I am in complete agreement with The Wolf and Col. Hunt in his article. LTG Kearney needs to taken to the woodshed and paddled for this. When we get to point in a shooting war that Generals are micromanaging individual operations at the tactical UNIT level, then we need to start firing Generals.
When I was in the ATO, I operated my own firebase for the last 5 months I was there. I had a 9 man squad of infantry soldiers assigned to me and the Captain I was with for our personal security and we 11 Americans (that’s right 11 Americans on a firebase in the middle of the Taliban) lived on this firebase with a company of Afghan Infantry soldiers that the Captain and I mentored, taught and fought the Taliban with in our AO.
As the Senior NCOIC on the firebase, I was the S-1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7. I was responsible for an OPFUND that I administered with the Captain. I ensured that we had all the things necessary to fight and win. The Captain was in charge of the officer side of all those departments, as well as teaching the Afghan Officers how to plan and execute combat operations. I spent my time, the time I was not doing the above duties, maintaining the indirect fire support assets of our base (the 120 mm Mortar that I borrowed from an SF ODA) and showing the Afghan NCOs how to teach, mentor, and lead their junior soldiers.
I managed to do all this, and along with my Afghan compatriots, also managed to kick in a few doors with SF, the 82nd Airborne (who had just got into town) and we chased down and captured/killed a fair share of the Taliban, to include some HVTs that we had been looking for in our area for quite awhile.
I am not just tooting my own horn here for the sake of a war story. I point this out because I managed to do all this without any direct and close supervision by anyone holding a field grade command or holding the rank of general officer. Yup, did it all by myself.
And that really is the whole point. We won World War II with fewer generals controlling more troops and more resources in more places involving more battles without internet, satellite phones, Keyhole Spy satellites watching the objectives, unmanned drones feeding real-time intelligence to an air-conditioned OP Center where all the action looks like a HALO tournament. We don't train SF Soldiers to the level we do so that we can assign them their own personal general officer to oversee the tactical level decisions they make in battle.
All the generals we have now want to talk about how to win the “3 Block War” as we are now calling it, In order to make this possible, the generals have to “walk the walk.” “Walking the Walk” means, for general officers, that they need to give their guidance, issue their orders through their staff and then they need to STFU and let the soldiers that are walking the mean streets of bad places that we may or may not see on the news at night do their jobs according to that guidance and those orders.
Here are the messages that this action by LTG Kearney sends to men and women serving downrange:
“If you shoot someone that I don’t want shot, I will personally charge you with murder”
“You should not join the Special Forces, because you could be charged with murder for doing your job”
“If you don’t call me and check with me before you take any kind of action against an alleged bad guy, I will charge you with murder.”
This is a travesty of justice. We do not prosecute soldiers for doing their job according to the Rules of Engagement.
Terrorists all over with world are laughing in delight at us right now...
DROP THE CHARGES!!! FREE THE SF SNIPERS NOW!!!