Sunday, March 8, 2009


I recently received a request from a soldier to pass along his thoughts and feelings on stop loss.
I guess during the process of putting his thoughts in writing a few other issues came out also.
It's good to vent, and while I edited the content for length, the real meat of the message is here in all it's glory.
I should explain that this individual spent 15 months in Iraq and was involved in several missions, including the siege of Baqubah. (sp?)
Here are his words.

Tell these people that are saying stop loss is needed, that they need to do some more research.

The army is currently over-strength.
If we weren't in two wars, they'd be trying to pay people to get out.
One month after defense secretary Gates recommended to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to lower the percentage of soldiers being stop lossed, they instead raised the number by 43%.
Soldiers who are stop lossed, serve on average, an additional 6.6 months.
Ask them if they can imagine being 3,000 miles away from home, going out risking their lives for 180+ days when they are supposed to be home living their lives.
Tell anybody who wants to know, if I was only doing 6.6 months, I would have way less of an issue with it. But I'm a lucky one and I get an additional 19 months.
Tell the guy who is in the army and suggests that soldiers get paid more money that,
A. It was never about money for me. I could be making at least 15 grand more a year as a police officer.
B. Stop lossed soldiers are supposed to get extra pay, the bill has been passed, yet the same government who decided that we didn't deserve to be civilians, also decided we didn't deserve the money we were entitled to. And,
C. If he wants more money, just wait, when we're done in Afghanistan, they'll stick a nice check in his pocket and kick his ass out the door with maybe a thank you, but we don't need your service anymore.

Tell them that stop loss is only legal in a time of war. I guess since we're in the global war on terror, maybe I could run away to Canada.
Technically if the war is global, I'd be upholding my end of the deal.
This isn't a war, this is an attempt to destabilize the most populous Muslim region in the world, in order to keep one strong Muslim country or uprising that would finally fill in the power vacuum that was left when,
A. World Wars I and II sapped Europe of all there power (thanks to the fact that we ensured through our great treaties that countries like Germany would not regain any form of power for decades to come),and
B. The Cold War ended and Russia collapsed leaving all the areas they were trying to support economically to stand against us, and resulting in a lawless society of people who never had a government. (except for during the Russian rule).
Politicians knew that the Muslims would eventually rise against us if we didn't do something about it because the hardliners feel that America's "degradation" of women is causing the traditional family model to collapse globally.
Don't listen when these d-bag politicians try to say "Muslims hate us cause of our religion".
They hate us because in our society if women wanna raise a family, do it up.
You wanna be a professional and don't have time for a family, that's fine, we won't behead you, or throw acid on you, we'll encourage you.

It is truly, in their eyes, a fight of good vs. evil, or old school vs. new school, traditions vs. progress.
I'm not saying I'm not proud to have fought for my country, or that I don't agree with why we're fighting (both reasons, the real one I just stated and the whole religious ticket too).

Sorry, I could go on forever.
I don't know how this went from stop loss to what the war is or isn't about but...Any of these folks who agree with stop loss, or are just brain washed retards period, tell them to look me up and I'll educate their dumb asses.
Sorry again, more sarcasm than anger!

I'm attempting to force the government to pay attention to the stop loss issue, and make good on Secretary Gates' order to reduce the numbers of stop lossed soldiers.

If left to the leaders of the Army it will never happen, because it's easier to do nothing, than to fix the problem.


Online petition - End Stop Loss

You can also help by posting a link to the petition on you blog, and telling your friends an relatives about it.
Or simply link back to,
And I'll do the rest.

May god bless and keep our soldiers safe so that they may all return to their loved ones soon.
Thank you.



    i have no need for your education. the fact that a policy affected you in a negitive way does in fact qualify you for a bias opinoin. i dont hear any soldiers getting on here who havent been stop loss bitching about it only the ones who wanted out and were stopped. its like polling a bunch of drivers who just got speeding tickets and asking them if they like trafic laws. its a no fucking brainer. if you wanted out and the army made you stay..... you naturely will not like that. duh.... so i get it, you dont like stop loss and you were prolonged for 19 months. that sucks man, but to fucking bad. deal with it. i think i can take a hard opposition to your stance cause i have been over here twice, and i go out on the streets 6 days a week. ive kicked in doors, ive been blown up, ive been shot at, and ive tried to fix someone who was shot in the face while being shot at. ive earned the right to have an opinion. dont tell me how to feel or that im wrong to feel safer with the soldiers of mine who were stop lossed. i would rather have them here with me then new privates out of basic. if you cant understand that... then to fucking bad. im sure my soldiers who are stop lossed think it sucks. and its a shitty situation. but at the end of the day there presence could, and may have already saved lifes.

    i just reread your post and heres a quote of yours.

    "Tell anybody who wants to know, if I was only doing 6.6 months, I would have way less of an issue with it."

    why in the world would you have less of an issue with it if it wasnt for as long. if it were the avg. that everyone else does then you wouldnt have a problem with stop loss. are you fucking serious. you let your own situation and your own bad luck dictate your opinion on an issue. well how conviced im i to be if you dont even REALLY belive what your saying, its just that you had it super hard. poor you. because you have had a rough time and you got it worse then most, now what, you think your feelings holds water.

    heres another quote.

    "Tell the guy who is in the army and suggests that soldiers get paid more money that, If he wants more money, just wait, when we're done in Afghanistan, they'll stick a nice check in his pocket and kick his ass out the door with maybe a thank you, but we don't need your service anymore."

    thats me right. yeah ok, im not a shit bag. the army kicks out shit bags. the army will keep me after afganistan. your a retard to think that the army will draw down its numbers after afganistan. you think this war stops at afganistan. your naive.

    "Don't listen when these d-bag politicians try to say "Muslims hate us cause of our religion".

    which politicains say that. are you serious. do you honestly think thats the stance of the US government. that muslims hate us cause of our religion. your stupid. stop talking if you dont know what your talking about. all you do is make the normal people around you dumber. do you really want to be responsible for making everyone around you dumb. come on guy. SERIOUSLY.

    oh its magic bullet time. wait for it.

    Sorry again, all of the above was more sarcasm than anger!

    thanks for the comments high speed.

  2. I understand the need to vent, but the "facts" this soldier is speaking of, are themselves based on myth, common misunderstanding, and perception. Had this soldier done any real research himself, instead of relying on what he has heard was conduted as research, he might have a better understanding of the situation.

    First off, Stop Loss isn't new. While it is still not largely known, despite an MTV movie, it was used even during Desert Storm. After Desert Storm, with the military draw down (link here) of the 90's, it was once again mostly shelved. There wasn't a need.

    The Army doesn't have a "strength" in the sense you are speaking. The truth is that fighting two wars overseas will ALWAYS result in being under strength. Between Desert Storm, and OEF, there was nothing (Kosovo/Bosnia doesn't count) for our military to do. This is arguably a GREAT thing for America, but not for the military. If you think about the 20 year retirement cycle, you can't have a sitting military with no experience. As those with experience move out, those they trained will be trained by experience, but have none themselves. The next generation would be even worse off. You can play war games all you want in the Barstow desert and the Louisiana forests, but we both know it isn't the same. This isn't WHY we create war, but this is why we GET INVOLVED in other conflicts. That, and weapons/equipment research and testing. If you disregard Iraq and Afghanistan, there are tens of thousands of American soldiers stationed and strategically placed all over the world. You can even disregard the thousands in Germany and Korea, and we would still have thousands at various places across the globe. Unfortunately, the military is used to protect government and business interest, with defense second. So, when you speak of "over strength," the truth is that there are a couple hundred thousand soldiers in America in support, training, and command posts that are not deployable--though not to say that they have not also participated. If we were "over strength" as you say, then there would be no reason for soldiers to have even gone back for a second trip, let alone third, fourth, or fifth. There would not be an issue with dwell time, where some BDE's are spending less than a year in between rotations. Saying this though, does not mean that I agreew ith the way the military is being used in Iraq--the pace, tempo, and missions given.

    In 2005-2006, the Air Force WAS paying soldiers and officers to leave the service, and more for those willing to go to the Army. Again, it isn't the number overall, but where those numbers are, and where it could better be used.

    The reason a stop loss average is around 6.6 months is because most soldiers find their ETS dates approaching when half their deployment is over. It is far easier for them to finish their deployment than get out earlier, or leave from a war zone. I don't agree with the principle, just stating why. (I was stoplossed for 15 months and a few days)

    Don't say it isn't about the money, because if it didn't matter, you'd give it back, or send it elsewhere. Maybe it wasn't the primary motivation, but saying it like you did makes you sound like some patriotic person who is GLAD to fight and defend his country, but not at all costs--because now you're complaining. (I complained too, but for me, it was about the money and the school money)

    The Stoploss Compensation Act has not passed. It has been introduced, and has sat around on the floor, getting psuhed around to other committees, where it will not likely do anything but get forgotten and dropped. (link here)

    Stop Lossed soldiers do get paid extra, along with all the other deployed soldiers. Sure, there is no extra pay for being stop lossed before and after a deployment, but the truth is, you're only stop lossed to deploy. And when deployed, you make more money. There is not an extra payment simply for being involuntarily extended.

    Stop Loss is legal anytime, and is used at the Presidents discretion. (Link here) But, his discretion pretty much only comes at war. :)

    Running away to Canada is not holding up your end of the deal. The term "Global War on Terror" is just a term, used by an idiot president, and has even been discouraged by the new one. Being a smart ass like this says a lot about your maturity. It isn't a Global War, and thinking you would be helping the "cause" from Canada is something a Private would think.

    The Middle East is not the most populous Muslim region in the world. An overwhelming majority of the world's Muslims live in Indonesia, not the Middle East and North Africa. And, the majority isn't even close to being 51/49--it's much higher, and has been for a long time.

    Your information for the wars on Communism and Fascism are lacking. Your details are mixed up, and the sad truth is that it wasn't America's "greatness" that led to end of either.

    The manner of extremist islamism that you described, about the female and familial struggles are not the real issues, but ones in which the media's propaganda is playing up, and even then, are not the real issues, but minor side issues. Sadly, my eyes were opened up when I went back to school and started learning about it all from a historical, political, and religious perspective (I'm not a muslim) in conjunction WITH my travels and experiences. Not that I blame you, stop loss halted my my dream of going back to school, but if you are patient and wait it out, you'll see. I understand your anger better than more could ever, but your arguments speak more toward anger and hasty disinformation than reason or unbiased and generally accepted research.

  3. sgt m,
    my comments above are not directed at you, but toward the guest poster. I'm supposed to be on his side, but he's clueless.

    sgt m, I don't agree with your reasoning, but I understand how and why you draw your conclusion. but to be fair, it also seems like your position on stop loss is influenced by your own situation--in that you would rather have the experienced soldier than the brand new one. but, we were all inexperienced once, even our own leaders. it isn't wrong to want the more experienced soldier backing you up--it's perfectly natural. the argument, moreover, is that if America is not able to convince its own soldiers to do the politicians' dirty work, then there is a problem.

    now, here is a question, sgt m. how do you make the army a place for soldiers to not want to leave?

    we'll pay any dirtbag 5 figures just to enlist, and accept that they'll want to leave in 3-5. then, the ones that don't want to leave, but nco's like you wish WOULD leave, well, we'll give 'em another 5 figures to stay army, as long as we can push them somewhere else.

    what can the army do to keep the good ones?


    because I'm a grammar nazi, and it'll help your monthly counselings (minus capitalization):

    "it's their's. it belongs to them over there."

    "iraq? yeah, i've been there."

    "the war is over--they're going home!"

    "dude, I got two spoons in my MRE!"

    "hey, I did too!" "too fucking bad!" "you're too smart for your own good."

    "where are you going to go to for RR?"

    "To Qatar? Hey, I've been there too!"

  4. I forgot to add these links into my text:,14556,MPDC_CareerNews_Army_Enlisted_011805_02,00.html

  5. SGT & Stoploss,
    In the future, refrain from calling names.
    It serves no purpose.
    Say what ever you want in comments.
    I don't care if the grammar or spelling is correct.
    If you want to debate a point that others make, feel free.
    If you have more knowledge of a subject, state the facts as you know them in a polite manner.
    Keep in mind that the spirit of my blog is that I honor the rites of others to their opinions, regardless of whether or not I agree.
    So behave.
    And, keep in mind that my stance against, "stop loss" has nothing to do with anyone who has been, or is to be stop lossed. It is my opinion that it is a terrible policy. J- you hit the nail square on the head when you said something to the extent of, if you want soldiers to stay in the Army, do something to make the Army the kind of place where people want to stay.
    I couldn't agree more.
    Thanks for stopping bye.

  6. Good job telling them to behave! hahahaha. finanlly someone else to help me! :) How are you doing?

  7. read the koran, and tell me atleast a decent percentage of these psychos aren't joining this fight against us for some off the wall translation they're being fed out of its pages. then, do me a favor and read bin laden's "letter to America" written to, you guessed it, America, in 2002. he cleary says in it on more than one occassion, we will be punished for ruining the "traditional understanding of the family". I won't go any futher into it.
    on to my next issue HIGH SPEED. me saying I wouldn't mind only being stop lossed for 6.6 months actually makes plenty of sense. here, I'll break it down for you. if I were to be stop lossed for 6.6 months, I'd be stop lossed while I was already in Iraq. now, 19 monhts...that's a little rediculous. and if you have a problem with me venting to someone, who by the way wasn't you, you can blow it out your ass. I'm going to say something I never say...I fought for my right to bitch. the reason I'll say that today is cause you wanna tell me what you've done? I am not impressed. there's nothing you've done that I haven't except for try to be-little me by saying that you've done it. so have I and 1000's of other young men. from one vet to another, THANKS! and since we're on the subject of patting ourselves on the back, I'm proud as hell of what I did. but I did it, and I don't want to do it again. you wanna call me a pussy for that, thats your problem. I know I'm not going to make a career out of this and you know what, I've done more than most already so if I'm a little upset about getting told I'm going to do it again, when there's millions and millions of able body people who haven't done it period, yea I get a little pissed off. you think I'm selfish for wanting to get out and start my life? I think you're selfish for wanting your guys who are stop lossed to get stuck in a shitty situation, against their will. my nco's are actually trying to help me get out cause they realize its probably better to train somebody to replace me than to have me over there as a team leader, distracted by the fact that I'm pissed off at the world for having to be there. what they don't realize is, if I do end up going back, this will all be a bad memory. I'll put it behind me and move the hell on. oh, another reason they're helping me out, is cause they know stop loss is bull shit.
    if its about training soldiers, how about they let me out and I'll join the guard and train them. If you can't teach a new soldier, in six months time, what they need to know to survive that's your fault. other than teaching them that, its out of your hands, the cherries either have it in them or they don't. I got to this unit 6 months before it deployed, went through three training exercises on top of the normal daily training and was good to go the second that helicopter touched down in baghdad. my point. there is almost an equal time between now and this units next deployment so any new guys will be trained fine whether I'm here or not. Honestly, I'm one man in a brigade of 4,000, with over 50% of that brigade being veterans. do the math. pretty good numbers.

  8. people have opinions, not everybody agrees with eachother. you wanna get all huffy puffy over someone else's opinion maybe you should hide yours from the eyes of the public. just an after thought.
    and 13 stop loss. I'll get to your comment tomorrow. I almost shot myself in the head reading your dribble on your blog, and that's not a risk I'm willing to take right now we just had to give our guys a suicide awareness class. lucky for both of us I suppose

  9. Anon, I'm looking forward to your comment. A lot of people are starting to discover the "dribble" on my blog. I noticed your visit on my sitemeter--I'm not sure how accurate your vomit induced opinion of me, my situation, or the content and style of my writing can be with such a limited amount of time spent not reading, but blowing through. I don't normally judge books by the first few pages I see, nor movies, and considering I have over 200 posts, unless you have been following for a while, are unlikely to find anything to support whatever misguided opinion you have of me.

    what's my beef? we share the same sense of entitlement, that our situations were equally wrong, and that we were equally pissed off. I take offense that your "post" seems to spout some sort of knowledge of the background and history, not only of the region you are in, but of the policies for which you obviously have not done the homework for. also, that your experience is the only experience, or mistakenly that it is just like every other experience is wrong. you may not actually think this, but your "post" comes across as this way. in that manner, your post is nothing more than a rant that does more harm than good.

    this is going to sound mean, but I honestly wish you well and an expedient and safe return. your suicide jokes are rather distasteful in this context--I'm sure you know that for every soldier down on the battlefield, it takes 2-3 more just to support and recover his ass. And where would that leave us? personnel shortage, and yet a greater reason to rely on IRR, and Stop Loss.

    btw, I suggest you read my BIO sidebar on my blog, and start from the beginning. click the blue words to bring up new pages to former posts that I felt were important to my story. then, realize that I have yet, in 11 months, to completely tell my story. Until recently, everything has been context to the story.

    stay safe, man.


    sorry jonh. the guess blogger made several references to me and he from what i could tell, was trying to talk down to me. i tryed to avoid this before. i have no problem being civil. in the future i will refrain from responding to comments that provoke and talk down to people, so that we can avoid pointless confrontations on your blog.
    once again, im sorry.

    guess blogger, i dont even know if your in the converstation anymore, it seems as if its shifted to me, stoploss, and some anonymous guy who i think stoploss thought was me. in the future, if and when i post, you will see SGT MCNEIL at the top. if you dont see my name, it wasnt me. it has been brought to my attention that i havent done my research on the issue. so i too will wait to respond to you stoploss. i will go and do my own "objective" reseacher that paints my opinion in a favorable light, since thats what objective reseach is these days. then i will respond.

  11. SGT M,

    I was not referring to you when I spoke of research, but to the guest poster. I'm sorry if it got confusing. I was under the impression that Anon was the guest poster, who was attacking both of us, for our own reactions to his post.

    SGT M, I did pose a question or two for you, acknowledging your stance on stop loss, and how I understand it, but disagree with it. the links I referenced above allude to the points I made in my first post in this thread, however, some of the more historical and religious points are things that I have learned this semester in Middle Eastern Politics, World Religions, and American History after the Bomb (which is really a class on CIA intervnetion in the 20th Century).

  12. for anyone to be sorry!!!!!
    I think it's a great debate.
    Sometimes anger takes over, and that's when we all need to realize that wars are being fought because of anger over differences of opinion.
    Religion is an opinion isn't it?
    So, when someone knows a little more about a subject than someone else, what good does it do to call them ignorant?
    I have problems with grammar, and spelling for that matter, so maybe everyone thinks I'm a dumb ass.
    Just don't call me it on my blog...
    Ha ha.
    Oh and Jenn. I forgot about you in this flurry of activity, lol.
    I've been ok. Other then an acute sinus infection.
    They're behaving a little better aren't they?
    I raised three sons, so I know a little about getting in the middle of disputes.
    Two of them still give me crap about the time I knocked their heads together because they wouldn't stop bickering about something. Evidently I scarred them for life...

  13. It's ok! it's been crazy on here! LOL. eww. sinus infections aren't good.( not that I ever had one ) HAHA thats too funny about knocking their heads together!!!! ha bet they learned to agrue in front of you! ;) oh and the guys are behaving much better.sheesh. boys will be boys i suppose. anyways, HAVE A GREAT DAY!!!

  14. Hey dad,
    Was over at your mySpace page. They deleted your blog,eh?

    Atta boy!

  15. Dad,

    I got distracted and haven't been by lately. Lots of discussion. I don't think this debate is going to be over anytime soon.

    I you are better from the sinus infection.

  16. Hey IDad.

    I wuz here.

    I think I'll keep my opinions to myself.

    Just remember, opinions are like assholes, everyone has one and they ALL stink.

    love ya, still praying for Matt.

  17. Ms Ass holes and armpits..
    I'd love to hear your op pinion, and regardless of how you feel, please sign the petition, so those of us who want to see the policy changed can go forward with the battle.

    Dad, Always good to hear from you..
    Debate is good.
    And I think your correct. It won't be over anytime soon.

    Sinus update. Had a wisdom tooth pulled today.
    Seems once I got the ear infection, and sinus's some what squared away, I realized I had a toothache.

    Mic, I haven't checked out my mySpace page for a while?
    Guess I should.
    It use to be our way of checking up on Matt. We would watch to see the last time he was on, and know that he was safe.

    Hi Jenn.
    I love it.
    Debate is good, as is ranting and raving.
    They learned not to get toe to toe when they argued. And that when I told them enough, I meant it.