Roundtable: QDR & BMDR

Marine: 'The rules of engagement prevented me from doing my job'

Like the Telegraph article’s title states: US casualties in Afghanistan provoke rage, frustration

Only the “rage and frustration” seems to be directed more towards the emasculating rules of engagement (ROE) rather than the Taliban.

As First Lieutenant Aaron MacLean, a Marine platoon commander stated, “rules are there for a reason.” I agree that a nation of law has to fight by the rules, but the rules that nation creates shouldn’t enhance the enemy’s capabilities and further endanger civilian populations while limiting the abilities of friendly forces to defeat them.

Lt. MacLean and his men recently fought a three-hour firefight with the Taliban who took full advantage of the ROE and managed to kill two of his men.

[MacLean], too is frustrated, accusing the Taliban of manipulating the rules of engagement by using women and children as shields and shooting from hidden positions before dropping their weapons and standing out in the open.

“They know we can’t shoot them if they don’t carry guns or without positive identification. They are fighting us at another level now,” MacLean said.

So the Taliban use women and children while killing more fellow Afghans than they do foreign troops… while our government limits our troops to the point where they are dying because of the rules? And the world views US as the bad guys?

“We were attacked treacherously. We came under fire from everywhere, but the rules of engagement prevent me from doing my job,” said Lance Corporal Mark Duzick, who was in the unit that was ambushed.

Outside a tent housing the Marines’ unit responsible for firing mortars stands an improvised cross bearing the inscription: “Here lies the 81st, death by stand down.”

[Originally posted at Unto the Breach]