How to become a soldier in the USA: an immigrant from Ukraine shared his experience - ForumDaily
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How to become a soldier in the USA: an immigrant from Ukraine shared his experience

The Ukrainian, who serves in the US infantry, spoke about how to get into the American army, undergo training and find friends there. He shared his story with "Voice of America".

Photo: Shutterstock

35-year-old Alexander has been serving in the American army for 2 years. He received two higher educations in Odessa, served under contract in the ranks of the Security Service of Ukraine, where he had the call sign “Svyatov,” and several years ago he won a green card on his first try and moved to America.

“I'm ready to run 20 miles (about 32 km) with a backpack. Fire 10 shots - all on target. Crawl 150 meters, mine the area and disguise the mine - no problem. Taking a navigation course in the middle of the night without a flashlight or GPS, with a backpack containing two “pancakes” from a pole, through swamps where alligators are found, is wonderful,” he admitted.

“Why did I join the army? From my point of view, this is a simple way to show loyalty to the country,” says Alexander. “You will get a profession, you will get friends, you will get something new and experience that few people have.”

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But despite the experience of military service, getting into the US Army was not easy. Previously, Alexander lost the phalanx of the thumb on his right hand. And, according to him, it was not easy to even get to recruiters. He visited four recruiting centers and only one soldier, a former special forces soldier, interviewed him and asked whether Alexander could hold a weapon. He brought his own rifle from the car, asked to demonstrate it - and Alexander did it.

After signing a contract, the US Army carefully checks the background of each recruit. While this was happening, Alexander received a truck driving license and fulfilled another dream of his - he visited almost all American states. After this there is a camp for recruits, where up to 15% of recruits are eliminated annually.

“Some made a mistake already on the second day,” says Alexander. — For three days, 72 hours, you are not allowed to sleep. This period is called the “hell 72”. It's not hard if you have a backbone, a goal, if you love challenges and can cope with exhaustion. For today's youth it will be difficult, because you cannot use gadgets, you do not have any civilian things. The only civilian thing I had was a small ribbon in the colors of the Ukrainian flag.”

Photo: video frame "Voices of America"

Alexander is a sniper, but he also works in the headquarters, because he also speaks Belarusian, Polish and Czech. He says that because of his experience, he was treated like a sergeant from the very beginning. But he emphasizes that in the American army everyone is equal.

“If you are in the fields, if you are at war, then you and your sergeants, officers and all the other guys live the same way,” says Alexander. - You sleep in one cold puddle. Everyone has seen the video of the sergeants screaming. They scream like crazy. But if you need to tell or explain something, the sergeant will always spend his free time on you. He won’t go to sleep until he gets to you what you need.”

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Military service in any country in the world is impossible without brotherhood, says Alexander. A person who has served somewhere, who has felt for himself what life is like outside the comfort zone, being on the brink of life and death, will not be the same. And he always wants to feel those emotions, to see those people who will “cover his back,” as they say in the American army.

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US Army american army Our people Ukrainians in the USA
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