What ‘Generation Kill’ tells a French soldier about U.S. military culture

jonny

Actual or Former Legionnaire
Legionnaire
#2
« As for France, I am also convinced that had we made a similar effort with the traumatic war in Algeria, we would probably have a less schizophrenic relationship with that conflict today. »

Very true indeed.
 
#3
Even 56 years after the end of the war in Algeria, it's still pretty difficult today to have a discussion about it that doesn't become quickly emotional... The few movies about the Algeria war are generally adopting a pretty partisan view.
 

dusaboss

Hyper Active Member
#5
Even 56 years after the end of the war in Algeria, it's still pretty difficult today to have a discussion about it that doesn't become quickly emotional... The few movies about the Algeria war are generally adopting a pretty partisan view.
What you mean by “partisan view”? I guess you are on official France-state side (at the time, and probably Fr. state of today which have same or even more liberal policy toward Algeria) about mentioned event and Algerian question overall.

Because I am (atleast I was just two years ago) against imperialism of any kind I would say that independence was good for the people of Algeria, but now after the time spent on this forum, I reconsider my views. I mean if independence is so great, why would someone want to work in live in country of yesterday's occupiers?

Not to mention that many Algerian people who were with FR and helping FR forces during war didn't manage to obtain visa, citizenship or any help form FR state. So what was their destiny? I many are killed by rebels immediately, some had more gruesome end and some lived miserable lives until death. In other hand many Algerians (some of them probably fighting against France) did manage to get in Europe (in Marseille most of them) and have good lives.

Definitely not glorious part of French history.
 
#6
A vast amount of Algerian people were forced /threatened/intiminated in to voting for the FLN. ..plus, Américain disapprouval in the way France were handiling the war
(Torture and murders ..ethnic cleaning, if you prefer )
Public opinion is exactly that. ..and what the public wants, the public gets, right ?
Same more or less for Vietnam and the Américain invovlment there
Sure, cinéma has an influence on the public opinion (how many times do you watch a film. ..?
Music, yeah music is culturel too
Even before Woodstock,the times were changing

Post Shitum
Sniff flowers
Stroke pussies
Wear sandales and dread locks
Hug trees
Eat vegan
Avoid the draft
Love and hugs to all x
 
#8
For the rest, what legionnaires or French low ranks Marines or GI's talk about and think in the foyer / p.x. store or naffi, is similar. Only the accent changes. Sous-officiers (NCOs) are lower ranks gone up the ladder with some experience. Of course it is important for command /officers to listen, for advice and guidance from their NCOs,, after all they were little ranks before, so they know.
Every officier wants to write his book on “L'Art de la Guerre, selon moi”, we all know. Why do you think ordre serré/drill was invented for?
OK, must dash as am running late. Have to make it to Moscow before winter sets in.
 
#10
Even 56 years after the end of the war in Algeria, it's still pretty difficult today to have a discussion about it that doesn't become quickly emotional... The few movies about the Algeria war are generally adopting a pretty partisan view.
Rapace,

Very true indeed. I have friends in France who lived and farmed in Algeria. To this day they are extremely bitter. Some years ago I sent Volt some details about them with their comments.
Very sad .

Kind regards- Chas.
 

mulgarat

Actual or Ex Legionnaire - Donator
Legionnaire
#11
I watched "Generation Kill" when it came out 10 years ago. I tried to like the Jar Heads and the show but I couldn't. Besides the Navy Corpsman "Doc" and the super nice fitness freak "Rudy Reyes", the rest of them were self absorbed meat heads that would've been laughed out of the Australian RAR. Guess that's why we call them "Seppos".
 

USMCRET

Active Member
#13
You have no clue, that is in some of the comments: The French Officer I thought gave a fair assessment; however, there is a cultural difference, more so in the Marine Corps than any other US Service. 1st, you are groomed and driven to become a Corporal then Sergeant (NCOs); 2nd, you are further groomed to become a SNCO, that is Staff Sergeant through Sergeant's Major. A particular note, First Sergeants and Sergeant's Major take a different career path, the leave their Military Occupation Specialty where if they stayed in their MOS they would have become Master Sergeants and Master Gunnery Sergeants.

At the platoon level you have the fire team (4 Marine Team), lead by a Corporal. Three Fire Teams make up a Squad (13 Marines, Lead by a Sergeant, and three Squads make up a Platoon lead by a SNCO from the Staff Sergeant to Gunnery Sergeant Level. Master Sergeants and Master Gunnery Sergeants are at the Battalion Level.

There are 2d Lieutenants as platoon commanders. BUT and a Big BUT here, he will and is there to be trained by the SNCO in Platoon Leadership before they progress to 1st Lieutenants and Captains a Company Commander and his XO

We had imbedded reporters in my Battalion and they were free to report what they saw or thought, as long as they did not accidentally give away movements, strengths, and other such tactical information.

When the fight goes house to house and street to street Small Unit Leadership is ESSENTIAL. That is why we are successful.
 

Joseph Cosgrove

Moderator
Legionnaire
#14
You have no clue, that is in some of the comments: The French Officer I thought gave a fair assessment; however, there is a cultural difference, more so in the Marine Corps than any other US Service. 1st, you are groomed and driven to become a Corporal then Sergeant (NCOs); 2nd, you are further groomed to become a SNCO, that is Staff Sergeant through Sergeant's Major. A particular note, First Sergeants and Sergeant's Major take a different career path, the leave their Military Occupation Specialty where if they stayed in their MOS they would have become Master Sergeants and Master Gunnery Sergeants.

At the platoon level you have the fire team (4 Marine Team), lead by a Corporal. Three Fire Teams make up a Squad (13 Marines, Lead by a Sergeant, and three Squads make up a Platoon lead by a SNCO from the Staff Sergeant to Gunnery Sergeant Level. Master Sergeants and Master Gunnery Sergeants are at the Battalion Level.

There are 2d Lieutenants as platoon commanders. BUT and a Big BUT here, he will and is there to be trained by the SNCO in Platoon Leadership before they progress to 1st Lieutenants and Captains a Company Commander and his XO

We had imbedded reporters in my Battalion and they were free to report what they saw or thought, as long as they did not accidentally give away movements, strengths, and other such tactical information.

When the fight goes house to house and street to street Small Unit Leadership is ESSENTIAL. That is why we are successful.
US Marines kill more than 70 Taliban leaders in Afghanistan
https://a.msn.com/r/2/AAy2evz?m=en-us&referrerID=InAppShare
 
#15
Just sent Volt a copy of the official report and documentation of the assassination of my friend's father in Algeria on 1 June all those years ago. Possibly Volt can use them for his own archives.
 

jonny

Actual or Former Legionnaire
Legionnaire
#16
I happened to serve in the French Foreign Legion in Algeria between 1957 and 1962.

I can probably shed some light on obscure matters. Questions are welcome.
 
#17
#18
I watched "Generation Kill" when it came out 10 years ago. I tried to like the Jar Heads and the show but I couldn't. Besides the Navy Corpsman "Doc" and the super nice fitness freak "Rudy Reyes", the rest of them were self absorbed meat heads that would've been laughed out of the Australian RAR. Guess that's why we call them "Seppos".

Imo
They took a reconnaissance unit (selected men) and and gave them a job that they were not really needed for in my opinion. Or utilized property may be a better word.

I did a few years in the Corps (one enlistment) before moving to the Army for a specific MOS.

I was embarrassed by that series.
 

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