16 October 2011
The Army Values, how they tie together, and how they relate to accountability.
LDRSHIP is an acronym that simplifies all that an Army soldier stands for. LDRSHIP is short for Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage. Each of these is a value that not only stands alone but ties into the next. It is a chain that, if missing one link, will not hold.
You don’t have to look hard to see the connection between each of the seven Army Values. It is a system that is intertwined within itself. If you don’t have Personal Courage, it is difficult to have a sense of Duty. Integrity is seemingly pointless without Honor. A man who doesn’t respect his superior would have a problem being loyal to that same person.
Accountability ties in the closest with Duty. Duty is defined as fulfilling your obligations. It is quite difficult if not impossible to “fulfill your obligations” if you cannot keep accountability for your equipment. Missing something as simple as a flashlight can impede you from completing the mission. Until it happens, you just don’t realize how much the small things matter.
Accountability does not just mean keeping up with your sensitive items (i.e. weapons, radios, etc.). It is the smaller things that are taken for granted that go missing and affects the mission. Take the flashlight mentioned earlier for example. That flashlight may not be used much but just one time you need it to see into a dark corner in a room that you are clearing. What happens if you don’t have it? Maybe nothing will happen. Or, maybe there is a man hiding in that corner with a weapon that you cannot see due to the lack of light. That didn’t just affect you, but it got your battle buddy behind you shot.
As you read above, accountability and the Army Values doesn’t just affect the one soldier who has the problem. It affects the team as a whole and the leaders appointed over him. To serve selflessly, one must not think of...