1. A lot of this stems from the inflation of military personnel efficiency reports. Anything other than “outstanding” or similar superlatives doom an officers career. This isn’t a new thing. In “Once A Marine”, Commandant A.A. Vandergrift noted that during WWII, the service chiefs had a discussion where they noted that they ALL had courts martial in their jackets and without the war, would have been retired long before at much lesser grades. They tried to generate some latitude in consideration for promotion. Alas, that practice has been long gone.

    One of the fairly recent Secretary’s of Defense wrote that he filled out his aide’s efficiency report in what he thought was glowing terms. He got a call where some Pentagonite profusely apologizing for the choice of the aide and promised a prompt replacement. After some back and forth, they sent over someone to coach the Secretary on the proper verbiage to properly reflect the officer’s performance in the necessary manner.

    As a result, NO ONE wants to have anything negative attach to them.

    I’ll also concede that some of the troops behavior during and post VN and before going all volunteer might have something to do with the reluctance to arm the troops generally. Frankly, that’s BS under current conditions.

    • After reading a couple comments below, I realized a couple of other things affecting putting something like arming the troops into effect.

      Budget: not only do they need to find the money (though I expect they’d get a lot of volunteer civilian instructors gratis) for the training, they’ve got to get the Pentagon cubical critters to soften their focus on their “real job”. That job is maximizing how much of the defense budget their service gets.

      Political: hysterical protest by the usual suspects and states about more “guns on the street”-with an undercurrent of class distain for those who serve in the military. Remember that many of the highly agitated politicos may have some influence on the budget.

  2. it has never made sense to me why our military on us soil is not armed while on base again as you stated Mas that is nothing but soft targets Nationwide. our soldiers have difficulty upholding the oath they take if they are unarmed on us soil protecting the Homeland.

  3. I am even more enraged by the fact the shooter was taken down by county Sheriff officers NOT base security. How can this be? Have you no active protocol for a mass shooter, not enough security guards. Did you stand and do nothing while you waited for the Sheriff. The first major news from the scene was by the Escambia Sheriff.

  4. Arming our Unarmed Forces is the very definition of a “no brainer.” John Farnam has pointed out the same truth in the past.

    Toward the end of WWII, our Marines were disarmed when higher-ups thought the battle of Iwo Jima was over. Some Japanese soldiers made a last ditch attack with predictable results.

    I am for allowing our service members to carry weapons of their choice, paid for by themselves. If any commander-in-chief could get this done, it would be this one.

    Will there be negligent discharges from time to time? Of course. I believe negligent discharges are preferable to slaughters. I guess the Second Amendment isn’t even recognized by our military.

    In other news, there was a prolonged shootout in Jersey City, NJ yesterday. I wonder why it took so long to neutralize the threat. Will our government tell us? Will journalists search for the reason?

  5. In my opinion all those who want to keep the innocent untrained and unarmed are “culpable” for every needless death. I would charge them with the crime they are “aiding and abetting”. Missed getting to Eglin in time for JSSAP but was a friend of Jack Robbins and Sandy “Boss”Weisberger.

  6. While I agree with the idea of arming (with some restrictions) our military people, there are and will always be at least two reasons that it won’t happen: Time and money. I was in the USN during Vietnam (two cruises in the ‘war zone’) and learned first and second hand of the budget restrictions on purchasing anything but essentials – and even those were an issue at times. The time issue is pertinent because modern sailors (and soldiers, I would presume) have a lot to learn and stay current with, as well as their normal duties. As was tragically demonstrated fairly recently with the far east collisions this is a major problem.
    The M1911’s we wore during sentry duty were unloaded while in the USA and (usually) loaded overseas. I was one of few on the ship who had actually used one. However, I used it before enlisting…
    Just my $0.02

  7. Mass murderers hunt where the prey can’t defend themselves. Kudos to the military for being open to the possibility that they should allow lethal self defense to be an option. I hope it happens but am sad the brave men and women who protect us from foreign and domestic enemies now need to protect themselves in our own country on our own military bases. Civilian government facilities could learn a thing or two from the military. As could too many state governments.

  8. I sent a comment to President Trump suggesting that all NCOs and Officers be allowed to carry both on and off duty.

  9. We had Saudi trainees at Eglin AFB when I was there in the 1960’s. “We watched our backs.” They also fly lethal aircraft at our bases although I see they’ve been temporarily grounded. A big risk to take just to sell aircraft. We were often armed, BTW, and the times were not nearly as volatile as now, but there still were occasional issues.

  10. We recruite these service men, vet them, background check them, socially verify thmm train them, promote them, train them some more…. and then see they are disarmed, when their very reason for BEING in the military is to be ARMED protectors for our nation, both at home and abroad.

    I know gummit are masters at strange irrational thinking and policies… but this one is beyond insane.

    At this rate, when the deep state controllers finally decide its time to take over by force, after thinking they have the general public disarmed, and their military “servants” are disared, when at least some of us are not HOW do they think theywill prevail?

    Since their form of control/dominance is a mental illeness, I suppose it is rational their idea are NOT rational and sound. Methin=ks the have not thought things through far enough.
    If they keep everyone disarmed, WHO will be their enforcement arm?

    Disarmed military is a strange oxymoron. But that fits well with the morons trying to run the show.

  11. “I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” Some find the burden of adulthood overwhelming.

  12. NCOs and Officers were always armed “on duty”. Foreign militaries that I’ve worked with were as well. Bring back the trust in our troops. When I started out, we had our rifles all the time and locked to our bunks or “Stacked” with a guard.

  13. Decades ago when I served in the USAF as a Minuteman Deputy Missile Combat Crew Commander, we were required to wear our sidearms when we had any one other than the crew commander or deputy commander inside the Launch Control Center. The missile wing I was assigned to was hosting a tour of American and international military officers who were attending the National War College and were studying theory behind Nuclear deterrence and strategic bombardment. Part of the curriculum involved visiting an operational missile base and touring an operational Launch Control Center ( sometimes referred to as the “capsule” ) and interacting with an on alert combat crew. My commander and I were selected to be the crew the Nato officers visited. My commander was giving them a briefing ,when I observed one of the visiting officers ( high ranking and from a country that shall remain nameless) reach up and start pulling on the lock I had used to secure our launch codes in our clearly marked safe. I had my sidearm halfway out of my holster when our guest froze , looked in my direction and realized I was a fraction of a second away from being very inhospitable to him. He dropped his arm and started listening to the lecture with me remaining very close until he and the other students left the capsule. I informed my commander and the rest of the chain of command what happened, and never heard of the event again. Every one of these student officers were briefed multiple times that they were not to touch anything, yet our “guest” still decided to test whether I had remembered to secure my lock. My point is that military members need to be armed and to not do so could invite disaster depending on the circumstances. BTW, we were issued WW 2 era S&W Model 10 4 inch barrel .38 Special revolvers, loaded with fmj ammunition. It was enough of a threat to do the job.

    • Phil Fleury,

      That is a fascinating story! I’m so glad the USAF had that sensible rule in place, that you be armed in a missile silo. To me, that incident is just another example of God blessing America. I don’t know why He does it.

    • I find your story very interesting. I was drafted for Vietnam in the late 1960’s and a very good friend of mine was told he had to join a military service or go to jail for several months for evading police. He didn’t want to serve any time in jail so he joined the Air Force for 4 years. While he was serving in Okinawa, as security, the Base had demonstrations in protest for the Americans being there. To protect the base, the security forces were issued weapons with no ammunition. So I guess it was just up to the base commander on how the Air Force would protect its interest.
      For me, I was armed with both weapons and bullets. Maybe the Army just had more trust of their soldiers than the Air Force had in their Airmen. 🙂

  14. The oxygen is thin that far up the ladder. They are so engaged in the power struggle of getting further up that they become light headed with the arrogance of power. And cannot see reality beyond thei shortsighted and narrowly constructed idealism. A house of cards with no real structure. It would take a library to detail the extent of their ignorance.

  15. When I was in the Corps in the 70s, I carried a 1911 with an extra magazine on base. What the hell is wrong with DOD!

  16. Any person who insists on our military to be unarmed in today’s society is an idiot i hope Trump reverses this madness. Arm our troops

  17. I believe all active military personnel should be allowed to carry sidearms just like civilians who have concealed weapons licenses, only in their case it should include on bases too. At the very least, they should pack heat on bases where members of a foreign nation’s military are present, especially those from middle eastern countries. Profiling? You bet!

  18. I suggest that the military split the difference between the options of (1) disarm all military personnel and (2) arm all military personnel.

    Instead, take a page from the “Shall Issue” laws in a lot of States. Give military personnel the option to obtain a “Military Handgun Carry Permit” issued by appropriate military authority. There should be a uniform set of rules to obtain such a permit. Generally, these would be:

    1) The military member, requesting the permit, must have a Good Service Record with no history of serious reprimands, crime or domestic violence.

    2) The military member must be qualified (on the range) with military handguns.

    3) The military member must be willing to take (and pass) a short course (1 Day) which gives additional training concerning legal issues and concealed carry methods.

    Requesting a military permit would be voluntary and there would be NO FEE to apply for the permit. All military personnel who (A) want a permit and (B) are able to meet the above basic requirements SHALL BE issued a permit.

    In case of future misconduct, the military authority would be able, of course, to strip any member of the military of their carry permit.

    We know that civilian carry permit holders are among the most law-abiding people in the U.S. I suspect this same dynamic would apply to members of the military that are interested enough to apply for a military version and work to meet the requirement.

    The result would be that some percentage of military personnel (maybe 10 to 20 percent) would likely be carrying at any time and could instantly respond to one of these murderous incidents. They would be military sheepdogs.

    This option avoids making people carry who simply don’t want the responsibility while enabling those who do want it. It seems to work for us civilians. I don’t see why it can’t work for military personnel.

    • TN_MAN,

      Sounds good. Also, I think your idea would keep negligent discharges to a minimum. Forcing all members to carry all the time would give scatter-brained individuals plenty of time and chances to make loud mistakes. Boom!

    • Your plan could work harmoniously with off-base carry rules in at least one State, where all active duty military in pursuit of their duties have been legally entitled to carry anywhere in the civilian sphere (maybe except on certain federal property, like “gun-free” Veterans Administration hospitals). Your military carry permit holders ought to be thus automatically entitled to bear arms continuously on and off base in such a State. Some kind of recognition device would probably be considered necessary, though. No microchip implants, please. We sure could use a nationwide, military/civilian permit system to help facilitate personal defense and sheepdog action. As an ear-witness to one mass murder, I am a fully committed sheepdog myself.

      • It should work for off-base carry in a lot of States. Clearly, if the State has “Constitutional Carry”, it would be OK.

        A number of States have, written directly into their laws, that members of the military may carry firearms. So, that exception might be enough for a number of other States.

        Finally, a lot of States automatically recognize all valid carry permits from other States. I think it likely that these States would extend that policy to Military Carry Permits.

        Probably, the only real “problem” areas would be those “Deep Blue” States or Districts, like New Jersey or Washington, D.C., that are philosophically opposed to ANYBODY but on-duty law enforcement carrying firearms.

  19. Our servicemen should be armed. Period. However, those who are issued weapons must receive more training than I received when I went thru boot camp back in ’68. One day with the M1 and no training with the 1911 before shooting for qualification. Why is it “safe” to train these men with all manner of weapons to fight overseas and tie their hands here in the states?? Are we afraid of them?? Are we afraid that they will use common sense when given an order?? “Gun-free zones” are nothing but open season tickets.

  20. The reluctance and downright fear by senior leadership is a clear statement of just how far out of touch they are with the troops who actually accomplish the mission.

  21. I engaged in this debate over at Instapundit and was shocked at how many commentators were making excuses as to why the troops shouldn’t be armed. It was highly reminiscent of the
    ‘blood in the streets” arguments you see from leftists every time civilian carry is discussed. It doesn’t happen in the civilian world and it won’t happen in the military. It is even crazier in the military world because the military has the authority and resources to mandate first-rate training. I wasn’t dealing with leftist trolls either as I recognized many of the people.

  22. This is a shame. My co workers am I are better armed in a bad part of town where theres a “no weapons “ policy within the company property.

  23. No rational reason that NCOs with additional training should not be armed on base. Of course, it will never happen. The Beltway crowd prefers additional murders of service members and civilians to even the thought of a negligent discharge.

  24. Churchill talked about the Quebec Conference in his history of WWII. The conference room was hot and crowded, so various generals, admirals, and ministers got pushed out into the hall and the door closed in their faces, while Roosevelt, Churchill, Mackenzie-King, and various lesser VIPs were discussing Important Matters.

    At one point the VIPs were being presented with a demonstration of a “bulletproof” building material. General Marshall was dubious, so right in front of everyone he hauled out his pistol and took a shot to see for himself.

    Churchill said this caused much commotion out in the hall, and a cry of “They’re killing each other in there!”, but nobody dared open the door to look…