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Allen Curtis

We used to regularly host the Soviet army specialists from both the US (Leavenworth) and UK (Sandhurst) at the National Training Center to observe the OPFOR portrayal and share their latest work on Soviet tactics (picking interesting details out of open-source literature).  We’d run down to Ontario (California) airport or LAX to pick up the Brits.  On the way back up through the desert, they’d always get a chuckle out of the very prominent Toys “Ya” Us sign in Victorville.  Nowadays, it bugs me when companies like Battlefront/Flames of War use Cyrillic characters in place of “look-alike” Latin ones.  The mind really stalls for a second or two as it tries to process that gobblety-gook.

I didn’t go to ARI, but used my GI Bill benefits to take Russian at KU whe I was working at Leavenworth: in one class, two of us who were civilian intelligence specialists and a couple of the local Soviet foreign area officers took a tailored course in military Russian for a couple of years.  For the two of us civilians (my boss with a doctorate in c.17th German, myself with Latin, Greek and Old English), it started with the alphabet, then basic grammar and everyday vocabulary, before moving on to military vocabulary and reading military journal articles.  That was so much fun I worked with the same instructor learning Old Russian and Old Church Slavonic.  Now those will really bend your mind when learning vocabulary, because there are so many words that only appear in the literature one time.  Ever.

Yep, I love that site, and refer to it regularly.