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West Point Pillow Fight Turns Violent


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The pillow fight occurred on August 20th and hit national new yesterday and CBS Morning News this AM. An annual end of summer session for Plebes, it appears some of the instructions may have not been followed.


I have no doubt that there will be calls to cancel this tradition because of the injuries and I don't disagree that there should be some measure of restraint. But honestly, if we can't allow our future war fighters to have a pillow fight then what have we done with our country ?




An annual pillow fight by freshmen cadets at the U.S. Military Academy turned bloody this year when cadets swung pillowcases packed with hard objects, injuring 30 cadets, including 24 who suffered concussions.


West Point Superintendent Lt. Gen. Robert L. Caslen, Jr. said in a statement released Saturday night that besides concussions, other injuries sustained by cadets included a broken nose and dislocated shoulder.


“While these spirit events do occur, we never condone any activity that results in intentional harm to a teammate,” Caslen said. “Although the vast majority of the class appears to have maintained the spirit of the event; it is apparent that a few did not.”


Photos and video have circulated on social media showing the Aug. 20 brawl, which The New York Times reported West Point did not confirm until Thursday.


Lt. Col. Christopher Kasker told the newspaper the annual fight is organized by first-year students as a way to build camaraderie after a grueling summer of training to prepare them for plebe life.


He said upperclassmen overseeing the fight required cadets to wear helmets, but video shows many did not. Some cadets swung pillowcases believed to be packed with their helmets.


The Times noted one freshman posted on Twitter: "4 concussions, 1 broken leg, 2 broken arms, 1 dislocated shoulder, and several broken ribs. That’s one hell of a pillow fight. #USMA19 ."


Kasker said all cadets have since returned to duty. None of the participants have been punished.


"We are conducting appropriate investigations into the causes of the injuries,"Kasker told the paper. The academy does not plan to end the annual tradition, the Times reported.


Caslen said Saturday that a military police investigation which began the night of the incident is “ongoing.”


The Times spoke to cadets who said one cadet suffered a broken leg and others suffered dislocated shoulders.


One first-year cadet told the paper that an upperclassman told him, "If you don't come back with a bloody nose, you didn't try hard enough."

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Nolan's a tool - destined for the Quartermaster Corps.


Since when is a pillow considered a pillow when it has a helmet crammed inside it?

Although after thinking about it, I've slept on a few motel pillows in the past that felt like they had bricks in them.



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Were they supposed to just use pillow cases and pillows? If so, then anyone who packed their pillow cases should not only be punished, possibly charges as well? And thrown out of West Point.


Uhhh, no, they should not have any charges and no they should not be thrown out of West Point. There will be discipline, no doubt.


Let's remember that these are kids who graduated from high school and in some cases only days later end up at CBT.


We are training leaders and war fighters here and not everything in this world that doesn't go according to plan means we have to punish people, especially young men and women, for the rest of their life.


These are teachable moments that can shape the future of Army officers. Provided the institution deals with it, and they will, then things will work out just fine.

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