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Old 16-11-2012, 13:41   #16
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

I spent 22 years in the British Army and enjoyed most of it including Belfast. Learnt to dive, ski and sail. It was a bad year if I didn't manage 7 weeks skiing during the winter and you and being paid to do this stuff.

They have paid me a 1/2 pension from the age of 40 to make up for the need to change careers half way through life. I didn't say no.

Whilst you are a lawyer now, you don't have to join the Army to work in Law, what would you like to do? chef? pilot? engineer?


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Old 16-11-2012, 13:47   #17
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

I served 4 years in the US Army commencing in the early 1960's including 14 months in RVN. I did not particularly want to enter the military but I and most of my friends and acquaintances were raised with the understanding that freedom isn't free and that we owed our Country a period of service, a philosophy the Country could well use again. It was quite difficult, demanding and sometimes damned dangerous but all in all a very worth while experience. Some that went into the service with me did not survive. I was extraordinarily fortunate all things considered. Do not consider the Military with the impression that the characters portrayed by Tom Cruise in his various movies exists in real life and particularly his portrayal of a Navy JAG officer. With the RIF that's coming, only the most productive and promising young people will be retained in Services that already require pretty competent, capable young people. Accordingly, perhaps the question to ask is not what the military can do for you but what you can do for the military (to paraphrase Jack Kennedy), eh?
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Old 16-11-2012, 14:28   #18
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

BTW, we are assuming you would join the US Army but that is not the only choice, there are other options. Ever thought about learning French and Arabic?

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Old 16-11-2012, 14:44   #19
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
BTW, we are assuming you would join the US Army but that is not the only choice, there are other options. Ever thought about learning French and Arabic?

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I was actually thinking Navy, but that is a different discussion.

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Old 16-11-2012, 14:45   #20
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

Three years away from retiring from the Navy as an officer. I started out as an enlisted diver and picked up a commission along the way and became a Naval Aviator. There are really good and really bad duties throughout your career. Absolutely worth it IMO as I get towards the end.
Something else to consider is they are looking at changing the retirement system. I expect this change will come in the next four years and a pension retirement as we know it will more than likely go away for those signing up in the near future. It is not set in stone but is on the table for sure.

One thing also is you have to like what you do. Some jobs in the Navy I would have gone AWOL if I had to do them for 20 years. Flying and diving I would pay to do (but they pay me instead)

Love what you do, expect some bumps and sacrifices. The camaraderie is one of the best rewards and oh yeah the pension will fund (hopefully) my cruising lifestyle at 42 when I 'retire.'
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Old 16-11-2012, 15:54   #21
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

Dear James,

I served 14 years in the USN and 12 years in the USAF. In the Navy I was a cryptologist, and in the Air Force I was a chaplain. I retired in 2008 at the age of 51 and I am working in civilian life now (I am a congregational rabbi). If I didn't have kids in college, I would be able to retire, period, and with reasonable comfort.

If you have a spirit of adventure, a desire to serve, and a temperament that allows you to give up some of your autonomy, then I recommend you sign up for three years and 'try on' military service. As has already been pointed out, you will be recruited at the rank of O-3 (Captain in Army, AF, and Marines; Lieutenant in Navy or CG), or at least O-2 (First Lt or Lt Junior Grade) with promotion to O-3 very soon. So the pay isn't bad, and when you add up the various benefits and the joy of military life (IFF you find it so), it is worth a try.

In the USAF I was close to a number of JAGs along the way. Their lot is nowhere near as exciting as that of Harm Rabb in the TV show JAG! But they get to do interesting things, and they transition between the various legal specialties (prosecutor, defense, int'l law, mil law, contract law...) as they desire when they negotiate their assignments along the way. So they're never stuck with the same kind of job too long.

Not to get too personal, but how old are you? How long have you been out of law school? How physically fit are you? All these are issues to take into account when considering the military.

All the best and good luck with your decision! If you have any additional questions, I'll watch this thread...or you can PM me.

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Old 21-11-2012, 14:35   #22
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Greetings! Don't want to be left out :-) I started as a cadet in '92 and left in '05 as Lt. after almost 13 years. It was a great period of my life. I learned a lot - good education, personality development, adventure, travel, and many co curricular activities. I think irrespective of nationalities, across the world, Armed Forces are a great building ground for a men/women. when I look back at the time gone by, I have fond memories.
Cheers!
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Old 21-11-2012, 17:41   #23
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

I joined the Navy at 17. Put 29 years in and retired at age 46 with enough of a pension to not go seeking another job. Have been happily building homes and boats since. I was enlisted and retired as a Command Master Chief. No doubt if you go in as JAG you'll gather much more pay and pension than I earned.

One of the things that I learned while in the Navy is that every 3 years you'll have an opportunity to move to another duty station if you are at one you don't like. The downside is that you might be in a good place and not want to go again after 3 years. Another good thing is that you may have a terrible boss but you know he or she will be gone in less than 3 years. The downside is that a good boss will be replaced before 3 years is up.

When you talk with recruiters get everything they promise you in writing. You should know that about contracts. If you have a law degree don't settle for anything less than promise of a commission (in writing). Don't do drugs and do not admit to ever have used them. Be in good physical condition (not overweght).

Good luck in your choice. Avoid the Army and get in the Air Force if possible. Navy would be my second choice. Others can ask me why I prefer the Air Force if they like but obviously they treat their people much better.

In country Vietnam vet and Desert Storm vet.

kind regards,
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Old 21-11-2012, 17:48   #24
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Re: Anybody In/Out of the Military?

Oh, I forgot to mention that Marines use Navy JAG. Just as Marines are Naval Aviators. Marines use Navy Corpsman and Doctors. If you want to be attached to marines you'll have to become a Navy JAG.
Maybe someone has already mentioned this?
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