Afghan leader expects zero noncombatant casualties

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by jumpinjarhead, Feb 22, 2010.

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  1. Obviously in a counterinsurgency it is critical that noncombatant casualties be kept as low as reasonably possible but to expect no collateral damage, especially in urban combat, is IMHO ludicrous and to the extent the coalition embraces this notion, bordering on the criminally irresponsible.

  2. Dream on, even in WW2 in North Africa there were civilians killed
  3. He's a poilitician, Jarhead, and a corrupt b@stard even by the standards of his "profession".

    He does'nt give a fcuk how many civilians, or soldiers for that matter, die as long as he gets to hold on to power.
  4. I know but reports on evening news tonight here suggest McChrystal (or more likely his political masters in DC) are giving more credence to him than we should in terms of ROE. Hard to get the truth due to classification. Some reports are saying the coalition troops are to allow Taliban gunman to walk away if they drop their weapons--even if they just used them.
  5. Agreed...that said, he's saying what he has to say...imagine if he were to go out and say, "Yeah, NATO killed some of my innocent countrymen, but I don't give a fvck because this is war. Shit happens."
  6. I've heard that too. And yeah, it worries me. I've also heard that troops can't shoot at someone running out of a Taliban bunker that just shot at them if that individual doesn't have a visible weapon. It smacks of some of the more ridiculous RoEs from Vietnam...
  7. If that's true then the media will, inevitibly, get hold of the proof. Three people can keep a secret if two of them are dead. And Obama will then face the mother of all sh1t-storms.

    And since the Chosen One will no doubt have figured this out, I would be surprised if he allows Karzai to dictate ROE.

    At the end of the day, Karzai need the US and Britian far more than we need him. Without us, he won't last six months.
  8. How do you know a politcian is lying? His lips move.
  9. From the Air Force Times:

    Even the Air Force Times today focused on the frustration of soldiers on the ground, hampered by NATO style ROEs that effectively have the forces fighting with one hand tied behind their backs.

    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.

    Under the current rules of engagement, troops retain the right to use lethal force in self defense, said U.S. Col. Wayne Shanks, a spokesman for the international force.

    The rules seek to put the troops in the “right frame of mind to exercise that right,” Shanks said. They require troops to ask a few fundamental questions:

    * Even if someone has shot in my general direction, am I still in danger?

    * Will I make more enemies than I’ll kill by destroying property, or harming innocent civilians?

    * What are my other options to resolve this without escalating the violence?
  10. Whoever is ultimately responsible for these ROE's should be immediately removed from whatever position they hold. By causing soldiers to hesitate, they could get them killed.

    Noone wants civilian casualties. But I'm afraid I would rather see Afghans die than British or American troops.

  11. Gen Stanley McCrystel's staff published all 66pages of them in September
  12. I did say "ultimately responsible". IMHO, the buck stops with the Commander in Chief...
  13. Andy_S

    Andy_S LE Book Reviewer

    66 pages of ROE? How do they fit in a section commander's aide memoire?

    As noted, Karzai says what he has to say (and who can blame him?) Generals nod solemnly and agree. Generals' aides then get drafting. But how far these effect the troops on the ground is the real issue.

    Regardless, I think it pretty clear that the days when Helmand was virtually a free fire zone are over. Given the lack of progress in the early years in the province, I don't think it wise - yet - to complain about the change in tactics and ROE.
  14. Unfortunately the ROE in NI were very similar you knew who they were and what they had just done but shoot them and you end up in the jail, it puts extra pressure on troops on the ground trying to justify every shot in a two way range. We have become more and more susceptible to after the fact law when smart lawyers are more dangerous then the rag head with an AK47.
  15. Cut down to OFOF?

    At any rate, I am quite disappointed that the brass decided to publish the ROE - while there are political reasons for doing so, allowing them to be accessed like that leaves them open to exploitation by the enemy. Bone move.