This Army specialist’s inspiring speech about moving ‘down this bullcrap range’ ranks up there with Eisenhower’s D-Day address

“Is that the Secretary of Defense?”

When thinking about the kinds of military speeches that inspire exhausted spirits and strike fear into the hearts of enemies, several come to mind.

There’s Army Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower’s address to troops as they prepared to “embark upon the Great Crusade” and storm the beaches of Normandy in 1944. There’s Winston Churchill’s 1940 address to the House of Commons in which he declared, “We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields … we shall never surrender.” And lest we forget President John F. Kennedy’s address in 1962, when he said the “cost of freedom is always high-but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender or submission.” 

Now, it seems it may be time to add another name to that list of orators as one specialist’s exhilarating speech is making the rounds on social media

Standing in the dark with a pipe in one hand, the young man identified on TikTok as the “Commander [in] Chief of the E-4 Mafia” delivers a rousing speech to his fellow soldiers, encouraging them forward on “what could be the largest nighttime invasion that this here bullcrap range has ever seen.” 

“So now hear this — you will not question your orders,” he exclaims passionately as the soldiers around him laugh. “You will understand that higher knows better, and you will go down that range. You will go to the ammo points, you will fill your magazines with imaginary rounds … and you will move slowly — very, very slowly — down this bullcrap range.” 

Chills. It almost brings a tear to my eye.

@hammer_actual

Pt.1 Speech from the Commander and Chief of the E-4 Mafia! #fypシ #fyp #military #america #MoneyTok #army

♬ original sound – Cole
@hammer_actual

Pt.2 The Commander and Chief of the E-4 Mafia! #fypシ #fyp #military #america #MoneyTok #army

♬ original sound – Cole

The response on social media was as expected: viewers praised the lasting legacy of the E-4 mafia everywhere (and wondered who exactly in his chain of command this soldier might be mimicking).

“I’m not even in the Army and I’d follow this man into war,” one person said in the comments. 

“Is that the Secretary of Defense?” another asked. It’s a fair question!

Many others pointed out that this is exactly the kind of ridiculousness they miss about the Army — finding some reason to laugh about even “the dumbest wastes of time and energy.” Not to mention the time-honored tradition of mocking the higher-ups that soldiers have subscribed to for decades, highlighted even in World War II miniseries Band of Brothers. 

There is of course no limit to the great lengths soldiers will go to fill time, and this group is likely fed up with whatever bullshit they’re standing around waiting to do. But the resounding message from all those who found inspiration in this specialist’s speech was simple: Promote ahead of peers.

Featured photo: Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower gives the order of the day to paratroopers in England prior to boarding their planes to participate in the first assault of the Normandy invasion (Left; U.S. Army Signal Corps via AP); Unnamed Army Specialist (Right; screenshot of TikTok).

Haley Britzky

Haley Britzkyis the Army reporter for Task & Purpose, covering the daily happenings in the Army and how they impact soldiers and their families, as well as broader national security issues. Originally from Texas, Haley previously worked at Axios before joining Task & Purpose in January 2019. Contact the author here.

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