Thursday, September 22, 2005

battle monkeys

Okay, first lemme say that I'm responding to a comment that had nothing to do with the post it was commenting on, which dealt with the aftermath of Katrina. But the comment struck me as either naive, or a sideways method of saying "get out of Iraq", and I felt I couldnt just let it sit there. So...

LZ XRAY wrote on September 21, 2005 12:10 AM:

U.S. Military Deaths Top 1,900 in Iraq By STEVEN R. HURST, Associated Press Writer

BAGHDAD, Iraq - The war in Iraq passed a sobering milepost Tuesday when U.S. officials reported 12 more Americans were killed — eight of them members of the armed forces, raising to more than 1,900 the number of U.S. service members who have died in the country since the invasion.

The most recent deaths in Iraq were victims to IEDs.
I wonder.....if the monkeys on Capitol Hill had loved ones on the ground engaged in that QUAGMIRE, would they make more of an effort to find out why the military has failed to protect the troops from these road-side bombs?
I'm curious what LZ XRay thought could be done. More armor and extra vigilance, but truth be told, there's really not a whole lot else you can do. Leave, maybe.
Think about a handgun. Once upon a time, if you wanted to kill someone, you needed to be bigger or faster or luckier. Suprise might help, but in the end it was strength and ability that won the fight.
Then came the gun. Suddenly, being bigger and stronger wasnt enough, big men could be taken down by children and old ladies. Guerilla fighting is the New Gun, and that's what this "insurgency" is, a guerilla war. We call the Insurgents "immoral", and so they are, because they involve innocent civilians.
But suppose they targeted only soldiers and police with their bombs. Wouldnt they then be soldiers fighting a war the only way they can against a far superior opponent. Unconventional? Yes. In violation of the Geneva Accords? Possibly, never having actually studied them I couldnt say.
But lets understand something here - this is War, capital "W". Big countries continue to get together to come up with "civilized" rules for killing each other; but this is done mostly for self-preservation: You-Dont-Do-That-and-We-Wont-Either rules avoid a lot of potential nastiness, leaving mostly the kind of nastiness the public is used to (guns, bombs, flames, shock and awe) available just in case Someone is feeling a little agressive.
But Guerilla Wars are rarely fought by established nations. They are fought by small groups battling big odds. Their effectiveness is based on not following the rules, and to expect them to give up an advantage just because it doesnt fit the rules of the Big Boys is simply naive. War is Hell, and Soldiers Die. If you cant deal with that, then you need to rethink your battleplan to include not having one. And if you dont have any choice (rarely true, despite assurances from Authorities) then be prepared for Death, on someone else's terms.

Thanx to Blog For America, where this post all began.

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