We sharpen our knives and clean our firearms prior to anticipated action. More than that, we keep our weapons and equipment in excellent repair. Combatants will repair equipment, reorder consumables, and complete function checks. Yet what priority is placed on the single most important weapon system that resides in the eight inches between a set of ears.
It is necessary for combatants to be trained to exceed the physical, and emotional limits of the civilians they protect, and the opponents they face. Training in the military has but a few real purposes; To give the combatant the skills, and knowledge they need to perform their missions. To prepare them emotionally for the pandemonium of battle. To instill in them the discipline which makes them something very much more than just an accumulation of warm bodies.
The military and law enforcement have a long tradition of instilling discipline in their ranks. By all means, ask any Marine or State Trooper. These institutions also accomplish marvels in infusing individuals with a host of knowledge, skills, and abilities. Usually far more quickly and with greater mastery than any pure civilian agency. The one area that our great institutions are laboring ardently on, is the preparation and care of the emotional and mental health of our modern-day warriors.
In an ever more complex field of battle, the mental health and emotional preparedness of each combatant is more critical now than ever before. We know from unassailable medical research what affects human performance. Something as complex as a human being expected to perform well during the emotional, physical and mental stress of combat should be properly maintained.
We know, for instance, just getting enough sunlight on a regular basis is important. Permanent or long-term assignments to night shifts are not going to keep personnel at their best.
Constant change in sleep patterns and the regular absence of sleep is one the largest contributing factors to poor and at times disastrous decisions. The Stereotype of a hard drinking and hard fighting warrior who never asks for help has to be addressed. The hardest drinkers are usually not the best fighters, and it’s in no one’s best interest to find out when someone has reached their limit. Down time is important and allowing for “decompression” and rest after the action is essential.
Today’s warriors have evolved into something extraordinary. They are part scholars, part craftsmen, professional managers, each is expected to be able to shoot, move and communicate. Once this meant employing a bolt action rifle, wiring a field telephone and operating a Jeep. Currently, the technical expertise it takes to operate all the equipment that modern warriors are expected to be competent in is staggering. The communication systems they employ are labyrinthine and complex. The stress of operating under frequently changing rules of engagement is enough to test the mental limits of anyone regardless of the amount of training.
All the training and all the equipment of the modern world is of absolutely no value without the warrior. We need to remember that even the most powerful weapon in the world needs to be cared for, and maintained.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.