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March 08, 2005

More Idiocy From The New York Times

Some friend.... hmmmph... TigerHawk points to yet another blitheringly moronic regrettable NY Times editorial:

On Jan. 18, American soldiers on patrol near Mosul were ordered to stop an oncoming car. After giving some warning shots, six soldiers sprayed the vehicle, firing at least 50 rounds. Chris Hondros, a photographer for Getty Images, said that when the car had come to a stop, he "could hear sobbing and crying coming from the car, children's voices." A car door opened, and six children, one only 8 years old, tumbled into the street, splattered with blood. The parents of four of the children lay dead in the front seat, their bodies riddled with bullets. Back at the base, the company commander told the soldiers that there would be an investigation, but that they had followed the rules of engagement.

At which point the Times commences with the arm-waving oratory:

Iraqi civilians don't have to live only in fear of suicide bombers and masked insurgents. They also must fear being mistaken for an insurgent by jumpy American forces, which are told to shoot first and ask questions later.

Excuse me... but in the preceding example, were there not WARNING SHOTS fired first? Does this truly fit the Times' characterization of "shoot first and ask questions later"? What, pray tell, were the soldiers on duty to think when confronted by an oncoming car that refused to stop even after warning shots were fired?

Oh. I get it. The rules of engagement should have read: ALLOW ALL ONCOMING CARS TO PROCEED UNMOLESTED - EVEN THOSE WHICH IGNORE WARNING SHOTS AFTER BEING ASKED TO HALT. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES WILL PERSONNEL ATTEMPT TO STOP AN ONCOMING CAR. ALL CARS - EVEN THE EXPLODING KIND - WILL BE ALLOWED THROUGH TO THE CHECKPOINT SO PERSONNEL MAY "ASK QUESTIONS LATER". IN THE CASE OF AN EXPLOSION, THE "ASKING QUESTIONS" PROCEDURE MAY BE DEEMED UNNECESSARY. Got it.

American soldiers operate under rules of engagement that give them the authority to open fire whenever they have reason to believe that they or others in their unit may be at risk of suicide bombings or other insurgent attacks.

Would an oncoming car that has ignored warning shots qualify? The Times believes, obviously, that this policy needs to be changed?

No one can fault an American G.I. at a checkpoint who fires on a car that refuses to stop, because the insurgency has targeted such checkpoints with impunity.

Ummm... but isn't that what the Times' editorial staff just did? Or did I miss something?

But with every additional civilian who is killed by American fire, the human cost rises - both in terms of the lives lost and the psychological damage suffered by the Americans in uniform.

Well this is just a stunner... I'll bet no one in the military is aware of this. You know, this little nugget alone justifies the cost of a one-year subscription to the Times. Who knew that with every life lost the human cost rises? Damn, that's Pulitzer material there.

More broadly, these accidents further harm the United States' already shaky image abroad. And they play into the hands of extremists, who use them to vilify America and the American soldier.

Work with me here. The folks who call our President a chimp and behead innocent women need more reasons to hate us? Methinks they were already there.

It is the responsibility of those at the top of the chain of command - the ones who write these rules of engagement - to make sure that such rules are as close to mistake-proof as possible. [Ed. note: see new procedure outlined above in all caps] That means studying hard the approach to each and every checkpoint put up by the United States military to make sure civilians understand that they should slow down.

Let me spell this out to you. We are A-T W-A-R. No one, least of all our military men and women, wants to see innocent Iraqis get killed. It has obviously escaped your notice (and this is not surprising, because you have never given a fig for their prospects) but those men and women over there are risking their lives to give Iraqis a future. They have more of a stake in the safety of the Iraqis that you do.

There was a "mistake" made here - the mistake of not stopping a car approaching a checkpoint when warning shots were fired upon it. And the NY Times is going to have to face the unpleasant fact that military men and women live with every day: war is hell. Things happen. But not every mishap requires a 180 degree change in policy.

You'd better believe there will be an investigation into this incident, but not because the New York Times wants it. And when that investigation is complete, you and the rest of the world will find out what the conclusions are.

It will happen because the United States military demands that of itself as a matter of course, and always has. Unlike the media, we hold ourselves accountable for our mistakes. We have rules.

So before you suggest an ill-considered change in policy (before the investigation that would determine if it's even needed) that will result in not just more military deaths, but more Iraqi deaths when suicide bombers and insurgents get past checkpoints because timid soldiers are scared to challenge them, stop and think. With power comes responsibility. When we start to see some accountability out of you, maybe we'll start listening.

UPDATE: I should have known Liberal Larry would be all over the Chimp on this one:

Formed out of the ashes of Support Our Troops, Asterisk, Support Our Murderous Troops is a grassroots organization devoted to supporting our murderous troops but not the immoral, illegal, and incompetent work they do....

Why is this man not writing for the Times? Oh... he's on the wrong side:

Giuliana Sgrena is a militant, America-hating leftist who writes for a communist newspaper...but that doesn't necessarily mean she's right. It's general knowledge that U.S. troops are actively hunting journalists like pronghorn antelope in Ted Nugent's back yard.

Go... now. But for God's sake put down your drink first.

Posted by Cassandra at March 8, 2005 02:17 PM

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Comments

Well. I'm sure that you felt better after that. I know that I did.

Of course, I now know that I should think twice before pointing out transcendant asshattery. You don't need the extra stress!:)

Posted by: TigerHawk at March 8, 2005 05:27 PM

Oh it's OK. I almost let it go but it really frosted me yesterday when I saw the first Times piece. I just didn't get around to doing much reading this morning - I'm trying to give myself a break from my usual grind so I've cut way back, just for this week.

But of course it's driving me mad.

Posted by: Cassandra at March 8, 2005 05:38 PM

Larry will never write for the Times. He is Professym Chomstein at Evergreen State College
for the Rights of Little People.

I tell you, if that one didn't make me get a new set of abs...his latest baby killer diatribe did. It (the Little People piece)was a terrific take on Ward Churchill.

The guy is brilliant.

Posted by: Cricket at March 8, 2005 05:45 PM

Larry is such a freak. His "John Negroponte is No Negro" piece literally made me stop breathing.

I still laugh every time I see the title - it is so utterly ridiculous.

Posted by: Cassandra at March 8, 2005 05:55 PM

Dat Lib'ral Larry's posts
Dey make me scream and shout
I almos' peed my pants
Dat boy he wears me out
For every ChimpReich story
Every BushHitler tale
I laugh so hard I forget
I forget to exhale...

Shoop, Shoop, Shoop
Shoo Be Doop Shoop Shoop (yeah)
Shoo Be Doop Shoop Shoop
(All you got to say is shoo be doop)
Shoo Be Doop Shoop Shoop
Shoo Be Doop Shoop Shoop (Shoo be doop)
Shoo Be Doop Shoop Shoop
Shoo Be Doop Shoop Shoop
Shoo Be Doo

Posted by: Whitney Houston at March 8, 2005 06:00 PM

There was a "mistake" made here - the mistake of not stopping a car approaching a checkpoint when warning shots were fired upon it.

Crikey! These NYT reporters really don't know jack about the military, do they? MathMan is not in the Air Force but he was in intel working with the Air Force, and worked on base. He had a business trip to Hawaii and I got to join him. We stayed on Hickam AFB, and arrived as the sun was going down. The sign said something about no headlights, but I didn't understand that they mean it!! (It was getting dark and I didn't know where I was going - I really didn't want to do this in the dark.)

He said the guards have the right to shoot out my headlights, and shoot me if necessary, an American, in the US of A, in peacetime, right there by the purty beaches in Ha-woy-yah, if I don't turn off my %@*& headlights! It seems they need to be able to see you, or something. Who knows why...I suppose it's some sort of power trip?

Posted by: MathMom at March 8, 2005 09:48 PM

Wow.... lot's of names I remember!!! I was told on the Scrappleface site to report here 'if I knew what is good for me'. So here I am ... like I need more trouble then I got ... tromping around in the land of Mordor, Orcs lobbing nasty stuff at me at nights, and setting off bombs on the sides of the road.

Cassandra ... did your hubby ever get the cal t Mordor? Have had a few contacts with those Marine types ... I always respected them before, but I love them now!!!! In the most manly of Hobbit ways of course!!

Posted by: Frodo at March 9, 2005 09:10 AM

Frodo!!!!

Good to see you :)

No, sadly he did not. He is firmly ensconced at the 5-sided Funny Farm. He got to Fallujah for 2 weeks and had to move mountains to make that happen. He had a job lined up over there, but they would have had to gap his billet at the Farm and the Lidless Eye said not just no but helk, no.

So it appears he hath been promoted out of all usefulness :(

Posted by: Cassandra at March 9, 2005 09:19 AM

How are you doing?

Posted by: Cassandra at March 9, 2005 09:20 AM

Sorry to hear it ... I guess ... odd to feel sorry for someone who can't get themselves sent here to be shot at!! I was up in that vicinity a while back, hense my contact with the Marines. Great guys ... and they don't take no Orc s***. Wish I had a few of them where I'm at now.

Posted by: Frodo at March 9, 2005 09:24 AM

I'm doing well thanks ... things over here are progressing, the elections were a huge success ... at least where I am. We still get the occational round lobbed at us, but fortunately for us those SOB's can't shoot straight!!

Posted by: Frodo at March 9, 2005 09:30 AM

"I was told on the Scrappleface site to report here 'if I knew what is good for me'."===Frodo

It's always wise to heed the friendly nudge of a Cat! [the non friendly ones could keep you outta trouble, too, come to think of it.] (~;) And I didn't even lure you with the possiblity of finding the ring here! hehe

Posted by: aCK (furballs!) Cat at March 9, 2005 10:19 AM

Thanks Cat ... I take all the friendly advise I can get ... trying to keep my good Karma going. The Orcs have done their best, but most of the time their timing is off (hit before I get there or after I left) and the few times they've gotten shots at me they've missed ... must be that elven cloak I got at CIF in Lothlórien (AKA Doha)!!!

;-)

Take care ... your friend Frodo

Posted by: Frodo at March 9, 2005 11:41 AM

Sorry you've hit on a slow posting week - I'm trying to take the week off due to an impending meltdown. Hopefully back up to my normal pace (or something like it) next week.

Posted by: Cassandra at March 9, 2005 11:44 AM

Actually Cassandra, I don't know if you want to tell your significant other, but I'm currently working (indirectly) for a Marine O-6 (reserve) ... one of those weird dotted line relationships over here.

I wish there were more of them ... currently work with a lot of AF types ... nice people but don't know a thing about soldiering ... they keep telling me that they we sent to do a particular job and won't do anythng else ... I can't understand that mentality ... I was sent to accomplish a mission.

Posted by: Frodo at March 9, 2005 11:49 AM

Well then you should get a kick out of this Frodo:

http://www.villainouscompany.com/vcblog/archives/2005/01/usmcissue_rat.html

Posted by: Cassandra at March 9, 2005 11:54 AM

LOL ... that was great ... I wish I could tell you my FAVORITE Marine 'not taking any s*** from anyone' story from over here, but I probably shouldn't because the NY Times might pick up on it and make it into an international incident!!!

Posted by: Frodo at March 9, 2005 12:15 PM

Blaming the soldiers who open fire on someone who rushes at a checkpoint, ignoring warnings to stop, is like blaming the ground a car lands on after driving off the edge of a cliff. Not that the NY Times is going to let fairness or common sense impede their "arm-waving oratory" (good phrase). I love the part where the Times claims to be concerned about "the psychological damage suffered by the Americans in uniform." One easy way to reduce psychological damage to the troops would be for MSM lefties to lay off the anti-American propaganda.

Posted by: Van Helsing [TypeKey Profile Page] at March 9, 2005 12:44 PM

Mathmom,
When we lived near Fort-Lost-In-The-Woods the Mud Puppies would point to their eyes and then our lights if we hadn't turned them off by the time we got to the sign that said "no lights beyond this point."

You think??????

Now you have me wondering...how many retinas we might have fried by not doing that in a timely manner.

I am prostate.

Posted by: Cricket at March 9, 2005 01:28 PM

Frodo, which thread are you on? I haven't been to TOB for a while and feel the need for some Orcflesh and goblin guts to renew the roots of the liberty tree.

Posted by: Cricket at March 9, 2005 01:30 PM

Hey Cricket ... I just dropped in to the Scrappleface site today (http://www.scrappleface.com/MT/archives/002105.html) , I had a slow day today here so I thought I would check in ... was surprised and quite flattered to be remembered ... been a long time since I had some time on my hands to post there!!! Right now, I'm headed out to my hooch to smoke some pipe weed and then hit the rack!!! Been a long day writing purchase requests!!!! I don't know which is worse, getting shot at by the Orcs or convincing the Victory cabal that I really need the materials and equipment I'm ordering!!! (actually I do know what is worse, it's the latter!!!)

Desk Ranger Frodo!

Posted by: Frodo at March 9, 2005 01:59 PM

Nice to see you again Frodo. Take care of evil for us will ya! We would like to keep middle earth going, even if middle earth is on the right here among the VC.

Posted by: KJ at March 9, 2005 02:04 PM

"for a Marine O-6 (reserve) ... one of those weird dotted line relationships over here."

*sniff* Where's the justice in THAT? Heck! I'm a hetero female stuck in a hetero females body (& mind.) Even I'd be willing to settle for a weird dotted line relationship with a Marine. I don't mind a few freckles. As long as it's accessorized with a full head of dark hair. Heh! (NOTE: I did say "A", in the *single-ular*) *sigh*

Posted by: CK (bad) Cat at March 9, 2005 02:04 PM

and yeah, I realize "full head of hair" in the same sentence as "Marine" is a smidge [but not permanently] oxy-moronic. hehehe

*******************
TOB doesn't hold my interest like it once did, either--but I guess I've become an unofficial "keeper of TOB gate" so if they happen to show up, I can tell the "Veterans" where to find some of the old neighborhood friends.

Frodo,
Dang you! All your stories about wearing that bullseye on your head--now I have to add yet ONE more name to my own "hit list"---of Mil persons I pray for every day.(~; Granted, a kinder, gentler hit list.

Was it the Farside deer that had that bulls eye on its chest and another deer said: "bummer of a birth mark". hehe

Posted by: CK(bad)Cat at March 9, 2005 02:14 PM

Blog KittyCat behaving Badly:
I like TOB but everyone else has taken over.
And we were there at a time when we could beat the Phrench with one hand tied behind our backs.

I remember reading some of Frodo's posts to my son
and we both would howl with laughter. After everything happened, and I was sidelined for a while, I decided that as much as I love satire, and Scott is VERY mild and well mannered and witty, I wanted some meat.

I loved Cassandra's writing because not only did she not get into a snit, she could write well, and logically and make a point and a conclusion.

I still go over to Jet Noise.

Such is the nature of readership and the internet.

Posted by: Cricket at March 9, 2005 03:14 PM

Well, I don't know if I have a bullseye on my head, I'm in a much safer area then many of our soldiers ... and frankly I'm some what disappointed that I haven't made the insurgent hit list yet ... guess I'll have to do more to mess with them.

;-)

Posted by: Frodo at March 10, 2005 05:27 AM

You be safe and smart, okay?

Posted by: Cricket at March 10, 2005 11:00 AM

Most times being safe is a matter of luck or timing over here. For instance you may remember the British C-130 that went down near Balad? I took that same flight just a few days prior. Have had similar experiences with indirect fire and IED's (minutes / hours rather then days), so I can't guarentee anything there ... as for being smart, well you know what they say about old dogs!!! ;-)

Posted by: Frodo at March 11, 2005 06:55 AM

Dooh ... thought I caught that before it was sent the first time!

It happens sometimes Frodo :)

- Cass

Posted by: Frodo at March 11, 2005 06:57 AM

Cass to the rescue!!!

Posted by: Frodo at March 11, 2005 09:02 AM

Glad to be of service :)

Posted by: Cassandra at March 11, 2005 09:10 AM

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