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Discipline within the WTBs..

Discussion in 'US Army Forum' started by deadday, Mar 10, 2009.

  1. deadday


    Aug 14, 2007

    Won't post the whole article as it is quite long, but damn, seems like the Army needs to take a serious look at the CoC of some of these units. Isn't that what the Tiger teams are for? They came through Ft. Sam every month or 3, and would've been all over something like this.

    Of course, the article doesn't give the full story, as usual, but given what is written, it seems like there is some serious conflict between Soldiers and Command. At Ft Sam, generally, those Soldiers that were on heavy pain and or sleeping medications were not required to make the 0700 formation, but were required to call their first line before 1000, and check-in, in person before COB....
  2. I would suspect that many commanders of this type of unit have to walk a fine line between keeping an adequate form of discipline for soldiers assigned to this type of unit and helping them recover from their wounds both physical and mental.

    Soldiers returning from combat sometimes, can be difficult to lead, especially when not dealing with their usual NCOs and Officers, as well as normal unit members. An uncooperative 'attitude' can be formed very quickly by soldiers placed in this type of unit and circumstances.

    Leaders chosen to lead this type of unit should be picked carefully and given special training and monitoring. (Both Senior NCOs & Officers.)

    At the same time, soldiers assigned to these units should maintain their soldierly attributes and soldier on, to the best of their abilities. There is no such thing, as a free pass for wounded soldiers to have or show a lack discipline or not maintain their ability to be a good serving soldier.

    If they have good medical reasons to miss formations, etc. they should be checked by a medical doctor and excused from making such formations or duties they are missing, etc.

    If the Medics do not supply an excuse they should be subject to military discipline.

  3. deadday


    Aug 14, 2007

    I definately do not envy the commanders of these units....The one at Ft Sam went through 2 BCOs and 4 Co COs in the time I was there.....They started with a Medical officer as Co CO, then a QM who didn't last long...The best one we had was an infantry officer who actually started as a soldier in the unit and was promoted to Capt. and given the Co....

    It is a very hard line to walk, but a bit of understanding is needed by the CoC, especially with the guys that are on truckloads of pain medications, sleeping medications, etc. I think the best solution they came up with was the one I described. Given the Soldiers physicians recomendation, a Soldier would be excused from the 0700 formation, but was required to check in by phone before 1000, and then in person before COB.

    As odd as it sounds, this situation caught the Army unprepared, and with 40,000+ injured Soldiers/Sailors/Airmen/Marines since 2001, they are having to build everything (including policy) as they go.


    Jul 16, 2008
    JBLM, WA
    its a fine line here indeed. i was assigned to a WTB after my second tour, right after the initiative kicked off. it was hard to find the middle ground. many WT's are on some heavy med's and it seemed like the cadre was very accommodating to meeting the needs. but yes, discipline was still enforced. IMO it is necessary. there are a lot of disgruntled joe's in those units. some that are pissed b/c they are getting railroaded out... some want to just get the hell out of the army... others just want to be w/ their families and cannot because of distance. i was at gordon while assigned and we had guys there from all over b/c of overflow.

    the biggest problem i see w/ WTB's is the mindstate of some medical staff and WTB cadre. its almost like they look at all WT's being "on they're way OUT of the army". every aspect of WTB's has the undertones like the army done w/ you and its just a formality before one gets boarded out. the objective is to get better and face whatever is next, continued service OR civilian life.

    i bust my ass to get back to active duty and agree w/ green berets comment about Soldiering on.
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2009