Deployment Day 97, Mobilization Day 140 – 15 April 2010

Big Boss situation has officially been resolved. Only time will tell what will become of the Task Force now that he is gone, but if his farewell letter is any indication, I don’t think he is very happy about his departure, and it definitely does not seem like it was on his terms. And I quote:

“Soldiers and Leaders of the 334th LSE,

I bid you continued success in this mission as another opportunity has been created for me. I will be involved in establishing the long-term relationship between “us and them,” which should put this mission type – long term – as a 316th Mission.

In simple terms, an honest mistake was made. (The) customer asked for 2 Majors and an E8, allowed a 3rd officer, but my arrival as an O-6 was a first ever surprise to them. Had they been consulted by the USAR, they would have suggested an alternative. Due to the busy (op)tempo facing the USAR, the consultation was not made. Hindsight is always 20-20.

Given near term plans to transition from an O-4 to a Warrant Officer in the J4 position, and the disparity in rank between this position and mine, a mutually acceptable agreement between my deployed supervisor and my CONUS bosses was made to allow me to continue to support our customer in a more traditional O-6 position. In addition, the customer has communicated it may continue to reduce the enlisted structure by eliminating E-9s, and that is their next assessment phase. Like mine – this decision can happen quickly; we do not serve an indecisive customer. As we develop in the months ahead the MOA (Memorandum of Agreement) between 316 and (the customer), the specific desire for future LSEs is for exactly 2 O-4s and 1 1SG/MSG – will – be enforced, so we don’t have too much rank for 59 people in this mission again.

I return to the battalion to address challenges that are happening in our HQs, with 4 of our 5 units in war, going to war, or returning from war, and the tremendous workload and family chaos associated with (the) same. And I will prepare for (the) late summer arrival of our new inbound battalion commander.

You absolutely do not need three officers to be successful. I have total confidence in each Major’s individual ability to lead; together they are, and have been, and exceptional team. Simply put, we don’t need an O-6 here leading this platoon-sized force, while working for a Warrant Officer functionally. It is a rank disparity that both the customer, and I, agrees is too great.

In addition, now that we are established, it is clear to BOTH the customer and I that our unit is doing so well – WE DO NOT NEED a full colonel here. And – I am pretty simple in this context – if I agree I am not needed here as a full colonel – and others in the Army need me and can benefit from my rank elsewhere, the correct answer is obvious.

So I bid you farewell in the near term, eager to get back to the battalion and address the issues that are stressing it CONUS. Further – I look forward to serving as a guide to our commanding general as he establishes a Memorandum of Agreement with our customer, which I anticipate will result in some of you, in future years, mobilizing in an LSE in support of our nation’s strategic and vital offensive against extremists who have, and will, target our families and friends if we do not stop them.

I will be circulating the next 2-3 days to say farewell in 3D, but if for leave or travel or schedule reasons I miss you, please keep in touch. I intend to join Big Big Boss and (the CG) and meet you at Fort Dix upon your arrival, and celebrate your success.*

You need to remain focused as a unit on the positively focused Soldier and leader decisions that maximize synergy and unit cohesion and insure full compliance with Army Regulations to be successful. It has been concretely documented that positively-led organizations have 400% more institutional energy than traditional information-led organizations. You must continue to maintain the positive climate that has led to our success to date. You must continue to DEMAND synergy and allow ONLY positive leadership. As I have told you – SYNERGY DOES NOT HAPPEN BY CHANCE, NOR IS IT EASY. Please continue the continuous improvement philosophy that we have established, and please continue to improve SYNERGY. It is impossible to have TOO MUCH synergy, which – when properly understood is the highest activity in life.

Each and every one of you is a blessing to this task force. And – each of you senior NCOs, has been a tremendous part of the success we have had to date in your own individualistic contributory way. The junior NCOs have collectively been spectacular. And all of you Soldiers, including those who have only recently become corporals, have been outstanding in your motivation and Army Values. You have a winning team that will continue to excel until end of mission, and I assure you that as I transit to our CONUS battalion headquarters – I am still on your team, just helping where I am geographically more critically needed at this point.

Thank you and God Bless,

Big Boss”

*He didn’t come and meet us when we came home, but it was okay.

In my opinion, all the stuff in bold italics is utter and complete bullshit, and does not reflect any actual reason for his departure. Some individuals on this Task Force bought the whole thing, but those in the know or those with some intelligence saw through it all and understood that it is utter nonsense. Over the next few weeks, things are sure to change around here, but it will most likely be for the good. I have complete faith in those that will now lead us, and the next six months should go very smoothly. But, as with a lot of things in the Army, we will just have to wait and see. I will come back and address this topic a bit more in the near future as changes begin to take shape.

Until next time…

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