Bronze Star? Am I missing something?
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  1. #1

    Bronze Star? Am I missing something?

    I don't know but maybe someone here can enlighten me. Living in the DC area I run into a lot of service members. Today I met a young Army guy who told me he got the Bronze Star in Afghanistan. I asked about the circumstances of how he got his award.
    Get this one. He is an office pog and he was the only one working in the office. Since there was no one else he had to do everything that was work that would have been done by an E-6 or above. For this the Army command decided he should get the Star.
    Now I might be wrong but isn't something like that supossed to be for bravery in action? Or is it because I'm a Viet vet and I saw true heros doing their jobs in bad situations. Or is it just because it's the Army?
    I don't get it and I've been having trouble wrapping my mind around this all day. What do you Marines think?


  2. #2
    This is from Wikipedia.

    The Bronze Star Medal was established by Executive Order 9419, 4 February 1944 (superseded by Executive Order 11046, 24 August 1962, as amended by Executive Order 13286, 28 February 2003).
    The Bronze Star Medal may be awarded by the Secretary of a military department or the Secretary of Homeland Security with regard to the Coast Guard when not operating as a service in the Navy, or by such military commanders, or other appropriate officers as the Secretary concerned may designate, to any person who, while serving in any capacity in or with the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, or Coast Guard of the United States, after December 6, 1941, distinguishes, or has distinguished, himself by heroic or meritorious achievement or service, not involving participation in aerial flight—
    <dl><dd>(a) while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;</dd><dd>(b) while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or</dd><dd>(c) while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.</dd></dl> The acts of heroism are of a lesser degree than required for the award of the Silver Star. The acts of merit or acts of valor must be less than that required for the Legion of Merit but must nevertheless have been meritorious and accomplished with distinction. The Bronze Star Medal is awarded only to service members in combat who are receiving imminent danger pay.
    The award may be made to each member of the Armed Forces of the United States who, after 6 December 1941, was cited in orders or awarded a certificate for exemplary conduct in ground combat against an armed enemy after 7 December 1941. For this purpose, an award of the Combat Infantryman Badge or Combat Medical Badge during the Second World War is considered a citation in orders. Documents executed since 4 August 1944 in connection with recommendations for the award of decorations of higher degree than the Bronze Star Medal cannot be used as the basis for an award under this paragraph


  3. #3
    Yep. Typical army type award, basically 'Meritorous service IN a combat zone'. Realistically, when you 'read' someones awards, a Bronze Star MINUS a 'combat distinguishing device' (i.e. a 'V' for Valor) means they were in a combat zone and did their job, without shooting themselves, getting drunk, or losing some Colonels luggage.

    I've also heard the Bronze Star referred to as the 'Field Grade Good Conduct Medal' by old school Marines and Soldiers from the Vietnam era. Take that for what you will.

    I'm pretty jaded when it comes to seeing army guys with decorations (and higher Marine officers as well...and lets not even DISCUSS the Air Force) so this isn't a shocker whatsoever.

    Now, you see a Bronze Star w/V on a Marine Sergeant, you better believe he EARNED that sucker the hard way, and probably should have gotten a Silver Star instead, but it was downgraded by 'higher' headquarters.

    Another sea story....during Grenada in '83, the Army troops on the ground numbered around 4500 or so...and the army passed out something like 7500 Bronze Stars...(or so I heard).

    Last bit, and this part is TRUE. To recognize the actions of the WWII army Infantry soldier, the War Dept, in 1947-48, instituted an 'automatic' award of the Bronze Star for ANY army infantryman who had earned a Combat Infantrymans Badge (CIB) or Combat Medical Badge. The idea was that there had been SO many casualties in those branches in the European fighting, that many acts of valor went unreported/unrecognized. Therefore, as a 'motivator/oohrah', the BSM was retroactively awarded to ALL those soldiers who had been awarded the above badges. The only catch was, you had to APPLY for the medal. Well, many of those guys either never heard about it, or didn't care. Not until much later, in the 90's, when their relatives started applying for old awards, did they remember this.

    Moving this to the 'uniform' section area.


  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by ridingcrops View Post
    I don't know but maybe someone here can enlighten me. Living in the DC area I run into a lot of service members. Today I met a young Army guy who told me he got the Bronze Star in Afghanistan. I asked about the circumstances of how he got his award.
    Get this one. He is an office pog and he was the only one working in the office. Since there was no one else he had to do everything that was work that would have been done by an E-6 or above. For this the Army command decided he should get the Star.
    Now I might be wrong but isn't something like that supossed to be for bravery in action? Or is it because I'm a Viet vet and I saw true heros doing their jobs in bad situations. Or is it just because it's the Army?
    I don't get it and I've been having trouble wrapping my mind around this all day. What do you Marines think?
    Army,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,He must have had hand to hand combat with a stapler......


  5. #5
    The Bronze Star..... it's not just for combat anymore..... go figure


  6. #6
    I recall a Capt receiving the star in the gulf war. He earned it while doing an awesome job at ensuring Marines received chow as we pushed our way up to Kuwait City. We also had a Marine who received it while attemting to pull another Marine from a burning vehicle after a friendly fire incident. How does that compare?


  7. #7
    Squad Leader Free Member Rooger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt Leprechaun View Post
    Another sea story....during Grenada in '83, the Army troops on the ground numbered around 4500 or so...and the army passed out something like 7500 Bronze Stars...(or so I heard).

    That's what we who were there heard also, Many Marines I know who were there got the Navy and Marine Corps medal, The the Corps, when the chair warmers realized the mistake, upgraded them to Bronze Stars with Combat "V"s. AFTER they heard about the ARMY awarding all those Bronze Stars.Talk about spring loaded to the ****ED off Position! Freaking Army

    We have two companies of Marines running rampant all over the northern half of this island, and three Army regiments pinned down in the southwestern corner, doing nothing. What the hell is going on? [Gen. John W. Vessey Jr., USA, Chairman of the the Joint Chiefs of Staff; during the assault on Grenada, 1983]

  8. #8
    I never saw a Marine in the Nam get a bronze star without the V. Hell, most of the guys in my platoon should have rated it or more, but with Sgt's and Cpl's running the show who puts you in for it?


  9. #9
    There were a couple of SNCO's who wrangled themselves a BS for themselves when I was in RBN. They wrote themselves up and CO signed off. Made me puke.


  10. #10
    I have seen it multiple times in Afghanistan. Usually zero candy for the Maj's and above. They run the administrative BS, without the "V". I've seen it awarded to the majority of the CO's running the air squadrons and, of course, a general here and there. It's sad really. At least they don't put the "V" on there, so I suppose that is something.


  11. #11
    Marine Free Member Riven37's Avatar
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    I caught my CO adding a BS to his own records in Nam. I didn’t say anything I just looked at him. Then a few days later two guys put m in for the BS, and this same CO of mine did nothing with it.


  12. #12
    Hell.... I had chest candy and didn't wear them. Just gave the inspecting officer more to gig me on. The only time I put anything on is when the order came down we had to wear them.

    Those who earned it... could care less about wearing them. Those who didn't earn them....want to have them run up their chest and down their backs. Go figure.

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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt Leprechaun View Post
    Yep. Typical army type award, basically 'Meritorous service IN a combat zone'. Realistically, when you 'read' someones awards, a Bronze Star MINUS a 'combat distinguishing device' (i.e. a 'V' for Valor) means they were in a combat zone and did their job, without shooting themselves, getting drunk, or losing some Colonels luggage.

    I've also heard the Bronze Star referred to as the 'Field Grade Good Conduct Medal' by old school Marines and Soldiers from the Vietnam era. Take that for what you will.

    I'm pretty jaded when it comes to seeing army guys with decorations (and higher Marine officers as well...and lets not even DISCUSS the Air Force) so this isn't a shocker whatsoever.

    Now, you see a Bronze Star w/V on a Marine Sergeant, you better believe he EARNED that sucker the hard way, and probably should have gotten a Silver Star instead, but it was downgraded by 'higher' headquarters.

    Another sea story....during Grenada in '83, the Army troops on the ground numbered around 4500 or so...and the army passed out something like 7500 Bronze Stars...(or so I heard).

    Last bit, and this part is TRUE. To recognize the actions of the WWII army Infantry soldier, the War Dept, in 1947-48, instituted an 'automatic' award of the Bronze Star for ANY army infantryman who had earned a Combat Infantrymans Badge (CIB) or Combat Medical Badge. The idea was that there had been SO many casualties in those branches in the European fighting, that many acts of valor went unreported/unrecognized. Therefore, as a 'motivator/oohrah', the BSM was retroactively awarded to ALL those soldiers who had been awarded the above badges. The only catch was, you had to APPLY for the medal. Well, many of those guys either never heard about it, or didn't care. Not until much later, in the 90's, when their relatives started applying for old awards, did they remember this.

    Moving this to the 'uniform' section area.
    Good god.. what is the world coming to.


  14. #14
    Oh well like our SDI said the army wearing their dress greens look like a walking Christmas tree so just add a little more to the tree,lol,Semper Fidelis.


  15. #15
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