Monday, February 19, 2007

Miscellanity, Part 4

The other day I read this

How the U.S. Army Works

Mostly just to see if Mister Ed Grabianowski got it right. I stopped reading part way through so I guess he got it right enough to become boring to someone who knows it from the inside. However the very first page divides the army into an "operational branch" and an "institutional branch". This apparently started bugging me without my knowing it. I was subconsciously trying to figure out how those terms fit into what I knew of the Army structure.

So this morning I realized what one of those terms meant. TraDoc (pronouced "tray - doc") was a phrase which dropped into my head in the shower. It stands for "Training and Doctrine Command" and is where all military students, their instructors and any other support personnel are assigned. That was apparently what he meant by the phrase "institutional branch" (although the term "branch" means something totally different to officers, NCOs and enlisted soldiers). But I couldn't recall what the other term was. And that bugged me. I recall years ago when my friend Verb told us that he felt he was losing his roots, that he couldn't remember all the terminology they had used at West Point when he went there. I was losing my Army verbiage. D'oh!

But it came back to me after a bit. The other term is "ForsCom", which stands for "Forces Command" and is where all the military units which get deployed (overseas?) are assigned.

And yes, my mind is an odd place sometimes.


Anonymous Ed Grabianowski said...

As an author who writes on a wide variety of topics with short deadlines, I'm always aware that there are people who know far more about a given topic than I could possibly digest in less than a week. There's that concern in the back of my mind that an expert is going to call me out on something I got wrong. So learning that I "got it right enough to become boring to someone who knows it from the inside" is a relief. You should have seen what happened when I wrote an article about those guys that put huge spoilers on their little import cars.

Anyway, it sounds odd, but I'm glad you were bored by my article.

Blogger banzai said...

It's amazing how much things within the Army change and the speed with which it happens.

When I mustered out in 1989 it was four years before I considered getting back in the reserves. I ended up finding a position in the Missouri National Guard in 1993 (the guard being where most of the Engineer units are located, my guess is so that state governors could mobilize them for relief work). The first time we took our annual training with I Corps at Fort Lewis and met with the active guys working in the Corps Engineer shop I discovered just how out of date my terminology had become in those four short years. :)


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