It seems to me that we are going the wrong direction in this country these days. I think "these days" started about 50 years ago, but still there has been a change.
During the last "Big War" being WWII we fought to win. We went in with a lot of bodies and we pushed and killed and broke stuff until the enemy's nation surrendered. George Patton said it "There is no glory in dying for your country, there is glory in making the other poor bastard die for his country." That's a paraphrase. The military focused on killing the other guys with guns but a significant part of prosecuting a war was to break the spirit of the nation we were at war with. That entailed destroying their homes and businesses and killing many "civilians" War was literally HELL. The men who were involved in it didn't want to talk about it when they got home. They wanted to leave it there and never revisit it. It was not glorious, if you thought it was you didn't have the respect of your peers and you were probably locked in a padded room.
This is where I make everyone mad. Of course when I say "everyone" I am referring to the 3 or 4 people who read this blog.
Since Korea, and Vietnam we have started fighting differently. The press is world wide and very fast. If you screw up it's on the evening news. If you succeed in killing the enemy and breaking their stuff the best you can hope for is to be ignored. The worst is for Congress to find out about it and you get brought up on war crimes charges by your own country.
We stopped fighting in a way that breaks the spirit of the enemy. We have refined and honed our weapons to the point that if we kill a civilian it is presumed to be purposeful and that is not acceptable. Because of this war lasts a lot longer. If we had fought "the old way" in Vietnam I believe we would have had victory in a few years. Instead we had to pull back whenever the opposing military got near civilians. The same happened in the Iraq war. We signaled for something like 18 months before we engaged the enemy and they had time to bury or move the weapons of mass destruction we knew they had/have. Our troops noticed that some of the people who greeted them in cities were clearly men who had taken off their uniforms and formed a greeting party. That is why we went in so fast. We were largely unopposed until we got to Baghdad. I believe many of these civilian soldiers turned into insurgents as soon as we left their cities on the way to Baghdad. Then when fighting the insurgency we would have to stop shooting if the enemy ran into a mosque. Hello?? He is the enemy! Go in and get him! If you encounter too much resistance blow up the mosque. Do you think they would stop if we ran into a church??? That is clearly not fighting to win.
I am not so bloodthirsty that I would want us to kill all the civilians and leave their corpses to rot in the sun. What I am saying is that in order to bring a quicker and therefore more merciful end to a war, civilian casualty is necessary. The spirit of the nation must be broken and victory must be the goal or there is no way to define the end. We just stay there until we decide to leave.
There has been a recent change to the "Rules Of Engagement" that govern how our military is to respond to the enemy. Along with this change was the introduction of a new medal. The Medal Of Restraint. ... I am speechless. Clearly war is now intended to be HECK instead of HELL.
I have not researched the new rules, again I apologize to all 4 of you. But apparently we are getting to the point where we will have to get a permission slip signed in 6 places and duplicates sent to the enemy's parents, Commanding Officer and the UN and congress before our guys can load our guns. Then there will be a 5 day waiting period for the paperwork to get back before they can shoot.
If we are in a foreign land to accomplish a goal we need to do it and get out with our goal clearly accomplished. That is how you know you have won. If we are not there to accomplish a goal then we need to get out as quickly as possible. The problem is that we have entered a war zone with the intent of ousting a rogue government, first Al-Quaeda in Afghansitan, then Saddam in Iraq and now back to the Taliban in Afghanistan. If we are not there to break them and destroy their grip on the people of Afghanistan then we need to leave.
The problem with leaving is that we have caused many of our allies and citizens to take our side. If we leave with the rogues in power those allies will be summarily killed. It happened in Iraq during the Gulf War, it happened in Vietnam.
I am strongly opposed to us as a nation and a people leaving any ally in a situation like that. Therefore our only righteous option is to destroy to enemy until they are unable to control the government of the nation in which they reside.
Publishing a date of withdrawal is not the way to do that. So to any of our allies, I am sorry for our stupidity. I am sorry we have destroyed you.
Now I turn my eyes on us. We have lived fat dumb and happy for a long time. We have been the most powerful nation of the face of this earth for a long time, we have had great power and we have not used it repsonsibly. Sorry Uncle Ben. Now we face the prospect of our financial folly bringing down the worlds financial system. We have behaved like spoiled children and now what is broken is beyond our ability to fix it.
We must turn to God and hope for His grace and mercy to heal the damage we have wrought. I believe it is possible. Unless we wake up all will be lost.