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Roberto Vargas

Background Information
My observations will cover my personal experience during basic training, the movie
Black Hawk Down, and the TV series surviving the Cut. Black Hawk Down is a movie
that is based on the true story of the battle of Mogadishu. The battle of Mogadishu was supposed
to be a thirty minute mission, which took place in Mogadishu, Somalia. The mission ended up
taking place for eighteen plus hours after three black hawk helicopters were shot down. The
mission mainly involved Army Rangers and Delta Force soldiers.

Observation 1

September 1, 2015 9:00 am I was heading to the airport. I was on my way to Fort Benning,
Georgia to begin my military career. I had heard plenty of stories about basic training. But didnt
really know what to expect. That night I got to Fort Benning at a place that they call reception. It
is where you begin the in-processing for the training. I was in reception for ten days. The first
official day of my training was September 11, 2015. The bus stopped and the doors opened.
Immediately we started hearing explosions and saw colored smoke all around. The drill sergeant
on the bus started yelling at us to get off the bus as we carried two bags weighing approximately
fifty pounds. We ran off the bus and the explosions kept going off along with the yelling of drill
sergeants. That was a rough day. A lot of yelling and a lot of running. That day I questioned
myself What the hell am I doing here? I spent the next fourteen weeks learning how to become
a soldier. My basic training was not like most trainings. Most trainings you do ten weeks of basic
training and usually go to another base to continue your AIT (Advanced Individual Training).
This is where you do your job training for whatever job you signed up for. I did something called
OSUT (One Station Unit Training). This is where you stay at the same place for your whole
training. You stay with the same people, and same drill sergeants. Everything stays about the
same as basic training. My Job was Infantry. So I spent ten weeks learning how to be a soldier,
and the other four weeks learning the basics of how to be an infantryman. Through basic training
I got a close look at the very basic things that special operations is all about. Of course the things
they do are way more in depth, but I got a very small taste of what the lifestyle is like. All my
drill sergeants were infantry. They had all been to Iraq or Afghanistan multiple times. They had
all seen war. They all seemed to be heartless so to speak. It always seemed like the only emotion
they ever had was anger. Of course, I did not know them on a personal level, so it was just a

Commented [1]: The overall paper needs to be


expanded a bit more. There are a few context(Chart,
artifacts) that seem to be missing. Maybe revise a little
and see what you can add.

Commented [2]: If I were grading this paper I would


give it a B. I like the quality of the paper. Although
some things are missing and other things need to be
addressed. Overall decent job.

Commented [3]: I really enjoyed reading your


assignment. It seems that you are missing a couple
sections after your background information. It would be
really helpful of you to include who your actors are,
what your artifacts of your figured world, and a title for
your assignment. Maybe review the example or rubric
provided for tips.

Commented [4]: As it pertains to your observation,


you may want to put a side note on how you did the
breakdown of your times as well as adding background
info to observations 2 and 3. Your observations were
pretty in depth except for the third. You may want to
add a little bit more there, Im not sure how long or
short the film was for your third observation but still try
to add a little more(this is where the background info
will come in handy for not only you but the reader).
Commented [5]: Your first observation was great and
enjoyable to read. I like how you used your personal
experience as an observation. You provided a lot of
information from your basic training experience which,
you explained in good detail. it is also good that your
length of this observation met the requirement as well.

view from the outside. But they were human too. They were in the same boat we were in at some
point in their careers. I graduated from basic training December 16, 2015. That is when I earned
the sacred blue cord. Only infantrymen get to wear this blue cord on the right shoulder of their
dress blue uniforms. After basic training I had a better understanding of the military lifestyle and
the special operation lifestyle.

Observation 2
Black Hawk Down

52:01: This scene of the movie is when the first Black hawk helicopter is shot down. This
mission was supposed to be a half an hour mission but then turns into an 18+ hour mission. The
Somalian shoot an RPG(Rocket propelled Grenade) at the Black Hawk, The Black Hawk pilot
tried to avoid it but does not get out of the way quick enough.
60:00: Around this time is when they decide to send men to the crash site to recover any
survivors and destroy US military equipment. The men moving to the crash site face a lot of
conflict from the people who live in the city on the way there.

Commented [6]: There is a big gap from the beginning


of the movie until your first informing point in your
second observation. Maybe provide some build up
information until the helicopter is shot down. Or add
some background information of your own to help
relate the reader to the reality of the movie.

Commented [7]: You have provided good information


in your observations but, observation 2 and 3 are very
short. These should be at least one page long in
length. Try going in depth more of the movie and
episode you watched from black hawk down and
surviving the cut. Breaking down the minutes to provide
more information would be wise for you to do for both
observations.

1hr: 12: The second Black Hawk is shot down by Somalins using RPGs. The Black Hawk goes
down, but there is one pilot who survived. Master Sergeant Randy Shughart and Sergeant First
Class Gary Gordon of 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta volunteered to go down and
tried to save the pilot survived. Even though they knew they wouldnt have back up and nobody could
help them. They faced hundreds of Somalian militia forces. They both ended up dying and being
awarded the Medal of Honor.

Surviving the Cut

Surviving the Cut is a television series that follows the training of special operation forces. Each
episode follows a different special operation force. The different forces they follow are: Army
Rangers, Marine Recon, Navy SWCC, and more. The series doesnt show all of what these men
do in there training, but it shows what these men to go through just to be considered in join a
special operation force.

Interview

What did you do in the Army and how many years did you serve?
I was an infantryman specializing in long range surveillance and then I was a drill sergeant.
I was in for twelve years

What was the hardest thing you had to do in your army career?

Commented [8]: Enjoyed reading your interview.


Questions were formatted well with easy
understanding. Responses were good as well, some
went in depth which is good.

The hardest thing. Oh wow. Mentally, jumping out of an airplane for the first time.
Physically, believe it or not, was fighting forest fires in Idaho. A lot of walking up steep
mountains. It kicked my ass.

What was the most memorable thing you did in your Army career?
I would probably say walking one hundred miles in three days for a challenge march in
Germany. It was between us and the German army. We kicked their ass. Another one
of my most memorable would probably be becoming a drill sergeant. Thats my proudest
accomplishment in the Army?
Did you ever work with any us special operation groups? Who was your favorite
and why?
I did. I would have to say Marine Force Recon. Reason being those dudes are just tough
as nails. Hard chargers.

Did you every work with any global special operation groups? Who was your
favorite and why? I did get the opportunity to train with some IDF (Israeli Defense
Force). Dudes are hard chargers. The women who are in the IDF are tougher than a lot of
the men Ive met.

Propose

My topic will be about the special operation groups of the United States military. These
groups will include Navy SEALs, Army Special Forces, Army Rangers, Delta Force, Air Force
Pararescue, and more. The United States is home to the best military in the world and because of
that we are home to some of the best special operation groups in the world. My topic will also
cover a broad view of other special operation groups for different countries like British SAS,
Russian Spetznaz, and more. I will cover the differences between different ones and see what
sets them apart from each other, how they use different tactics to complete a mission, the primary
purpose of each one. My observation for this topic is my experience during Army basic training.
My MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) was 11B, which is infantry. The job of infantry and
special operations is very similar if not the same thing. The only difference is that there training
is way more in depth and they specialize in one thing for example unconventional warfare. They
are the best of the best and are extremely well trained. During basic training, obviously, we only
covered the basics, but I still got a small taste of what they do.

Commented [9]: Your propose was great and


informative, which is good. So far I like what I see. Just
review and see what you can adjust based on the
feedback given.
Commented [10]: You are missing a couple more
sections here. It seems you have chosen your topic
but, you also need an analysis of your observations
and interview. There should also be a chart before your
propose that includes search terms with sources for
your chosen topic. Revising over the rubric and
example would be beneficial.

Commented [11]: Overall I think this is a good start.


With a few modifications you could have a great paper.
Keep up the good work!