Author Topic: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander  (Read 7977 times)

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Offline Evocatus

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Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« on: October 03, 2016, 15:11:42 »
Happened via a link, to trip over Mr Cox's open FB profile... 

'We' Canadian taxpayers apparently employed/paid, Mr Cox in some capacity, to travel to Kandahar, and by design/purpose or by happenstance, Jim ended up in conv with Commander JTFA, verbosing his theories on winning the war and stabilizing the region.

Jus saying...
Never show your emotion. It reveals your weakness. Never hate your enemy. It effects your judgement   -  M.l Corleone.

Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2016, 15:13:46 »
A consultant no doubt. Perhaps some people closer to the inner circle can enlighten us.....
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Offline jollyjacktar

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2016, 15:33:47 »
Everybody better get their socks sorted out then... or crap will hit the fan.  :nod:
« Last Edit: October 03, 2016, 16:00:11 by jollyjacktar »

Offline E.R. Campbell

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2016, 15:55:58 »
I'm prejudiced ... I know both guys in the pictures, friend may be slightly too strong a word, colleague certainly is not.

A lot of people with a whole helluva lot fewer clues than Jim Cox went to Afghanistan on the public's dime and bent the ears of all and sundry, now and again about things that some of the visiting "experts" actually understood. I have no idea how BGen (ret'd) Cox thought we might win the war. It appears to me, based on the outcomes, that few, if any, of the serving generals, diplomats and very senior officials from 20+ allied countries who were there for a decade and more had any useful ideas about how to win that war, either.

It is ill that men should kill one another in seditions, tumults and wars; but it is worse to bring nations to such misery, weakness and baseness
as to have neither strength nor courage to contend for anything; to have nothing left worth defending and to give the name of peace to desolation.
Algernon Sidney in Discourses Concerning Government, (1698)
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Offline Ostrozac

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2016, 16:12:52 »
BGen Thompson wasn't Commander JTFA, he was Commander JTF-Afg.  JTFA was/is a Canada Command/CJOC domestic operations formation headquartered in Halifax.

Ah, how we love our acronym soups.

Offline Lightguns

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2016, 07:59:38 »
Hopefully he didn't fall in any trenches while he was there.  Excellent BGen a little preoccupied with the colour of the APCs and underwear by but.......  This chest thumping is not out of line.  I wonder if he won the war not......
Done, 34 years, 43 days complete, got's me damn pension!

Offline Lightguns

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2016, 08:14:49 »
LOL, his facebook security is nil.  And don't park in front of his house, he calls the cops on ya and takes pictures!
Done, 34 years, 43 days complete, got's me damn pension!

Offline medicineman

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2016, 08:38:52 »
Why, oh why, did I wander into this thread...started having flashbacks to when he was GOC 1CMBG.

Wonder how long his pontifications took to get out...he could still be there trying to explain his first point for all we know.

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Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2016, 10:09:39 »
LOL, his facebook security is nil.  And don't park in front of his house, he calls the cops on ya and takes pictures!

Did they catch you? :)
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2016, 14:19:10 »
Flash backs go even further to when he was a Coy Comd with a CSM having a similar speech afflictions. Q&A at O Gps tended to go on a bit. [lol:
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Offline Happy Guy

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2016, 15:04:55 »
I keep missing him, but I keep hearing stories about him from people who claimed to be there or third hand accounts.

Before I got to the Bn, my predecessor recounted his winter ex when then LCol Cox was CO and he made everyone dig trenches in Shilo.  The guys came down with poison ivy during winter time.  When he became Comd 1 CMBG, I missed the infamous bde pde where he ranted against soldiers wearing grey socks with mismatching colours and green T shirts with cut off sleeves.  I also missed meeting him again when he was appointed Inspector General for LFC.  I was told that he jumping out from behind plants in the lobby of 101 Colonel By to correct Army personnel's dress and haircuts, and asking people if they saw anything suspicious.
He was, still is a character to be reckoned with.

Offline Thucydides

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2016, 01:23:40 »
I actually received an email from him directly when I was working in 31 CBGHQ. Why it was addressed to me is a mystery (it had nothing to do with the branch I was working in nor any related topic), so I forwarded it to the Brigade Adjt. While that officer never (to my knowledge) worked for or with Gen Cox (ret), they immediately treated the message like toxic waste. Obviously his reputation was still well known throughout the forces in the early 2000's.
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Offline PPCLI Guy

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2016, 12:46:34 »
LOL, his facebook security is nil.  !

Maybe he thought that he would be treated with at least a modicum of respect by fellow military professionals.

Clearly he was wrong.
"The higher the rank, the more necessary it is that boldness should be accompanied by a reflective mind....for with increase in rank it becomes always a matter less of self-sacrifice and more a matter of the preservation of others, and the good of the whole."

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Offline Lightguns

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #13 on: October 07, 2016, 13:19:28 »
Ohhh come on, what do you say when you talk about old times?  You sit around and remember the funny crap or "I remember him, very inefficient but I respect him".  I remember Pte Frost, a nervous redhead who was so scared of blowing himself up with the grenade he dropped it in the bay.  Sgt Blades laid in him so much he stuttered for the rest of course.  Or the time MCPL Peddridge made us marked time in 3 foot deep mud puddle while sat on the bank smoking just for his amusement.  Generals don't a special card just cause they were generals.  He did stupid stuff and we remember and swap stories.  Heck, I will even laugh at myself.  I remember a time as new arty officer that I got so sleepy that the GPO pointed out to me that my compass skills sucked because I had 3 guns pointed one direction and 1 gun pointing in another direction.  Stupid stuff that happens, all very funny now. 

Jimmy Cox will always be a source of amusement to those you have worked with, for and under him.  As you are to some old soldiers you there.  As I am and everyone on this forum is to someone.  We call war stories and they been telling them since two cavemen join another to steal chicks from two caves over. 
« Last Edit: October 07, 2016, 13:22:09 by Lightguns »
Done, 34 years, 43 days complete, got's me damn pension!

Offline PPCLI Guy

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #14 on: October 07, 2016, 13:24:51 »
The difference, of course, being that you have named names, while remaining anonymous yourself. 

"The higher the rank, the more necessary it is that boldness should be accompanied by a reflective mind....for with increase in rank it becomes always a matter less of self-sacrifice and more a matter of the preservation of others, and the good of the whole."

Karl von Clausewitz

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #15 on: October 07, 2016, 13:25:56 »
Ain't that the truth.
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Online Blackadder1916

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #16 on: October 07, 2016, 14:39:42 »
. . .  they immediately treated the message like toxic waste. Obviously his reputation was still well known throughout the forces in the early 2000's.

While BGen Cox may have had his idiosyncrasies, some of the extremes of his antics and reputation have likely been exaggerated in the retelling (and I'm probably as guilty of that as any other on this means).  Prior to being posted to 1 CMBG when he was the Bde Comd, my knowledge of him was limited to tales (taken with a grain of salt) from former phase training coursemates who had the "luck" in getting him as their first bn CO - yes, I heard the stories of TQ4 courses (e.g. Dvr Wheeled and MG) having to dig in and live in trenches in Shilo during the winter.  But those stories were tempered by seeing him several times in the later 1980s on the local Ottawa public access channel (in uniform) discussing the challenges of having a speech impediment and some measures that could be taken to overcome it and be successful.  If I remember correctly, those appearances were well regarded and were publically acknowledged by our leadership as reflecting positively on the CF.

But yes, he did have a reputation for some unique training philosophies.  While most of us would say that "any fool can be uncomfortable" when referring to living and training in the field, Gen Cox apparently believed in a different track - living in the field during training exactly as we would during combat operations, in other words, "train as you fight".  It was somewhat at odds with the mindset of most of  the army of the day.  The execution of that concept was not always successful (nor, IMO, necessarily a good idea in all instances), but that was not always the general's fault.  However, I have seen similar suggestions for Cdn Army training from members in these forums.  I guess going to a shooting war makes a difference.

As for his stammer, yes, it was noticeable.  And we made jokes about it (behind his back).  But I don't recall any occasion when it interfered with him getting his point across, either in an O Gp or (in the circumstance when I most closely interacted with him) during the preparation and presentation of a multi-presenter lecture on CF operations to a hall full of poli sci students at the UofC.

Okay, he can still be the go to standard for jokes about socks and potted plants (I didn't see either of those incidents attributed to him, though I do recall a GOC's inspection in the 1970s when the Bde RSM checked for the old green boxers) but to consider him as "toxic" is probably a bit extreme.  He wasn't the most likeable general that was ever in my chain of command, but he certainly wasn't the worst.  While he wouldn't have been my first choice of a commander to go to war with, he was a lot better than some others.
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Offline ballz

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #17 on: October 07, 2016, 14:47:12 »
Maybe he thought that he would be treated with at least a modicum of respect by fellow military professionals.

Clearly he was wrong.

And foolish if he ever thought that... What my subordinates say about me behind my back is none of my business. I much prefer to have gained rapport rather than to rely on convention to protect me from the judgement of my subordinates. They have every right to judge my leadership how they see it.

I don't know Mr. Cox and don't pay much credence to reputations (they are far too often inaccurate from my experience), but a higher rank comes with a brighter spotlight shining on it for good reason.
Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
- Helen Keller

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #18 on: October 07, 2016, 14:53:20 »
But yes, he did have a reputation for some unique training philosophies.  While most of us would say that "any fool can be uncomfortable" when referring to living and training in the field, Gen Cox apparently believed in a different track - living in the field during training exactly as we would during combat operations, in other words, "train as you fight".  It was somewhat at odds with the mindset of most of  the army of the day.  The execution of that concept was not always successful (nor, IMO, necessarily a good idea in all instances), but that was not always the general's fault.  However, I have seen similar suggestions for Cdn Army training from members in these forums.  I guess going to a shooting war makes a difference.

Like I said, reputations are poor evidence to judge someone on. Sounds like the exact same "unique training philosophies" that his son possesses, whom I worked for, and while he could be a very frustrating person to work for due to his certain nuances / idiosyncrasies, he was a long ways off from being weak.
Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
- Helen Keller

Offline jollyjacktar

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #19 on: October 07, 2016, 15:47:58 »
When "Jimmy" hit the Brigade, it was a bit of a shock as he was 180 deg. from his predecessor who was of the mantra that if it makes you more comfortable in the field, go for it.

Wainwright became more "interesting" shall we say after his arrival.  He was indeed of a mindset  that was "train as you fight"  and "the more you sweat in training, the less you'll bleed in combat" school of thought.  I will give him this, he lived exactly the same way he demanded we live.  I respect that.

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #20 on: October 07, 2016, 19:25:12 »
2 commanders prior to him was Brian Vernon, who had some similar philosophies about being comfortable with being uncomfortable - if temps were above "x" degrees C, tarps were off the Iltis's and such...and he cared very much about how people performed in the field.  I also found him very personable - had many occasions to discuss my job with him at various stages of the beginning of my career.  BGen Ashton followed him - a little different, as we'd do a full up GOC's inspection, mustered in front of our vehicles and kit, followed by a full on unit level deployment...Gen Vernon wandered about to chat with us in the hangar for GOC's (at least at 1 Fd Amb - he was very concerned about how we functioned in the field though, not what we looked like).  I'd also had a few chats with Gen Ashton about things...like why none of us had bayonets on our webbing as a for instance.  I actually remember my CO visibly blanching when I noted that while there were many in the QM, we weren't issued them.  When pressed, I let the CO off the hook by saying many thought of them as offensive weapons, so we weren't issued them.  Then came BGen Cox...and his "hardness training" as some folks called it.  I think that if you can make it through a few years in field units with the crap we were issued in the 80's and 90's to keep us allegedly protected from the elements, you were reasonably mentally and physically resilient.  I actually enjoyed some of our exercises, since we just went out to Wainwright or Sarcee, cammed up as we hit the gates, and trained for a week or two straight then went home, since those were when budgets were at a premium.  We were required to shoot to qualify pretty much monthly/quarterly at one point IIRC - again, something useful and important given the operational tempo we had in the early/mid 90's.  Personally, the man never gave me a second glance, much less spoke to me, in the numerous times we'd crossed paths - I'm 6'2" and he is of a height where I'm sure he'd add in the extra 1/8" if asked his - he didn't like talking to or looking up at tall folks.  If you look at those pics above, you'll notice he's sitting higher than the dude he's pontificating to.  I missed GOC's with him due to deployments and courses...I heard all the fun stories from platoon mates though about how he'd rag out people because they had new socks in their rucksacks and other weird stuff.  I broke my ankle just prior to the COP COBRA '95 fiasco going to and in Suffield, so missed out on it...then was posted.  One of the platoon leaders in my current reserve unit was a Pte with 3 RCR when he was the CO - I've heard a variety of things, often the same as other things I'd heard from others that were there as well. 

MM
MM

Remember the basics of Medicine - "Pink is GOOD, Blue is BAD, Air goes in AND out, Blood Goes Round and Round"

I may sound like a pessimist, but I am a realist.

Offline jollyjacktar

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #21 on: October 07, 2016, 20:25:24 »
I was there for Vernon, Ashton and Cox. They were different cats that's for sure.  Never really like the transit to Wainwright in the Iltis in the late fall to early spring period.  Too ******* cold inside.  Luckily those horse blankets masquerading as ranger blankets were good for dividing the interior of the jeep and give the pos heater a chance to do it's job.  Thank frig for Norwegian sweaters and American jacket liners.

Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #22 on: October 07, 2016, 21:25:34 »
I heard all the fun stories from platoon mates though about how he'd rag out people because they had new socks in their rucksacks

OK, I give, why is this a bad thing?
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Humphrey Bogart

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #23 on: October 07, 2016, 22:12:34 »
OK, I give, why is this a bad thing?
Which part?  The ragging or the socks?

Why are we talking about this man anyways?  He is long retired, Let the personality cult (good or bad) die already.


Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Gen(Retired) Jimmy Cox - Advisor (?) to JTFA Commander
« Reply #24 on: October 08, 2016, 01:12:49 »
Which part?  The ragging or the socks?

Why are we talking about this man anyways?  He is long retired, Let the personality cult (good or bad) die already.

But, but, but I just HAVE to know why having new socks in your ruck is a bad thing ... pleeeeeeeeeze?
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon