Preparing for Civilian Life After the Military Can be Very Difficult

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Military news…

An Army paratrooper accused of misconduct in 2020 in Syria was cleared of all charges during a court-martial at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

(I was stationed at Ft. Bragg.)

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In a Historic First, Aircraft Carrier Abraham Lincoln Deploys Under Command of Female Captain

USS Abraham Lincoln has deployed to the Western Pacific with the first woman to captain a nuclear-powered carrier, Capt. Amy Bauernschmidt. It’s also the first carrier deployment for a Marine Corps F-35C fighter squadron.

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coronavirus on US bases

South Korean president calls for ‘rigorous’ measures to stem coronavirus on US bases

coronavirus on US bases

The South Korean government needs to work closer with the U.S. military to curb the spread of COVID-19 stemming from American troops stationed in the country, the country’s president said.

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Kansas contractor sentenced for fraudulently taking millions of federal funds meant for disabled vets

A Topeka-based contractor cheated to obtain contracts between 2009 and 2018 that should have gone to firms led by disabled veterans and racial minorities. The type of scheme involved is often called “Rent-A-Vet” or “Rent-A-Minority” fraud., prosecutors said.

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Russia’s rifts with the West keep growing. How did we get here?

Putin has shown an ability to rattle NATO leaders and keep Europe off balance, demanding sweeping security guarantees that include NATO’s ruling out any future expansion in Ukraine or other countries along Russia’s borders. NATO leaders say Moscow cannot dictate the alliance’s move

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Kazakhstan adds uncertainty to talks with Russia on Ukraine

Russia’s decision to send paratroopers into Kazakhstan, where a crackdown on violent anti-government protests has left dozens dead, injects additional uncertainty into upcoming talks over a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine.

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Here is another excerpt from my ucp coming book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In an Out of the Trenches of Life.

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Are You Trying to Finish the Race With a Broken Leg?

You have spent several years of your life serving your country. You have had many months of stress, and pain. You may be still in the trenches, or you may be already out in the private sector.

As the time gets near to facing the outside world, separate from the military, are you ready? Do you have a plan? If you are already in the private sector, have you attempted to fit in, or are you hiding from others?

What I have said here doesn’t fit most of you, but there are some who are having difficult times thinking about the future. You worry about the new approach to living. You were used to the strictness, and regimented type atmosphere, and fear that this approach will not be too acceptable in your new environment. Then you are facing a world where you make all the decisions. Some of us do not do well with no one in authority over us.

In the private sector, we have to find a new normal. The first goal at this time is to release the past. The second goal is to plan for the present. The third goal is to look to the future.

Treat each new day, in the private sector, as if there was just a new fallen snow and it has provided a white blanket for you to walk on to form a path that only you take and others follow.  

After we join the private sector, we expect our lives to suddenly be happy, trouble free, and victorious. We forget that victories come only after we fight battles and win. 

There shouldn’t be this barrier between you and what you are trying to accomplish. It is tough enough to survive in this world without other factors digging into your thinking process.

Having stress about facing the new world is like having a broken leg and trying to finish a race. It can be done, but the pain, and agony is almost unbearable.

Help yourself by taking time before you leave the military to study the ways of cooperation’s. Learn how to adjust to the new status quo. Don’t go into a new situation cold turkey.

Read up on life after the military. There are books that can guide you to walk the right path to help ease you into the new world.

Go to night school and get some college credits. There are also online courses you can take no matter where you are in the world. My son was able to get two Masters Degrees while in the military, and this helped him get a very nice job when he retired.

My first few months after I got out of the military were pretty stressful because I had a family. I had to provide, and there weren’t too many jobs to be had. I had to work at jobs I didn’t really like. Some were down right degrading, like the story I told you about working on the “chain gang,” railroad crew.

But I slowly adjusted and eventually found a job in teaching that was very good for not only providing for my family, but was rewarding as well.

Take on this world with vigor, and courage. It is almost as daunting in the private sector as it is in the deserts of Afghanistan. You are a brave soldier for facing that challenge, and I am sure you will be just as brave in the private sector. You will achieve your goals and be a very productive citizen, who has a big feather in their cap. The feather of valor, and commitment, because of your time you served your country.

IWILL

Don’t think that people will look down on you for being a soldier. It may happen from time to time. I went through that when I was a teacher, and invited my son Colonial K.C. Bolton to come and speak to my class. He was honored to come, and the principal even had him speak to the school.

However, there were a couple of the teachers who were anti-war, and wasn’t happy that a soldier was coming to speak. They let me know about it, and I stood my ground. I said I was very proud of my son, and since I was a veteran as well, I felt they were also attacking me.  That quieted them down a little, and they even recanted their thinking after hearing my son share the need for bravery in each of the children’s lives. It was a wonderful talk and the children loved him.

I once said in a talk during a book signing,” Let people feel the weight of who you are, and let them deal with it.”

Think on this

Isn’t it funny how people want to be protected and yet frown on those who do the protecting?

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There will be more excerpts in the future, so keep coming back. Better yet…go to the top of this page and click on “Subscribe.” When you do all future posts will come directly to your inbox.

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Checking in on you…How are you doing? Are you struggling now that you are a civilian?

FEAR NOT!

There are over 13,625 fellow veterans here who have your back.

If you are battling mentally, because of your love for others, but it isn’t working, GET HELP!!

Here is a toll free number that you can call 24/7. There are highly qualified counselors there to help you, and they will no hang up until they know you are OK.

1-800-273-8255…texting 838255.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Fear is Something Many Soldiers Have to Face Every Day.

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Stolen valor, the term for when civilians pretend that they served in the military, isn’t always bad, at least when it takes down racist dirt bags. Specifically, one Army veteran-turned-FBI-informant named Joseph Moore won the trust of a Ku Klux Klan cell in Florida by coming up with fake war stories and pinning false medals to his hat.

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All U.S. service members, even if they are fully vaccinated, now have to wear masks indoors if they are in an area where COVID-19 is raging. Many troops thought the pandemic was over, but now it’s back to the mask, and just in time for the hottest month of the year.

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The Afghan Air Force is already falling apart, despite President Joe Biden’s claims that the U.S. would make sure the Afghans could maintain it. You need spare parts and bombs to keep an air force running, and Afghanistan is zero on both.

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The Navy has charged a sailor with starting a fire in July 2020 that destroyed the USS Bonhomme Richard, an amphibious assault ship that became engulfed by an inferno for days as the ship was docked in San Diego, California. The ship cost $1.2 billion to build, but it only took a few days for it to burn beyond repair.

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“We have to be honest with the American people, who pay for this – not only in money but also in blood and treasure.” That’s from John Sopko, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, who took reporters through all the mistakes the U.S. made in Afghanistan over the past 20 years. The result: a resurgent Taliban and little to show for the thousands of Coalition and Afghan troops and citizens who died there.

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‘You’re gonna keep your A-10 Warthogs and you’re gonna like it,’ is essentially what Senators said to the Air Force after it tried to cut 42 A-10 attack planes from its fleet in its fiscal year 2022 budget proposal, reports yours truly in this piece. The A-10 is a legendary attack plane that has saved the bacon of countless ground troops over the past 45 years, but it is getting older and Air Force officials worry it’s not up to face China in a big war.
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Here may be the last excerpt for a while. Time to send the book off to the publisher.

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F.E.A.R

(1) Forget Everything and Run, or

(2) Face Everything and Rise.

The choice is yours

Fear is one of the inevitable things a soldiers must face. I faced it a few times. The worst time was when I was on a plane ready to fly to the Bay of Pigs. I was ready to serve my country, but not knowing what was going to happen caused the fear.

In the dictionary fear is described as:

  1. A distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil or pain.
  2. Concern or anxiety.
  3. To be worried or afraid.
  4. Reverential awe, especially towards God.

All of us on that plane tried to hide our fear. We were supposed to be men/women. We were not supposed to think about what might happen to us. In reality we all thought about not returning home. We thought about loved ones. We thought about the unknown we were facing.

It is hard to face fear. John Wayne said, ” Courage is being scared and saddling up anyway.” This is the man who played the parts of heroes all his life. Many of his films were military films.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, “We have nothing to fear, but fear itself.”

Fear isn’t something that is a cowardly act. It is an honest reaction to what is happening around you.

I have faced my own fears. I was within hours of death when I was rushed to the hospital in and ambulance and had quadruple by-pass surgery on my heart.

When you see a car coming at you, head on, while driving on a highway, You don’t act in a cowardly manner, you react. You take action to save your own life.

If you feel you were fearful too often while you served, don’t let that give you a feeling of failure on your part. It is just an honest feeling that often brings out the best in people.

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How is your day? Did you face fear while enlisted? Did things seem to go belly up for you?

FEAR NOT!

There are over 12,525 fellow veterans subscribed to this site who have your back.

This may not be enough for you. If so, GET HELP!!

Here is a toll free number to call 24/7.

There are highly qualified counselors there to help you. They will not hang up until the know you are OK.

Never face fear alone!

1-800-273-8255, Texting 838255

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all….never, ever, give up!

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A Warrant Officer Was Marching us Into a bay, and Couldn’t Stop us.

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President Biden just received his approval rating and it is 52% That sounds pretty good, except that means 48% do not approve of him. Half the country.

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Military news

“The military justice system simply is in the wrong hands” said Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), specifically about military commanders’ ability to block the progress of sexual misconduct cases. But that could come to an end,. There is a Pentagon panel’s recommendation to remove prosecution authority for sexual misconduct cases from the chain of command. Instead, an independent civilian-led office would prosecute those cases.

The recommendation could be a huge step forward for holding military sex offenders accountable, advocacy groups say, but there is a long way to go before any lasting change might be made.

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“It bothers me a little bit that it’s just going to end like this,” one Marine veteran said about the possible withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan this Sept. 11. It’s one of many mixed emotions veterans shared with Jeff about the end of a 20-year long war that killed several of their friends, shaped their own lives, and which never seemed to produce any tangible results. In the end it seems like everyone’s left to their own interpretation of what it all meant.

“I want to believe that everything that we did over there made a difference,” said the Marine vet added. “That’s what I’d like to believe.”

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Dear media, ‘military-trained marksman’ doesn’t mean much

I am talking about the ‘expert marksman’ award, which is not nearly as impressive as it sounds. Unfortunately, it happened again when Nicholas Reardon, a police officer and a staff sergeant in the Ohio Air National Guard, fatally shot 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant in Columbus, Ohio last week. That’s bad because it implies Reardon was more likely to do this because of his military background, and not because of other issues which could be at work here, such as police violence or systemic racism.

+ I was an expert marksman. I am very proud of that, but I certainly understand how people might think like they do.

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I have an excerpt from my upcoming book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of Life.

While in Basic Training we were marched back and forth from the firing range. One day our drill sergeant couldn’t be there and asked a Warrant Officer to do it.

We saw that he was going to take us back, and we made a sudden decision. We would only take correct orders when he was marching us.

We were all standing around at the firing range when he said, “Let’s get together men.” No one moved. He said it again. No movement. He finally asked one of the sergeants there tell him what to say. He finally said. “Get into formation men.”

We did, and the he tried to start marching us. We were all in formation and facing him.

He look flustered. He couldn’t figure out how to get us into marching form. He again asked one of the sergeants what to say. He then said, “Right face,” We did it.

He again was frustrated because he didn’t know how to get us started. He went back to the sergeant, who by this time was not happy.

The officer then said “Forward march,” We started marching, and the officer was happy. He didn’t do any form a cadence, but we march for him anyway. We were moving along pretty good when we saw we were heading for a boat ramp on the bay. The officer saw that and yelled, “Stop!” We kept going. He yelled it again, “Stop!”

The front of the formation was in the water.

I was in the water soon. The officer screamed for help and there was a sergeant near that ran over to stop us, but that time, the front was swimming around and we were all laughing.

The officer finally got us to our barracks, and we were dismissed by a sergeant there.

All hell broke loose, because the commander didn’t like what we did. At least we thought he didn’t like what we did.

He got us in formation, and chewed us out, but then as he was walking away, He had a big grin on his face.

*This and many other military stories will be in the book. Keep checking in to see the progress.

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How are your doing? Have the nights turned into nightmares. Has the pain of your wounds not gone away?

FEAR NOT!

There are over 11, 900 fellow veterans here who have your back.

If it is just too overwhelming for you, GET HELP!

Here is a toll free number to call 24/7.

There are highly trained counselors there to help you. They will not hang up until they know you are OK.

Never take on this, not so friendly world, alone.

1-800-27308255 Option # 1

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit from this site, please let them know about it.