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we got new second lt,s who had never been in country and they relyed on non coms a lot and we trused the older non coms over them.
It can go both ways. I arrived in Germany in early 1971 assigned to a Pershing 1A missile battalion. Throughout ROTC and Officer Basic Course we had pounded into our heads that we were to rely on and trust our NCO's. But I was quickly sobered up from this induced sense of euphoria when I realized my platoon sergeant and all the section chiefs were worthless. (3x Pershing launch platoons, each with three launchers, per battery.) They were all retrained and involuntarily reassigned from air defense Nike Hercules units, and they were not happy with that. Their bad attitude was infectious and the platoon's operational performance showed it. I quickly learned to rely only on my "acting jack" sergeants - E4/Spec 4 - to get things done. I made a point of taking care of them, and they reciprocated.
 

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Well, I wasn't in the navy, but an experience back in 1973 in a US Army nuclear-capable Pershing 1A missile battalion was significant and, I think, relevant to this discussion.

By 1973 the Viet Nam war was over. Although my unit was priority for manning, we were losing personnel faster than the replacements were coming in. A Pershing battery was almost twice as big as a typical howitzer battery, and we had far more vehicles. After coming to the end of a stint on QRA - quick reaction alert - at a remote launch site, we did not have enough drivers left to convoy back to home base as a unit. We had to shuttle drivers back and forth to retrieve all of our vehicles.

With the end of the draft, Fort Sill did not have enough recruits with the proper qualifications to train replacements. Nuclear units required higher security clearances. Things got so bad that USAREUR diverted some of the first all-volunteer soldiers arriving at Rhine Main. So one day a bunch of fresh out of AIT 11B's arrived. They did not know what sort of unit we were, but we did not care as long as the soldier could walk and talk.

We had no choice but to OJT - on the job training - these freshly minted infantry men. Well, to every one's surprise, they turned into outstanding missile crewmen. Talking to a number of them, I found out that they were at first stunned and overwhelmed by Pershing missile system's equipment and mission. But they also realized that their individual importance had also jumped way higher up. We were doing as good a job, if not better, than Fort Sill, and by the time I left the firing battery my platoon had achieved outstanding performance standards and no - I repeat no - discipline or morale problems.
 

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... That RMCS lied! He made up his own rules and regulations. This was back in OCT 1968. Anybody else have that problem????
Sort of... By August 1975 I had orders to return from Germany to go back to Fort Sill for the officers' advanced course. USAREUR had run out of PCS funds so I was extended. Time to report to Fort Sill was drawing near but I still did not have my "port call" although I had PCS orders in hand. (A "port call" is an anachronistic term for a MAC passenger ticket on one of those charter airlines nobody has ever heard of other than whoever in the Pentagon issues the contracts. Originally, it was a dated boarding pass for a troopship sailing from Bremerhaven.) I kept pestering the PSNCO - senior personnel NCO - for my port call and was told he could not get one because there were no USAREUR request forms due to a theater-wide shortage. (Note: at that time many or most official forms could not be locally reproduced unless specifically authorized. These forms had some number with an "-R" suffix.)
So, I "suggested" that he type out all of the required information that went into the USAREUR port call request form on a DF - disposition form - which was nothing more than a blank sheet of paper with a border around it and boxes to enter the subject and date. The PSNCO recoiled in horror at my suggestion of deviating from standard procedure, but I insisted. Well, two weeks later I got my port call.
 
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