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Comment count is 9
Old People - 2014-12-10

They have to blur out their faces because their mission is so badass that the terrorists might target their families! Dude, you fly an artillery piece, and you only ever fly it when we have total air superiority. Chill out.
The phrase "Grunts of the Air" makes me think of football coaches who say things like "it's literally war out there".
Nobody who goes to war sitting down gets to call himself a grunt, ever. The hyperbole reminds me of a drone pilot I once met who made an impassioned case for why drone guys ought to get combat awards the same as fighter jocks. I encouraged him to the point where he started saying that because he'd once gone out the gate to recover the drone when it malfunctioned, he was effectively an Infantryman.
Don't get me wrong, I love the A-10. But it's a plane with a big gun, not goddamn Delta Force.

SolRo - 2014-12-10

it's just inter-air force bragging. and they do face significantly more threats than the fighter pilots (when was the last time the air force had to fight planes of the same era?) or bombers.

infinite zest - 2014-12-10

Interesting. I think I learned the word from Warcraft 2, along with Peon, long before I thought of it in real-life military terms. I always saw the word as an insult, part of the Drill Sergeant's "beatings will continue until morale improves" approach. I used to work in an office where we'd refer to each other as grunts, because we did the most work for the least amount of pay, but we were also at a desk and not risking our lives when we went to replenish the coffee pot. Do actual infantrymen (and women) like to refer to each other as that?

RockBolt - 2014-12-10

The quality is poor and the faces are blurred as this is just a leaked copy of the documentary

https://medium.com/war-is-boring/watch-the-a-10-movie-the-u-s- air-force-doesnt-want-you-to-see-d31c24aaa9ad

A related story does demonstrate why ground forces do appreciate the experience and more analog nature of the A-10 pilot-

https://medium.com/war-is-boring/a-10s-saved-the-day-in-botche d-afghanistan-raid-b78367f4fd0e

EvilHomer - 2014-12-11

I can understand what you're saying, OP. Calling A-10 pilots "grunts" is over the top, maybe even a little disrespectful to real grunts. Clearly, pilots - even close air support pilots - are *not* on the same level as grunts.

However, I'd argue that Warthog pilots aren't really going to war "sitting down". Well, OK, so technically speaking I guess they are, but they're sitting down in a hunk of metal hurtling at twice-NASCAR speeds over hostile territory, not in a nice ergonomic chair somewhere in the beer-and-stripper lands of Germany. A-10 pilots may not have to contend with enemy aircraft (do ANY American pilots have to contend with enemy aircraft these days...?) but they're still close to the action, closer even than many artillery guys, and that's gotta count for something! Tankers go to war sitting down, too, as do the 88 Mikes (who I'm sure you can agree have one of the absolute shittiest jobs in the Army) - anyway, I'd place A-10 pilots somewhere between tank crew and artillerymen on the scale of grunt-FOBbit. Maybe it would be best if we had a new word to describe "half-grunts" like A-10 pilots? Not grunts then, but perhaps Groans, or maybe Mumbles?

EvilHomer - 2014-12-11

Also, your drone pilot anecdote is ridiculous. I mean, sure, he's all high-speed going out of the gate once to pick up a drone, but hell, *I* once carried a 20lbs stack of paperwork from, like, one end of the Engineer School all the way to the other!!! No shit. I told my CO straight up, I was like "You know, Ma'am, if we just stored these records digitally we wouldn't have to move them around" but she was like, "Private, there comes a time when Freedom calls on men to stand up and make sacrifices. You have your orders!" So that's what I did. Carried that whole stack of papers in my arms, pure sweat and muscle power, didn't even use a handcart or nothin'. I dropped a couple sheets, but, you know, I'd just been eating a donut and my hands were kinda sticky.

I got that paperwork filed away like a Viking motherfucker, but I never asked for no medal. That's just the kind of American hero I am.

Old People - 2014-12-11

Zest, "grunt" is basically a neutral descriptor. Infantry guys are proud to be grunts, and call each other that, whereas the legions of assorted POGs (Personnel Other than Grunts) always talk about "dumb grunts". Boiled down, the term just means "infantryman".
There are no infantrywomen yet, though that'll probably change in the next decade.
RockBolt & SolRo, any grunt who doesn't appreciate the A-10 hasn't seen one in action (admittedly, I've only seen it in videos, but I have had my ass saved by an AC-130, so I appreciate what aerial cannons can do). They do great stuff, on today's battlefield they take more risks than most fixed-wing guys, and their plane looks really cool. It's ok that they have grunt-envy; a lot of folks do.

Cena_mark - 2014-12-11

On the ship its mainly a rivalry between engineers and everyone. Engineers are just bitter that they have to work in loud, hot, dirty spaces, whereas others get to be in cool rooms with lots of computers.

fedex - 2014-12-11

This is my favorite A-10 movie of all time!



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