I don’t know if I even recognize the Army anymore

| May 11, 2021

XVIII Airborne Corps

Some days I wonder just what’s going on with the Army. TDY to a foreign country and the young airborne troopers can’t even hit the strip club? In Poland no less? Jeff LPH 3 sends in this Army Times article;

Brigade caught in strip club episode in Poland hit with corps-level investigation

The 18th Airborne Corps has launched an investigation into the leadership of the 101st Airborne Division’s Combat Aviation Brigade following a deployment to Europe last year, officials told Army Times Monday.

The inquiry by the headquarters at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, comes in the wake of a previous investigation that uncovered how one of the unit’s subordinate battalions broke Army rules by visiting a strip club during an official trip to Gdansk, Poland.

The battalion’s executive officer went missing for a day following a drunken nighttime outing in September, and he later claimed to investigators that he was drugged at the strip club and charged excessive amounts on his credit card.

Stars and Stripes first reported the new investigation, in addition to the original one.

Army Col. Joe Buccino, 18th Airborne Corps spokesman, confirmed that the headquarters had launched an investigation, but he revealed few other details.

“The investigation encompasses a series of allegations,” Buccino said in an email. “The investigating officer has been tasked with a through investigation and we do not have a [completion] timeline right now. No one has been suspended in concert with the investigation.”

The investigator sent by 18th Airborne Corps is a colonel from outside the 101st Airborne Division. Col. Travis Habhab, the aviation brigade commander, informed his subordinate leaders of the investigation late last week.

The corps-level investigation indicates there could be problems within Habhab’s brigade that extend beyond what happened at the Polish strip club last fall, which ended with numerous officers facing early ends to their military careers, Stripes reported.

Stripes also obtained a command climate survey from the deployment for the brigade’s headquarters company. The survey indicated pervasive issues with suicidal thoughts and bullying in the unit.

In April, the brigade returned to Fort Campbell, Kentucky, from a nine-month rotation to Europe in support of Atlantic Resolve, an ongoing multinational response to Russian aggression in Ukraine.

There are approximately 6,000 soldiers participating in Atlantic Resolve “at any given time,” according to U.S. Army Europe and Africa.

There’s a lieutenant colonel and sergeant major out there that deserve some real respect if they were able to deal with the logistics of deploying an entire battalion into a single strip club on foreign soil. That they were able to do so and lose only a single officer in the re-deployment out of the area of operations is all the more impressive.

While we’re on the topic of missing officers, the battalion XO must not be well liked if he went missing for a day on a drunken bender and none of his men would cover for him.

Category: "The Floggings Will Continue Until Morale Improves", Army, Army News

Comments (39)

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  1. Mustng Major says:

    What could go wrong on a long deployment of soldiers, worked around the clock, living in tents, and eating Army rations when given an opportunity for a beer in a strip club?

    • Mustang Major says:

      After thought: Given the delay between the event and the investigation, an upset wife may have triggered the investigation through the wife back channel network.

      • Sapper3307 says:

        Facebook rampage from the family support group?

      • MarineDad61 says:

        Mustang Major,
        (American doctor to wife) –
        “No, you have a European variant of VD.
        Where would you possibly get that from?”

        • David says:

          “But, Doctor, could he have picked it up from a toilet?” “Could be, but it’s a strange place to take a hot date!”

      • SEAL Team TWO says:

        And someone always squeals. The number guys who, when witnessing something that should best be left “on deployment” tells his wife about it never ceases to astonish me. And once one wife finds out, they might as well have splashed it all over a fakebook page, replete with lurid details. The person doing the squealing might as well even make up many lascivious exaggerations, because that’s what the wives are going to do. Its kind of like when a teammate is out on a two-week training assignment and his wife comes in to “pick up his mail.” If she is persistent, there’s always some toad in the mailroom who’s going to hand it over to her. Then the fireworks begin.

  2. 5JC says:

    The old “stripper drugged me and forced me to lap dance with her for hours on my government travel card” game eh? Didn’t work back when I was in either. Joe is going to have to come up with a better story.

    • MI Ranger says:

      From the original Story, the Club was notorious for spiking peoples drinks (to include free ones handed out in the street). The Officers had just finished an OPD and were walking back. The charges were not on a Government Credit Card. The amount was 15,000 (which hopefully was in Zloetis which would be about $5,000) but the reporter did not know if it was US or Polish money amounts.

      The officer in question was tracked down to a hotel by the CDR (who may or may not have been assisted by a tracking device), and had to spend several extra days in country due to general feelings of nausea before he could fly.

      Sounds like XVIII ABN Corps was not happy with just tanking the XO, and BN CDRs careers for allowing it to happen, and the initial investigation likely stirred up some other things that were not in the original scope of the investigation and involved people higher than the original investigating officer!

  3. How many will get their ranks stripped from them after this. Possible that they went on a trip and the letter S was missing in front of the word trip over the front door.

  4. Claw says:

    So glad to see the Troopers of the 101st are able to once again be wearing the full color division patch on field uniforms, instead of the drab camo one.

    Signed: A Double-Eagle Soldier (July 71-Feb 74)/smile

  5. chooee lee says:

    Poland, is that the Olongapo of the east?

  6. Anonymous says:

    Also, stop these “rotational deployments” and just station units over there again– we found after World War II it was cheaper.

    • David says:

      Yeah, but it’s easier to bury the funding if it is a TDY. Plus, wouldn’t this be at the Pole-named Camp Trump? Ain’t no Dem voting for that.

  7. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    Maybe some Joes sick of MREs and sleeping on the ground decided to say something about the Ooficers partying while they did so?

  8. penguinman000 says:

    Our COL brought a bunch of strippers to us in LAVs during a mandatory fun day on deployment. That was just a handful of years ago (2006ish). The only mandatory fun day I’ve ever seen widespread enjoyment.

    Guess that wouldn’t fly anymore.

    • MI Ranger says:

      I remember something similar in my enlisted days before the GWoT, down in Albania for an exchange exercise. Lots of local girls to come dance for the troops.

    • SEAL Team TWO says:

      Back in the 1980s, in an attempt to boost patronage at the dying, brink-of-extinction base officer clubs, the “O-Club” at Fort Story (Virginia Beach) used to bring in strippers every Friday afternoon/early evening. Needless to say, it did boost business – immensely. I can just imagine what might happen in today’s “enlightened, improved” military should anyone even suggest such a thing. Now they would rather go broke than risk offending someone’s “sensibilities,” to say nothing of the fall-out from that five-sided wind-tunnel on the Potomac.

  9. KoB says:

    Glad to see that our Troopers are still supporting Single Moms worldwide.

    The XO was simply doing a deployment recon to ensure the maintaining of good order and discipline. Guess a credit card goes further than Chocolate Bars and silk stockings these days.

    • Mason says:

      I just realized I failed in picking the picture to go along with the article. It totally should have been this. I’ll flagellate myself in penance. We’ve got this thing uploaded no less than four times on the servers.

  10. Green Thumb says:

    Party on, dudes!

  11. MI Ranger says:

    I remember something similar in my enlisted days before the GWoT, down in Albania for an exchange exercise. Lots of local girls to come dance for the troops.

  12. Mike B USAF Retired says:

    Can’t speak for the other Branches, but the Air Force banned us from strip joints, due to it being considered “Sex Trafficking”.

    Don’t remember when exactly it happened, but it was prior 2006 I believe.

    Don’t remember if it was just overseas or if it included CONUS ones.

    • Anonymous says:

      Confirm. Was doing Courtesy Patrol (a.k.a., “Drunk Patrol”) policing and finally rounding-up our unit folk from the “juicy bars” in Songtan outside Osan AB in Korea in 2001- 02. A favorite of the strippers (play LOUD w/ lots of bass ’til you feel it) then:

    • SEAL Team TWO says:

      Whenever the Air Force takes a stand, the Military and Armed Forces are sure to follow.

      • Anonymous says:

        Sadly… not much changed at Songton, especially toward or after curfew though. Army!!

  13. Hack Stone says:

    Hack Stone was able to acquire a transcript of the interview that the Executive Officer has with investigators. Following this sworn statement, investigators recommended that no further inquiries are needed.

    Executive Officer: “Was that wrong? Should I have not done that? I tell you, I gotta pleas ignorance on this thing because if anyone had said anything to me when I first checked into the command that this sort of thing was frowned upon, you know, ‘cause I’ve been in a lot of commands, and I tell you, officers do that all the time.”

  14. Mike B USAF Retired says:

    The official name for the DOD program, is TIP or Trafficking In Persons.

    We had to do the TIP courses annually, a quick search showed that around 2001 or 2002, the military did a study on TIP, and not long afterwards the Computer Based Training Module came out on the Air Force side.

    Strip clubs, massage parlors and prostitution fell under the ban. There was an argument by Overseas Commanders that enforcement wouid be hard, once the GIs left the base as the SOFA (Status Of Forces Agreement) didn’t cover it, and they weren’t supportive of editing the SOFA. Don’t know what the SOFA has to do with GIs and strip clubs.

    There’s a lot of PDF documents if you Google DOD TIP regulations.

  15. Roh-Dog says:

    This XO would be killed dead if he’d gone straight into a COBRA GOLD rotation.
    Them LBFMs are pros….so I’ve been told.

  16. Stacy0311 says:

    Marines would’ve kidnapped the strippers, burned the club to hide the evidence, invaded Belarus and STILL made it back in time for PT in the morning

  17. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    It’s moments like this that I’m forever grateful there were no cell phones while I was between the ages of 16-30…there was very limited photography as well…

    As a result there is zero documentation of a series of misadventures and fucktard moments of a relatively naive and thus ignorantly brave dumbass of an 11B during the late 70s into the early 80s…those moments are known only by a handful of guys who were participants in those moments…all of whom are now grandpas like me. We know what we did or did not do, and no one else has a fucking clue, and that is how it should be….

    On topic, that XO must indeed be a peckerhead because if he wasn’t no one would have ever known he was missing overnight after a series of lapdances and VIP room handjobs…

    Don’t bring a phone and don’t be a prick seem easy enough and yet…