I must admit I was very shocked and surprised (doh, thats why I posted!)
A few questions: Does the American Army have the harder area of Iraq to control and us the easier or are they just pants at peacekeeping? Should we feel sorry for the American soldiers who are doing what they think is best without adequate training and expeience?
Sorry Shotgun, pardon my ignorance, what do you mean 'mercenaries'?
What's worrying is that how these American soldiers handle this situation could well determine whether or not Iraq becomes the Islamic State from hell or a Western ally.............what we do today comes back 3 fold in the future...........
A mercenary is paid to fight, and the only consideration is the objective. There is no extra pay for protecting the innocent, protecting the enemy once they have surrendered, or generally being nice in any way. A merc won't care whether he kills civvies or the enemy as long as he reaches the objective. There are no consequences for a mercenary other than his pay packet.
A soldier has to adhere by rules of conflict, even during a war. A soldier has objectives to pursue but is subject to the rules of war, and the Geneva convention. A soldier has to look to the future of what his actions may make. A soldier is there to protect and serve, not to win and prosper. A soldier should consider consequences.
I'm sure there's lots more, but this should just about cover it.
Once again, I am surprised by the level of surprise felt by everyone out there. (See Overkill). The Yanks aren't trained for Peacekeeping normally, much less on the victrious side of a shooting war.
These boys are, psychologically, on bum deal to start with - they've been trained to win wars by bringing the maximum amount of firepower they can to bear. They were told once they had won the war, they would go home. The latter has not happened, so they are very angry teddies, who are not filled with smarts. But they do have lots of guns, which seem to do a great deal of talking on their behalf!
Throw in the usual American superiority complex and their ignorance of anything non American, sprinkle liberally with religious fervour and general pissed-offness with America and you have the makings of one very volatile situation!
Given that they were also, by their own account, involved in the fight for Baghdad which involved fighting irregulars, dressed as civvies, hiding amongst civvies, it is hardly surprising they are not sympathetic to the local population. I can't help wondering how our own guys would react in a similar situation.....but then, if you look towards Basra.......
Following on from that Gringo, I once had the dubious pleasure of spending a little time on the Enterprise.
Huge and massive, and a virtual town. I was told not to go there or there because that was a black ghetto, then not to go there because that was the latino quarter and so on. It was joke. Murders were being investigated, and muggings etc.
My point is that these are the people that are currently on the streets of Baghdad, lol.
And we wonder why Vietnam was a debacle. Distant past (not really). Mindset.
Zero learning curve or at least very short memories. We, as the Brit nation at least learn, all be it sometimes slowly.
I could rent umpteen DVD's from the local blockbusters that tell a story of a nation that, on the surface tries to write clichés and lives for the 'movie'. I believe that nation only has a surface, shallow as it is.
At least in the good old bad old days of the cold war, we had the 'opposite force required to contain a main servo valve seizure'. (Re: Lynx AH 7 FRC, Pre mod, sad git :-/).
In laymans terms, and Newtons third law, an equal and opposite force to keep in check.
I am more concerned now than I ever was when the Third Shock Army was threatening to cross the IGB.
Ramblings from the flashy. ???
I may appear to be anti American and anti Israeli (read some of my other posts on the Israeli 'problem'). Yes, to be quite honest, I am. Does this make me a bad person?
The thing that I have a bit of a problem with is, as I grow older and more senile, I fear that the thickest and most bigoted race on the planet are pulling the shots globally and there is no one to stop them and say, hang on, mate, are you right in doing that? The UN, the largest org on the planet have been given the f*ck off pill, with absolutley no come back. Play ground bully at work, yet again.
What hope for the mationations of a free world in the future?
End of lesson.
Raymond Seitz, former US ambassodor to the court of St James and renowned Anglophile (when he retired he stayed on living in London) says in his book that the British "know that one day they will lead the rest of the world in putting America back in her place for ever." He was being sarcastic, however I wonder if he will also have to be proven right one day.
We can't trust Europe, the Yanks are loosing it, China is on the rise and the Middle East is in turmoil.
I think it may be time to start thinking doomesday scenearios.
Memo to Hoon : Dig out that Nineteenth century policy on a Navy strong enough to fight any two combined