Friday, June 15, 2007

The Brief is Mighter than the Vest

Bing and Owen West report from Iraq, entitled The Laptop Is Mightier Than the Sword "The war in Iraq would be over in a week if the insurgents wore uniforms. Instead, they hide in plain sight, and Iraqi and American soldiers have no means of checking the true identity and history of anyone they stop. This is inexcusable. In Vietnam, the mobility of the Vietcong guerrilla forces was eventually crippled by a laborious hamlet-level census completed by hand in 1968. Biometric tracking and databases have since made extraordinary advances, yet our vaunted technical experts have failed at this elementary task in Iraq."

The other major defect we’ve seen in our military strategy is the consistent release of captured insurgents. Imprisonment is the dominant military weapon for quelling this insurgency. Vietnam was a shooting war; Iraq is a police arrest war. The insurgents learned years ago not to engage in firefights with American troops. American troops in Vietnam in 1968, for example, found that they killed 13 enemies for every one captured; in Iraq, one enemy is killed for every 10 captured.

Yet, according to Pentagon records, more than 85 percent of the suspected Sunni insurgents and Shiite militiamen detained are soon set free. The troops call it “catch and release.” The American and Iraqi jails now hold about 40,000 prisoners — by some estimates just half the number Saddam Hussein released from prison in the mass exodus of 2002.

Maybe it's not the teeth that are at fault, but the tail. The whole massive weight of lawyers, procedures, politics and media that have become the modern day sutler train of armies.


Blogger j willie said...

Problems #1, #2 & #3 - lawyers
Problems #4, #5 & #6 - bureaucracy

6/15/2007 07:36:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Why, J, the problem is in the Leadership, not in the underlings.

Buck stops where the buck has always stopped. In the Oval office.

That is where the tone is set, the band merely follows along.
Win or lose.

6/15/2007 07:41:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

I did hear, at a recent blogger roundtable, that a database system was now in operation. And it was referred to as a proud achievement. But I know from long experience that a database without data is worthless. It will only acquire utility over time.

6/15/2007 07:47:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Time is in short supply.

In fact it has about run out, after all these years.

Democracies don't vote for war.
Pillar of the Bush Doctrine.
Based upon his experience in the United States, he's correct.

The US won't vote for a "Long War".
Especially if the Commanding General says that War cannot be Won, by the US military.

Nope, not much chance that will pass the voters or the representitives muster.

6/15/2007 07:56:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It was what, a bit more than two years ago, maybe more that we first read Mr Yon's tale. The one of Ltc Kurilla being shot by a "Caught and Released" terrorist, one implicated in an early mess hall bombing.

Still the problem plauges the Army of the United States, in Iraq.

Why? It is an easily solved challenge, GP medium tents behind some triple row concertina wire.

We use them here, in Maricopa County, AZ, USA. 24/7, 365.
It was 111 degrees F, here today.

6/15/2007 08:10:00 PM  
Blogger j willie said...

Fuck you DR, you arrogant asshole. You write more twisted, contrived posts about how right you are/were than you write about anything. Nowhere have I witnessed anyone else who likes to see their own words on the screen more than you. So go straight to fucking hell, because you don't care about moral right or wrong, you only care about whether DR is right or wrong.

You don't deserve a response on any other level. Others like Doug & 2164 who like to see their own names in print support your big mouth; normal people just go somewhere else. Yet, your ego is not satisfied by the small "go-DR" crowd at the EB, so you have to follow those who formerly found camaraderie there in spite of you, to their current preferred web hangouts.

By the way, if you don't think there is an anti-Republican, pro-secular progressive dominating majority that runs the bureaucracies of this country, in spite of whoever is the leader (maybe with the exception of Reagan who would just fire all their sorry asses), then you are not just arrogant, you ar stupid.

6/15/2007 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

Maybe it's not the teeth that are at fault, but the tail.

Whatever happend to the idea that "The buck stops here?"

Bush and company have been in charge. They get the blame and the glory. Ankle-biting lawyers and oter sutlers may slow down the caravan but the head honcho, aka "The Decider" sets the tone and makes the rules.

We've gotten to this place by many decisions and policies but Bush is the one that set this bus in motion. He had the support of the people at the time.

6/15/2007 08:30:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Such a wonderfully polite fellow you are not, j.

To describe the Military Officer Corps, the men and women of the Federal Government that have run the War in iraq as being full of

an anti-Republican, pro-secular progressive dominating majority that runs the bureaucracies ...

certainly makes your position clear about the leadership of the US Army and Marines.

6/15/2007 08:33:00 PM  

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