From the Soldier side: The American Army has been calling on the Reserves and National Guard more since 9-11 than they have since the Korean War and WWII. Now as most of my readers know, when I was in Iraq, we had a total "mix" of troops. At some points I had National Guard, Reserve and Regular Army soldiers that I was in charge of. Never once did any of them question me or doubt my leadership, even though I was only a National Guard Soldier.
We looked at the individual soldier and how well he or she could do their job. If they could do it well, then they were part of the team. If they couldn't then we still had them along as a boat anchor.
One of the things that kind of bothered me during our training, to get ready for both the Bosnia and Iraq deployments......Even though we were on Regular Army post....we were in the older barracks and the older mess halls. The tray of food above was an actual meal served at Fort Mc Coy before our Bosnia deployment.
We could have walked over to where the "real Army" troops were and see that they were eating decent food.
The same thing happened at Ft Lewis. They stuck us in the WWII barracks that were supposed to have been torn down years before...but they had to wait to figure out how to dispose of the toxic materials in the building. But, they were OK for us to live in before and after our deployment to Iraq.
We ate really crappy food in our mess hall, but sometimes walked down the street to eat in the "real Army" mess hall and had really good food.
Our leaders for our Guard unit were living in the regular Army barracks and ate in the good mess hall. We didn't know this until we had been there for a few weeks. We kept wondering why we never saw most of our leaders eating with us...they wouldn't eat that crap we had to eat. The Sergeant Major would eat in the good mess hall...then come over to ours and annoy us by checking our uniforms and silly shit.
The bit thing our useless Sergeant Major came up with...when we got to Ft Lewis, we were still wearing the old BDU uniforms. He said that we couldn't put on the issued DCUs (Desert Combat Uniform) until we had passed most of our training. He was making the DCUs seem like an award. The stupid part was, most of us were told we would be issued DCUs right away, so don't bring too many BDUs. This created a big problem as we had to keep washing the limited number of BDUs we had.
Most other units were putting on the DCUs as soon as they got them...but not us. Then when we were authorized to wear the DCUs, our dumbass Sergeant Major told us to keep wearing our beret. We looked like retards.
That was the same Sergeant Major who later in Iraq, had a few Negligent Discharges on the M2 .50 Caliber Machine gun that he assigned himself to on convoys. He was never qualified on it, but thought he'd play Rambo or some shit. What a totally useless, POS, retarded, scumbucket, asshole, turd, waste of O2, dipshit.