Infantry OSUT Graduation info
I was recently honored to be invited to attend an OSUT Infantry graduation at Ft Benning, GA. It was good to be back at the site of so much of my own past but I thought I'd share some of what was said there on that day. Here to my best memory is part of what I heard:
"Ladies and gentlemen, take a long, hard look at the parade field. What you see standing there is representative of the noblest strata of our society. These new Infantrymen are America's 21st Century Spartans. They are an element of a small segment of our population that guards the national wall of defense and as arrogant as this may sound, this is what makes them better than the average young man. Not better in a material, snide or arrogant way but better as it relates to doing something versus hanging out in a coffee shop talking and criticizing. Anyone can talk about what should be done in a given moment but most won't do anything about it. You see it everyday on your televisions. All sorts of so called experts with great sounding titles and published articles that are always ready to give advice but never ready to pick up a rifle, ruck up and close with the enemy.
There are two kinds of men that walk the Earth, men of action and others. What you see before you are men of action.
Not one Infantryman you see standing before you really wants to go into harm's way and risk it all, but their moral clarity won't allow them to sit back and let someone else provide the blanket of freedom that we cherish here today and so many others take for granted.
When policy makers finish talking, when debate has ceased, when negotiations have failed and orders are given, it becomes the mission of the young men before you to execute national policy.
The best and the brightest are not necessarily on campus or in the corporate boardroom right now. The best and brightest are right there on the parade field..."
I hate newspapermen. They come into camp and pick up their camp rumors and print them as facts. I regard them as spies, which in truth, they are.
Gen. W.T. Sherman