Thursday, February 4, 2010

Fighting a War With Our Hands Tied--Once Again!

The lessons that should have been learned in Vietnam and Korea appear to have been forgotten--by the military--can't expect them to be remembered by the nincompoop that poses and postures as their "Commander-in-Chief." I'm talking about restrictions on where troops are allowed to pursue the enemy--"de-militarized zones," parallels that cannot be crossed by our troops to pursue and destroy the enemy that is killing them, etc.

Comment at NAVY INSIDER:

I was in the navy in the vietnam fiasco. What we are in now is the same bull shit except at a grander scale.Our pilots were briefed to what they could bomb . No towns,no airports, no train stations,no fuel depots. They could bomb rice patties, foot bridges across a rice patty, water buffalo. . . .
Posted by: Barry Clark February 02, 2010 at 06:57 PM

Now with the a$$-clown ensconced in our White House and Gen. McChrystal, the latest expert on counter-insurgent warfare forcing impossible Rules of Engagement (ROEs) on our troops, we stand to lose another war.

Of course we DO NOT WANT VICTORY: the "Commander-in-Chief" declared that bluntly, it does not sit well with him, as he remembers (falsely) Hirohito (Jap. emperor during WWII) coming down to the USS Missouri to sign the unconditional surrender document. Of course his memory about WWII is sadly deficient when he remembers his uncle freeing concentration camps.

But back to Afghanistan, the war he wants to end, but not win.

Looking at Afghanistan today:

"The enemy IS their population. Can't we all just read the Koran?"

When townsfolk can pelt the Marines with rocks and Taliban fighters can run amok in the crowds, U.S. forces are not respected. It’s an ominous sign – that the most feared fighting force on earth, the 911 forces of America, the most deadly, rapid and mobile strike forces of any nation anywhere, can be pelted with rocks and hit with sticks without any fear whatsoever. This isn’t likely to ensure belief by the population that they will be "protected" by our forces.


Troops Feel Growing Rage in Afghanistan
Troops Feel Growing Rage in Afghanistan Anger, frustration and a hunger for revenge are running high among U.S. Marines as casualties mount on the frontline of the battle against the Taliban in southern Afghanistan. Outside a tent housing the Marine unit responsible for firing mortars stands an improvised cross bearing the inscription: "Here lies the 81st, death by stand down."...More

New US Air Strategy in Afghanistan
Six months after Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S commander in Afghanistan, issued a tactical directive urging troops to walk away from a fight rather than risk killing civilians, the Air Force is engaging in a campaign of restraint. Instead of airstrikes, Airmen are increasingly searching for places they can drop bombs that can be heard and felt, but where they're unlikely to damage buildings or hurt people....More

Are the rules of engagement making any difference?
BY Herschel Smith

In order to believe that the ROE is beneficial, one must believe that the higher casualties suffered now will redound to less in the future. But this is unproven doctrine, with the ROE is Iraq more robust than it has been thus far in Afghanistan.

… the Taliban feel utterly protected by being amidst the population. While it may be backed with all of the nice intentions mankind can muster, the unintended consequences of less robust rules of engagement are that more noncombatants die. Many, if not most, of these townsfolk would never have been there if they had believed that they were in mortal danger, and the Taliban wouldn’t have been there to instigate the event(s) if we were giving chase to them and they were running for their lives.

Enlisted Marines on the Rules of Engagement
By Herschel Smith

Based on recent communications with enlisted Marines (of various ranks), a perspective is developing around the current rules of engagement for Afghanistan. There is no such thing as air or artillery support any more. The ROE General McChrystal has set in place is killing Marines. Sure, there was the ROE in Iraq, but Marines were genuinely encouraged to think for themselves, assess the situation, and ascertain the best course of action independently. This is not being done in Afghanistan, where rules are micromanaging the tactical situation. Many Marines with combat experience in Iraq are leaving the Corps for various reasons, but at least one reason for the exit can be traced to a lack of willingness to deploy to Afghanistan under the current circumstances. Deploying Marines to Afghanistan are mostly inexperienced.

Stryker Network Fail in Afghanistan?
Roadside bombs and military grade land mines continue to cause the largest number of U.S. casualties Afganistan. If there are new tactics or pieces of equipment that can aid in the counter-IED fight we want to know about it....More

Announcing the Marja Offensive
BY Herschel Smith
From the WSJ

Getty Images
Marines take cover after hearing shots during a patrol in the outskirts of Marjah in Afghanistan's Helmand province on Jan. 19.
Photo from The Wall Street Journal


From COMMENTS at Stryker Network Fail in Afghanistan?

I am impressed by the intellectual depth of the 3 and 4 star politician generals. Converting our killing machine to Agency for international Developement is a formula for dissolution of the killing machine and the fullfilment of the dream of our adversaries.(break us financially and psychologically). Long engagement cannot be supported in domestic politics. All Vol Force will break, American people's will will break. These adversaries think in centuries, not presidential 4 yr term.
Posted by: Robert C Brenzel, Sr February 02, 2010 at 07:20 AM
Why is there no defined mission in Afghanistan? Just a vague "War on Terror". Afghans will fight any outsider who is in their country just because they have nothing better to do. We are trying to win over the populus by being friendly now. Offering to pay insurgents who "change their ways". The only thing these people understand is violence.This is ridiculous to a soldier who was trained to kill, but now has to write down and try to address every stupid grievance these people have. The same people that are waiting for my to turn my back so they can throw a grenade at it.
Posted by: Confused Soldier February 02, 2010 at 07:50 AM

Comment to Troops Feel Growing Rage in Afghanistan

Feb 1, 2010 2:13:43 PM

The enemy IS their population. Can't we all just read the Koran?


First thought that pops into one's mind: "But we do have Islamic countries as allies, don't we?"

I mean, look at Saudi Arabia. Hand-holding and kissing buddies (only "royals" though) of George W. Bush, sells us their oil (which we discovered for them), buys armaments from us, and was on our side against Saddam Hussain.

. . . yes, sure, and all the while planting their poison (koran, madrassas, mosques) on our soil with the ultimate aim of making the United States into one of their vile "Islamic Republics."

Okay on that--maybe--but what about Jordan? Wasn't that a Jordanian that was "helping" the CIA people at that forward CIA base in Afghanis/Pakis-tan?

Yes, indeed, he was in fact the one who blew himself up and took nine Americans with him. Some "friend" and "ally."

Can Karzai be trusted?

As far as I could throw Michael Moore (if I wanted to get that close to the slob).

The enemy IS their population. Can't we all just read the Koran?
--1387FURF Comment to

And Gen. McChrystal's "Rules of Engagement?"

They are killing our Marines and Soldiers. See Covering for the Rules of Engagement? by Herschel Smith at The Captain's Journal.

(NOTE: . . . that Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s vaunted new Afghanistan strategy — including his call more a troop surge — is not substantially different from the strategy Gen. David McKiernan advocated, but never got the resources to fully implement. From Off With Their Heads!)


Associated Press - Marines Wait in the Cold for Afghan Offensive, by Alfred de Montesquiou

Times Online - Refugees Flee to Capital of Helmand to Avoid Huge NATO Afghan Offensive, by Jerome Starkey and Tom Coghlan

LA Times - Marines Focus on Civilian Safety in Afghanistan, by Tony Perrry and Laura King



Obama understands that he has to extract American troops from Afghanistan before Taliban takes over the country, but the fundamentalist group refuses to negotiate. The Americans, therefore, decided to turn heat on Taliban with an assault on a town of Marjah in a backwater Helmand province.

The assumption is wrong. Taliban won’t take the defeat at Marjah as a problem. Unlike elected presidents, they think long-term and know that the Americans will withdraw, Marjah or no Marjah.

The real question is, what does it take for American soldiers to risk their lives for no cause?

This post continued at Marines Under Fire Ahead of Assault

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