Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Major Trouble

This is going to be the blogging equivilent of the older neighbor behind you in the checkout line of the supermarket bragging about his kid. Difference is, you don't have to be stuck there pretending that you're interested if you're not. Oh, and it's the seven items or less line, and you've got nine items there. Just thought you should know.

The following are the comments my son's Commanding Officer--a full-bird Colonel--wrote on his T-ODP.* It's sort of the military's report card/letter of reccomendation that all the Junior Officers get. Other than the XXX's, the footnotes, and the name thing, it's word-for-word:

[LT. TROUBLE]is ready to be an Operations Officer of a large unit. I have invested my personal time and professional energy to confirm his success! Send him to the most challenging assignment open!

If an Operations job is not open, then send him to a MAJCOM** Staff. This assignment will provide the staffing skills required for him to be successful. I look to see him as a commander soon.

Additional Developmental Recommendations/Assessment:

Okay, pay attention! Take your time in getting this one RIGHT!

[LT. TROUBLE] has learned the XXXX, XXXXXX, and XXXXXX*** portions of our duties. Currently, completing his MS degree, he is ready for more challenges. Either deploy him as a Operations Officer or Joint Staffer in the AOR****, and he will succeed. I am expecting him to pin on Captain soon and we need to position him to take on the toughest of missions. Push him to SOS***** as soon as possible so he can focus on executing the mission. I want this guy to eventually go to Air Staff as a seasoned Major, so prepare him for command early!
Wow. Is this the way they write up everyone? I've never been in the military, so I may be wrong, but it sounds to me like this kid is being groomed.

Thing is, he's not even sure if he wants to stay. One of the captains he worked with at Nellis is now a patrol officer in the Las Vegas PD, and is trying to convince him to come to work there.

And, of course, there's this nasty war business. You may have heard something about it. McCain and Lieberman say we're winning it. However, Lt. Trouble, in his duties in the back office at Nellis, was dealing with a Major who was looking for officers to send to the dessert for the next deployment in December. Apparently, the Major was having a bit of tough luck. For every Colonel's positon he needed to fill, he had to ask eight officers, because seven of them would resign their commisions rather than go over there. That's a big loss of leadership. Especially for a war that we're winning.

Perhaps that's why he's being fast-tracked. There's no one left.

By the way: he told me he's '80% sure' that he's going to be deployed again in December.

Major Trouble, indeed.


* Transitional Officers Development Plan.
Major Command. A big-league job.
** Redacted by me. They probably could have been blogged, but I want to be careful about revealing too much.
***Area of Responsibility. Aren't abbreviations great?
****Squadron Officers School. Yes, they are.


Blogger terry said...

wow. you have every reason to be proud.

and it strikes me as patently unfair that this high achiever might be "rewarded" by being sent to iraq.

((yes, i'm aware that people in the military are expected to go to war. not my point.))

oh, but wait.. things are going so well there, so what's the big deal?

11:39 PM  
Blogger United We Lay said...

Wow, that's great. I hope that he'll be safe, and he'll be able to pin on General some day!

9:41 AM  
Blogger Nölff said...

We won the war back when George Bush dressed up as a fighter pilot or whatever... lies to boost moral.

3:03 PM  
Blogger cadbury_vw said...

you should be proud

fast track or not, moving up because of vacancies or not - the military is a professional organization

he would not be put in command without ability

no matter what

5:08 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

That is such a great photo.

12:35 PM  
Blogger Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

Great father, great son.

'Nuff said.

12:14 PM  
Blogger SFChick74 said...

Interesting how no one in the media seems to know/report that people would rather quit (or is it be demoted?) than be sent into a war we are winning.

12:28 PM  

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