Jay B
Lv 5
Jay B asked in Politics & GovernmentMilitary · 1 decade ago

The Old Army?...What Are You Talking About?

I'm been in the Army for almost 2 years & when I hear an NCO say..."We could go back to the Old Army"..or something along those lines...he/she doesn't say what the old Army was like.

Can someone please explain how the "Old Army" was.......AND I'm NOT talking about the Army back in the 70's or 80's..I'm talking about the time between the Iraq War('91) and the time The Army had NEW regulations to build on the New Army.

And please..no smart-a$$ remarks...I'm just asking a question...

Update:

JJ: Nah...my 2 years in the Army I heard at least 6 NCOs say "Ya'll wanna go back to the Old Army..because we can!"

IDK....maybe the so called "Old Army" was more strict.....who knows?..But that's why I'm asking..*shrugs*

Update 2:

Tom : Yeah you got a point there..but there's more to it then that.....maybe they mean that all throughout your time in service...even when you get to your unit..it's was like Basic.

Nowadays the NCOs are easier on soldiers as you go from Basic to AIT to a Unit...but was it like that back then?

And please..no comparisons about BCT now & then..

Update 3:

Michael: What are you talking about?..I'm not complaining or crying about anything...just asking a question....

Tired of people thinking every NEW soldier under the NEW Army cries all the time over everything....there are SOME but not all...

15 Answers

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  • 1 decade ago
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    I believe they are referring to the time frame when they could put there hands on lower ranking soldiers. Or more bluntly, they could beat the **** out of you to get the point through your thick head!

    Ok I also think they are talking about the way certain rights were taken away from them. Back in the day a soldier could be told to clean the latrine with a tooth brush if they lived like a pig, now that is demeaning to there character! We are in an army that would rather have the soldiers counseled and UCMJ pursued than making sure the porblem is fixed with some good old fashioned corrective training. Now NCO's have to be too afraid of an IG complaint or the chaplain getting involved to actually get someone to accomplish the mission! It has opened the door for many soldiers to take advantage of the system and make sure they can sham there entire enlistment. The backbone of the army has been disconnected from the brain for many years!

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  • 1 decade ago

    It is an implied threat, and here is a real tail from the old army.

    My section (artillery) was given a new section chief, E-5, replacing a well respected E-6. Most of us adjusted to the change, but one soldier developed a personality conflict with the new chief. It all came to a head in the field. I was positioned on a .50 cal about 20m from the gun, and heard some yelling behind the M109. I saw the Sgt enter the howitzer, followed by the Pvt., and the crew inside evacuated expeditiously. I recall the hatches closing. In less than two minutes, the pvt exited the piece, smiling and dusting off his hands, as if saying that settles that.

    None of us said anything, and to his credit, the Sgt did not file charges, I would like think it was because he could accept a beating like a man, and not cry about it (as well as ending his career for fighting a subordinate). News of the conflict must have leaked somehow, and the Sgt was reassigned to another section, life in the Army went on, no paperwork, no counseling.

    In this case, the pvt prevailed. This is part of the risk. But I believe the NCO's are implying, or you are meant to infer, "if you don't like it, we can settle the issue the old way, tete-a-tete.

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  • 1 decade ago

    agreeing the the SSG above me, thats basicly what they mean when referring to "the old army". Times when if a soldier had a problem with another soldier they wouldnt write them up on paper they would give them a pair of boxing gloves and let them settle it physicly. Or if a soldier didnt like what was going on he wouldnt go to someone else he would go to the person he had the problem with and settle it right there. Also the way some lower rank soldiers talk to NCO's, while NOT standing at parade rest to show respect. In the "old army" most of the time if an NCO was speaking to a lower rank that lower would stand parade rest, even if just BS'ing.

    So basicly from my experiance as an MP and being around high ranking, long term NCO's, the old army was tougher, more strict, and more dirrect with orders compared to the "new army" where the Command is trying to form a more "profesional" and more trust worthy army, even if that means losing a sence of respect to higher ranking soldiers.

    Source(s): 28th MP Det. US Army Alaska
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  • Jill C
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    They're referring to the days when training was tough, complaining was not tolerated, physical punishment was both expect and acceptable, soldiers dealt with eachother with their fists instead of filing paperwork, GI parties and getting smoked were the norm, and subordinates didn't question their superiors.

    In the early 90s, I can't count how many times my husband got the crap beat out of him, coming home with bruises and welts and barely being able to stand, because he was a "smart ***". These days, he can't even yell in a soldiers face or have him do excessive PT for screwing up, because if the soldier complains, my husband could get into some serious trouble that would affect his career. Younger soldiers know that they're untouchable now, and are less afraid.

    That being said, I think the saying has just always been said. Every soldier believes he had it harder and tougher than the next. When my husband was a private in the early 90's, he too heard how easy they had it compared with the "old Army"

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  • 1 decade ago

    Dude I know exactly what you're talking about. I was in the Marine Corps for 5 years and heard it from NCO's all the time there as well. My entire 10 years in the US Army I've heard it in every unit as well.

    It's just a way of saying that "hey this ain't tough, we can take it back to the old Army when it was tough", usually speaking in reference to when wall to wall counseling was a common occurrence etc. These Sr. NCO's here at Bragg use it on an hourly basis in the field.

    Source(s): US Army SSG. 82nd AB INF
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  • 1 decade ago

    There wasn't much of a standing Army prior to 1940 and that was still modeled mostly on the World War One Army, so 'The Army At Dawn' refers to the new Army as it was developed in the course of the Second World War which left its mark on the Army for the next thirty-eight some odd years.

    Brown Boot Army vs. Black Boot Army; We started WWII wearing ankle boots and leggings, however by war's end everybody is wearing a full boot of brown leather. The Fatigue Uniform became the standard duty uniform from 1944 until 1982, the only changes being in the fabric of the uniform from Herring Bone Twill to Satin to Permanent Press. The load bearing equipment changed with the weapon being carried, however the helmet remained unchanged from WWII to Korea to Vietnam. It is again in the 1980's that the Fritz Helmet replaces the M1 Helmet from WWII frame.

    I enlisted in 1972 and the old timers then were veterans of WWII and Korea, their's was the Brown Boot Army. They swore that they could leave their stuff unsecured and come the next day to still find it there. Mine was a Black Boot Army, the post Vietnam nightmare. Old Army often implies when things were simplier, more organized. Generally, the ways things were done in WWII were still pretty much in effect in the early 1960's. Vietnam had the effect of changing a lot of what had been the Old Army....

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I was a SSG in the Army before i went to the dark side and became an officer, but i still look at the young privates and specialists and want to go back to my enlisted days and pt the crap out of them, but unfortunately we can't do that anymore. Now we have to baby the young ones and hope they will learn and become good NCO's. They even have stress cards in basic training now, what a joke. I want it back the "old" way. If a soldier screws up, pt them, run them and yell, and once its over, its over, not....ok soldier, maybe we didn't show you the right way.....its my fault you are an idiot, let me show you again. No, do pushups until you remember.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    That means you should stop crying about a little hard work.

    The Old Army did the job without crying about adverse conditions.

    The youth show a definite lack of self discipline. Probably because most of the kids who recently enlisted never had to do anything at home that required effort.

    ""Michael: What are you talking about?..I'm not complaining or crying about anything...just asking a question....

    Tired of people thinking every NEW soldier under the NEW Army cries all the time over everything....there are SOME but not all..."" You asked your question. I gave my answer. That's what I, as an NCO, meant when I said 'We could always go back to the Old Army."

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  • 1 decade ago

    Well we stopped short and did not enter the capital city of Iraq,exPresident George Bush disappointed his men by telling them to pull back. Matter of fact, that is the main reason that he lost his second term, to Bill Clinton. A lot of NCOs were in Desert Storm, and resent being pulled out, and not allow them to finish the job. If they had we probably wouldn't be over there now.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I have been in the Army now just about 2 years and from what i guess the 90s to 20 was a time of downsizing in the Army so it was easier to kick people out and the Army did not have to cater to people like they do now because of the higher demands placed on us. lol just a guess

    *Definition of the Old Army=anything pre ACU

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