Happy 4th of July

Hidden Weapons and Fireworks

4 July 2005

Happy 4th of July!


We had a battalion mission yesterday and Charlie Company was the main effort. Then entire target area was cordoned off and we went house to house searching for insurgents and weapons. In our 3rd platoon objective we found a several things. Everything from stripped car batteries for IEDS and pistols. Then Sgt. Vanny and I uncovered the biggest find yet!

  • 2 AKs
  • 1 submachine gun
  • 17 loaded AK mags
  • 5 – 100 round AK drums
  • 2 satchels with AK rounds, 9mm rounds and sniper rounds
  • 125mm rounds
  • RPG sight
  • Gas mask
  • Mortar cans
  • Tons of IED making material

The stuff was hidden everywhere. We even found stuff tucked up in the ceiling! The resident was gone unfortunately. I’m confident we will catch them.

It was fun running the mission and being the main element. This is the stuff we have trained for. Much better than just driving around on the roads hoping we don’t get blown up. We got to seek out and find the enemy. These houses we were searching didn’t have a lot of things in them, but surprisingly still lots of places to hide things. I guess those hours training at Ft. Stewart were paying off.

Still trying to get on the recon/sniper team. Got word that each squad leader can submit names of candidates. Clearly, I’ve already dropped a hint with my squad leader, PL and PSG. I wonder how long it will be until they make the decision. Today’s find will hopefully help my chances.

The after thoughts…

The typical response to this would be along the lines of “think outside of the box.” I’m not going to go there on this one. Instead, I want to talk about the line “this is the stuff we trained for.” I can remember dreading the training at Ft. Stewart. It seemed like we could never win. For every scenario or role play that we did during training there was always a new catch. We could execute things exactly how we were taught. Then BAM another hidden explosive or something we overlooked. Failing time and time again was frustrating.

On the surface, we were learning the steps and how to handle certain situations. At a deeper level, the training was shaping our thinking. We were being pushed to be critical thinkers, problem solvers and fine tuning our abilities to think on our feet. I’ve now incorporated this same approach to the training and workshops I do. I develop primary and secondary goals for each. More often, the secondary goals aren’t as obvious to the learners.

Just as in policing, no situation will be exactly the same or a “routine” traffic stop. There is no such thing. You must be able to take your knowledge base and adapt it to each situation. This even applies to my AOD prevention work. Not every campus and student population will be the same. Thus, there is no one-size fits all prevention strategy. The ability to assess and determine the best fit and develop a comprehensive prevention plan are the keys to success.

You can apply this same strategy to your daily habits. Set a primary goal, but also have in mind a secondary goal. For example, I make it a point to exercise regularly. Getting in shape and staying in shape are my primary goals. However, I also made it a goal to develop a habit of exercising regularly. I set up an accountability calendar for myself that will keep me on track, motivated, and help develop the habit. I focus on consistency rather than losing a specific number of pounds or how much I can bench press. It’s the habit and the routine that will make for a healthy lifestyle.

How do you incorporate primary and secondary goals into your life?

Drop a comment below and let’s chat.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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