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Obama’s Rules of Engagement Stymie Air War against the Islamic State

Without boots on the ground providing intelligence feed, the U.S. led coalition air war is failing to “deter, let alone degrade” the ISIS.  How else can you explain 7,000 sorties over Syria and Iraq with less than 25% having ‘bomb releases”? That was the key disturbing finding in a Washington Times (WT) article, U.S. bombers hold fire on Islamic State targets amid ground intel blackout.”

 The U.S. conducted 7,319 sorties over Iraq and Syria as part of Operation Inherent Resolve in the first four months of 2015. Of those, only 1,859 flights — 25.4 percent — had at least one “weapons release,” according to data provided by United States Air Force Central Command. That means that only about one in every four flights dropped a bomb on an Islamic State target.

There have been reports of frustration by U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine pilots engaged in the ISIS air campaign who have acquired targets and yet been commanded to stand down from attacking them. That has led to criticism of the Administration ISIS air war from Members of Congress, most notably, Sen. John McCain who heads the Senate Armed Services Committee cited in the WT report:

The Arizona Republican said at a hearing this year that missions that don’t drop bombs needlessly put American pilots in danger and that U.S. boots on the ground would produce better intelligence that could lead to more effective bombing missions.

 The level of air sorties in the U.S.-led coalition air war is far below those of Gulf Wars I and II and even the Balkan Air campaigns during the Clinton era.  The question is what is causing this?  Many believe it is the restrictive rules of engagement to spare civilian lives, when ISIS fighters move among columns of civilians, effectively using them as human shields.  Further, some analysts ironically believe that these strict rules of engagement actually contribute to civilian casualties by to ISIS. Perhaps this also reflects the misguided Obama Administration obsession in both avoiding collateral damage and avoiding putting special teams on the ground to provide better target intelligence.

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Israel Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel. Source: Times of Israel.

Perhaps, the Central Command planners and air war commanders might best heed Israeli Air Force Commander Major General Eshel who was cited in a Defense News article saying:

“We have an offensive capability that is unprecedented and extremely significant which we’ve been developing over years and are now able to implement.

“In small wars, it’s a very significant challenge for us to reduce collateral damage on the other side when the enemy is using all he has to elevate the damage we’re forced to inflict on him,” Eshel said.

“First of all, it’s a moral challenge. … It sounds like a slogan, but we are constantly thinking, planning and operating with this challenge in mind.”

The demonstration of that approach was what  occurred in Operation Defensive Edge against the Hamas rocket and terror tunnel war threatening Israel when the IAF F-16’s flew missions in attacks against urban targets with precision guided 1 ton bombs within 250 meters of IDF troops.  The key is precision strikes based on precise intelligence.

Note these debates about the Pentagon handling of the ISIS air war campaign in the WT article:

Former US Navy Helicopter Pilot, Cmdr. Harmer:

Without ground forces, argues Cmdr. Christopher Harmer, a retired Navy helicopter pilot, U.S. airmen are essentially flying half-blind and, as a result, are returning to base with their bombs still in the bay.

“As long as the body politic or president or whoever is making decisions absolutely refuses to put American air controllers on ground, essentially pilots are flying with one eye closed,” Cmdr. Harmer said. “It’s almost impossible for pilots to designate between [Islamic State] fighters and coalition fighters.”

Cmdr. Harmer, who now serves as a senior naval analyst with the Middle East Security Project at the Institute for the Study for War, said airstrikes can hit big, static targets such as bridges, runways and tanks without on-the-ground guidance. But to be effective in hitting moving targets such as enemy troops in a firefight, U.S. pilots need American joint terminal attack controllers to give specific directions from the ground to guide their missiles precisely.

Fewer targets of opportunity says CENTCOM:

Col. Pat Ryder, spokesman for U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), told reporters Friday that while pilots can often place bombs on targets “within minutes,” it’s very important to be very precise and exercise tactical discipline to protect civilian populations.

“We’re dealing with a hybrid adversary who often hides among the population,” he said. “It’s more important for us to accurately target the enemy with a high degree of precision in order to minimize civilian casualties than it is to strike with such speed or force that would risk disenfranchising the very population we’re there to protect.”

Richard Brennan of RAND Corporation has a more pragmatic assessment:

But to make things work without a ground force and employing only air power, the rules of engagement must change, argues Richard Brennan, a senior political scientist at RAND Corp.

Mr. Brennan said the Islamic State, in adapting and responding to U.S. airstrikes, has started to intermingle its fighters with civilians to frustrate U.S. attacks from the air.

In an effort to protect civilian lives, the strict rules of engagement are doing the opposite by giving the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, the opportunity to kill civilians, he said.

“Even though the United States isn’t doing the killing, by its inability to use force in all but the cases where they’re sure of not having collateral damage, we’re ceding the advantage to ISIS in many situations,” Mr. Brennan said.

Looks to us that CENTCOM needs to whistle up a session with IAF General Eshel to understand how the Israelis do precision hits against Hamas in heavily urbanized Gaza City and Hezbollah Syrian missile and weapons transfers.  Both Cmdr. Harmer of the Institute for the Study of War and Brennan of the RAND Corporation are correct about the stringent rules for engagement in the air war against. They are generating more collateral civilian casualties.  Something that didn’t dawn on the Metternichean Munchkins in the Obama National Security Council who call the shots over Pentagon objections.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review.

Obama’s Policies degrading the “Combat Effectiveness” of the U.S. Armed Forces

By evaluating an overwhelming amount of evidence that has been building for 6 ½ years, the obvious conclusion personnel with extensive military experience will come to, is that Obama’s military policies have been degrading the finest U.S. military fighting force in history. Over the last 6 ½ years, the U.S. Armed Forces has been hollowed out by Obama, his Social Experiment On Diversity has severely fractured unit cohesiveness, his “Politically Correct Policies” have negatively affected unit morale, and the  “Combat Effectiveness” of the U.S. military is being degraded. Tip of the spear combat units are being compromised by preventing military combat veterans, with a great deal of combat experience, from providing their invaluable operational experience being considered and evaluated, in the debate within the Obama administration, over whether female military personnel should be exposed to hand to hand combat against highly trained enemy infantry units and enemy special operations personnel. None of the below highlighted actions, which have been degrading the “Combat Effectiveness” of the U.S. Armed Forces, for the last 6 ½ years, could have been instituted without the willing support of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who should have resigned, rather than execute Obama’s below listed policies that have been degrading the U.S. Armed Forces.

The Flag and General Officer Corps have been prevented from opposing and challenging the hollowing out of the U.S. Armed Forces and the degrading of the “Combat Effectiveness” of the US  military by the occupant in the Oval Office. A total of 195 Flag, General, and Senior Military Officers, who may have disagreed with Obama’s “Politically Correct Policies’ and his “Social Experiment on Diversity” that was negatively affecting unit cohesiveness, the moral, and the “Combat Effectiveness” of the U.S. Armed Forces, were purged. Senior enlisted military personnel who utilized their right to complain thru the chain of command about many of the new policies, to express their concerns, were also been purged, and in some cases were court martialed and dishonorably discharged.

The U.S. Army is being reduced to the manning level that existed prior to WWII. The U.S. Navy is being reduce to the number of ships it had prior to WWI down from President Regan’s 584 ship Navy to Obama’s 284 ships Navy today (1/3 of those ships are going thru shipyard availability and modernizations programs). Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert told lawmakers that the Navy would need a 450-ship fleet, in order to meet the global needs of combatant commanders.  The most effective long range offensive missile in the U.S. Navy arsenal, the Tomahawk Missile (TLAM), is being scrapped by Obama. The TLAM  combines accuracy, range lethality, mobility defense against being jammed, is relatively low cost, and is simple to fix and change targets.

When the Navy reordered 980 TLAMs to bring its inventory current, with the most up-to-date models, not only was the request denied by Obama’s civilian appointees at DOD, the decision was taken to completely end production of all TLAMs in fiscal 2016. No orders for the TLAM will be allowed to be placed after autumn 2015, and there is no replacement missile system under development or in the works to take its place.

NO STRATEGIC JUSTIFICATION HAS BEEN OFFERED TO THE US NAVY BY THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO ACCOUNT FOR THE CANCELLATION OF THIS VERY EFFECTIVE WEAPON. The TLAM’s usefulness as a weapon system in combat will expire in 5 years.

In violation of a Federal Law which requires the President to seek approval from Congress in advance of the release of prisoners from the Naval Prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (GITMO), Obama released 5 dangerous Radical Islamic Taliban Terrorist Generals from GITMO for an Army deserter, Sgt Bowe Bergdahl. According to an elected Combat Veteran For Congress, Representative Duncan D. Hunter, Maj-USMCR (D-CA-52), a ransom was paid in February 2014 to an Afghanistan middleman by Spec Ops personnel which was another violation of Federal Law by Obama. Obama doubled down and released 5 more dangerous terrorists from GITMO while Americans were distracted by the massive press reports of Obama’s Executive Order preventing ICE from deporting 5 million Illegal Aliens, an in effect cancelling all deportation except in some very special cases. The occupant of the Oval Office then released an additional 6 dangerous terrorist from GITMO, labeling then as refugees—now terrorists are designated as refugees by Obama. Those releases are an assault on the U.S. military who captured them, sometimes at a loss of life, because they will soon be killing American servicemen again.

The “Justification” given by the Obama administration for the exchange of 5 dangerous Radical Islamic Taliban Terrorist Generals was “We leave no military personnel behind”:

(1)   Obama and Hilary Clinton left 4 Americans behind, including 2 Navy SEALs, to be murdered in Benghazi by Radical Islamic Terrorists, while there were armed aircraft less than 2 hours away that could have saved their lives, but the US Armed Forces was prevented from rescuing of the 4 Americans, because Obama refused to execute “Cross Border Authority” which would have been required to authorize a military rescue mission—violating the. Sacred trust  “We leave no military personnel behind.

(2)   Obama left Sgt Andrew Tahmooressi, USMC behind (an Iraqi War Combat Marine Veteran suffering from PTSD) to be tortured in a Mexican prison for over 7 months; his only crime was to mistakenly cross the wide open southern border because of bad signage on the US side of the border— violating the. Sacred trust  “We leave no military personnel behind”:

(3)   Since January 2012, for over 1600 days, Obama has left Sgt Amir Hekmati, USMC behind (an Iraqi War Combat Marine Veteran) to be tortured in an Iranian prison; his only crime was to seek and obtain permission form the Iranian Government, in advance, to visit his dying grandmother—- violating the. Sacred trust “We leave no military personnel behind”.

In January of 2013, the Obama administration announced its decision to make female military personnel eligible for assignment to direct ground combat units by January 2016, including the infantry. The Obama civilian appointees in the Pentagon are forcing the U.S. Army to insert women into the one of the most grueling training regimens in the entire military establishment, the U.S. Army Rangers. They are planning to reduce the physical requirements for military personnel to qualify as a Ranger so that women will be able to pass the rigorous training and qualifications; that will negatively affect the “Combat Effectiveness” of one of the most important tip of the spear units in the Army.

A study was conducted by the British Ministry of Defense, which tears to shreds the case for women in close ground combat. One of the findings of the study was that under conditions of high intensity close quarter battle, “team cohesion is of such significance that the employment of women in this environment would represent a risk to the “Combat Effectiveness” and there would be no gains in terms of “Combat Effectiveness” to offset it.” The question is whether women should purposely be placed in situations where they must close with the enemy, one on one,  in extremes of physical endurance, climate, and terrain, brutal and violent death, injury, horror, and fear, just to satisfy the “Politically Correct” feminist agenda.

Obama is planning to compromise extremely high standards of tip of the spear units that have resulted in outstanding combat results for the last 75 years, Obama’s compromise of those tip of the spear units will be destruction to the “Combat Effectiveness” of units like the U.S. Marine Corps Infantry, US Army Rangers, the Green Berets, Delta Force, and U.S. Navy SEALs, and will disrupt the “Warrior Spirit” and “Ethos” so carefully nurtured over the years by the finest military force in the world.

China, Russia, Iran, Cuba, and the American people are fully aware that the military strength has been systematically degraded by Obama for 6 ½ years, and believe that the National Security of the United States has been severely compromised by Obama’s hollowing out of the U.S. Armed Forces, and by Obama’s willful intent to ignore the external military threats to the Republic. At the same time, during those 6 ½ years, China, Russia, and Iran have been building modern conventional and nuclear military weapons systems——the US military has not be able to keep pace because of sequestration and being bogged down fighting al Q’ieda,  the Taliban, and ISIL. While ISIL expands, is prosecuting the genocide of Christian, and developing sleeper cells in all 50 states, Obama does very little (ISIL recently stated they now have 71 trained Radical Islamic Terrorists operating in the U.S.).

Obama is keeping his promise, made to Russian Prime Minister in an overheard comment on an open mike prior to the 2012 election, when he said that his hands would not be tied after the election. Russia continues its invasion of Ukraine after its successful the naked aggression and conquest of Crimea; that has all but been ignored by Obama and Ukraine’s request for major defensive weapons systems for over 2 years have fallen on deaf ears in Washington. Russia announced it is shipping S-300 anti-air missiles to Iran to prevent Israel from striking its nuclear weapons development facilities; Obama’s only comment was that he is not surprised. Russia is upgrading its Naval base in Cuba, while Obama removes Cuba from the U.S. State Department’s list of state sponsored terrorist nations and recognizing Cuba while Cuba is supporting the terrorist activities of FARC and Venezuela in South America

The Department of Homeland issued a bulletin to all police agencies in 2009, naming all military Veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan as potential terrorist.  At the same time Obama is allowing hundreds of thousands of Muslims to enter the U.S. thru the UN Muslim Refugee Resettlement Program while preventing intelligent analysts from checking their backgrounds for possible ties to ISIL and Al Q’ieda Radical Islamic Terrorists. At the same time, the Greek Catholic Relief Agency has stated over 300,000 Syrian and Assyrian Christian refugees are being prevented from entering the U.S.

Obama has imposed new and dangerous Rules Of Engagement (ROE) for the U.S. Armed Forces executed by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Michael Mullen, and retained by his replacement General Martin Dempsey. Each year since 2008 when the new ROE took effect, 2049 more military personnel per year have been Wounded In Action, each year, for 5 years (a total of 10,245 more personnel have been wounded and/or maimed for life), an increase of 378%.  Each year since 2008 when the new and “dangerous” ROE took effect, 368 more military personnel have been Killed In Action, each year, for 5 years (a total of 1840 more personnel have been killed), an increase of 458%.

Obama has been launching attacks on the profound religious beliefs of Christians in the U.S. Armed Forces, in violation of the Freedom of Religion guaranteed to every American in the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Chaplains are having their sermons and even places where they can pray censored to be sure they are Politically Correct. Chaplains reading letters from Cardinals to their parishioners in the pulpit have been prevented from doing so. Military personnel are prevented from having bibles in their work places.  Chaplains are being prevented from offering bibles to patients in military hospital rooms, unless they specifically ask for them. Base commanders on military installations are prevented from allowing bibles to be placed in the base hotel rooms. The massive 6 ½  year assault on Christians in the US Military by the Obama Administration is outlined in the video that can be watched by clicking on this link from the Thomas More Law Center;  http://bit.ly/HAfq8Z. It is a dangerous and extreme anti-Christian program being driven by Obama himself against members of the US Armed Forces; Obama has not stopped this unprecedented assault.  What would President George Washington, President Lincoln, President Teddy Roosevelt, President Truman, President Kennedy, President Eisenhower, and President Reagan have to say about Obama’s shameful assault on “Freedom of Religion” in the U.S. Armed Forces?

Open homosexuality in the US Armed Forces has been decreed by Obama, in violation of General George Washington’s 238 year old US Military Regulations. Gay Rights Political Events are now held on U.S. Military bases in violation of U.S. Military Regulations which prevent any political activities on any military installation. U.S. Military Color guards and military personnel in uniform have been ordered to march in Gay Rights parades (apolitical event) in violation of U.S. Military Regulations. The civilian appointees of the Obama administration in the Pentagon, have been trying to cover up the fact that 10,400 straight military male enlisted personnel have been sexually assaulted by gay male military personnel in their barracks and on their ships—creating retention problems, and that thousands of straight female members in the military hae been sexually assaulted by lesbian military personnel.

Poster in Officer’s Club, Vandenberg AFB, CA:

During the 2010, 2012, and 2014 elections, the Obama administration, through Attorney General Eric Holder, actively encouraged State Secretaries of Democratically controlled states, to disregard Federal Voting Laws that required the timely mailing out absentee ballots to active duty military personnel, so they can receive the ballots on time, in order to return them on a date specific, so they can be counted on election day.  As a result, hundreds of thousands of military votes have never been counted, denying members of the U.S. Armed Forces their basic fundamental American rights to vote.

Although the Veterans Administration is supposed to support the interests of military veterans, yet it has slowed down the process of allowing veterans to file claims for benefits to the point where veterans are waiting for months and even years to have their claims processed.  When veterans go to the VA, because of new regulations imposed by Obama, they are being asked if they own firearms, if they have ever been depressed, and if their spouses handle the family finances which is against privacy laws. Then that information is being used to declare them mentally incompetent and deny them their Constitutional rights to own, purchase, or possess firearms in accordance with the 5th and 2nd Amendments to the US Constitution. Eric Holder’s Justice Department has put them on a list of Americans who are prevented from owning firearms in violation of their 2nd Amendment rights. Many Veterans cannot get help with their medical issues, and have to wait hours on the phone to get any response at all; an average of 23 Veterans are committing suicide each day.

The Army ROTC cadets at Arizona State University were recently humiliated by being forced to walk around on campus in full military uniforms wearing Red Pumps for an event called “Walk A Mile in Her Shoes” to raise awareness of sexual violence against women on college campuses. As reported by the Washington Times, in 2014, the Army encouraged participation in the April 2015 event.  However: this year, the ROTC candidates at ASU were faced with a volunteer event “that became mandatory.”  Or, they were “voluntold” they have to participate or be faced with discipline action. The Cadets were forced to walk around out of uniform (because they were not wearing military boots) in violation of Army Regulation AR670-1, entitled Wear and Appearance of Army Uniform and Insignia—“A military member must wear his or her uniform in a way that projects an image of discipline and order and is prohibited from wearing a combination of civilian and military clothing.”

A twelve month survey of internal data of personnel in the U.S. Army from the period through early 2015 was obtained by “USA Today”, it shows starling negative findings of their very low morale, including in the findings are the following:

  • More than half of some 770,000 soldiers (52% or 403,564 soldiers) are pessimistic about their future in the military, agreeing with statements such as “I rarely count on good things happening to me.”
  • 48% or about 370,000 soldiers are unhappy in their jobs, have little satisfaction in or commitment to their jobs, and would have chosen another if they had it to do over again. Only 28% felt good about what they do.
  • More than half reported poor nutrition and sleep. Only 14% said they are eating right and getting enough rest.
  • Two-thirds were borderline or worse for an area called “catastrophic thinking,” where poor scores mean the soldier has trouble adapting to change or dwells on the worst possible things happening.
  • Nearly 40% or about 300,000 soldiers didn’t trust their immediate supervisor or fellow soldiers in their unit or didn’t feel respected or valued. Only 32% felt good about bosses and peers.

General Martin Dempsey has been trying to push the U.S. Marine Corps to lower standards for women in order to let them pass the Infantry Officer’s Course, regardless of how it will affect the “Combat Effectiveness” of the U.S. Marine Corps. If a lower standard for Infantry Officers is forced upon the US Marine Corps, it would result in weakening the infantry arm of the U.S. Marine Corps needlessly, in order to comply with Obama’s “Political Correctness.”  Senator John McCain told Fox News’ American Newsroom, “General Dempsey is the most disappointing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff that I have ever seen. and I have seen many of them.  He has supported the plan to completely withdraw from Afghanistan. He’s basically been the echo chamber for the president, and one of the reasons why we are in the situation that we’re in, in the world today…..is because of his lack of either knowledge or candor about the situation in the Middle East, and it has done great damage.”

The real threat to the National Security interests of the United States and the American citizens is the internal threat, the occupant of Oval Office who has repeatedly said he doesn’t want the United States to be the only Superpower in the world..

Please watch this very important video:

We strongly encourage you to read the article below.

The Washington Times

U.S. military decimated under Obama, only ‘marginally able’ to defend nation

By Rowan Scarborough – The Washington Times

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The U.S. military is shedding so many troops and weapons it is only “marginally able” to defend the nation and falls short of the Obama administration’s national security strategy, according to a new report by The Heritage Foundation on Tuesday.

“The U.S. military itself is aging. It’s shrinking in size,” said Dakota Wood, a Heritage analyst. “And it’s quickly becoming problematic in terms of being able to address more than one major conflict.”

President Obama’s latest strategy is to size the armed forces pledged in 2014 so that the four military branches have sufficient troops, ships, tanks and aircraft to win a large war, while simultaneously acting to “deny the objectives of — or impose unacceptable costs on — another aggressor in another region.”

In other words, the Quadrennial Defense Review says the military can essentially fight two major conflicts at once. It could defeat an invasion of South Korea by the North, for example, and stop Russia from invading Western Europe or Iran from conquering a Persian Gulf state.

But Heritage’s “2015 Index of U.S. Military Strength” took a look, in detail, at units and weapons, region by region, and came to a different conclusion.

“The U.S. military is rapidly approaching a one-war-capable force,” said Mr. Wood, a former Marine Corps officer and strategic planner. “So [it is] able to handle a major war and then having just a bit of residual capability to handle other minor crises that might pop up. … But it is a far cry from being a two-war force.”

“The consistent decline in funding and the consequent shrinking of the force are putting it under significant pressure,” the report concluded. “The cumulative effect of such factors has resulted in a U.S. military that is marginally able to meet the demands of defending America’s vital national interests.”

The index report is part scorecard, part research tool.

It grades the Army, which is shrinking from 570,000 soldiers to 440,000 or lower, and the Navy, which is failing to achieve a 300-ship force, as only “marginal” in military power. The Air Force’s fleet of fighters and long-range bombers is judged “strong.”

Heritage says the military cannot fight two wars at once.

The report said the Army historically commits 21 brigade dombat teams to one war. Several years ago, that left just 21 more brigades for a second war and none for strategic reserve.

But the problem is more acute. The Army announced in 2013 it may go as low as 33 brigades, far short of the 50 brigades Heritage says are needed.

The Army has been battered by automatic budget cuts known as “sequestration.” A bipartisan budget deal provided some relief last year, but the slashing could come back in 2016 without another agreement.

Gen. Raymond Odierno, Army chief of staff, has said that if the active force is squeezed down to 420,000 soldiers, it could not carry out all global commitments.

The Navy would need 346 ships to carry out two large campaigns, Heritage said, but its fleet is only 284.

At the report’s release, Rep. J. Randy Forbes, Virginia Republican, talked of all the technological advancements that led to complete air superiority in the 1991 Desert Storm operation over Iraq.

Today, the House Armed Services Committee member said the Air Force “would say we are dangerously close to no longer being able to guarantee that air dominance that we could guarantee in Kuwait.”

“If you listen to the Army, they will give testimony they can no longer guarantee. You talk about two wars — they testified they can’t guarantee that we could win one war,” Mr. Forbes said. “The Navy will tell you if we get to 260 ships, we cease to be a superpower; we become a regional power.”

The Pentagon’s base budget, minus overseas war costs, has decreased under Mr. Obama, from $527 billion in 2010 to about $496 billion in each of the last three budgets. The president is asking for an increase in 2016 to $534 billion.

“The enemies that we have out there, and competitors, are making very smart investments accounting for their strategic objectives and interests,” Mr. Wood said.

President Obama killing our soldiers softly with his Rules of Engagement

In the 7 years, from 2001 to 2008, US Military Personnel engaged in combat in Afghanistan operated under the “standard” Rules Of Engagement (ROE) that the military always operated under; during those 7 years, 630 US Military Personnel were Killed In Action (KIA).  In 2009, Obama imposed new and “dangerous” ROE on US Military Personnel operating in combat in Afghanistan, over the next 5 years, from 2009 thru 2013, 2,292 personnel were KIA.  The increase in KIAs for Combat personnel who had previously operated under the “standard” ROE, jumped from 90/year during the first 7 years, to 458/year over the next 5 years employing Obama’s new and “dangerous” ROE—–an increase in 458% in KIAs.

According to CNS News.com, 19,080 US Military Personnel have been casualties in Afghanistan since 2001; CNS News.com further reported that 73% of all casualties in Afghanistan occurred from 2009 thru 2013, the time frame when Obama’s new and “dangerous” ROE were forced upon US military personnel engaged in combat.  The increase in casualties for US Combat personnel who were operating under the new and “dangerous” ROE jumped from 5,151 during the first 7 years, to 13,928 over the next 5 years (many of those casualties were maimed for life), the annual casualty rate has gone from 736/year when they were operating under the “standard” ROE to 2785/year when they had to employ Obama’s new and “dangerous” ROE—an increase of 378%/year for Combat personnel Wounded In Action.

Apologists for the Obama administration might say there were more casualties because of an increase in tempo of operations; the tempo of operations might have increased somewhat, but the tempo operations did not increase by 378%.

The below listed article will put a face on the above listed statistics on Killed In Action numbers, and number of casualties, as a result the new and “dangerous” Rules Of Engagement imposed upon military personnel engaged in combat by the then Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mullen. General Mullen never saw ground combat, but followed in lock step with how the occupant in the Oval Office wanted the Rules Of Engagement changed, and he didn’t carefully evaluate how those devastating changes would dramatically increase the casualties of combat personnel going into “Harm’s Way” daily, or how the new and “dangerous” would degrade the Combat Effectiveness of the finest tip of the spear military units in the world.

Two well-known losses of combat personnel are examples of how the imposition of the new and “dangerous” ROE forced on combat personnel increased the dangerous environment on the battlefield.  The first example was depicted in the movie “Lone Survivor” where the fear of being charged by civilians in the Pentagon with war crimes, if they silenced a hostile Afghani, resulted in compromising an entire operation and resulted in the death of 3 SEALs.  The second event, Extortion 17, occurred because the request for suppression fire at a landing zone, that used to be normally approved to allow a helicopter to land in a hot zone, was denied by senior commanders because of the new and “dangerous” ROE.  That lack of support resulted in the loss of 48 military personnel flying on Extortion 17 (those killed included 16 members of SEAL Team SIX, 20 Spec Ops Warriors, 5 helo crew members, and 7 Afghani military allies); Extortion 17 was the largest loss of life of US military personnel in one day in the 13 year history of combat operations in Afghanistan.  There have been thousands of incidents over the last 5 years that resulted in casualties that could have been avoided, if the “standard” ROE were being employed.

The occupant of the Oval Office has let it be known that he welcomes debate, but won’t tolerate dissent; the past 5 years of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan has taught the combatant commanders not to complain about the ROE (because they knew of the unusually high number of commanders that had been relieved in the midst of their tours).  Sound judgment was not exhibited by Mullen when he imposed the new and “dangerous” Rules Of Engagement on the US military by Obama—he should have had the courage to resign to demonstrate his opposition to Rules of Engagement that would result in killing so many of the Republic’s finest warriors.  Each year since 2008 when the new and “dangerous” Rules of Engagement took effect, 2049 more military personnel per year have been Wounded In Action each year for 5 years (a total of 10,245 more personnel have been wounded and/or maimed for life) which is an increase of 378%.  Each year since 2008 when the new and “dangerous” Rules Of Engagement took effect, 368 more military personnel have been Killed In Action each year for 5 years (a total of 1840 more personnel have been killed) which is an increase of 458%.  The unacceptable number of casualties continues to increase, while the current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, hasn’t made a concerted effort to change the dangerous Rules Of Engagement that US Military personnel, engaged in combat, are required to operate under.

US SOLDIERS IN AFGHANISTAN ARE NOW FORCED TO FIGHT A TWO-FRONTED WAR

Written by Billy & Karen Vaughn on Friday, 14 February 2014.

OUR BEST AND BRIGHTEST COME HOME IN BODY BAGS AS POLITICIANS AND LAWYERS DINE OVER WHITE LINEN TABLECLOTHS; WRITING, MODIFYING, AND RE-MODIFYING THESE LETHAL RULES…RULES THAT FAVOR THE ENEMY RATHER THAN THE AMERICAN SOLDIER.

US soldiers in Afghanistan are now forced to fight a two-fronted war. Before each deployment, these soldiers understand fully that day after day they will do battle against relentless terrorists with shifting loyalties and unspeakable hatred. But what none of them could have foreseen was the killing field that would open from their rear…the Continental United States.

Our government’s incessant tightening of already restrictive ROE (Rules of Engagement), compounded by the failed COIN (Counterinsurgency) strategy—also known as “winning hearts and minds,” has made an otherwise primitive enemy formidable.

Our best and brightest come home in body bags as politicians and lawyers dine over white linen tablecloths; writing, modifying, and re-modifying these lethal rules…rules that favor the enemy rather than the American soldier. Rules so absurd they’re difficult to believe until you hear the same stories over and again from those returning from battle.

In a delicate discussion with an Army Ranger who recently left the military, we heard the following: “I had to get out. I have a family who needs me. I didn’t join to be sacrificed. I joined to fight.” This decision came shortly after he lost a close friend to the ROE. He went on to explain: the Taliban had attempted an ambush on his friend’s squad, but quickly realized they were in a battle they couldn’t win and began retreating. While chasing them, the US soldiers were ordered not to engage due to the slight chance the Taliban had laid down their arms as they ran through some type of shack. While arguing with leadership at the JOC (Joint Operations Center) his friend was shot and killed.

A Navy SEAL who left his job only a few years shy of full retirement said the following: “I got out because I couldn’t take it anymore. We tried to explain how much reckless danger we were being exposed to and they told us we were being illogical.”

This type of response has created a growing compromise of confidence between our war fighters and senior military leadership. His argument wasn’t illogical at all.

A gut-wrenching pattern began forming in early 2009…a pattern completely ignored by Congress, the White House, and apparently the DOD.

In the first seven plus years of war in Afghanistan (October, 2001 – December, 2008) we lost 630 US soldiers. In early 2009, this administration authorized the implementation of the COIN strategy. Over the next five years, the US death toll skyrocket to 2,292.

Seventy-three percent of all US deaths in Afghanistan have taken place since 2009.

In the first seven plus years of war in Afghanistan, 2,638 US soldiers were wounded in action. In the next forty-five months (2009 – 2012) an additional 15,036 suffered the same fate.

Liars figure, but figures don’t lie.

While concern over being killed due to these policies weighs heavy on the minds of those we’ve spoken with, the deepest pit-in-the-stomach comes from fear of prosecution should they violate these absurd and ever-changing ROE. The last thing a war fighter should ever be forced to experience is unnecessary fear.

Fear creates hesitation. Hesitation creates flag-draped caskets. Flag-draped caskets create fatherless children, widowed wives, and childless parents. Our heroes deserve the right to fight with swift hands, clear minds, and confident hearts.

However, today’s war fighters have the grave misfortune of serving leaders who elevate the virtues of inaction over action. The message? If you dare use your training or your gut instinct, if you have the fortitude to fight for your life, or the desire to kill the enemy, there is a good chance you will be punished.

The physiological capacities of a true patriot cannot tolerate the vile stench of injustice, especially when perpetrated against those who defend us. Its wretched aroma permeates the core and demands a response.

We’re counting on you, the American patriot, for that response. We must defend our defenders. Please, spread the news and demand change.

Rep. Rooney (FL-16) Goes After Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Two Members of the House Armed Services Committee, Congressmen Tom Rooney (R-FL) and Duncan Hunter Jr. (R-CA), sent a letter to General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff questioning why Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) Matthew Dooley was given a negative Officer Evaluation Report (OER) on the grounds his instruction of a course on Radical Islam was offensive to Muslims and Islam.

Their letter dated October 10, 2012 states in part:

“It appears that LTC Dooley led this course well within the scope of NDU’s professorial guidelines, as NDU’s own Faculty Handbook states: “Academic Freedom at National Defense University is defined as freedom to pursue and express ideas, opinions, and issues germane to the University’s stated mission, free of limitations, restraints, or coercion by the University or external environment.”

It is our understanding that LTC Dooley did not violate any established University practices, policies or DoD regulations to merit a negative OER.”

The Congressmen’s letter concerns actions taken by General Dempsey earlier in the year when he publicly excoriated Lieutenant Colonel Matthew Dooley at a May 10, 2012 news conference claiming the course LTC Dooley was teaching at the Joint Forces Staff College (JFSC) was offensive to Muslims. General Dempsey caused LTC Dooley to be fired as an instructor, ordered his course, Perspectives on Islam and Islamic Radicalism, to be discontinued and that all material considered offensive to Islam be scrubbed from military professional education within JFSC and elsewhere within his command. General Dempsey further ordered that LTC Dooley be given a negative Officer Evaluation Report—the death knell for a military career.

Click here to read entire letter.

Rep. Rooney was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2008. Prior to that time, he served four years in the United States Army Staff Judge Advocate (SJA). During his years in SJA he served as Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney at Fort Hood, TX prosecuting all civilian crimes on post. In 2002, Tom was selected to teach Constitutional and Criminal Law at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

Prior to his election as a congressman from California, Duncan Hunter Jr. served as an officer in the Marine Corps. He served three combat tours overseas: two in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.

The Congressmen’s letter asks “[W]hy the DoD was compelled to further discipline LTC Dooley by jeopardizing his reputation and his future in the service.”

LTC Matt Dooley

LTC Matt Dooley attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, where he graduated and received his commission as a Second Lieutenant, Armor Branch in May 1994. His assignments included deployment to Bosnia, Kuwait, and Iraq for a total of six operational and combat tours over the course of his career. He served as a Tank Platoon Leader, Tank Company Commander, Headquarters Company Commander, Aide-de-Camp (to three General Officers), and Instructor at the Joint Combined Warfare School. He is a graduate of the Command and General Staff College as well as the Joint Forces Staff College.

The Thomas More Law Center, a national nonprofit public interest law firm, based in Ann, Arbor, Michigan, represents LTC Dooley.

Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Law Center observed, “The purpose of the Army is to fight and win wars. So what happened to LTC Dooley is more than a personal miscarriage of justice. When instructors are prohibited from teaching military officers about the true threat posed by Islamic Radicalism, it is a threat to our national security. Our warfighting potential is thus being crippled by the political correctness and appeasement of radical Muslims currently in vogue at the upper echelons of the Pentagon.”

A review of LTC Dooley’s OERs going back several years, including his OER as an instructor with JFSC, paint a picture of an outstanding officer with unlimited potential:

“LTC Matt Dooley’s performance is outstanding and he is clearly the best of our new instructors assigned to the JFSC faculty over the last six months. . . . A must select for battalion command. . . . LTC Dooley possesses unlimited potential to serve in positions of much higher authority.”

“MAJ Dooley is unquestionably among the most dedicated and hard working officers I have ever known.… Unsurpassed potential for future promotion and service.”

“Our soldiers deserve his leadership.”

“This officer possesses unlimited potential for future assignments. He must be promoted ahead of his peers and selected for Battalion/Squadron Command at first opportunity.”

“Superb performance.”

“Matt is a consummate professional with unlimited potential;”

LTC Dooley’s awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Army Commendation Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters, the Army Achievement Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with Star, Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal with Two Stars, both the Global War on Terrorism Service and Expeditionary Medals, the Armed Forces Service Medal, the NATO Medal, the Parachutist Badge, the Air-Assault Badge, and two Army Superior Unit Awards.