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(WTKR)   Pentagon looks for ways to honor drone pilots, besides a 1-UP   (wtkr.com) divider line 92
    More: Interesting, combat operations, honor drone  
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3068 clicks; posted to Main » on 13 Jul 2012 at 10:23 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-07-13 10:25:13 AM
Let em wear berets.
 
2012-07-13 10:26:06 AM
Trophies for multiplayer/co-op.
 
2012-07-13 10:26:50 AM
As long as we dock bonus points from their score for civilian deaths, I dont see the issue.
 
2012-07-13 10:27:25 AM
Achievement Unlocked-Double Dead
bombed a funeral!
 
2012-07-13 10:27:30 AM
Achievement Unlocked
 
2012-07-13 10:28:41 AM
Some sort of "Thanks For Not Crashing the Drone This Week" ribbon may be in order, but I think an award for valor and bravery is just a bit beyond silly.
 
2012-07-13 10:30:41 AM
STOP CAMPING!

Just come out in the OPEN!
 
2012-07-13 10:31:05 AM
www.demotivationalposters.org
 
2012-07-13 10:31:13 AM
Make it and amusement park game... charge for people to play.
 
2012-07-13 10:31:45 AM
Have they thought of medals? Some countries reward their military members with colorful ribbons with coin sized metal ornaments they allow their members to wear on their uniforms. They often will go out of their way to collect as many of these as they can. This is analogous to certain birds that gather shiny objects to ornament their nests.
 
2012-07-13 10:32:05 AM
Some people argue the pilots shouldn't get combat recognition because they're not on the ground, in the air, or in any danger when flying the drones.

But the Pentagon told Politico the drone pilots significantly and directly impact combat operations.


Makes sense to me to reward them for their contributions to missions, rather than how likely they are to get themselves killed.
 
2012-07-13 10:32:31 AM
Nerve staples?

/OH! I thought you said 'Drone Riots'....
 
2012-07-13 10:32:43 AM
coolmaterial.com
 
2012-07-13 10:32:47 AM
Wouldn't the traditional non-valor medals be enough for exceptional service? Do a good enough job, and you get an Aerial Achievement Medal.
 
2012-07-13 10:33:01 AM
Seeing as "real" pilots don't get much in the way of recognition when they put their lives one the line every day, I say they the UAV pilots can suck it. Impact LOA at the most. And definitely nothing for the States side ones.
 
2012-07-13 10:33:29 AM
drone pilots significantly and directly impact combat operations.

It's their job - why do they need a medal? They also get flight pay although the only time they get off the ground is skipping out to their cars after quitting time.
 
2012-07-13 10:33:37 AM
Give them a free premium account, or at least queue priority.
 
2012-07-13 10:37:29 AM
I whole heartedly agree.

They aren't the front line soldiers, or what we imagine a front line soldier to be. They won't be coming back from war with a chest full of shiny metal that could blind a room, but they do their part. And that's what the Military is all about, every little thing going towards the objective. Everyone is important, from the CO down to the chef in the mess hall (hungry soldiers can't do their job) and the IT workers in the hull of every carrier.

Let the drone pilots have their little bit of recognition.
 
2012-07-13 10:37:59 AM
If they do a good job, they can enter their initials into the Hall of Fame.
 
2012-07-13 10:38:47 AM
Non-Whistleblower Medal for keeping you mouth shut about war crimes.
 
2012-07-13 10:39:44 AM
Heck, dont even pay a salary. Just release the drone control program online as a freeware "game". Crowdsource the airwar.
 
2012-07-13 10:42:19 AM
When was the last time we fought a naval battle? Vietnam? But the Navy is still giving out medals I assume. The guys launching Tomahawks aren't in any danger either.
 
2012-07-13 10:42:39 AM
A set of unlockable achievements. If the full set is unlocked, they enter the Hall of Fame.

Seriously though, they are doing their part to help the mission objectives and are helping to save the lives of their fellow soldiers. They do deserve some recognition.

That being said, those with their boots on the ground who are putting their lives on the line certainly deserve a higher tier of recognition.
 
2012-07-13 10:42:49 AM
I would guess they should get some sort of "Meritorious Service" award... but Combat awards are reserved for those who put their own lives on the line. There's a big difference between putting your life on the line versus putting a $10 million drone on the line - while sitting in an air conditioned office 20,000 miles away, knocking off at 5pm to go home to the wife and kids for dinner.

I can see any special badges being mocked by other service personnel, too... that's a tough one. These guys do contribute, but their risks are pretty much the same as a guy working in an office.
 
2012-07-13 10:45:28 AM

Ned Stark: Heck, dont even pay a salary. Just release the drone control program online as a freeware "game". Crowdsource the airwar.


This was basically the plot of an arcade game called Virtual-On.
 
ows
2012-07-13 10:47:20 AM
award? allow them to make shooting sounds when they fire their missles?
 
2012-07-13 10:47:47 AM

edmo: It's their job - why do they need a medal?


Because people will sometimes go above and beyond what is expected of them if there is a chance they will be recognized by their superiors and/or peers.

Plus, you get points towards promotion depending on how many medals you have.
 
2012-07-13 10:49:08 AM
Howabout a disappointing scroll that credits each engineer and designer behind the making of that particular model of drone?
 
2012-07-13 10:51:26 AM
A twelve pack of Code Red and Family size bag of Cheeto's?
 
2012-07-13 10:51:50 AM
Do they not already have a campaign ribbon to celebrate being inducted into the The Order of The Hemorrhoid?
 
2012-07-13 10:52:56 AM

cgraves67: If they do a good job, they can enter their initials into the Hall of Fame.


Funny how there's always someone with the initials ASS on those lists.
 
2012-07-13 10:56:06 AM

dittybopper: Wouldn't the traditional non-valor medals be enough for exceptional service? Do a good enough job, and you get an Aerial Achievement Medal.


YES. This debate is stupid.
 
2012-07-13 10:57:27 AM
i.imgur.com
 
2012-07-13 10:58:41 AM
I've played this game. They awarded me with a harrier call in, and some AC 130 control. It was pretty sweet.
 
2012-07-13 11:05:34 AM
images.wikia.com
 
2012-07-13 11:05:35 AM
Lt. Col Harry "Hard Ass" Bomblaster groaned. The pin head flight crew of his drone did not install his seat cushion. He had clearly requested it in his pre-flight check list. It would be a tough flight today.

Harry sat down and tried to get comfortable but his butt cheeks quickly warmed. He would be very uncomfortable. He began his preflight checklist. His Throttle Control was sticky. Captain James "Slouchy" Fennermaker was probably the last pilot here. He alway flew with a couple of donuts and the controls were covered in sugar glaze. Harry looked up at the big sign he had installed. "Please wipe down the equipment Post Flight!". "Kids these days," he thought to himself. "They never read."

Continuing with his preflight, he was dismayed to find the cup holder had been given a red X. Someone had tried to put their 64 oz Sooper Slurper in it and it broke. Normally, that would keep this control system from being operational but every system was being used these days. A technician taped it closed with 100 mile an hour tape. A few years ago, there would have been three new cup holders installed to replace it. "Thanks a lot, Obama." Harry muttered.

Pre flight done and the drone powered up, Harry began the flight. Trouble started almost immediately. Someone had touched the screen. There was a big finger print right on the horizon and Harry tried to avoid what he thought was an approaching plane several times. His butt continued to bother him. The burning was now getting itchy. How hard could it be to get a simple cushion installed?

As his drone flew over central Afghanistan looking for Taliban Weddings to bomb, Harry tried to clean the controls and get some of the donut glaze off the primary systems. It proved to be impossible and dangerous. As he picked off a piece of crusty sugar, he nearly dumped his weapons stores. If all his missiles, bombs and guns had fallen off, what would he drop on the Taliban bride and groom?

Halfway through the mission, the fan quit. Not the fan that blew air across the top of the room, but the little fan that kept he feet cool. Harry almost bailed out of the simulator. Harry was now solely dependent on the room's air conditioning. If that quit, god help him.

The entire mission was a disaster. Harry only found and bombed seven suspected Taliban weddings that day. His butt developed a rash but he had already received a Purple Heart for a Butt rash in theater so he couldn't apply for another P Heart. He landed his drone and shut down the system muttering that he could not serve his country to his best under these conditions.

He left the system and went to the Commanding Officer to complain about the conditions in which he flew. The CO listened patiently to Harry and suggested Harry should transfer to the C-130s. The Eastern European Whisper Jets were always looking for warfighters. Maybe a year in the sandbox dumping MREs out the back would make Harry appreciate his current job.

Harry stormed out of the CO's office. That chair jockey had no idea what Harry did in the service of his country! He went back to his desk, put himself in for a Silver Star. After all, he spent the day facing down an 'unseen enemy'. They'd probably kick it down to a Bronze again but it was better than nothing. Harry submitted the FormFlow file for his award. "Sheesh! He had to do everything today. What kind of war was this?
 
2012-07-13 11:05:47 AM
They should be able to wear the leather jacket and make that little notch in the back of their flight caps. Also take the ring out of the service cap so it mushes down on the sides like the guys in WWII did.
 
2012-07-13 11:06:27 AM
Look. I'm an electrician. I wire houses. I'm damn good at what I do and I significantly impact the building of the community. Do I ever get a "Thank You"? Do I get any award for doing what I'm paid to do? Do I get any recognition for my service? You know I don't. Neither do most of you. These yokels may be working for the military, but there ain't nothing 'combat' anywhere except the mandatory uniform (Which I've had to wear in other companies).

They want recognition?.. Recognize that a trained hamster could do what you're doing. There's is six other guys, in Detroit alone, that could do that job. And job it is. You go home to a a cooshy recliner at the end of the day. You are free to go to the bar and brag about your exploits just like any gamer. You ain't gonna get your ass blown off in your sleep! Recognize that.

This ain't no first-grade participation trophy. You're grown-up, you do things because... because you're SUPPPOSED to do them. Man up, do your job and be glad you ain't actually in the air with your ass hanging out. There are worst things than semi-pilot.

/I want my "Thank you, Masked man"
//I had to play guitar to get any applause.
 
2012-07-13 11:07:01 AM

Ned Stark: Heck, dont even pay a salary. Just release the drone control program online as a freeware "game". Crowdsource the airwar.


I second this ;)
 
2012-07-13 11:07:05 AM
Well, that article pretty much sums up the problem.

1. They aren't physically in harms way so they aren't serving our country in combat like other soldiers, pilots, tank commanders, etc. are, so medals of the same caliber as those given in combat don't seem fair.

2. You still have to recognize what they do accomplish in order to keep up morale and performance.

What kind of medal do you give a desk jockey that kills people and breaks things in support of the war effort but is not himself in any danger?
 
2012-07-13 11:10:48 AM
Ned Stark: Heck, dont even pay a salary. Just release the drone control program online as a freeware "game". Crowdsource the airwar.

Well, the threat of a hellfire missile in your house would certainly make kids think twice about bullying that Warcraft geek in their class on Facebook.
 
2012-07-13 11:13:19 AM
Medals to be virtually lobbed onto wrong chests from air-conditioned trailers in U.S
 
2012-07-13 11:14:29 AM

DrWhy:
What kind of medal do you give a desk jockey that kills people and breaks things in support of the war effort but is not himself in any danger?


The White House?
 
2012-07-13 11:16:00 AM

DrWhy: 1. They aren't physically in harms way so they aren't serving our country in combat like other soldiers, pilots, tank commanders, etc. are, so medals of the same caliber as those given in combat don't seem fair.

2. You still have to recognize what they do accomplish in order to keep up morale and performance.

What kind of medal do you give a desk jockey that kills people and breaks things in support of the war effort but is not himself in any danger?


Well, pretty much anything up to the distinguished service medal. But combat medals are not appropriate for remote operators not in the line of fire.
 
2012-07-13 11:16:18 AM
Hell, if Obama can get the Nobel Peace Prize for surviving from election to inauguration, I imagine these guys are probably eligible for the Congressional Medal of Honor. I mean, it's not like Congress has any standards anymore either.
 
2012-07-13 11:17:16 AM
The Purple Eye - awarded for eye strain sustained during remote combat operations.
 
2012-07-13 11:17:24 AM

Mikeyworld: Look. I'm an electrician. I wire houses. I'm damn good at what I do and I significantly impact the building of the community. Do I ever get a "Thank You"? Do I get any award for doing what I'm paid to do? Do I get any recognition for my service? You know I don't. Neither do most of you. These yokels may be working for the military, but there ain't nothing 'combat' anywhere except the mandatory uniform (Which I've had to wear in other companies).


If you decide you don't want to show up for work anymore, what happens?

If you decide that your boss is a dickhead, what happens when you call him that to his face?

What happens if you boss tells you to do something, and you decide that it's not part of your job description and refuse?
 
2012-07-13 11:17:57 AM

SweetSaws: Ned Stark: Heck, dont even pay a salary. Just release the drone control program online as a freeware "game". Crowdsource the airwar.

I second this ;)


Look up "Unmanned"
 
2012-07-13 11:21:20 AM

URAPNIS: Let em wear berets.


Done in one!
 
2012-07-13 11:25:16 AM

dittybopper: edmo: It's their job - why do they need a medal?

Because people will sometimes go above and beyond what is expected of them if there is a chance they will be recognized by their superiors and/or peers.

Plus, you get points towards promotion depending on how many medals you have.


What hell do you want them to do "above and beyond"? Just fly the damn drone!
 
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