Home > Uncategorized > Lessons from Army photos

Lessons from Army photos

I try to learn whenever I can, especially from government sources. Take a look at this photo posted @ the Firearm Blog. Notice anything about Spc. Jeremy Burton? Here are a few observations.

  • He’s not alone, despite the appearance. For one, he’s got his teammates described in the caption. Two, I’m willing to bet that the cameraman is armed.
  • He has what appears to be a bottle of water strapped to his back. Don’t do that, it makes it hard to get to. Likewise the axe (?) next to the water bottle.
  • His body armor is not as effective as it could be. Note the giant gap behind his left scapula (shoulder blade) where the body armor isn’t conforming to his torso. This means that a large part of his back is uncovered from the cameraman’s perspective, and therefore vulnerable.

I’m sure he’s trained in how to use that M4 and M203 competently, so I won’t comment on his skill there without any evidence. But all that fancy equipment ain’t worth a damn if you don’t use it correctly.

What else do you see?

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. 15 February 2011 at 21:15

    -ACU…not so good there.
    -He may be skylining himself, although I’d have to see the rest of the terrain to say for sure.
    -I have no clue how you’d seriously aim an M203 with an ACOG mounted. We used to have to put them through windows at a distance to qualify. Can anyone shoot iron sights anymore?
    -That 15-20′ wide line of rocks below him would serve to draw attention (“point”, if you will) to his general area. I’d personally avoid unnatural terrain features like that if I could. His buddies climbing would draw more attention than he would, however.
    -The 40mm rounds don’t bug me too much, other than being shiny, and forming a shiny line from a distance. It takes a bit to actually arm those things. It’s still kinda spooky to bounce them around, though.

    Hard to say much though, without being there. He could have been ordered to mount the ACOG, has no choice in gear or uniform, and his squad leader probably told him to pull overwatch from there.


  2. Dick B
    15 February 2011 at 21:52

    Concur, not a spot I’d choose for my guys. Too obvious a location and no concealment
    let alone cover. There’s gotta be a better spot.
    Also concur on the bright ‘brass’ 40mm. Sort of thing that catches the eye. Cover it
    Inappropriate camo uniform. he ought to have some plain brown burlap or brush to screen him.
    Body Armor can be a PITA, and it’s hot. Odds are slim somebody will pot him in the middle of a photo op, but still, one should do one’s best. Bad habit to get sloppy.

    But he’s a tanker and so, cannot be judged as tho he were Infantry. His Sergeant needs to have words with some grunts and learn the game.

  3. Anonymous
    20 February 2011 at 20:47

    Looks posed to me. (The cameraman seems to have climbed a nearby terrain feature for the purposes of the photo.)

    Speaking as a hunter, crawling around on a prominent knoll like that would create enough movement, noise, silhouette and generalized commotion to frighten off anything marginally awake.

    I concur with Dick B. He’s a tanker, so his gear may not make much sense.

    Tip from an old SF buddy of mine: Get an old fishing net or similar and weave in/tie on burlap and strips of cloth. Roll it up tight and attach it to your ruck. It only takes a second to unlimber it, garnish with local “color” and drape it over yourself for an instant hide.

    Not as cumbersome or hot as a full Ghille, cheap, disposable and very effective when used correctly.

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