"Seeker" Introduction

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Jul 31, 2010
St. Paul, MN
Hello everyone! I am a psychologist with cultural research ("ethnography") experience who is currently a candidate for a position as a Social Scientist on a Human Terrain System Team ("HTS", more info here). I also have a graduate degree in theology and some background in studying Islam. At this point in my selection process, I am awaiting my security clearance investigation, and following that, my initiation of classes at Fort Leavenworth includes an immediate review and approval process by Army CPAC. I joined this forum because I would like to learn as much about counterinsurgency theory, strategy and history as possible from people with real experience. In short, if I get this position, I want to be the best at my job, and the only way I can do that is if I listen well, study hard, and do it right. I would be really grateful for any recommendations or advice people may have for getting myself a grasp of how counterinsurgency works in the real world.

There were some physical readiness criteria in my HTS interviews and review (e.g. tolerance of extreme environmental conditions, 30 lbs of gear, all day every day schedule, etc.). Well, besides all the brainy stuff, I am also a big time motivation and physical training fanatic, and enjoy comparing notes, motivating people, and getting fired up by other motivated people - so do let me know if that's you! My personal program has MGySgt Paul Roarke's (USMC Ret) "Corps Strength" Enhanced Physical Readiness System at its core (more info here), and I also integrate core exercises and swimming from the Naval Special Warfare PT Guide (more info here). I am putting it all together and doing long distance competitive running events whenever I can - looking forward to my first half-marathon this month and then looking to get into running marathons and then maybe ultra (50 or 100 mile events) someday. As for HTS, my personal goal is to be a "go anywhere, any time, by any means, under any conditions" HTS specialist, for myself and for my team.

I am looking forward to meeting everyone, doing some learning, and maybe having a laugh or two as well. Thank you for the opportunity!
Welcome to the site. I'm sure you'll find what you're looking for here.
Thanks everyone, the first 24 hours have been great! I'm already getting some advice on learning Pashto and Dari, plus a welcome book recommendation here from LibraryLady. Thanks from me to y'all!
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