Reading an article this morning brought back memories.
It appears that NATO’s Standing Naval Forces have arrived in Scotland for the largest-ever Joint Warrior Drill, which will include 50 ships, 70 aircraft and 13,000 personnel from 14 countries.
These biannual military drills will be conducted this year between the 11 and 24 April, according to a statement released by the alliance.
This exercise is a unique opportunity for NATO to work with Allied shipmates. Multinational exercises like this help sailors learn how to cooperate and excel with other navies in a challenging and multidimensional environment.
We deployed for STANAVFORLANT Exercises a number of times throughout the 70’s including 1973, 74, 76, and 77.
Always a part of long deployments, they added an element of excitement to normal shipboard life including such thrilling moments like one dark night narrowly missing being rammed and sunk by HNLMS Zuiderkruis – we passed down her port side close enough to see the welds in her hull. You know you are REALLY alive when … only adrenalin junkies need apply.
So what has that to do with anything except an old sailor’s memories? Well quite a lot, it turns out, if one looks at what exercises (drills) are for. Drills… drills are not created to make life hell for young men and women in the military, no matter what they might believe at the time. Drills are created by folks who know better so that folks who don’t know better can learn to do better.
It is never ending. there is never enough time when the proverbial crap is in the blender and the blood is all over the place to explain the right way of doing things. Drills allow us to develop our abilities to the point that we KNOW what to do when we hit real life.
And for some of us it is only after a long slow painful process of drills that a light comes on and we realize that “LIFE” is a drill!.
This is all just one big non-stop training exercise so that we have half a chance of learning what we need to know for real life – that is eternity.
The Church is full of NCO’s, some good, some bad. The Officers are the Saints and Angels, and the Colonel is Christ. The CIC is the Master. There are only two sides. No exemptions. If we refuse the Master then there is only the Father of Lies. Any questions?
Disclaimer for nitpickers: We take pride in being incomplete, incorrect, inconsistent, and unfair. We do all of them deliberately