A British Officer Cadet providing fire-support with an L7 GPMG on the final exercise of his 44 week initial training

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Whoa, slow down with the straw man arguments. At no point did I make any statement regarding American culture or the overall quality of the US Army officer corps. I merely observed that a guy with 90-days of training is not really ready to be an officer in combat, a reality that I think applies regardless of your cultural background. I’m not even saying that those hastily-commissioned officers were *bad* officers, just that they were almost certainly not sufficiently prepared for the enormously taxing demands of combat leadership. Some of them learned on the job, overcame huge obstacles, and did great things. Others were killed in their first engagement.

Believe me, I fully recognize the quality of the US Army officer corps, both through study of history and through considerable personal experience in both peace and war. While there is an interesting discussion to be had on that topic, that wasn’t remotely what I was attempting to address. I was merely saying that 90 days of training is not adequate prepare someone to be an officer in combat. It wasn’t true then, and it’s even less true now. But the reality is that every military learns how to function with constrained resources, the most important of which is time. A 90-day commissioning program is a terrible compromise that came at an awful cost: unprepared leaders. What’s worse is that it was a self-perpetuating problem–the faster you commission leaders, the more frequently they get killed, necessitating that you quickly run their replacements through hasty training, which makes them more likely to get killed . . .

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