Posts Tagged ‘rules of engagement’

Why Fighting For Our Country Under Obama Is Different Than Any Other Time – Except Maybe Vietnam

July 5, 2010

Fighting a war under the command of Barack Obama is very different than fighting under the command of any president who has ever come before.  Up until president #44, commanders-in-chief actually had some degree of trust in the soldiers under their command.  They put them into battle for one reason, summed up by President Ronald Reagan’s statement: “We win, they lose.”  They sent them with commonsensical rules for civilized warfare, and then they gave them the mandate to go out and win.  Today we have a commander-in-chief who would prefer not to talk about actually winning:

I’m always worried about using the word ‘victory,’ because, you know, it invokes this notion of Emperor Hirohito coming down and signing a surrender to MacArthur.”

In order to avoid the potential for some kind of awkward “victory,” our soldiers and Marines are literally unable to shoot when every element of common sense and the entire history of warfare tell them to shoot:

Troops: Strict war rules slow Marjah offensive
By Alfred de Montesquiou and Deb Riechmann – The Associated Press
Posted : Monday Feb 15, 2010 15:08:51 EST

MARJAH, Afghanistan — Some American and Afghan troops say they’re fighting the latest offensive in Afghanistan with a handicap — strict rules that routinely force them to hold their fire.

Although details of the new guidelines are classified to keep insurgents from reading them, U.S. troops say the Taliban are keenly aware of the restrictions.

“I understand the reason behind it, but it’s so hard to fight a war like this,” said Marine Lance Cpl. Travis Anderson, 20, of Altoona, Iowa. “They’re using our rules of engagement against us,” he said, adding that his platoon had repeatedly seen men drop their guns into ditches and walk away to blend in with civilians.

If a man emerges from a Taliban hideout after shooting erupts, U.S. troops say they cannot fire at him if he is not seen carrying a weapon — or if they did not personally watch him drop one.

What this means, some contend, is that a militant can fire at them, then set aside his weapon and walk freely out of a compound, possibly toward a weapons cache in another location. It was unclear how often this has happened. In another example, Marines pinned down by a barrage of insurgent bullets say they can’t count on quick air support because it takes time to positively identify shooters.

“This is difficult,” Lance Cpl. Michael Andrejczuk, 20, of Knoxville, Tenn., said Monday. “We are trained like when we see something, we obliterate it. But here, we have to see them and when we do, they don’t have guns.”

That mindset doesn’t just apply to our fighting men on the ground, who are put in a position in which they can’t defend themselves if their enemy flouts Obama’s miserable rules of engagement.  The pilots flying overhead and the artillerymen on surrounding positions are prevented from supporting our soldiers if they get pinned down, too:

Family calls U.S. military goals ‘fuzzy’
Parents of soldier killed last week criticize firepower restrictions

By DENNIS YUSKO, Staff writer
First published in print: Thursday, June 24, 2010

QUEENSBURY — The parents of a Lake George soldier killed in Afghanistan attacked the Obama administration Wednesday for “flower children leadership,” and said they would work to change U.S. rules of military engagement in the nine-year conflict.

Hours before holding a wake for their 27-year-old son in Glens Falls, Bill and Beverly Osborn heavily criticized a military policy implemented last year that places some restrictions on when American troops can use firepower in Afghanistan. The new rules were set when Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal assumed command of the Afghanistan effort, and have reportedly made it harder for troops to call in for or initiate air power, artillery and mortars against the Taliban.

The counterinsurgency policy is intended to reduce civilian casualties and win the allegiance of Afghans, McChrystal had said. But echoing criticisms from the Vietnam era, Bill Osborn said Wednesday that it’s tied the hands of service members on the ground.

“We send our young men and women to spill their blood and we won’t let them do their job,” he said from his Queensbury home. “Winning hearts and minds is wonderful, but first we have to defeat the enemy.”

And then we wonder why Obama doubled the American body count from Bush in 2009, and is now on pace to double his own total (which means four times the Bush 2008 Americans KIA).

We just suffered the highest number of American causalities for a single month in the history of the war.  Mind you, EVERY month becomes the new “deadliest month” under Obama.

From icasualties.org:

For those who are historically ignorant, America firebombed Tokyo and Dresden in World War II.  We didn’t make sure that every single person who could possibly get killed during an attack was a 100%-confirmed “militant” before we sent a wave of death at our enemies.  If we’d resorted to that form of liberal moral stupidity, we would have lost – and the only question would have been how many of us would have ended up speaking German, and how many of us would have ended up speaking Japanese.

Thank God we didn’t have Obama leading us back then.

But our rules of engagement still weren’t getting enough American soldiers killed, so Team Obama came up with a better idea: how about ordering soldiers to go into battle with unloaded weapons? That’s right. Soldiers are now told to wait until they actually start falling down on the ground dead before they can actually be allowed to fumble a round into the chamber.

Fighting a War without Bullets?
by  Chris Carter
05/25/2010

Commanders have ordered a U.S. military unit in Afghanistan to patrol with unloaded weapons, according to a source in Afghanistan.

American soldiers in at least one unit have been ordered to conduct patrols without a round chambered in their weapons, an anonymous source stationed at a forward operating base in Afghanistan said in an interview. The source was unsure where the order originated or how many other units were affected.

When a weapon has a loaded magazine, but the safety is on and no round is chambered, the military refers to this condition as “amber status.” Weapons on “red status” are ready to fire—they have a round in the chamber and the safety is off.

The source stated that he had been stationed at the base for only a month, but the amber weapons order was in place since before he arrived. A NATO spokesman could not confirm the information, stating that levels of force are classified.

In other words, our guys can’t prepare their weapons to actually fire until they are already under attack.

Imagine sending our police into a building filled with armed gang members like that.

And you want to know how to win a medal in Obama’s army? Don’t do anything. Certainly don’t actually shoot at the enemy.

Hold fire, earn a medal
By William H. McMichael – Staff writer
Posted : Wednesday May 12, 2010 15:51:31 EDT

U.S. troops in Afghanistan could soon be awarded a medal for not doing something, a precedent-setting award that would be given for “courageous restraint” for holding fire to save civilian lives.

The proposal is now circulating in the Kabul headquarters of the International Security Assistance Force, a command spokesman confirmed Tuesday.

“The idea is consistent with our approach,” explained Air Force Lt. Col. Tadd Sholtis. “Our young men and women display remarkable courage every day, including situations where they refrain from using lethal force, even at risk to themselves, in order to prevent possible harm to civilians. In some situations our forces face in Afghanistan, that restraint is an act of discipline and courage not much different than those seen in combat actions.”

Soldiers are often recognized for non-combat achievement with decorations such as their service’s commendation medal. But most of the highest U.S. military decorations are for valor in combat. A medal to recognize a conscious effort to avoid a combat action would be unique.

It used to be that the hero was the guy who took on the enemy. Now it’s the guy who crawls into the fetal position and walks away from a battle with an unfired weapon.

We can only wonder what Obama’s version of Audie Murphy will look like.

And Iran sure doesn’t have to worry about Obama shooting at them as they develop their nuclear arsenal so they can cause Armageddon.

About the only thing regarding the military Obama is actually determined to fight for is gay rights. You can bet that the same political weasels who won’t let our soldiers actually shoot at the enemy will fight tooth and nail for the right of homosexual soldiers to be able to buttrape their buddies. Because we don’t have nearly enough gay rape in the military. That’s going to be the new meaning to “Don’t ask, don’t tell.” Don’t tell, because that homosexual is the new protected class.

And if all of the above doesn’t beat all, you probably don’t want to hear about the fact that Obama’s timetable for a cut-and-run had nothing whatsoever about satisfying military issues and everything about satisfying political ones within Obama’s radical leftwing base.  The military wasn’t even consulted, according to General David Petraeus:

McCain: “General, at any time during the deliberations that the military shared with the President when he went through the decision-making process, was there a recommendation from you or anyone in the military that we set a date of July 2011?”

Petraeus: “Uh, there was not.”

McCain: “There was not – by any military person that you know of?”

Petraeus: “Not that I’m aware of.”

Nobody knows what the hell is going on over there.  Are we going to stay and fight?  Or cut and run?  Most of the Obama administration is saying that we are most definitely going to cut and run in July 2011.  Take Vice President Biden, who says, “In July of 2011 you’re going to see a whole lot of people moving out. Bet on it.”  All Obama will say is that “We didn’t say we’d be switching off the lights and closing the door behind us.” which isn’t really saying anything.

All the money is on a pullout, as Obama cuts and runs.  The Afghan people know that, know that the Taliban will soon be their landlords, and aren’t about to risk any kind of meaningful alliance with America that would be necessary to actually winning over there.

Do you remember FDR telling Churchill, “I’ll give you a year, and then we’re running with our tail between our legs where it belongs”???

If it’s a war worth fighting, it is a war worth sticking around to fight.

We will win when we allow our fighting men to fight.  And not until then.

If you wonder whether Afghanistan is going to become like Vietnam, stop wondering: it already has.  Because we’re fighting Afghanistan the same way we fought Vietnam – with the mindset of putting our troops in danger while simultaneously preventing them from securing victory.

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Rolling Stone Broke Journalistic Ethics In Publishing McChrystal Remarks

June 27, 2010

It’s ironic.  Barack Obama said that Gen. Stan McChrystal showed “poor judgment” in his comments to Rolling Stone.

I can’t disagree.  But I would hasten to add that he showed even worse judgment in his vote for president.

And now Obama is firing probably the only senior general in the US military who had the terrible judgment to vote for him.

We can breathe easy.  Now that the pro-Obama general is gone, we have Bush’s general running the war to go along with Bush’s Secretary of State running the military.

It appears that we have – in the case of Rolling Stone devouring Gen. McChrystal – yet another case of liberals eating one of their own.

And we have yet another case demonstrating that liberals and legitimate journalism simply do not mix.

That said, let’s see what integrity Rolling Stone threw away in order to have its “gotcha! moment”:

Rolling Stone broke rules over Stanley McChrystal interview
By Toby Harnden World Last updated: June 26th, 2010

So now we know. It is mind-bogglingly inexplicable why this is only emerging now (though I have one theory on that – see below) but it turns out that Rolling Stone did not run all its quotations past McChrystal’s staff as their editor said they did. The general’s staff now say that all the offensive quotations were clearly off the record. So far from this being “terrific journalism” as my colleague Harry Mount put it, the Rolling Stone piece now looks much more like a disgrace to the profession.

I say mind-boggling because if McChrystal’s staff had come out with this in the first few hours of the furore on Tuesday morning then the entire narrative of the week would have changed and the general might very well still be in his job today.

My hunch as to why it didn’t come out earlier? Basically, because McChrystal is an honourable man who thought it would be unseemly to quibble about the details. There could have been a tactical element to that, certainly – perhaps he or his staff calculated that trying to wriggle out of things would not be viewed kindly by Obama and that it could have fuelled a row with Rolling Stone that might have made things worse (if so, how wrong they were).

Politico has a list of the 30 fact-checking questions submitted. The most interesting one is number 30 in which Rolling STone asks whether McChrystal did indeed vote for Obama. The reponse – irony of ironies – was this:

IMPORTANT — PLEASE DO NOT INCLUDE THIS — THIS IS PERSONAL AND PRIVATE INFORMATION AND UNREALTED TO HIS JOB. IT WOULD BE INAPPROPRIATE TO SHARE. MY REASON FOR THIS IS IT WOULD PRESENT AN UNDUE COMMAND INFLLUENCE ON JUNIOR OFFICERS OR SOLDIERS WHO SHOULD MAKE THEIR OWN POLITICAL DECISIONS. THERE ARE VERY STRICT RULES IN THE MILITARY ON SEPARATING CHURCH AND STATE ON THIS SORT OF STUFF – HAVE TO KEEP OUT OF POLITICAL PREFERENCE AND PERSONAL CHOICE.

But, of course, they left it in. It’s difficult to escape the conclusion that Rolling Stone did not care a hoot about the agreed journalistic ground rules or about McChrystal. They were out to get him and get him they did.

This is sadly all history now and nothing can change Obama’s decision. But it would be interesting to know if anyone in the White House even inquired into whether the profane and juvenile quotations about civilian officials were really on the record or if they just took Rolling Stone’s word for it.

If they didn’t, think about what this means: the Obama administration accepts the word of a counter-culture magazine and doesn’t even bother to check with the four-star general commanding 100,000 troops in wartime whose career the magazine is seeking to destroy.

We can endlessly speculate whether the Fool-in-Chief was right in canning his record-setting second general.  We can’t know for sure whether Obama canned McChrystal because he is at heart a vain, arrogant, petty, thin-skinned, vindictive man – as I listed as the reasons in predicting that Obama would fire McChrystal – or rather because there truly was some better reason.

What we DO know is that when one actually reads the Rolling Stone article, there really wasn’t a whole lot of “there” there.  The very worse thing McChrystal’s staff did was to reveal that Obama’s civilian leadership team in Afghanistan were in complete chaos.  It does seem that nothing can be worse in the Obama administration than telling the truth.  But that’s where we are.

Liberals in the mainstream media hailed the firing of Stanley McChrystal as though it were the most brilliant and courageous act of presidential leadership in world history.  It wasn’t.  It was a sad and tragic situation – even if Obama did the right thing.

The best thing that will come from this change is likely this: that General David Petraeus will change General McChrystal’s godawful rules of engagement and actually give the soldiers and Marines under his command the ability to carry the fight to the enemy.

The Obama Administration Just Can’t Stop Comparing Terrorists To Shoplifters

February 16, 2010

Twenty percent of terrorists returning to terrorism and trying to murder Americans “isn’t that bad” for the Obama administration.

Amy Geiger-Hemmer puts it pretty well:

John Brennan says 20% terrorist recidivism rate “not bad”
By Amy L. Geiger-Hemmer
Feb. 15, 2010 12:00 p.m.

On February 13, 2010, the top White House adviser for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, John Brennan, stated that a 20% recidivism rate for terrorists released from Club Gitmo wasn’t that bad.

Brennan was comparing the terrorist recidivism rate with that of the United States prison system.  In the U.S. prison system, the recidivism rate averages around 50%.  Yet,  Brennan seems to ignore that many prisoners in the United States aren’t terrorists.  The average criminal in the United States isn’t intent on killing fellow Americans simply because they do not agree with one’s own religious beliefs.  The average criminal in the United States isn’t out to wage jihad on innocent Americans if they do not adhere to the same religious practices.  The average criminal isn’t going to strap on explosive devices to their own body to blow up innocent civilians.  The average criminal isn’t going to behead American soldiers and journalists on television.    And the real biggie:  the average criminal isn’t waging a war in the Middle East right now against America and our soldiers.

When a country is at war, as the United States is, doesn’t it make sense to keep any enemies that are captured in custody until the war has ended?  Those supportive of Obama will claim that Bush released prisoners from Club Gitmo, too.  That is true.  But what needs to be taken into context is that Bush had the Democrats, the media, and many liberals,  breathing down his neck to do such a thing – and no pattern of recidivism had been established at the time.  And for some insane reason, Bush always tried to play nice and placate those across the aisle. In hindsight,   Bush should never have released terrorists from Gitmo.  Years have now gone by and we KNOW that many terrorists released from Gitmo have gone back to the battlefields to fight and kill U.S. soldiers.  Obama has the knowledge and past history of what happens when terrorists are set free, yet is still insisting on letting them go and closing Club Gitmo.   Are we our own worst enemy?

20% of terrorists from Gitmo return to fight against us!  Twenty percent!  That is an increase of 6 points from last year.

The flippant, cavalier attitude of the White House advisor for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, John Brennan, speaks volumes for how the White House perceives the terrorism threat.  No big deal.

Clearly, the Obama White House thinks there are more important things to fight against….like FOXNews, Republicans, Conservatives, and people who go to Tea Parties and oppose Obama’s socialist agenda!

On this side we have a guy who masterminded the murder of 3,000 innocent Americans, and gladly would have murdered 300 million if he could have done so.  On the other side, we have a common shoplifter.  Who to let go?  Who to make sure never sees the light of day?  Oh, these tough decisions!!!

Bottom line: the reason we should have Gitmo is to lock up every single terrorist we capture (so we can waterboard them until they grow gills and extract everything they know from them) and allow them to leave only if they’re corpses.

This is the same mindset that produces the following mind-boggling stupidity:

MARJAH, Afghanistan (AP) — Some American and Afghan troops say they’re fighting the latest offensive in Afghanistan with a handicap — strict rules that routinely force them to hold their fire.

Although details of the new guidelines are classified to keep insurgents from reading them, U.S. troops say the Taliban are keenly aware of the restrictions.

“I understand the reason behind it, but it’s so hard to fight a war like this,” said Lance Cpl. Travis Anderson, 20, of Altoona, Iowa. “They’re using our rules of engagement against us,” he said, adding that his platoon had repeatedly seen men drop their guns into ditches and walk away to blend in with civilians.

If a man emerges from a Taliban hideout after shooting erupts, U.S. troops say they cannot fire at him if he is not seen carrying a weapon — or if they did not personally watch him drop one.

What this means, some contend, is that a militant can fire at them, then set aside his weapon and walk freely out of a compound, possibly toward a weapons cache in another location. It was unclear how often this has happened. In another example, Marines pinned down by a barrage of insurgent bullets say they can’t count on quick air support because it takes time to positively identify shooters.

What do you even say?

The fact that John Brennan is perfectly okay with the fact that one in every five terrorists goes back to the battlefield where they try to keep murdering our soldiers is a powerful evidence that the Obama administration has no business being in charge of our war against terror, and John Brennan has no business having a job.