French Soldier Shares His Observations of U.S. Military in Afghanistan
Sometime over the last six years, a French ISAF soldier was stationed in
Afghanistan with U.S. Army soldiers. His observations, which were published
in an editorial in a French newspaper, are a striking example of the uniquely
American values found in the country’s DNA.
In his beautifully penned article, the French soldier depicts U.S. soldiers
as brave, strong, and disciplined. He commends the soldiers for their
ability to think on their feet and to remain focused in the face of great
adversity, praising their team dedication and selflessness.
The Ruling Is in: Americans Are Impressive Warriors
One aspect of the American soldier which stood out immediately to the French
solider was their size and strength. The author compares their physique
to Rambo and states that next to the soldiers “we are wimps, even
the strongest of us.”
The Rambo analogy continues with his description of their fighting style
which was summed up in one word—charge! He paints a scene of a disciplined
unit all moving relentlessly toward the same goal, each man relying on
his brothers to support him in his mission. He states that while soldiers
in most militaries wait for orders in the face of adversity, the American
soldiers will simply charge, relying on their training and firepower to
win the day. “This is one of the great strengths of the American
force in combat…” the French soldier further commented.
Displaying Principles of Discipline & Unity
Although he was impressed by their ability to spend long hours in full
combat gear without the slightest sign of discomfort, he was equally fascinated
by the precision of the soldiers performing complex missions at night.
The soldiers carry out their tasks promptly and without complaint, and
transition from relaxed to combat ready in just three minutes.
“A passing American helicopter stops near a stranded vehicle just
to check that everything is alright; an American combat team will rush
to support ours…”
It is in this way that the American soldier best represents the civilian
values of industry, discipline and care for fellow man. The author concludes
his piece by declaring today’s American soldiers to be worthy heirs
of those who liberated Europe during WWII. He claims that their screw-ups
are “head and shoulders above the ‘high-medium’ of any
past group” and names them the “Greatest Generation of Soldiers.”
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to read an English translation of the full editorial.