Saturday, February 03, 2007

Rules of Engagement

You are a rearguard observer of a convoy in Iraq. A car is approaching the convoy from behind at high speed. What do you do?

5 comments:

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Too late. You have shot an Iraqi family. You will be prosecuted.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Too late. The back of the convoy has been blown up by a suicide bomber. You have died.

No, I am not being cute, here.

Tad said...

You haven't provided enough information....but, I think (see, gather, believe, suspect, assume,..[relates to your language comments later]) that you already knew that.

Failing that (more information), I would have already opened fire with my 7.62mm machine gun...directly IN FRONT of the car. This will throw up dirt/dust (dirt roads) or; dirt/small bits of paving/dust (paved roads). Effect: a) makes it very hard for the driver to see...they'll probably slow down. b)"informs" occupants of speeding car that what they're doing is not viewed with happiness by convoy. c) rounds that "skip/richocet" will hit tires/underside of engine, chassis, other systems...bring car to slow/halt. That is best I can do w/o lots of other information. BTW, 32 years in the Marines (infantry...and actually in convoys under potential attack AND much study of this and other mundane (in the eyes of most of America's citizenry) things are my "credentials". BTW2: You write LOTS of very thought provoking items, where do you get the time? Tell the truth, AVI is really a string of writers, thinkers, right? You're the Danielle Steel (I suspect I've spelled that wrong, and am glad as I've not (naught) read one of her (their) works...I suspect they are all the same novel with just names, places, costuming, etc, changed. My point? She/they really crank out lots of books. You/you guys and gals really crank out lots of thoughts on your blog. The difference? You're doing (I guess) much better in the area of things interesting.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

You are correct in your assessment of that post. It is of course ridiculously oversimplified, and people have significant training to deal with situations like this.

I intentionally left out the two reciprocal good outcomes: you open fire on a suicide bomber, or, you let the Iraqi family in a hurry go unchallenged. There are, as you say, many other possibilities. But those other possibilities do boil down pretty closely to one or the other of these choices. I was trying to illustrate to any who cared to contemplate what our decisions to fight a clean war and have restrictive rules of engagement actually means. Here at home, we blithely speak as if such things as avoid collateral damage are easy and should be automatic.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

As to the other point, no, it's just me. I daydream at work a lot, and email ideas home to myself. I don't multitask that well, but I do switch tasks quickly and can hold things motionless in memory while I do something else. When the list gets long, I resort to mnemonic devices. Longer than that, I email it home. I have a half-hour commute each way and sketch things out then.