I was a 95B ( Military Police ) detailed as a 'custodial agent' of nuclear missiles in West Germany from Dec. 1985 until Feb. 1989- 507th USAAD, 5th group, 59th Ord. Brigade- Nike Hercules missile systems.
The missiles were under U.S. control- but in the event of a nuclear event the U.S. would "lease" the missiles to the Belgian Government and they would launch them under their responsibility--- we as custodial agents safe guarded the missiles until the time we handed of the Command and Control of the missiles over to the Belgians...
The work was insane-18 yrs old and I was instructed in how to launch nuclear missiles... We worked 3-4 man teams, 28 hrs on- 20 hrs off- with a 4 hour sleep shift ( mission permitting ). All items of entertainment beyond Field Manuals were prohibited- no radios, games, books etc ( this rule was broken quite regularly ). The Nike Hercules system was taken out of the U.S. arsenal in like 1980- but lived on within NATO- the level of competence of our command and support was reflected in the fact that the system had been mothballed.
Mentally we eroded. Pre-interwebs once down range we had no contact with the outside world, we waited, for the call up... and had no way to verify that the world was in danger.... We stood with missiles raised on launchers- sometimes for days in all kinds of weather- once I stood in 2 feet of snow in 10 below zero weather for 16 hours because Khadafi was flexing his 'muscles'.
"It was the best of times- it was the worst of times..." Feel free to ask questions. First to Battle
posted on 12/02/2009 9:32:55 PM PST
I had to smile. I did my time in Turkey and not any place on the list that was posted. It was a hell hole. Nuclear security and custody is a bitch in some parts of the world.
the MM-III’s, minute man 3’s, were a walk in the park compared to some places the Army had my butt parked. Then after a few years guess what??? The Air Force sent my tail end back to one of the detachments in Turkey and it still sucked.
posted on 12/02/2009 9:48:05 PM PST
(I'm a VET and damn proud of it!!! I did not fight for a socialist America!!!!!!!)
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