There is absolutely no question in the minds of almost all American citizens over the age of 20, that deception is the weapon of choice within the DC beltway. The level of comfort with which all of the representatives - on both sides of the aisle dispense verbal garbage is astounding and frightening.
Unfortunately, the politicians in DC justify their use of lies and deception during the course of their day to day dealings - even as it pertains to the very lives of our Warriors on the battlefield. For instance, rather than questioning the legitimacy of the counter insurgency strategy, they scrutinize their potential response to it for political value even though they know this current strategy and it's ROE is detrimental to the lives of our Warriors and likely to an American victory.
One year ago there was barely a word from any politician or the media about the rules of engagement much less counter insurgency doctrine. It was painfully obvious that nearly every last politician and the entirety of the media, including FOX was completely disengaged from the subject and the war in general. Even as our Warriors were falling victim to the whims of egotistical Officers intent on carving out a place for themselves in the annals of military history, there was silence from those who could have, and should have questioned the efficacy of COIN in this environment.
Today, the level of education in those circles remains inexplicably low and only edges upward in direct correspondence to it's political value. In the past few weeks we have heard from Joe Lieberman, John McCain, Glenn Beck, Bill O'Reilly and others as they bandy ROE about like some badge of sophistication but like the empty suits in the halls of Academia, know nothing about them or their reasons for existence. The politicians take occasion to mention ROE in an effort to assuage the slowly growing conscience of America and to dare suggest to the Parents of deployed troops and the Parents of those who have been sacrificed on the altar of arrogance that they are 'looking into it'. Make no mistake about it; all of the new flurry of interest in the acronym has been carefully scrutinized for it's value at the voting booth and media ratings.
For those disingenuous and demonically controlled members of congress and the media I have a message for you harkening back to the 2008 election:
It's Not The Rules of Engagement Stupid; It's The Counter-Insurgency Strategy!!!
Why is it that lesser men always grab a hold of the least important element of an argument? While we all know that the ROE is getting our Warriors killed, the fact is it is the COIN strategy resurrected by David Petraeus that has demanded the current ROE. They-are-inextricably-linked! You cannot have a conversation that includes discussion about easing the ROE without questioning the validity of the Strategy that bore it. Every time a congressman or senator asks about the ROE they get the same answer; 'it is necessary for the successful prosecution of the strategy'.
So why are they not questioning the validity of the Strategy? because they don't have a clue about the strategy, the military, combat, Afghan culture, Islamic doctrine, COIN or it's origin, history or purpose. All they know is that the CIC has dictated his Commanders Intent and that men in uniform have been tasked with carrying out whatever it takes to meet that goal. The fact that his intent may be detrimental to the security of our nation or the welfare of our Warriors be damned!
It has taken us nearly a year to get anyone in DC to even consider mentioning the ROE and all we have to show for it is a few Shrewd Politicians far too willing to use the phrase to further their own selfish interests. Even as the politicians are maneuvering for a more 'useful vocabulary', a new story comes out telling us about the fruit of their labors; another 6 American Warriors killed across Afghanistan while Adm McMullen joins his fellow upper echelon officers telling Americans that there will continue to be a cost paid for this effort.
So while we continue to watch events degrade even further in Afghanistan, day by day, we now get to watch the newest phase in Washingtonian dance; the introduction of ROE (used to murder our own Warriors) to the lexicon, as a tool to get re-elected. If there is a more evil act a man can be guilty of than using the lives of our Warriors for his own selfish interest please let me know.
Hey Congressmen and Senators; can you feel Hells fires licking at your heels?