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[Table] IAmA Finnish Army conscript. AMA

2013.06.17 16:45 tabledresser [Table] IAmA Finnish Army conscript. AMA

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Date: 2013-06-16
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How many Russians can you take down before you get overrun? Depends on situation. With spoon-fork combination maybe 15-20, with knife 30+ and an assault rifle it goes in hundreds.
No, seriously, we're trained to defend against enemy that is three times more powerful. It's something like the goal. The interesting fact is that the enemy is never "Russians", they are like "the yellow state" or "the k-state". Everyone still knows that it's Russia.
Do you play any Call of Duty games? If so, what do you think of Russia always being the antagonist? I play Battlefield, it's better than COD ;)
It's not a deal for me. I think that American entertainment industry likes to dig up some Cold War history and put the great superpowers against each other. And Russians don't seem to care a lot about the fact that they are the "bad guys". In BF4, there is China versus the US, I think.
What exactly do you do while you are conscripted for a year? It seems like a long time to be in the one spot training and all. It's just hard for me to imagine that there's actually all that much to do. Well, there's the basic training of 8 weeks. After that I went to NCO school that lasted 16 weeks. Then rest of the service is leadership period. In military police it means guarding duties and training war-time actions. A year is actually quite a short time to train when there's all the holidays etc.
Also, I've heard it's pretty common to be able to get out in 6 months. Were you just unlucky that you stayed for a whole year? In some places 6 months is an easy way to go. If you want only six months, probably you will get so. I wasn't unlucky, I wanted to stay the whole year because there wouldn't be much to do in the other half of the year. With high school education you aren't really hot in work markets and the university starts in autumn.
Do you guys do any deployments or is it just all stateside? I can't imagine a 347 day or less conscript being able to fulfill a decent deployment to a war zone. I think that none of the conscripts get deployed during their training. In Pori Brigade there's Finnish Rapid Deployment Force which is one of the special forces available for conscripts. It focuses on making soldiers to peacekeeping operations. You can apply to peacekeeping operations after conscription not depending on which training program you have gone through.
Also, is the food good? I know here in the United States, Army chow sucks ass, Air Force/Joint Base chow is the shit, and Coast Guard chow isn't bad either. Here the food is really good. We get breakfast, lunch, dinner and something to eat at evening. I serve in such a small place that the food has quite a high level. In bigger places the food is a little bit worse but still very eatable.
Lastly, thanks for your service Soldier. I respect all men and women who fight for their countries, even if they didn't volunteer. It still takes guts to be a warrior. I don't see myself as a warrior. This is just a thing that has to be gone through because I've won in the lottery and have born in Finland. I have no interest on going on deployment, the army world is not for me. Thanks anyway!
A friend of mine is going to Finland this summer to do his service (He's Finnish). Any advice for him? And with what Finnish saying could I flatter a girl? A friend of mine spent a year in Finland and is pretty fluent, I could use some help. A very brief advice: don't be first, don't be last, don't at least be volunteer. The whole thing is a big show: if it hits you on the cheek, just turn the other cheek and let it hit there also. Try not to moan about things - they won't probably change. Bring your own underwear and socks (especially for winter). Tell your friend not to worry. Every normal man or woman can go through it. It has ups and downs but some day it's always over. And remember to tell him "aamuja".
You asked women advice from wrong man. I suck at flattering girls. Go on and try the other geeks in Finland...
What did you enjoy the most about your time as a conscript? What was the thing you enjoyed the least? Well, there are many things. It's really easy just to be - everything comes served, the food, laundry, some activities... Maybe the most enjoyable moments are those when the weather is awesome and you are chilling in the forest doing some shootings etc. Or the moments when a really hard exercise has ended. The worst moments are those when you are tired and you are doing something that you can't see useful. And if it rains. Raining sucks ass. I prefer cold, dry winter to wet and damp autumn.
Miten menee? Mikäs tässä. Hyviä spol-hommia, koko yö valveilla eli läppäri hanskaan ja dataamaan.
- i'm ex-military myself and when younger I was used think that my country (UK) should have conscription due to the amount of useful skills/discipline/comradeship you learn. I still think you learn some really great lessons in the military but i'm no longer sure whether conscription would be the best idea for my country. My question is basically what you think of the Finnish system? Is it useful or a waste of money? Edit: Here's the comment. In my personal opinion, maybe it would be time also for Finland to move on to voluntary forces. From my point of view this system takes a whole lot of resources and the result isn't so shiny when you just take a look at the conscripts and their skills in an ordinary unit. But I'm sure that I can't see every side of the question of voluntary/conscript forces. Luckily it's not my decision to make. Hopefully our systems will never go to real test.
This is not about the army but I watched (and loved) Steam of Life/ Miesten Vuoro. Any other movie/documentary suggestions? I haven't seen that one myself. There's not much that comes to mind. I watch tv so little. One movie that pictures youngsters' living in 60s and 70s Finnish and Swedish Lapland is Populäärimusiikkia Vittulajänkältä . It's quite a good movie.
You could ask from Finland. The people there might give better advice...
Or I could myself take a look: here's such a good list.
There's a Finland subreddit? You have made my day! Yes, Finland isn't really big but there seems to be a few foreigners asking for information or something. There's also Finnish-speaking Suomi and learnfinnish for language learners.
Now I have a relevant question: how was it being in the service? I may have an exaggerated idea of sisu but I imagine that everyone approaches military service nonchalantly. It's hard to answer to a question how was it? It depends so much. I have not been the most nonchalant of all because whatever has to be done I like to do it properly. Of course sometimes I think that this year has gone wasted, I could have already been studying in university for a year. Some people don't really give a fuck about conscription and they sometimes irritate me when they won't do anything properly.
Also...your language is hella-hard! I became a rather adequate speaker but now...not so much much. It has been some kind of an adventure. Good moments, bad moments. Sisu has been sometimes in use. The living here is easy but it dominates life strongly because of living in the barracks instead of home. I truly like that I'm finally going home...
Hey how are you doing today? I live in Canada but I have finnish heritage and I have lots of family living in the Kuhmo area. Anyways I hope you have a great day and thank you for your services for Finland. Now I'm really tired: it's over 5 am and I've been up all night. Luckily I get to sleep within a couple of hours. Only a little bit over three days and I'm out of this place. That feels really good.
I've been in Kuhmo area a couple of times. It's quite nice place to be.
In general, are people from Finland shy? because i am a American and i have a Finnish friend and he seems to be a quiet person. I'm sorry this question isn't directly linked to the fact that you are a army conscript it is more of a general question for Finnish people. The answers from other people are good. I might consider myself a little quiet when I'm with people I don't know well. I don't like the meaningless small-talk. It's better to be quiet. There's nothing wrong with silence.
And when I'm drunk I become overly social...
What is your favourite place and favourite thing about Finland? Duh. There's so many nice places in Finland and I have seen only a fraction. I really liked the Käsivarsi Wilderness area when I visited there. In general, I prefer untouched nature to built cities and stuff. And in Finland the nature is vast.
Maybe the nature is the thing that I like. Of course the Finnish society is great but I don't think about it because it only goes on with my life automatically. Also we have four real seasons here. It's a good thing.
I'm from Finnish descent and went there last year. I cannot wait to go back again when I have a lot more money. It was beautiful and I hung out with relatives in tiny apartments and visited some of the smaller towns. It was beautiful and comfy in every single way. Will definitely look at the wilderness area. How do you feel about Estonia? Welcome back! I haven't visited Estonia for many many years, last time maybe I was something like 13 or 14 when I was there. I don't feel anything special about it, many Finns bring cheap beer and booze from there.
I was in the Swedish army about 15 years ago and it's funny you say the enemy is never the Russians because it was the same for us. It was always big red country attacks small blue country from the east. Sweden abolished conscription a couple of years ago, do you think that is the way Finland will go too? Edit: comment here In my personal opinion, maybe it would be time also for Finland to move on to voluntary forces. From my point of view this system takes a whole lot of resources and the result isn't so shiny when you just take a look at the conscripts and their skills in an ordinary unit. But I'm sure that I can't see every side of the question of voluntary/conscript forces. Luckily it's not my decision to make. Hopefully our systems will never go to real test.
How many conscripts decide to stick with the military for their career? Hm. That's kind of a tough one. You can serve as a contract soldier after conscription or apply to National Defence University). A military career isn't very popular among Finnish youth. I'd estimate that maybe five of my unit are going on a career either way. And there's like 100 people there so it's 5 %. Can't be really accurate.
I don't have to do conscriptionp due to the fact that I have dual citizenship with Finland and the USA. Any opinion? Such as I'm escaping through a loophole, etc? It's not a loophole if you have been told that you don't have to go. It's a loophole when someone goes to the doctor's and lies about having a broken back etc. and gets to go home with relief from peace time service. I dislike it.
Edit: I do have a letter from the Finnish Army saying I don't have to do conscription. If you want to serve in Finland and it's possible in your studies, it might be worth a try. You don't really lose anything bigger than life if you don't but as I said, it's one kind of an adventure.
Roughly where are you stationed? Does the army train troops in say unconventional environments? I.e. do you experience any desert warfare training or is it pure homeland defense stuff? I'm located in Eastern Finland. The ones who go to peacekeeping operations probably have training about their environment which is desert at least in Afghanistan which is quite a popular place to be. It was mentioned in other comments but conscripts focus on homeland defense only.
The sissi troops and special forces might have the most unconventional environment training because of their long trips in the wilderness.
Thanks for answering! What is your main rifle you train with? I guess issued would be a better term eh... RK 62 TP translated as Assault Rifle 62 Folding Stock (rynnäkkökivääri 62 taittoperä). Military police tends to have the folding stock. Some troops are using also the newer version, RK95.
When do you finish? On Thursday ;)
What kind of weapons do you have experience with? Mostly assault rifle RK 62 TP and two pistols: FN (I don't know the model, it was old and it sucked) and Glock 17 9mm pistol. Besides those I've shot a couple of times with a PKM light machine gun and a 7,62 mm sniper rifle which is called Sniper Rifle M85 here in Finland.
Any idea how much the ammo costs? Not a single idea.
FN (I don't know the model, [...] I'm guessing this is the 9.00 PIST 80 and/or 9.00 PIST 80-91, basically the Browning BDA, also known as the FN HP-DA. Yes, this one. I prefer Glock to this A LOT.
Dammit, I am doing research on the 7.62x39 round so any info on it would be appreciated. Sorry, I can't really help you. I'm not really fond of firearms, so mostly I've only been making metal pieces go from point to another.
Are you an operative or a tactical military police? If tactical, do the conscripts serve 6 months or 9 months with the operatives? A fellow operative MP from north-karelia brigade here. Feels pretty sad that there won't be anyone here after us. There's no difference where I'm serving because there's only one MP platoon around. I think that every MP serves 9 months. I've heard about the tactical/operative difference but I don't know anyone personally who would clearly be in the other.
Do the Hawks have any chance of beating Tuukka Rask? Hm. I don't watch ice hockey but I'd like to say that no.
What's the difference? I'm Finnish and I did my military service a few years ago (not as MP obviously) and I've never heard of this :O. I've heard that the difference is that operative MP forces participate in guarding of the garrison and the tactical MPs train only war-time operations.
Olikos teillä jo se lyhennetty palvelus? Juu. Kun tulin niin piti olla vielä 362, mutta siinä joskus viime vuoden puolella tuli tieto että 15 päivää lyhenee.
So i guess you are almost finished? hahahahahahah. Yes.
Moi moi, mina olen vitun uskomaton. Voi vittu. That's my limited knowledge of your language. You seem to have met a drunk Finn somewhere in the middle of the night.
Is finnish basic training like the first half of the movie full metal jacket. I haven't seen that movie but I think that it isn't. It's about learning basic soldier's skills.
I guess the Rapid deployment forces work in a similar way to peacekeaping duty, completely voluntary and the deployment itself is after you have completed your mandatory period. En oo kyllä valmiusjoukkoihin tutustunu vaikka vietinki aikaa Porissa muutaman kuukauden. Aamuja vaan, t. spol 1/11. Joo näin se kai menee. Ei tässä enää kovin suurta kasaa oo kun nyt on maanantai ja torstaina pois =)))
Kj 4. Aamuja.
Terveiset Merisotakoulusta. Tj3. Cool to see such an active AMA in /Finland. Aamuja vaan. Kolmesta saa kasan ja kahdestakin pinon.
Redditor for 1 day. Militaryspam. Throwaway for reasons.
How many hours per month do you spend eating reindeer pizza, listening to Nightwish, and shouting perkele at each other? Perkele is shouted a lot. Especially in the Army. I listen to heavy music but not Nightwish, sometimes it only comes from the radio. There's no reindeer pizza in the southern Finland but in Lapland it's really tasty.
Swedish military has newer and better equipment than the Finnish one for obvious reasons and unlike Finland Sweden doesn't have conscription but we rely on a volunteer military force. Which system do you think is better? Also, it is my understanding that every child is forced to learn Swedish in Finland. What do you think about that? Yeah, the Swedes are always ahead of us... :P It hasn't been long since Sweden also had conscription? Nowadays it is voluntary force, that I knew already. In my personal opinion, maybe it would be time also for Finland to move on to voluntary forces. From my point of view this system takes a whole lot of resources and the result isn't so shiny when you just take a look at the conscripts and their skills in an ordinary unit. But I'm sure that I can't see every side of the question of voluntary/conscript forces. Luckily it's not my decision to make. Hopefully our systems will never go to real test. My opinion of Swedish teaching is quite neutral. I think that it should be taught at least on those areas that have larger population of Swedish speakers. I don't see it really necessary in areas populated only Finnish speakers. The difficulty is in drawing the line. Maybe it's good to teach it to everyone so that no lines need to be drawn...
Oi voi. Nyt kyllä tuhlasit turhaa aikaa noin pitkän vastauksen kirjoittamiseen. Käypä katsomassa tuon hemmon profiili, niin huomaat millainen vittuileva peikko sieltä löytyy. Suoranainen legenda jo Suomi-aiheisilla alaredditeillä. No perse. Tylsää mulla kuitenkin oli koko yön...
Last updated: 2013-06-21 14:26 UTC
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