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Yankees versus Red Sox, dogs versus cats, Coca-Cola versus Pepsi — all these rivalries pale in comparison to grunts versus POGs.
A colloquialism for infantrymen in the Army and Marine Corps, grunts are the military’s door kickers and trigger pullers, in short, they’re the pointy end of the spear.
By contrast, the term POG — person other than grunt — refers to non-infantry personnel. POGs provide all the support — from food, chow, ammo, and intel to transportation and air power — that ensures grunts can do their jobs effectively, like take the fight to the enemy.
Grunts and POGs live in two different worlds, and while there’s a lot of things grunts experience that non-infantry personnel will never understand — like how you’re a boot until you have a combat action ribbon or a combat infantryman badge — there’s a few things only POGs can truly understand.
Here are 15 things only the desk jockeys, cooks, admin and supply bubba's can relate to.
1. You’ve heard someone say, “Sorry guys, can’t go out drinking tonight. I'm too busy doing my PMI to get promoted to sergeant in 18 months!”
2. You’ve tried to impress girls at a bar with a story about how you facilitated a payment disbursement despite all the red tape "in country.”
3. To you, sitting in a tent in the barracks parking lot is a field op.
4. There’s at least one person in your unit who has read all the books on the commandant's reading list.
5. You’ve heard someone say: “Yeah, I wanted to go infantry, but my ASVAB was too high.”
6. Even POGs play the “you’re so POG” card and no matter your job, there’s always a bigger POG. If you’re a truck driver, then public affairs is more POG. If you’re public affairs, then admin is more POG, and so on.
7. Unit PT is not an everyday occurrence, and occasionally just means playing flag football.
8. You know “that guy” who went on one convoy in an MRAP, and tells endless stories back home about his time “outside the wire." If this doesn’t ring any bells, you might be “that guy.”
9. In the eyes of your staff noncommissioned officer or platoon sergeant, getting a low regulation haircut is the same as not getting one at all.
10. You’ve been excited to eat an MRE.
11. Of course you deserve a Navy Achievement Medal, aka a NAM, (or the Army or Air Force equivalent) for doing your job, don't be silly.
12. You know how to always ace field day inspection.
13. People still think you are a war hero no matter what you actually did in Iraq and Afghanistan. … or Okinawa.
14. You and your roommate have inspected each other’s uniforms before going to the chow hall for fear of getting chewed out by some sergeant hiding just inside the doorway. Also, you only have one roommate.
15. You took corporal's course, got a new MCMAP (Marine Corps Martial Arts Program) belt, and completed a marathon, all while deployed to Afghanistan.
The Air Force's top general says one of the designers of the ride-sharing app Uber is helping the branch build a new data-sharing network that the Air Force hopes will help service branches work together to detect and destroy targets.
The network, which the Air Force is calling the advanced battle management system (ABMS), would function a bit like the artificial intelligence construct Cortana from Halo, who identifies enemy ships and the nearest assets to destroy them at machine speed, so all the fleshy humans need to do is give a nod of approval before resuming their pipe-smoking.
An F-15 is rocking a WWII paint job to honor a B-17 pilot who gave his life to save a wounded crewman
An F-15C Eagle is sporting a badass World War II-era paint job in honor of a fallen bomber pilot who gave everything to ensure his men survived a deadly battle.
A U.S. E-11A Battlefield Airborne Communications Node aircraft crashed on Monday on Afghanistan, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein has confirmed.
Beloved basketball legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and seven other people were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California on Sunday. Two days earlier, Army Spc. Antonio I. Moore was killed during a vehicle rollover accident while conducting route clearing operations in Syria.
Which one more deserves your grief and mourning? According to Maj. Gen. John R. Evans, commander of the U.S. Army Cadet Command, you only have enough energy for one.
After 70 years, service members are finally filing medical malpractice claims against the US military
Jessica Purcell, a captain in the U.S. Army Reserve, was pregnant with her first child when she noticed a swollen lymph node in her left underarm.
Health-care providers at a MacDill Air Force Base clinic told her it was likely an infection or something related to pregnancy hormones. The following year they determined the issue had resolved itself.
It hadn't. A doctor off base found a large mass in her underarm and gave her a shocking diagnosis: stage 2 breast cancer.
Purcell was pregnant again. Her daughter had just turned 1. She was 35. And she had no right to sue for malpractice.
A 1950 Supreme Court ruling known as the Feres doctrine prohibits military members like Purcell from filing a lawsuit against the federal government for any injuries suffered while on active duty. That includes injury in combat, but also rape and medical malpractice, such as missing a cancer diagnosis.
Thanks in part to Tampa lawyer Natalie Khawam, a provision in this year's national defense budget allows those in active duty to file medical malpractice claims against the government for the first time since the Feres case.
With the Department of Defense overseeing the new claims process, the question now is how fairly and timely complaints will be judged. And whether, in the long run, this new move will help growing efforts to overturn the ruling and allow active duty members to sue like everyone else.