19 March 2010

Friday Reset & Recovery

Miscellaneous bullets today, as I reset my personal Brain-Housing Group (BHG) after about 10 days of training on tents and related technologies. (Yes, I just used "tents" and "technologies" in the same sentence.) I also need to do laundry. And taxes.

Three-shot group follows:

Regular readers will recognize that I'm often interested in measures of mission success. This goes beyond rhetorical definitions of "victory" and "winning," and drills down into the concrete details of how troops are making a difference. I think that former Embedded Training Team (ETT) member, author, and mil-blogger Sgt. First Class Jeff Courter was doing a little bit of both, when he recently posted a couple of quick insights on assessing mission success in Afghanistan. It's worth checking out, particularly for a link to a 5-part video blog focusing on Afghan tribes. I'll let him introduce and explain more over at his blog. He continues to fight the good fight, even though he's back here in the states.

Given my ongoing rants both for and against social media tools such as Facebook, I've been meaning to point out a 5-part Slate.com series on how coalition forces used social-network analysis to locate Saddam Hussein: "I'll explain how a handful of innovative American soldiers used the same theories that underpin Facebook to hunt down Saddam Hussein," writes Chris Wilson. "I'll also look at how this hunt was a departure in strategy for the military, why its techniques aren't deployed more often, and why social-networking theory hasn't helped us nab Osama Bin Laden." Trust me, you might never look at Facebook the same way--or Mafia Wars. You'll also keep your family photo album in a safer place.

Earlier this week, I watched the first episode in HBO's "The Pacific" mini-series. Because it's a blend of multiple marine memoirs, it may not be as easily tied-together as a narrative as 2001's "Band of Brothers," but we'll see. I do think I need to view future episodes on bigger screens, in darker rooms. In my cozy little family room, I lost too much detail in the nighttime scenes--all I could see was black. Of course, when the enemy finally opened up from across the swamp, I jumped 5 feet out of my seat. (And not in a manly way, either.)


  1. and had to run and change you skivvies, too, I bet.

  2. Brother Sherpa - Thanks for the shout out, re: my http://LifeLoveandTruth.com posting.

    Last week, as I kicked back & fired-up my web browser to watch the 5-part vlog mentioned in my post ("It's the Tribes, Stupid"), I instantly thought of the RED BULL FILM FESTIVAL!

    This is another item to add to your growing "MUST-SEE-TV" viewing list. Lots of learning. No reading required.

    The only thing missing is the popcorn. ;-)

    Grateful you're continuing to shine a light on the training process. And more importantly, grateful you're willing to share a deep "slice of life" about the personal experience of today's citizen Soldier & trainer.

    Rise on, Red Bulls!
    Your ILARNG neighbors have got your back.


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