Tuesday, September 25, 2007

War, Indeed, Is Hell

But the question remains, are we executing a proper strategy in Iraq?

Imagine this. Your Iraqi. You have an 8 year old son. He's walking home from school one day and spies some interesting yellow chord on the side of the road. He stoops over, examines the piece. Finding it interesting, he puts it in his pocket for his collection of cool found items at home. As he takes his third step away from the location, thwack. His head splatters about and his body falls to the sniper's rifle.

In a place where it is extremely challenging to tell who the good guys are from the enemies you so want dead, when would this scenario play out? When the US snipers lay bait.

How would you feel if you were the sniper doing your job and you come to find out, you've just killed one of the newly minted Iraqi police departments officer's sons. What do you think think this father would have to say about our presence in Iraq?
A Pentagon group has encouraged some U.S. military snipers in Iraq to target suspected insurgents by scattering pieces of "bait," such as detonation cords, plastic explosives and ammunition, and then killing Iraqis who pick up the items, according to military court documents.

The classified program was described in investigative documents related to recently filed murder charges against three snipers who are accused of planting evidence on Iraqis they killed.

"Baiting is putting an object out there that we know they will use, with the intention of destroying the enemy," Capt. Matthew P. Didier, the leader of an elite sniper scout platoon attached to the 1st Battalion of the 501st Infantry Regiment, said in a sworn statement. "Basically, we would put an item out there and watch it. If someone found the item, picked it up and attempted to leave with the item, we would engage the individual as I saw this as a sign they would use the item against U.S. Forces."


Robert Rouse said...

How is it possible that this is the first I've heard of this? Damn! This sucks!

However, I'm glad I found it. I have a new blog to add to my daily rounds and my blogroll.


Mary Ellen said...

This reminds me of that old movie where the US was invaded by the Russians and they pretended to dump a bunch of fresh fruit and vegetables in the street to get the American group of militia to take the bait and kill them. Can't remember the name of the movie...I'm old, the memory is going.

Anonymous said...

As with the majority of the news out there, this is an additional thing that is taken way out of context by the media. Engaging the enemy can mean a lot of things, I do not understand it as sniping a guy. Some believe a sniper just goes out and snipes people left and right.. this is not the case. One the roles of a sniper is collecting information for the Intelligence Officer of a Unit, they are often used for recon. There is nothing illegal about placing devices out to spark the interest of a possible insurgent. I guarantee you, they were not taking them out.. an alive insurgent is much more valuable than a dead one.. the best part is.. we know that (military actually fighting this war).. just because someone looks at the planted weapons, we are not going to take them out.. we do things like this so we can question. It is almost like a Prostitute sting.. put a female Officer out as a Prostitute and arrest the "Johns".. we arrest the John move them out fast and get the next one.. book them, question them.. and go. Same thing over there.. killing a guy gets us one guy, that is possibly an insurgent, does us absolutley no good..does this make sense.. No.
questioning them can help us take out a group..Killing someone that walks by is not a easy process to clean up the mess.. by the second person killed your position is known.. it does not make sense. This is the situation, you have the snipers observing. You have units on stand by near the interested person. The units engage, taking him in for questioning, no body to clean up.. intelligence gained.. he is screening fingerprinted and tested for explovies on his person.. if he is clean he is released.. This sniping is not true..

The media says what gets people to watch their program.. anything negative and if they can skew the truth, they will. Americans do not want to hear the good stuff.. how the troops are changing things over there. Lets talk about schools being built, lets talk about how anbar province has totally changed, lets talk about how the Sheiks tribes are unitings to fight the foreign fighters.. no body cares about that.. It is sad to me. Since americans aren't interested in the truth.. the truth is stretched.. this being one situation where this is a fact..

I guess my goal is to give you a different perspective that is realistic, having been out there and have seen many tactics used.. I wish to put some facts out there to people that have not had any other resource other than the media. Not trying to argue, just educating. Hopefully open there are open minded peope that could understand that everything out there in the news is 100% true.

Thanks for your time.

Apologize for any grammatical errors as well.. typed quickly.

Anonymous said...

Sting operation?

Perhaps 'sniper' will enlighten us as to why snipers are necessary to a sting operation, as he described it.

''The units engage, taking him in for questioning, no body to clean up.. intelligence gained.. he is screening fingerprinted and tested for explosives on his person.. if he is clean he is released''

And this doesn't reduce the effectiveness of the sting operation to zero?

That $100 bill you walked past, you poor unemployed Iraqi, it wasn't real anyway.

Kevin said...

I am not a sniper, nor was I trying to do anything other than attempt to help people understand how things go over there. I do respect that you used quotes from the Officer that made them it is for you to interpret what is said.. you listening to the media will always help you decide what has actually taken place. The not so wonderful thing about being a Soldier is used how the Officer in Charge decides to utilize you, you will be used. The position you hold (even a sniper) has nothing to do with the duties you are assigned, more so has to do with your rank. It is very apparent there has not been a day of your life served in the military. There is nothing wrong with that.. it just bothers me when there are so many opinionated people out there that has no clue how things operate.
As I said previously, Snipers have other duties.. Reconnaissance being one, providing security being another. A "sting operation" as you decided to put, is just another way of operating against an enemy that continuously changes their way of operating, the difference being they have no rules. They put bombs on kids, they fight out of mosques, schools, hospitals.. when ever I say they, trust me I mean the terrorists Al Qaeda, Muqtada Al Sadrs Jaysh Al Mahdi, aka the Mahdi Malitia. Infiltrating Iranians. Many of the Iraqis appreciate us.. but many are getting fed up with the Foreign fighters.. many Americans think it is all Iraqis that are fighting us.. anyway back on subject.. If you have a sniper available, you will always utilize them for security many times as well in this case recon, does not mean they will snipe someone.. just means there is extra support if needed.
Your comment about effectiveness of a sting operation being zero just verifies you are not keyed into how anything works. An innocent person is intelligence gained. The wonderful thing about Iraq unlike Americans is that the local Iraqis know everything about their area. They know when there is someone new, a group moving in, a person moving in. You can go ALMOST anywhere in the States and people have no clue who has moved in the area recently, other than the Century21 Sign is no longer hanging up down the road. My point being.. they can provide valuable information.. as I said, a person alive is more valuable that a dead one.
If this still has not made any sense at all and you will pick what you want out of the many valid points I have provided based off of experience and not what I see on TV.. that is okay. i do understand I just hope my explanation helps someone have a better understanding of the war.. Atleast question some of the bogus things that have been reported. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Sting, with snipers

"It is almost like a Prostitute sting.."
Kevin: "[U]nlike Americans is that the local Iraqis know everything about their area."
Kevin: "Your comment about effectiveness of a sting operation being zero just verifies you are not keyed into how anything works."

'Even though the locals know everything about their area,' the sting still works? Kevin, are you sure you know how a sting works? Do your overlords at nsa.gov know that you're both blogging and uninformed? Is spreading happy talk on the internet part of your job?

Anonymous said...

My overlords at nsa.gov... LMAO!, sounds like you are the one that's uninformed.. I wish.. that's actually a pretty interesting website.

I was just putting a different perspective out there.. I said 'almost' like a prostitute sting, but regardless, it was not my point and not the best analogy, like I said you will pick out what you want of what I said and disregard everything else. Happy talk a part of my job? I suppose it is, my job currently is a tender of a bar... so technically happy talk is a part of my job. I enjoy discussing topics with those whom have different opinions and are educated and have experience such as you, my associates like video games, I enjoy knowledge, arguing my point.. as you do.. I see no issues with that. Blogging is just one way I can do that.. Can't do it at work.. because customers get an attitude if I show I have an opinion.. I do not see how talking about what I have experienced vs what is said in the media makes me uninformed (perhaps since my experience is at a lower level? you say this?). Every Soldier and Marine that goes on operations over there talks to the locals whether it is while handing out aid or working right next to them. That is how I have been informed... heck it may have changed in the last year I have been out.. But here leaving a different point of view, just leaves me appearing uninformed..

Back to happy talk.. I guess in a way I do try to have a positive outlook on the war and share my experience and opinions when I can because I see it no where else. I am proud of the work we are doing over there and in a sense flower it up at times because I do not be one of the crabs in a bucket..There are too many negative things being focused on that is happening and the troops are doing some great things. I would probably be there now if the military didn't try to make me become a recruiter. Anyway, as I said previously, why isn't anyone talking about the positive things. Again many of us feed off of drama and misfortune, whether is about the war or celebrities getting DUIs. It is crazy to me.

Since it is not displayed often in the media, I enjoy playing the devil's advocate to negative articles such as the one you posted.. Is that wrong? I suppose you would see it as being so, because you would see my posts as inaccurate. But could you also say that posting the article that you did without any supporting, for the lack of a better term, evidence.. other than quotes that can be interpreted in different ways, in a sense is misinforming those who've read your posts. Perhaps my analogy was not the best example, but if I was not here putting a different perspective out, people will just go ahead and believe everything that the media says.. many simple minded people do not like to think about possibilities of reports being slightly inaccurate..

I am done with my rant, I have to go and not have an opinion now.

Hey Anonymous/Windspike.. I appreciate your time..

Anonymous said...

4000 airliners landed safely today

Anonymous/Kevin (the former Government MetaAnalyst now a Student): ''Why isn't anyone talking about the positive things?''

Because good news is useless.

Anonymous said...

More good news!

Army Denies Education Benefits To National Guard Troops Who Served 22 Months In Iraq

''the Army wrote the orders for 1,162 of these soldiers for 729 days, making them ineligible for full educational benefits under the GI Bill, which requires written orders saying they were deployed for 730 days''

The Army operates like my local car-lube which schedules workers for a 29.5 hours/week so they won't have to pay health insurance at 30 hours.

Judge Radhi Testifies on Iraqi Corruption; GOPers Attack

The good news never stops.

Anonymous said...

Even more good news!

"Support our troops" should mean supporting the idea of pulling them out of a morale-sucking morass. William J. Astore, a retired lieutenant colonel (USAF), earned a doctorate in modern history from the University of Oxford in 1996. He has taught military cadets at the Air Force Academy, officers at the Naval Postgraduate School, and now teaches at the Pennsylvania College of Technology.

But WTF does he know?