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THE JOURNEY OF PRINCE HARRY AS A ROYAL CADET

New Colours are presented to RMAS (Royal Milit...

New Colours are presented to RMAS (Royal Military Academy Sandhurst). Officer Cadet Wales (Prince Harry of Wales – rightmost of the cadets, visible between the Chief of the Defence Staff and the horse) and his intake of Juniors are inspected by the then Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir Michael Walker GCB, CMG, CBE, later Baron Walker of Aldringham (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Arriving at Sandhurst Harry felt that all around him a new world was taking shape. When he timidly entered the gate of RMA Sandhurst it seemed to him he was living out a dream to which his principles were opposed. He had to spend here 44 weeks.

He felt that his new status as a junior cadet would bring him new experiences and challenges. Little by little, in the first days of his military career, Harry gets acquainted with the strict hierarchy of the military, military ranks and positions, military language and terminology, the forms of address laid down by regulation. The schedule includes a period of adjustment to the life of a cadet, characterized by many individual duties which are not easy. For some, this period passes quickly, for others, it seems long.

    During the five weeks of drills ( named “weeks of the inferno”) Harry learned many things. This was important for him. Training fortifies the spirit and exerts a good influence on any soldier. Training and life in the military develop the mind, cultivate emotions and responses, strengthen the will, mould the character and shape the temperament. Last but not least, they develop respect for values and symbols which Harry up to this point hadn’t fully appreciated.

During the Second Term’s classes, Harry began to get the feeling of what it was to be a cadet and he trained as much as he could in order to cope with it. His interest in military life sharpened his mind and developed his competitive spirit.     The quality of an officer is acquired not only as a result of the training in the Shooting Range and in the Exercise Field, but also as a result of his classroom education. Here in the classroom, Harry understood that military life, with its specific demands, requires certain fundamental changes in the attitude and behavior of each cadet.

During the Third Term the educational background obliges him to display integrity, to make quick decisions and be fair. He has to assume responsibility for his actions. He has to demonstrate moral courage in all circumstances and inspire and drive his soldiers to attain their goals. He must respect and defend their honor and dignity and set an example as regards physical strength and endurance. If he can combine all of this, he can consider himself competent and he deserves respect. Otherwise, he will be a pale shadow of a genuine commander. He will fail at the first test whether that be in the garrison, or on the battlefield.

The second part of the book tells about the Expedition to Cyprus which is going to be such an adventure!     This test is going to discover whether all of them have completed the metamorphosis that turns them into professional soldier.

    Then, the moments of graduation and the Passing Out ceremony come.

         Here, the journey ends.

                                                                                     Vasile Michael

A Day in the Life of a Royal Cadet

“The Cadet Life of Prince Harry” is an extraordinary story of effort, adjustment, courage and love that underscores the transformative power of military education. By reading it, you understand the happiness of trying to become immortal through what you do. At the end you will realize that the cadet life is a manly road full of hardships, of physical and intellectual efforts, that form you as a man.

There is one chance out of a hundred to get into RMA Sandhurst. Your road has led you here. You are going to learn the job of handling the weapons. You are going to dress the military uniform and you are going to do what you have to do. In fact, that’s what others expect of you! It is time we advanced on in our military career! Become officer cadets and so on.

Every day of a royal cadet is a different one. I know that usually, a cadet is not afraid of facing life. A cadet is anxious to prove himself. The excitement, the dangers, the difficulties of ling marches, carrying tens of pounds of equipment on his back, the problems of a complex life of a man does not intimidate a cadet. But, after ten hours of effort, a tired, but satisfied cadet, is eager to face the new obstacles life at RMA Sandhurst implies.

Prince Harry

New Colours are presented to RMAS. Officer Cadet Wales (Prince Harry) and his intake juniors are inspected.
Picture taken from http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Inspection-New-Colours.JPG

The purpose of drills is not related to cultivating his intelligence, but rather to cultivating his spirit. Spirit is sometimes mistaken for the conservation instinct. But they, the ones who are now in Sandhurst, know for sure that a day is going to come that each piece of knowledge, each skill they learned will produce results. This is in fact the goal of this period in the life of a junior cadet. His step becomes steadier, his look is firmer!

Then after a long period of drills, another one arrives: the classes.  The classes, lectures in the theory of tactics, with evaluations at the end of each week enable you to acquire knowledge. Actually small steps in a cadet’s own transformation. They do not mean defeat if they are not perfectly prepared for an exam. But that is not a reason for self inflation either, they hope to one day impresses their instructors with their excellent answers.

A royal cadet compares the classes with a kind of ceremony. Each class has a special significance, and the way in which the participants manifest themselves has something of a ceremony. After each break, the cadets head for the lecture theaters. Some of them talk loudly, others silently check their papers and pens. When the instructor gets in, they stand up at the order. Then the instructor invites them to be seated. He usually starts with a joke or at least a remark that makes them smile.

And as the days go by, the courses become more and more interesting. There are also days in which the courses are followed by drills, and after many hours at the desk, action is welcome. Class by class, the amount of knowledge gets bigger and bigger and the cadets become easier to handle.

You can imagine Prince Harry among the royal cadets. He is hard-working. He tries to assimilate all the knowledge in his teachers’ lectures. He no longer feels insecure, he no longer spends his days in daydreaming. His feelings start to unfold. He becomes more friendly with his colleagues, and more confident. Time is beginning to shape the real character which inhabits the being of Prince Harry. A character towards who he goes with open arms. Every moment of self-discovery gives him a feeling of accomplishment.