Monday, February 23, 2009

PSYOP Award Update

One of the purposes of this Blog is to update the PSYOP community on items of interest. An important issue today is the status of an award for excellence in PSYOP. At the moment there are two different award approaches being explored. (photo from Wikipedia)

For the past year a multi-organizational project, coordinated by USACAPOC has been under way to plan for and grant awards for exceptionally meritorious service or achievement within the PSYOP Community. Championed by the DCG of USACAPOC, the project has involved representatives from the 2nd PSYOP Group, the 7th PSYOP Group, the PSYOP Association (POA -, the PSYOP Veterans Association (POVA - and the PSYOP Regiment as represented by yours truly, the Honorary Colonel.

The award has been tentatively named the McClure Award in honor of MG Robert McClure who is considered the ‘father’ of modern day PSYOP. The award would be inclusive in nature meaning it could be awarded to a current or past member of any service from any country who excelled in service or achievement for PSYOP. It could also be awarded to civilians, veterans or deceased personnel who were nominated and selected.

It is envisioned that nominations would be submitted to a committee made up of representatives from the organizations noted above under the auspices of the PSYOP Regimental Association (PORA) which would serve as an umbrella organization serving the overall ommunity interest. Both POA and POVA would continue to function independently. POA concentrating on its stated mission of PSYOP education and POVA concentrating on its stated mission of holding reunions.

A US Army centric approach, focusing on excellence with the Army PSYOP branch, is progressing under the championship of the new CG of SWC. MG Thomas Crsnko (see assumed command of the JFK Special Warfare Center and School at Fort Bragg on 28 June 2008. He has directed his staff to initiate a project for awards recognizing Army personnel in the PSYOP branch for their service and achievements. This award, tentatively named the St. Bernadine Medal, would be awarded in three classes: Gold, Silver and Bronze based on nominations processed through an ad hoc committee formed by SWC.

By way of background, the CG of SWC is considered the “Home Base Commander” and as such is the higher HQ for the PSYOP, CA and Special Forces Regiments. Consequently it can be argued that they are indeed the proponent for the PSYOP, CA and SF Branches.

The 4th POG has scheduled PSYOP Regimental week at Fort Bragg for 1 – 5 June 2009 and it is hoped that PSYOP award or awards can be presented during that week.

USACAPOC and SWC are working together to deconflict the issues surrounding the awards.

If you have any input or suggestions regarding awards within PSYOP, please comment on the Blog and I will be glad to pass them along if you would like. Any comment to the Blog must be approved by me prior to posting (so far I’ve posted every one I’ve gotten since the Blog started in 2007), so do not be concerned that your input will be posted automatically. If you’d rather correspond privately, say so in the comment and I’ll get back to you via return e-mail.

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