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Jul 6, 2007

THIS IS IN REFERENCE TO A STATEMENT I MADE ON THE FOURTH OF JULY.
I SAID THEN IN A MESSAGE, THAT AMERICAN TROOPS IN IRAQ HAD NO MORAL RIGHT TO FIRE A SINGLE SHOT AT AN IRAQI; NOT EVEN IN SELF-DEFENSE.
A FRIEND OF MINE HAS CHALLENGED THAT STATEMENT;
AND I WELCOME THE OPPORTUNITY TO PROVE LOGICALLY THAT THIS STATEMENT IS ENTIRELY CONSISTENT WITH ALL OF OUR SHARED MORAL VALUES.
THANK YOU FOR LISTENING.

-----------------

With the "surge", there are MORE PATROLS ON THE STREETS. This I have READ in the daily news.
With MORE PATROLS GOING OUT, the NUMBER of soldiers killed by IEDs, has GONE WAY, WAY, WAY UP. And the number maimed and wounded.
Actually, and again I could cite this from an article I have seen, that is reproduced somewhere on Care2, VERY FEW GUNSHOT WOUNDS ARE BEING TREATED IN ARMY HOSPITALS. Unlike PREVIOUS wars, there are RELATIVELY FEW IRAQI SNIPERS. A few, but not many.

MOST OF THE CASUALTIES, DEAD AND WOUNDED, ARE FROM IEDs.
Of COURSE, the soldiers have a right to defend themselves from IEDs, when they FIND AND DE-ACTIVATE THEM. That is THEIR ONLY PROTECTION. The guy who planted the thing in the middle of the road, is FAR AWAY BY THEN.

Also, THERE IS MORTAR FIRE COMING INTO WHEREVER THEY ARE; EVEN INTO THE GREEN ZONE.
[I never thot I would learn so much about weapons!] But, again, from what I read, the incoming mortar fire is mounted on vehicles, and the shooters HIT-AND-RUN. From what I read, they are SELDOM OR NEVER caught.

There is also the SMALL ARMS ANTI-AIRCRAFT FIRE. From rooftops. That brings down helicopters. You don't hear too much about that. {The Army likes to say that a helicopter crash was "an accident".} But, again, I have read some detailed reports....... [As I said, this is not my usual reading or interest in peacetime!!!]

There are VERY FEW ACTUAL "CLASSIC" FIREFIGHTS. That WAS in my mind! It is probably beyond Human Nature, to expect an armed person, when actually fired upon, not to fire back!

The Iraqis, who LIVE there, actually constantly PREPARE AMBUSHES of various kinds for the American troops. Even American AIRCRAFT. THERE IS NO STRATEGY POSSIBLE TO PROTECT AGAINST AMBUSHES. EXCEPT JUST NOT TO GO INTO THEM.

There is no ARMORED defence possible, either -- because, the heavier the armor gets, of both men & vehicles, the LARGER the IEDs get! I understand that now, the Iraqis tie several IEDs together. And, there is a LIMIT to how much armor men & vehicles can put on! Men collapse from heat; and vehicles tip over or sink in the sand! But there is NO UPPER LIMIT FOR HOW BIG AN IED CAN GET. It is an arms race that U.S. troops MUST LOSE.

I wanted to make the strongest possible statement, with regard to firing a single shot against any Iraqi. I do believe in it {as a moral statement}; and that the proposition is probably unrealistic under conditions of actual firing, does not make it any less of a moral statement.

However, I did EMPHASIZE, "going on patrol". The 343rd Quartermasters, and the 10th Mountain Division {after it lost a sizable number of its troops}, did what the military calls a "Combat Refusal"; that is, they REFUSED to go out there where the combat was. In other words, REFUSED to go OUT INTO THE AMBUSHES PREPARED FOR THEM. This is more REALISTIC a proposal, as I realize.

Now, it must be emphasized, that these IEDs can be BIG HEAVY THINGS. If YOU were an Iraqi citizen, one of the 60% who ADMIT they think it's great that American troops are killed by the Iraqi Resistance, and you saw your NEIGHBOR or COUSIN, digging a great big hole in the middle of the street, or by the side of the street; would you think he was doing some ROAD REPAIR?
[By the way, according to the Americans, EVEN HAVING A SHOVEL IN YOUR POSSESSION, IS TAKEN AS "PROOF" YOU ARE A "TERRORIST". Tough on farmers.]
Then a group of guys take some canisters, heavy things, out of their backpacks, carefully tie them all together, stick them in the deep hole they have dug, and cover up the hole, leaving no suspicious piles of dirt next to it. I guess they haul away the dirt in their now-empty backpacks.
This is taking place in the middle of a well-travelled street, in broad daylight, with foot and donkey and car traffic going by unconcernedly. {What if you saw this happening in the middle of your town???} If this were happening in the middle of the night, and in a remote, deserted area, the U.S. has DRONE PLANES that would SPOT THE MOVEMENT, with sophisticated sensory equipment, and then call in to bomb the bejeezus out of those people! Who must be taking the better part of an hour, at least, to do their digging-and-filling!

I have read, that sometimes there are signs in Arabic, telling the locals where NOT to go! Only a few of our troops, have interpreters! Anyway, the local people MUST KNOW about the IEDs! They can just look out their windows!

So, AFTER the prepared AMBUSH, and the CASUALTIES, the troops are understandably ENRAGED -- and want REVENGE. There is, I repeat, NO WAY TO TELL WHAT ANONYMOUS IRAQIS ACTUALLY PREPARED THE AMBUSH. NO way. So, the troops start "searching" the nearby houses, expecting that there will be at least passive collaborators and sympathizers there. [AND THEY ARE RIGHT, OF COURSE! NOBODY WENT OUT AND WARNED THE TROOPS ABOUT THE IEDs! That must mean, the residents of the nearby houses WERE NOT CONCERNED IF THE TROOPS RAN INTO THE IEDs.]

DO THE TROOPS HAVE THE MORAL RIGHT TO TAKE "REVENGE" ON ANY RANDOM PEOPLE, IF THEY CAN'T FIND THE ACTUAL PERPETRATOR?

NO THEY DO NOT. NOT BY ANY MORAL CODE KNOWN TODAY.

ARE THE TROOPS DEFENDING THEMSELVES AGAINST FUTURE ATTACKS, BY WHAT THEY ARE DOING, ARRESTING MEN AND BOYS IN RANDOM HOUSE SEARCHES?

Again, NO. THEY ARE NOT IN ANY WAY DEFENDING THEMSELVES AGAINST FUTURE ATTACKS. It could be justifiably said, this makes future attacks on them, EVEN MORE LIKELY.
The troops are NOT PREVENTING FUTURE ATTACKS; and they are NOT FINDING THE ACTUAL SOURCES OF THE ATTACKS. Attacks which not only do NOT stop, but ESCALATE WEEK BY WEEK.

Therefore, THE SOLE MOTIVATION OF THE TROOPS WHO SEARCH THE HOUSES AFTER THE ATTACKS, THE SOLE MOTIVATION BOTH PRACTICALLY AND PSYCHOLOGICALLY, IS REVENGE AND RETALIATION.

And, THIS MINDSET LEADS DIRECTLY TO THE ATROCITIES WE HEAR ABOUT. It may be some "bad apples" who randomly MURDER, LOOT, STEAL AND DESTROY in Iraqi homes; such as the ones we have HEARD ABOUT, in HADITHA. However, NOBODY STOPS THEM. Nobody even REPORTS many of the atrocities, atrocities like Haditha that HAVE TAKEN PLACE ELSEWHERE. The Army REFUSES to believe these accounts, if they come from MERE IRAQIS!

If the Army "bad apples" carry the "revenge" to an EXTREME, it is the WHOLE SYNDROME of Ambush, Casualties, REVENGE, another Ambush, more Casualties, MORE REVENGE, that FUELS the "bad apples" in their thuggish army-disgracing behavior; and leads the "not-so-morally-bad apples" to either passively CONDONE such behavior; or to END UP ENGAGING IN IT; or to have extreme PTSD.

IT IS COMPROMISING THE MORAL VALUES OF EVERY ONE OF THE TROOPS THAT ENGAGE IN THESE "PATROLS"; ONE WAY OR THE OTHER. THERE IS NO AVOIDING IT.

This is the RIGOROUS LOGIC I am applying.

It could look, as if the officers and those in charge of the Army, were deliberately SETTING UP THE TROOPS TO BE KILLED, WOUNDED, and/or MORALLY COMPROMISED.
As I think IS the case.
It would be easy to prove.

THEREFORE, LOGICALLY, FOR THE TROOPS TO DO WHAT THE 343RD QUARTERMASTERS, AND THE 10TH MOUNTAIN DIVISION, HAVE DONE, IS THE ONLY WAY NOT JUST TO STOP THE WAR; BUT TO SAVE THE TROOPS' LIVES, LIMBS AND SANITY.

If somebody told ME there was a deadly ambush waiting for me down the street, in a country that was not my own, and where I was not wanted, I JUST WOULD NOT GO DOWN THAT STREET. PERIOD.

The ambushes WILL NOT STOP AS LONG AS A SINGLE IRAQI IS LEFT ALIVE IN HIS OWN COUNTRY.

It is the MORAL thing to NOT DRIVE INTO THE AMBUSH, AND THEN NOT GET ANGRY AND TAKE REVENGE AFTERWARDS.

If there are any "firefights", THEY ARE ALSO IN CONNECTION WITH THE AMBUSHES.

If the U.S. troops STAYED ON THEIR BASE, there would BE NO AMBUSHES AND NO FIREFIGHTS.
And if it was KNOWN to the Iraqis, that the U.S. troops were going to STAY ON THEIR BASE AND PLAN TO LEAVE AND NOT GO ON PATROL, the Iraqi Resistance would stop lobbing mortar shells into the Green Zone! THEY HAVE SAID SO.
The Iraqis will lob mortar shells into the Green Zone, as LONG AS IT EXISTS; or UNTIL A DEFINITE AND SOON DEPARTURE DATE IS SET.

Well this is my study of strategy and tactics. Based on regular news, Care2 news, Veterans' publications, and Iraqi sources, sources mostly in antiwar Veterans' publications. [Can't believe I'm reading that sort of thing!]
B Mutiny T







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Posted: Jul 6, 2007 11:38pm

 

 
 
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