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This is a question In the Army Now - The joy of the Armed Forces

I've never been a soldier. I was an air cadet once, but that mostly involved sitting in a mouldy hut learning about aeroplane engines with the hint that one day we might go flying.

Yet, anyone who has spent time defending their nation, or at least drinking bromide-laced-tea for their nation, must have stories to tell. Tell them now.

(, Thu 23 Mar 2006, 18:26)
Pages: Popular, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

This question is now closed.

Please remind yourselves that i was 14 and it was cadets.
Drill Instructor - Get up the rope!

Me. - Sir, i cannot get up the rope, Sir!

Drill Instructor - Schmuck! I am ordering you to get up the rope. Are you disobeying a direct order.

Me - Sir. I cannot get up the rope, Sir.

Drill Instructor - What kind of yellow faggot are you! Did the doctor make a mistake and hand your mother her placenta sack or did she give birth to a boy!

Me - Sir. She gave birth to a boy, sir.

Drill Instructor - Then get up the fucking rope, Schmuck.

Me - Sir. I really... I can't... the rope, Sir.

Drill Instructor - Well I hope your mothers proud. She's the parent and owner of a talking sack of shit. That's quite a feat. She should be in Ripley's believe it or not. She should be in the guiness book of records. I don't think anybody has ever passed a whinging turd before. Is your mother proud of you Schmuck?

Me - Sir, My mother hung herself three years ago, sir.

Drill Instructor - Oh. So the rope is reminding...

Me - Sir, Yes Sir.

Drill Instructor - Move on to the next obstacle.
(, Sat 25 Mar 2006, 15:16, Reply)
Back in 1981
I was nursing my wounds after a messy marriage break up and decided to take my uncles advice and try to join the Royal Marines. My idea was to join the RM Band and travel the world. Problem was, I was a fit fucker then, and got an A1 fitness pass so I ended up being selected for special duties, ended up in the SBS and went to the Falklands. My story is here. I'm back in the music business now.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 10:50, Reply)
To all the naysayers
There seems to be quite a lot of negatvity towards the amred forces on here - I guess its a sign of the times, way things change. Thing is, it showed me a lot of what I could do.

I did my two weeks basic training (standard for the SAS - Saturdays and Sundays as we were affectionally known) and for my sins I was sent to do mine with the Royal Artillery at Woolwich. Out of the 72 squaddies on our course, I was one of the less competent shall we say. As I mentioned before, I came from a small Corps of Drums and didn't get much training apart from in music, plus I was unfit and generally a bit of a weed, and nowehere else did this show up more than on the assault course.

The one at Woolwich is a bastard, and the PTI's are bastards as well to people like me. You started at the first obstacle - a high metal bar. The PTI would instruct you how to attack the obstacle and off you would go. You were then introduced to the second obstacle - a low metal bar which you would have to go under. Again you were shown how to attack it, then you were sent back to the beginning to do the first then second obstacle. and on this went - each time you were shown, each time you went back to the beginning and did all the proceeding obstacles.

One of the obstackes was a 12 foot wall, which you were boosted up on to by another squaddie, Tony - a lovely bloke and the only coloured guy on the course. Anyway he boosted me up, but as I was already suffering, I came off the wall wrong - rather than hang by your fingernails and drop and roll, I just bundled myself over and landed on my feet, buggaring up my ankle good and proper.

No one saw me do it, and when I started limping back, I suddenly picked up from the Captain the nickname Mr Bean, a real confidence builder. By the time I had completed the land based obstacles I was in agony and exhausted. And also by that time at least one guy had given up and got RTU'd (Returned To Unit - aka failed). At this point I should have done the same, but I remember my mate who had originally got me in my unit in the first place offering up the advice that as long as you tried and kept going until you could not go no more, the army would appreciate that. So I decide to carry on.

We now got to the water obstacles - I say water, but this stuff was thick and black, and made no better as our bombardier proceeded to piss in the water whilst the PTI instructor gave us the overview of the obstacles. The first was a 10 meter concrete tube, not with the snags in (at least I don't recall there being any) as mentioned in a previous post, but still full of black, stagnant and filthy water. I did all I could to pull myself through it, and by now I was starting to lose the plot a bit. I was already last after the run and the last two obstacles were two ten meter man-made lakes - by the time I had got there they had sent back a couple of finishers to encourage you through. I jumped into this thick black shit to find the bottom was matted with fallen tree parts and vegetation, I remembertaking about three steps and falling face forward into the shit, and thye next thing having my head pulled above the water and being dragged to the other side by two squaddies, while a young bombardier hurled utter abuse at me from the side. They dragged me to the end and were ordered back to barracks, while the Bomb came over and hurled more abuse at me.

It was then I just looked at him, completely dropped the soldier facade and said like you would to a pal down the pub that I could not go on, I had done my best but my ankle was royally screwed and that it was time to RTU me. But he wouldn't have it and ordered me in to the second lake - I just droppped in, falling under as I did and the abuse came again - how he was going to kick the shit out of me if he had to jump in after me. I looked at him, managed about two steps before I went under again. The next thing was him picking me up by the neck of my coveralls, hurling yet more abuse and dragging me to the end of this pit of shit.

I was dragged out of the pit by the now drenched and very pissed off bombardier, and I was ordered to complete the run back to the base - 3 miles, and I still don't know what happened but even through the pain and complete exhaustion something inside me switched, and I just started running. Well I say running, it was more of a spastic limp, but I just somehow knew I was not going to give up now. At this point the Bombardier had noticed I had not been lying and that I was in extreme pain and he offered me to rest up - I declined - I had just got it into my head that I was going to finish the course or it would finish me, and as I approached the barracks guard house I was joined by a few people who had already finished to egg me on all the way back to our block - you have no idea how much that can really lift you, and as I approached the block a load of people were there cheering me in - I had finished a clear 10 minutes after the person before me and quite sometime after the superfit lads. When I got to the block they had to strip me as I was so exhausted I could hardly manage. But I had - I'd done it - apparently 4 other guys had given up and I swear if it hadn't been for the bombardier seeing something in me so would I. I came last by a bloody mile, but because of my guts and determination was treated like a hero.

About an hour later I was back in my room, showered and back in my drill kit when the bombardier came in to see how I was. I explained that I had really screwed my ankle up but did not want to go to the doctor until thursday, as if you got signed off of duty for more than 2 days, you automatically failed - I knew if I could wing it for a couple of days I could still pass out with my colleagues. He agreed and then as he walked out of the room, just said as he went "That's one of the bravest things I have seen from a Soldier this morning" - It was then I realise just how far I had really pushed myself.

I lasted the course - just - I had to be pulled out of the fitness test after 3 laps of the parade ground at Woolwich, and then the saddest thing was being noticed that I couldn't stand to attention properly as we practised for our passing out parade. The final day, as all the families and friends were out on the parade ground, I had to open the doors and watch all my colleagues, all done up to the nines and proud as fuck marching out to pass out, knowing I had done so to, yet couldn't share the glory. Yeah I cried, I don't mind admitting but when you realise how much you have been pushed, what you have accomplished and just really what you can do, and not get the recognition for it, you'd probably do the same to.

The other thing was getting nominated for most improved recruit and getting a rousing round of applause in a class one day towards the end - No I didn't win, but amongst the competition I was in, the nomination was truly amazing.

Don't every time you hear about abuse cases by British Troops in Iraq, or violence out in Colchester pubs or similar think all squaddies are idiots and the Army is a bad thing. It introduced me to some of the most amazing people on whom you could be completely 100% reliant without even knowing their name. It made me realise that my own pre-defined limitations were not true, and that I could accomplish so much more, and that the Army made me truly proud of myself and gave me the confidence to attempt many things through life. The guy who is writing this would not be the same guy if he had not had this short time in the army - and my only regret is that I never enlisted full time.

Army? I fucking loved it.
(, Sat 25 Mar 2006, 14:46, Reply)
Picking on the Yanks
While I was at High School in America, I often found myself having to defend my Britishness, cue one day where our millitary was being poked fun at- so i pointed out we had the SAS, who are some of the best soldiers in the world.

One guy had never heard of them and said that the US Deltaforce were the best in the world- so i thought i'd educate him and tell him about the SAS

I managed to convince him (and a large portion of the other people overhearing the conversation) that in the SAS......
They learn how to dodge bullets
They sleep on barbed wire as part of their training, and carry on doing it afterwards just for the hell of it
They must be able to run a 4 minute mile in full kit
They don't need food, water or rest for up to 3 days
They can kill a man using only their little finger
They can kill with a single sheet of paper
They frequently will make their "combat drops" (jumping out of a plane) out of jets traveling over the speed of sound
They can stop their own breathing and heart beat for up to 5 minutes, so they can avoid detection or play dead

and the best.....
They drink pints of vodka like everyone else drinks beer, as thats the only way they can even think to get drunk.

Not content with this I added the fact there was the SBS (special boat service) who can do everything the SAS can do, but also do it under water

yep i conviced the guy they could and often did parachute under water

you know you like the length
(, Sun 26 Mar 2006, 4:57, Reply)
Why bother?
The armed forces never appealed to me. If I wanted to die or have things stuffed up my arse I would just go to Michael Barrymore's house.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 14:52, Reply)
Not the army but meh...
The joy of the ATC.

Being the best shot on .22, 5.56 and 7.62 rifles in my wing, I got sent to many things that regular air cadets don't go to.

One of these was a week long SERE (survival, evasion, resistance, escape) camp where I lived off rabits and got the shit beaten out of me by a hunter force of Officer cadets.

The first day, we were briefed on our mission (don't get caught), and basic field craft shite (how to build a shelter/catch food/etc).

On day two we were scheduled to be caught and then we were trained in cool stuff like room clearing, interrogation (read as 'torture') techniques, and a shed full of other cool stuff.

However, not all of us got caught. I had a five day ordeal hiding in bushes, burying my shit, and starving away like Victoria Beckham.

"But," I hear you cry, "you said you got beaten up by the Officer cadets!"
Well, I was hidden for 5 days of 7. The last two days were spent being interrogated properly for making them look like a bunch of wankers.

How did I get caught? They found me filling my pouches with rations from their store.

To my credit, I did knock out the guy who found me. It was the noise the frying pan made on impact with his head that alerted the sleeping base to my presence.

(, Thu 23 Mar 2006, 19:29, Reply)
As a newly minted Second Lieutenant in The USMC (Uncle Sam's Mis-guided Children) I had the honor of taking part in simulated combat training. This training took place over 8 days and involved leading a Platoon of Marines through a simulation involving calling in artillery, air strikes and all the other aspects of warfare one might expect in the modern conventional warfare theater.

It was a hoot...except for staying up for 8 days. Sure, there were catnaps, but in that state, you are terrified (especially as a Second Lieutenant wanting to make a good impression) of screwing up. So you stay awake...right up until the serious hallucinations start kicking in.

I was, apparently, trying to put a quarter that I had bummed off one of my NCO's into a tree that I was convinced was a Coke machine. My Sergeant said I told him I "needed the caffein."

My marks for the exercise? I aced it. :D

I have more of these, and honestly, just once I would like to make the first page...so I hope some of you will be able to put aside the knowledge that 1) I am a Yank and 2) that I served in the US imperialist war machine (and enjoyed it), and vote for my post. :)

Its not much to ask really...is it? I will even refrain from making the obligatory remarks about my size and prowess.

Semper Fi!
(, Sun 26 Mar 2006, 6:08, Reply)
Don't ask, don't tell
One of my closest friends came back from basic training to tell us this lovely story.

He was awoken at 2 in the morning and told to fall into formation, which in this case meant a line.

Standing before the entire unit were 3 people, the drill instructor and (since names weren't provided) Pvt. 1 and Pvt. 2. Two guys my friend had come to know pretty well. The following dialogue was completely unexpected:

Sgt: Pvt. 1, tell your unit what you were doing tonight in the showers!

Pvt. 1: I don't want to say, sir.

Sgt: Tell them now, dammit!


They had to do "up-downs" until the sun came up. Along with anyone caught laughing.

Needless to say, their unit was very tired come sunrise.
(, Sat 25 Mar 2006, 12:18, Reply)
My armies are in my sleevies.

Thanks kids, I'm pissed.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 2:38, Reply)
At school
This slightly plump girl in my form said she wanted to join the army. So naturally, I asked her if she was going to be a bomb, she didn't like that. She didn't want to be a tank either - I checked.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 19:39, Reply)
The Tale Of the Royal Marine and his Pet Koala...
Way back when, I was stationed aboard HMS Ark Royal and the highlight undoubtably was our deployment to Australia in 1988 for the Bicenntenial Celebrations of that year. It was little more than a shag and beerfest of 20 or so ports in 6 months.

The first port in Australia was Brisbane and it was a stampede to be one of the first ashore and get the best Sheilas. The Royal Navy is a hierarchial beast at the best times and it was no surprise that the ship's Royal Marines or 'Bootnecks' were the first ashore - first to get pissed - first to get a shag and first to get in a fight. You guess which order.

That is, all except one Marine.

He was struggling to get this particular girl between the sheets who was proving to be a bit more shy than her counterparts in this particular bar. He tried and tried to seduce her but she would have none of it, preferring instead to drink the drinks he bought her and rant on about her love of animals.

Well Marines aren't the brightest of God's creatures and this one took a little time to catch onto her weak spot, but eventually he blurted,

"I love animals too..."

"Oh really?" she cooed.

"Yeah, sure. Especially Koalas" he replied confident in the knowledge he'd soon get her where he wanted her. "In fact" he continued "I keep one on board the Ship"

At this point you should be aware that Koalas are on the endangered list in Oz but you knew that anyway, right?

"On your SHIP?" she begged

"On my ship" he confirmed sensing slight danger "but I look after him, he stays in my locker and I feed him potato peelings from the galley."

I can't remember whether the raven haired beauty threw the glass at him, its contents or both, but she swore an Ozzie obscenity and marched out of the bar.

Our intrepid hero returned Sheilaless to the ship.

Next morning, having related the story to his luckier mates, he hears his name being called over the Ships broadcast system (PA). He diligently reports to the 'Officer of the Day' at the gangway and is stunned to see the girl from the previous night accompanied by two of Brisbane's finest law officers.

"Marine Evans!" barks the Officer of the Day "Did you tell this girl you keep a Koala in your locker?"

"Yes, sir"

"Well that was plain stupid, of course you don't really have one" replied the OOTD.

"But I do sir, I'll go and get him".

Cue stunned faces all round when a grinning Evans returns with a large rustling paper bag 5 minutes later.

The police officers step forward to take the bag from Evans but just as they do our hero dropkicks the bag about 6 foot across the gangway area.

The gasps were audible for miles around but returned to silence when a stuffed Koala toy of lifelike proportions rolled out of the bag.

"Can I take Kevin back now, he's my lucky mascot like?" chirps our man

Well not too lucky. Marine Evans spent a night in an Aussie cell and then the rest of the Brisbane visit confined to the mess for bringing the ship into disrepute.

Deserved a frigging medal if you ask me......
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 1:31, Reply)
In The Army Now
I was in the Army for 7 months and one day - but a lot happened in that time. This is about a hapless twat called Williams.

Williams was a bit of a liability in the Army. He had no brains, no co-ordination and the fighting spirit of a sloth. Or so we thought. Being that Williams was so crap, the troop corporals were trying to get him to crack and resign. They didn't want to use their veto (they can kick anyone off, for any reason) as it was a matter of pride to these sadists to break the recruit and get him to request discharge themselves. And so Williams had a pretty bad time. Anything and everything he did ended up with a corporal on his shoulder screaming at him, yelling at him to drop and give him 20 or organising spirit-breaking punishments like the infamous "bumper parades". (A bumper parade was where you had to pick up a "bumper", a device with a long handle ending in a swinging weight of about 20 lbs which was in turn connected to a flat bed of stiff bristles. They were used to clean lino floors). Williams, to his credit, took it all.

And then, one fateful day he lost it. We were out in the moors on one of the rifle ranges and I was in the next butt over from Williams. A particularly sadistic corporal had spent all day riding Williams. Yelling at him, kicking him, screaming at him to resign and go home to his mother when Williams snapped. He was standing up and the corporal was walking towards him screaming at him when Williams raised his rifle and aimed it from the hip at the corporals body. I could see the strain on Williams as he wept and his entire body shook but he kept the rifle pointed at the corporal. The corporal froze and his face drained. Williams was still shaking and he brought the gun up to his shoulder and I could see his hands tighten on the rifle-but. He was definitely going to shoot. And then a quiet voice said:

"You don't want to do that son."

And walking casually towards Williams was our troop sergeant. A decent bloke, tough,strict, but not a bully.

"If you pull that trigger they'll put you away forever and he isn't worth it son"

The sergeant had now reached the corporal and walked in front of him blocking Williams from shooting him.

"Just put the gun down Williams - Put it down and we'll go and have a cup of tea and sort this out"

He walked up to Williams and stood about a meter in front of him.

"Unload your weapon son, put it down carefully, just like we taught you..."

And Williams crumbled. He safed his weapon, unloaded it and put it on the ground and with sobs racking his body, was taken away by the sergeant, never to be seen again.

We never found out what happened to Williams but there was no army trial so we presumed he was asked to resign and was shipped home to avoid any scandal.

If I'd been him and I'd pointed the gun at the corporal. If I'd been ridden as hard as Williams had been then I would have slotted the bastard in a heartbeat.

But I'm not as tough as Williams.

(, Thu 23 Mar 2006, 18:45, Reply)
An Exercise In Cruelty
I spent 25 years in the service of the Queen (Gawd Bless 'Er), starting off as a snivelling Trainee Signalman at the Army Apprentice College in Harrogate. In the early 70's bullying was a serious business practiced by true devotees of the art, actively encouraged by the resident sadists on the grounds of 'toughening up'. 'If you can't take a joke you shoudna joined' was the mantra of these knuckle-draggers.

I had my fair share of being beaten up by these people, mainly due to my inability to keep my great gob shut, but nothing like the living hell endured by 'Soapy Robinson'. Soapy was a quiet lad, didn't mix well, no social skills, came from a loving family, never been away from home before.........and his personal hygiene left something to be desired. Soapy hummed. His feet bowfed. He sweated a lot and didn't seem to notice the need for regular showers. Soapy was a gunge.

It didn't take long for the vultures to start circling. His room NCO tried to take him in hand, he had to hand in regular laundry bags, he had to sign a bath book, his locker and bed-space was inspected daily. But still he smelled bad....stronger actioned needed, me-thinks.

Those not from a military background will have never heard of a Regimental Bath, and you should count your lucky stars that you'll probably never see it, never mind experience one. The hapless gunge is grabbed by his peers, stripped naked, given a mild-to-severe kicking, then dumped in a bath of freezing water. Soap powder, Brasso, scouring powder, shampoo, liquid soap, lemon juice and anything that might have any sort of cleaning agent is scrubbed into Soapy's skin (paying particular attention to his bollocks), then large bass brooms are employed with great vigor. This is all witnessed by as many baying hounds as can cram inside the bath cubicle, and everyone is encouraged to come along and bear witness to what happens to a gunge. The skin on the back is rapidly stripped raw, the eyes turn bloody and inflamed, bruises sprout like overnight mushrooms. It's not a pretty sight.

It's like a feeding frenzy. Because Soapy is a gunge, he becomes outside the laws and social practices which normally regulate behavior, even in lunatic asylums like AAC Harrogate. The kicks and punches become more vicious, they vie with each other who can land the most telling blow...it's all 'allowed' you see, nay, encouraged.... cos the unstated goal is to make poor Soapy so terrified and beaten down that he'll slink off down to the Guardroom and resign from the Army. A 'Reggie Bath' can last from ten minutes to a couple of hours. It takes a very strong man to resist.

I personally witnessed young Soapy take three Regimental Baths and he still stuck it out. He was a pariah, totally friendless, even his room-mates ignored him completely. After a night on the piss some bright spark would suggest 'Hey, why don't we nip upstairs to Bravo Troop and beat Soapy up? Gungey Bastard needs a good kicking!!!' And off they'd go, drag Soapy out of his pit by the hair and administer a good hiding. Nobody lifted a finger, nobody said anything to the Permanent Staff, the recruit NCO's either turned a blind eye or joined in with a will. Soapy kept to himself, practically lived in the shower, always obsessively washing his kit, ironing his uniform, spraying deodorant like a man possessed and keeping his head well down at all times. Didn't make a hap'orth of difference, his card was well and truly marked, his ostracism and pariah status endured.

What finally turned my stomach was Soap's 18th birthday, a Friday in the summer of 1973. Soapy had been out in Harrogate for the night (by himself, of course), then came back to the darkened barrack blocks around 11pm, cos he had to be in for 'bed check'. Bravo Troop was on the second floor, but Soapy stopped on the ground stair-well by the notice boards, then just slumped in the corner crying quietly. The Regimental Orderly Sergeant found him there and then asked what the fuck he thought he was doing out of his room after bed-check. Soapy just told him he couldn't go up because he didn't want to get beat up on his birthday....he just needed one day off from it. He'd phoned his mum earlier that day and she was the only one in the world who knew it was his birthday, and the only kind word he'd had in weeks.

The Orderly Sergeant escorted him to his room, parked him in the corridor, then told his room-mates what he'd found and suggested we might like to lay off him for the moment. Soapy then came in, quietly undressed and crawled into bed...the Orderly Sergeant left........

Ten minutes later the Gungey Bastard was installed inside a matress cover, hung out of the third floor window while the resident nutters beat him with bumpers and brooms chanting 'Die you gungeball, die!!!'

Soapy never did resign. He completed three years at Harrogate and was posted out into the Regular Army just like everyone else, a qualified Electronics Technician. I saw him again at Catterick in 1979, and went across to talk to him, chat about old times. I told him I couldn't believe he'd made it through all that, I couldn't have taken half the shit he did, and then I stuck my hand out and said:

'I'm really sorry for all you went through, Soapy, I wish I'd said something at the time...no hard feelings, eh?'

He told me to go fuck myself.
(, Sat 25 Mar 2006, 13:18, Reply)
Different kind of army
In the seventies, Belfast was a rather troubled place. One morning my granny went out the back to empty the bin and there was a sniper sitting on the back wall, waiting for one of the frequent brit patrols that went through the area.

She threw coal at him until he pissed off.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 11:12, Reply)
older cousin in the army
stationed in germany, is driving down the autobahn in some tank or other, possibly a predator.

anyway, without any army knowledge myself, apparently the slightly-above-40 miles per hour it was doing was considered rather nippy for a tank, and if you're driving this fast moving mass of heavy metal, your braking distance is increased somewhat.

at which point some person decides to pull in front of him in a highly reckless way, forcing him to slam on the brakes. now apparently, on a tank, theres a bit in the front axle with a round hole in, so as you slam down on the brakes, a rod enters the hole and holds the axle still. jerky and abrupt, but nonetheless a good braking method.

unfortunately, this works best at slow tank speeds, such as 5-10 miles per hour, as when you try to brake at top speed, the rod tends to get sheared off, and you are left going at top speed.

somehow, he managed to hit the brakes at such a perfect moment that the rod slid in perfectly, and stopped the tank so hard that the back end flipped up to match the sudden jerk action at the front.

this resulted in the tank flipping forwards and bending the barrel, then falling backwards, only to pause with the rear end of the tank facing upwards at about 2 o'clock.

In nought but shock and amusement, cuz then proceeds to climb out of the hatch on top to discover a vw beetle underneath his tank, with a very scared woman sitting between two huge tank treads. apparently it was a good laugh, go figure..
(, Sat 25 Mar 2006, 23:48, Reply)
So many stories, so little girth
"Black up, lads", said WO Simmons as we lay in a ditch on some maneouvre out in the English countryside.

The enemy were due any minute, and even in the dead of night, our peachy clean white faces would stick out like sore thumbs.

So, I scooped up a handful of mud and smeared it liberally around my chops to hide me from those bigger, nastier boys and their great big guns.

At least, I thought it was mud.

"Corporal Scary - what the fuck is that smell?"

"Oh shit."

And it was.

Good: no bugger came within twenty foot of me that night.

Bad: three days of the galloping squits.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 12:01, Reply)
Royal Poo Collection
A recently ex-RAF pilot mate now works as a very posh taxi driver, flying celebs and the well to do around as part of a fleet of private jets. Not that funny in itself, but in a freezer at their base is a collection of celebrity turds that the crews 'collect' from the jet khazis. He is very proud that his first contribution was a brown otter belonging to a certain ex member of a girl band who was quite posh.

He also claims that there is a collection of Royal steamers harvested from the Royal jet, under lock and key on a RAF base. Why? Why not.
(, Mon 27 Mar 2006, 15:10, Reply)
Some Mother DO Have 'Em
Once you were out of basic things were a bit more relaxed. But you still had one poxy parade a week to attend where your boots had to polished to a high shine. Enough so you could see your face in it.

There were lots of tricks to keep your boots shiney. Too many to go into all of them here but one trick was Cleer (can't remember how you spell it) floor varnish. Once you'd bulled your boots to perfection, a coat of this would protect the shine and you wouldn't need to bull them again - or that was the idea. (Me? I used black missile paint instead of polish)

Anyway, one plonker bulled his boots to a fantastic shine, painted them with Cleer and put them by his bed to dry. Then he decided to make his bed. Grabbed his woollen blankets, shook them hard and then realised what he'd done.

Parade that day was funny.

"You!!! What the fuck are you doing coming on parade with FURRY BOOTS!!!!!"

(, Mon 27 Mar 2006, 14:10, Reply)
Army friends
An old marine friend of mine and four of his mates went for a weekend in Blackpool. Marines are a decent bunch but hard as nails: they have to be.
The idea was to get drunk, recover, get drunk again. On the first night they were more or less shitfaced going back to their hotels; Enter stage left 23 of Blackpool's finest examples of cro-magnon shithead.
Blackpool has more than it's fair share of shitheads at the best of time. That lot would have picked a fight with each other of they couldn't find someone else.
Perhaps the worst thing my mate could have said was, "Lads we don't want any trouble", which is a pity as the reaction was for one of the locals to pull a knife.
This turned out to be a bad idea.
You may be asking how I know there were 23... well... it was in the paper the next day. 23 locals were treated in hospital for a variety of injuries including:
Dislocated shoulder (that was the one who pulled the knife).
Broken fingers.
Broken collar bones.
Broken cheak bones (an accident, he fell badly).
Twisted knees.
Dislocated ankle.
And my own favorite:
Minor surgery to remove a knuckle duster from where the sun doesn't shine.
Moral: never pick a fight with someone you don't know.
The five marines had a couple of scratches and one of them threw up.
(, Thu 23 Mar 2006, 21:48, Reply)
Uncle John
My uncle John was stationed at Singapore during 1941, which at the time was supposed to be an "impregnable fortress" to keep the Japs out. Just like the vaunted Maginot line, the Japanese simply came round the back and took Singapore in a matter of days.

Anyway, uncle John spent the next three and a bit years in POW camps. The conditions were every bit as harsh and unpleasant as the Imperial Japanese army could possibly make them and he barely made it out alive when he was eventually liberated in 1945

Fast forward 45 years, and Uncle John is coming round to visit us.

"I have something very important to ask you" said my Dad.
"Whatever happens, please don't mention the war or anything to do with Japan otherwise you will upset your uncle. He was treated very badly by them and still hasn't forgiven them" he asserted.

I agreed, although I was somewhat surprised when uncle John turned up outside the house an hour later.

In a Mazda 323.
(, Tue 28 Mar 2006, 13:26, Reply)
Like shooting fish in a barrel
I'm on a roll. I went to a naval school near Sandhurst, so was duly packed off with the rest of the CCF to spend weekends sitting in the Sandhurst woods lugging Lee Enfields (we were like the Poundstretcher version of CCF) and trying to find whatever CCF had been dropped off at the other end. All of our meticulous training and planning came together one fine morning, with the entire troop hidden and waiting on the slopes of a cutting. As luck would have it, the other lot never showed, but two middle aged lady joggers in nice pastel towelling suits did... Fair play to the Colour Sargeant for getting the first thunder flash in front of them, and immediately lobbing another behind as both slopes erupted in gunfire and pre pubescent screaming. If you've never seen fat middle aged women completely losing it and running around in pure undiluted panic as the sun comes up over the trees on a gentle misty morning, you haven't lived.

Length? You know you love it.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 16:04, Reply)
true story
i was on the british side in WW2, i killed like 10 germans in a row once, then they started shouting at me "OMG SPRAYING NOOB!" and stuff like "AIMBOT H4XoR!!1", then i got kicked from the server and i was like "WTF!?11oneoen"
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 11:31, Reply)
During the War

(, Tue 28 Mar 2006, 18:27, Reply)
Not one of my own...
But my CO in ATC told us a story regarding a camp he went on as a cadet.

There was this Warrent Officer, you know the type, a bloke for whom nothing is good enough. Well, my CO's flight get latrine duty, and no matter how hard you cleaned the bastard toilets this Warrent would scream and shout at you.

So, one day, this kid in my CO's flight spends a full day cleaning one toilet. The rest of the flight cover for him while he scrubs just one toilet to a state of 'brand spanking new'.

He then sprays chocolate sauce all over his hard work, smothering everything in this one abloution.

The next day came inspection. The Warrent strolls down the line of shitters, putting people on report one by one until he comes to our hero's bog.

Opening the door he screams, "What in God's name is this?"

The cadet calmly and smartly walks into the toilet, runs one finger down a wall and tastes it. He takes a moment to sample it's flavour before returning to attention and shouting, "Shit, sir!"

Well, the CO get dodgy about details there, but needless to say that kid was on Janker's for the remainder of camp!
(, Mon 27 Mar 2006, 14:37, Reply)
The name's Mr T.
In 1972, I was part of a crack commando unit which was sent to prison by a military court for a crime that we didn't commit.
Myself, and the others in my unit promptly escaped from a maximum security stockade to the Los Angeles underground.

Today, we're still wanted by the government, but survive as soldiers of fortune.

We're trying to make some money. If you have a problem - if no one else can help - and if you can find us, or better still, e-mail us - maybe you can hire us. Let me know, like.
(, Sun 26 Mar 2006, 19:31, Reply)
Sort of on topic in that it involves someone in the Army, which isn't me nor is it strictly an Army-related story or, indeed, at all.
My grandad was a Sapper in the war. He built the Basra pipeline that we're fighting over all over again, he was responsible at the age of seventeen for keeping the entire South East's contingent of Bristol Blenheims in the air, was a part time rally driver and mates with an agent of the SOE (not Sony Online :P). He is also very much a product of Empire. He's not racist, as such, but he can't quite wrap his head around modern attitudes to race. He is a dinosaur. An example:

He recently went into hospital for a triple heart bypass, he wasn't, as I'm sure you can imagine, in the finest fettle and was somewhat disconcerted to have a black male nurse looking after him. His concerned conversation with my mum went along these lines.

"Jude, I'm not sure whether I should say anything, but I really think I should have a qualified nurse, not an orderly"

"Er, Dad, he is a proper nurse."

"Oh really? They're allowed now are they? Well, that's jolly good, isn't it?"

Now, he considers himself to be a pretty progressive sort of a chap and decided he'd strike up a conversation with his nurse. In the interests of racial relations, you see.

The poor nurse was somewhat disconcerted the next morning to find his patient jabbering away at him in tongues. My grandad was trying to talk to a lad born and raised in South London in fluent Swahili.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 10:08, Reply)
My uncle was in the RAF until last year, and has quite a few good 'uns - heres one.

He's mad, absolutly mad, on target shooting. He's one of the top 50 shots in the british armed forces, and as such often gets called to help with TV shows and the like.

One such thing was a program Jeremy Clarkson was doing on guns and various odd things about them, like how you can't blow up a car with them, best way to anally rape your mother with them etc. About a week after the army had had their fun at Heathrow airport, he turns up for the days shooting at RAF Brize Norton in his landy, complete with fully loaded shotgun in the back of his car.

I will repeat that for clarity. Jeremy Clarkson turns up at an RAF base after a top security alert with a fully loaded shotgun in the back of his car.

This would have been bad at the best of times, which these obviously aren't. Apparantly when his producer finally managed to get him out of the interview room he was walking funny for the rest of the day and later confessed to actually shitting himself when all the guns were pointed at him and he was politly dragged out of the car to told to get to first base with the floor
(, Mon 27 Mar 2006, 9:04, Reply)
Not me, but my grandad
It all begins in early 1942, somewhere in North Africa, probably in Egypt. Tea had just been brewed when all hell broke loose. The Germans had bomabarded a detachement of C company, who were overwhelmed, taken prisoner of war. Two-thirds of the battalion were lost.

The POWs were marched 4 days with little food and water, then handed to the Italians. Transit camp (near Tripoli) had awful hygeine, lasted 4 months, and many men died.

Transferred to Naples, then a POW camp near Sforzacosta, there he and his mates stayed, as always, undernourished. News gets through - Allies land in the South, but the Germans started taking over Italy from the North.

Did I mention that my grandad was Jewish? Well, plans were made in case the Germans arrived first. The day came that the Italian sentries were looking a little agitated, so he and two mated bolted out of the open camp gate. They ran for two hours, into the hills.

People in the first village were helpful - gave them clothes (a Navy blue pinstripe suit in my grandad's case) food, and a map. The journey South was hard. Not everyone was helpful, some were Fascists. Paths were avoided. British commandos were met, but a rescue rendez-vous never came through. The German forces passed them, and help became rarer.

Reliable info about Allied forces locations led to a last ditch attempt to cross the front lines. The three men were to run across a valley, at 5 minute intervals, meet at a specified tree. My grandad was the last across, but he didn't meet his comrades. He found a NZ forward post who gave him a rather welcome cup of tea.

He returned home after rehabilitation. His two mates did make it back. He never, ever talked about this story - he wrote it down once. It all seems a bit Hollywood, but it's true. My grandad had to be a hero, just for staying alive.

Apologies not for length or girth, but for lack of humour.
(, Sun 26 Mar 2006, 19:50, Reply)
Right to fire
When you are in the army and are issued with a firearm, yuo are also given a small card which gives instruction for protection of a barracks for if you go on stag (Guard duty) - when in Germany the card includes instructions for challenging possible members of the RAF (That's Red Army Faction) or the IRA - "Halt oder ich schie├čen" (Halt or I will shoot)

We were told by the issuing NCO at this barracks how to pronounce this as apparently, one timid young private was on duty one day at the camp when he was accosted by a drunken german gentleman hurling abuse. After a while the private loses his rag, brings out the card and reads off the instruction - however he misprounounced it and rather than saying "Halt or I will shoot!" it actually came out as "Halt or I will shit!"

This seemed to work as the inebriated chap was disarmed and proceeded to fall over laughing, as did the corporal at the guard house.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 23:30, Reply)
My mom's cousin
was called up for the draft for Vietnam.

They asked him if he ever committed suicide.

He thought it was such a stupid question he said yes.

They didn't take him.
(, Fri 24 Mar 2006, 16:00, Reply)

This question is now closed.

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