each year. Yet during this long war the U.S only lost 58,151 Americans during the entire war (United States Military Casualties of War). I believe this was due to the training. We see huge training spikes during this time. The U.S navy seals became active and were used for stealth operations during the Vietnam War. A navy seal’s training can take from 4-12 weeks. During this time they are expected to do a 500 meter in under 10 minutes and be able to do at least 42 push ups in less than a minute (United States Navy SEAL Selection and Training.). They are trained to the bone to be able to do the impossible and that is just one group being trained like crazy. The U.S army also improved their training during that time. The military had 8 weeks for basic training, 8 weeks for individual training, and another two weeks spent in Vietnam learning how to hip fire and to learn other helpful skills (What was training for the Vietnam War like). This went on the entire war and because of this extra training less people died. And believe it or not the training just got more intense later in the Iraq war.
The Iraq war is the longest war in American history. It has taken many lives in the last 11 years. Because of this war, the training for all military groups has gotten harder. The minimum training for a U.S marine is 12 weeks. Within this 3 month period they learn how to survive anything (US Marine Corps). It is not just the basic training that has improved these last couple years. For example, the U.S army green berets have also have made their training course more intense. Their training is the most intense course out there. First, they do full on hand to hand fighting and after run a lap around an arena while carrying someone on their back. Then they repeat that for 5 hours. This is the first day of a 90 day course with another 90 days behind them to be in the army (Surviving The Cut). Because of all this advancement in training there has been 100,000 lives saved at least. This is over 11 years though. We lost 4 times that in WWII. So I believe this is all because of training. he still
A good example how training has improved is Marcus Luttrell. He was a navy seal from 1999-2007. Also as a navy seal he and his team trained each day. They were considered one of the best special ops teams out there. But in 2005 they were sent on operation Red Wing. The goal was to spy on an al qaeda leader. They went one the mission but they got sabotaged. 150 al qaeda soldiers ran over a top of a hill out of no were. They were pushed down the mountain. 3 out of four of them died within 24 hours. Marcus Luttrell crawled miles to a town were they took him in and saved his life. This is all because of his training I believe. To become a navy seal you have to take standard training then take another 30 months of extra training to be able to do the impossible (How the Navy SEALs Work). That is 10 times more training than a standard soldier. And because of that extra training he survived and in his own words he said in a speech during a NRA conference “We aren’t heroes out their in the military. We’re just Patriots.”. That is
This training makes the truth of war for each soldier, because just like being born, your train for what to do and what not to do. When you go to war, it’s a new world and it’s like you are being born again. You learn what is right and what is wrong by your training. So when you don’t have any training, you don’t know what to do and lose it. But, when you know your objective, you can keep your mind on the prize and keep your head in the game. Your truth of war will be different then another person with less or more training and that will always be the truth.