How are the Rules of Engagement affecting The U.S. Military in today’s conflicts?

Discussion
Mar 22, 2015
http://www.barenakedislam.com/2011/07/09/barack-hussein-obamas-suicidal-rules-of

Rules of Engagement are defined as rules that allow U.S. Military Personnel to act violently on an enemy for a certain justified reason. By enforcing these rules the deaths of civilians and innocents is supposed to be limited. I find it interesting to find very different views on the Rules of Engagement.

According to The Truth Out some soldiers truly belive the Rules of Engagment will help them avoid harming innocents. Not only that, but they found the rules often times being infringed upon. Personal accounts of soldiers stated they have seen U.S. Military personnel kill innocents because they were frustrated with their enemy. The stress of war got to the soldiers and they took out their anger on innocents.

On the other hand an article from The Washington Times stated that soldiers are being killed because they cannot shoot the enemy. The Rules of Engagement can be tricky to follow, every time a soldier pulls the trigger he may be facing prison time for killing an innocent. If he decides not to pull the trigger because he suspects an innocent he may have made a life threatening mistake.

Comments

Great Subject

Submitted by Sam Stevenson on Sun, 2015-03-22 18:51.

Sam, I think this is a great thing to write about. It is so controversial, and in light of many military secrets being leaked to the public over the past few years, this issue is even more in the public light. I think it's great that you have chosen to tackle such a complicated issue. On one hand, soldiers have to be able to protect their brothers in arms, but on the other hand there have to be rules to protect the innocent citizens. I personally do not know a lot about this issue, so I am excited to see what you will do with it. Keep up the great work!

They should less strict

Submitted by colinbradley2800 on Mon, 2015-03-23 19:26.

I definitely believe that the rules of engagement should be at least a little less strict for soldiers because these rules require them to make decisions that are lose lose situations. When they see someone they think is suspicious, they can either shoot them and face a long prison sentence or not shoot them and, if that person was an enemy, probably get shot themselves. There is no need to put that kind of pressure on a soldier who is fighting for our country because with these rules, they are also in a way fighting for the enemy country by over protecting that country's public. These countries that we fight don't necessarily have a perfectly innocent public people any way so I really don't see the problem in having some of them die for the sake of keeping our own troops safe.

"I definitely believe that

landayc18's picture
Submitted by landayc18 on Thu, 2015-03-26 12:30.

"I definitely believe that the rules of engagement should be at least a little less strict for soldiers because these rules require them to make decisions that are lose lose situations."

I agree that these are lose-lose situations. However, I do not believe that the rules should be any less strict. In the 21st century, warfare is no longer state vs state. The only enemy left is the extremist, the terrorist, the man with a gun shooting not to protect their country, but to extend the control of their ideological nation. Asymmetrical warfare is the new warfare. No longer do we have lines of men with muskets waiting for the cue to get shot. We have combatants that hide among a sea of innocent waiting to get potshots at our soldiers.

"When they see someone they think is suspicious, they can either shoot them and face a long prison sentence or not shoot them and, if that person was an enemy, probably get shot themselves."

I admit that this is the issue with asymmetrical warfare. It isn't easy to know who the enemy is. But giving men and women free reign over the lives of foreign civilians accomplishes nothing. If anything, it gives extremists more angry boys wanting to avenge the death of their father.

"There is no need to put that kind of pressure on a soldier who is fighting for our country because with these rules, they are also in a way fighting for the enemy country by over protecting that country's public."

Except there is. Think about how long a year is. High school is what, 4 years? You've spent 17 or 18 years of your life learning. Learning. Imagine how it would feel to just get shot in the street for looking like a no-face terrorist. Imagine if you were 30 or 40. You can not. That is a waste of a life. Your statement also conflicts with your argument because soldiers who can shoot at will are NOT protecting anything but themselves. The days of the draft are also long over. The only people serving abroad are people that volunteered to do so. They have a job and they have do their job correctly. That involves not shooting civilians.

"These countries that we fight don't necessarily have a perfectly innocent public people any way so I really don't see the problem in having some of them die for the sake of keeping our own troops safe."

I do not believe you to be correct in this sense. First, you do not stereotype an entire population as "innocent" or "not innocent". That's inappropriate. Next, American soldiers are actively participating in an occupation. They aren't just walking through the streets handing out candy. Most of the time, we send troops to other countries to prop up pro-western dictators and governments. That isn't protecting anything but us.
Another thing is this "us versus them" mentality. It is a very negative mentality to hold because it puts the welfare of others at risk during warfare.
Lastly, it is not okay to have innocents die so we can stay alive. They can not protect ourselves. We can. We should be careful not to harm them. You propose we do the opposite.

You propose a valid argument, but I disagree.

Sam, this is definitely an

Submitted by saltymike on Wed, 2015-04-01 15:10.

Sam,
this is definitely an interesting subject. Have you seen the movie American Sniper? It displays the same sort of hardships and conflict that Chris Kyle would have when children would pick up weapons and how hard it was for him to decipher who was innocent and who was a suspect. I look forward to seeing what else you have to say about this subject and what others' thoughts are on the Rules of Engagement. Do you have interest in a military career?