I doubt that I will ever forget the majority of what I learned during the weeks of basic training I endured in the early 1980s at Fort Benning, Georgia. Here we are several decades later and it has come to my attention that one item that I learned has been cut down from 11 to 3. It seems to me the new Soldiers have it just too easy.
I recall doing inclined push-ups in a thunderstorm, eating batches of mud because I couldn’t remember 2 out of the 11 Army General Orders. Now Soldiers only have to memorize 3.
Well, I am “old school.” I believe you all should know and memorize all 11 Army General Orders, so in today’s post, I will give the complete list of Army General Orders.
1: You will take charge of this post and all government property in view. As a Soldier, you are responsible for the post you are assigned to, and you must guard, protect and keep track of all government owned items that are within your sight.
2: You will walk your post in a military manner, always on alert and observing everything that takes place within your sight or hearing. When we wear the Army uniform, it is always our responsibility to conduct ourselves in a military manner. Awareness is also a priority of Soldiers.
3: You will report all violations of orders you are instructed to enforce. Any, and all violations of enforceable orders must be reported immediately.
4: You will repeat all calls from more posts more distant to the guardhouse than your own. Even with today’s communication technology, this still is an important General Order. By doing this, all Soldiers will stay informed and updated on conditions.
5: I will quit my post only after I am properly relieved. This General Order speaks for itself. No matter why you may need to leave a post, you don’t until you are relieved.
6: To receive, obey and pass on to the sentry who relieves you all orders from the commanding officer, officer of the day, and non-commissioned officers of the guard only. This was needed to control any situations whereas someone who may be impersonating an officer ordered a Soldier away from a post.
7: You will talk to no one except in the line of duty. Chit chat is only to be conducted when a Soldier is off duty.
8: You will give an alarm in case of fire or disorder. It is your responsibility to warn all others who are in the vicinity if an emergency is taking place.
9: You will call the Sergeant of the Guard in any case that does not have instructions. Very simply, if you are unsure, you ask!
10: You will salute all officers and all colors and standards not cased. This means exactly what it says. If you are under arms, you perform a rifle salute. All officers are saluted and every flag is saluted unless it is encased which means being rolled and bagged. If you are unsure whether to salute perform the salute. It is better to look stupid than disrespectful.
11: You will be especially watchful at night, and during the time for challenging, to challenge all persons on or near your post, and to allow no one to pass without proper authority. This General Order also speaks for itself. You will always be aware.
As I stated earlier in this article, those going into basic training now only have to memorize 3 General Orders. They supposedly cover all 11 in them, but personally, I have issues with that. If I were a young man entering the United States Army, I would memorize the above 11.
Either way, here are the 3 Army General Orders for today’s Army:
1. I will guard everything within the limits of my post and quit my post only when properly relieved.
2. I will obey my special orders and perform all of my duties in a military manner.
3. I will report violations of my special orders, emergencies, and anything not covered in my instructions to the commander of the relief.
I would like to know your thoughts and opinions on the Army General Orders. Do you feel they cover everything that needs to be covered?
What were your experiences with Army General Orders? Any extra information you provide, or any opinions you have are greatly welcome. Thank you and have a great day.