Monday, July 23, 2007

Good week of training

I'll share a little more detail on what I've been up to of late. The last week has been nothing but range time and tactics training - exactly what a Soldier lives for. Outside on a firing range for 12-16 hours, or driving like mad men thru a fake city guns at the ready. Good stuff.

We spent a full day zeroing our rifles and sites, then zeroing our night sites. That can be fairly dull, but it is always good to review the basics of rifle marksmanship, and since we had new heavier barrels put on our rifles, they needed to be zeroed so we hit what we are aiming at.

Then we spent a few days firing the M2 .50 caliber ("Ma-Deuce") and the M240 7.62mm (this replaced the M60 for all you older vets.)

We fired first from static positions, mounted on vehicles, and simulating being engaged from the side.

Why tell you all this? Well, I was having a late night conversation with our XO, a great man we all have a lot of faith in, and we touched on the topic of preparedness. Now, we had been imbibing a little, and as happens that can make some of us (okay all of us) wax philosophical, but the question he put to us was do we feel well trained, well equipped, and well prepared for our mission.

As we answered, everyone had to more or less agree:

  • our equipment shortages are mostly closed, and there are good plans to address the rest
  • we have been getting some excellent training to address all our tactical skills
  • we've really come together as a team, from a band of strangers at JRTC
  • the remaining training lined up for us is exactly the kind of training we have hoped we would get
  • our Ops Sergeant has proven he will move heaven and earth to get us the training we need
Despite everything we feel ready for the task ahead, and their are many combat veterans among us who agree. Time will tell.