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Thread: C.I.A. Had Plan to Assassinate Qaeda Leaders

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    Re: C.I.A. Had Plan to Assassinate Qaeda Leaders

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    I never had any doubt that you felt that way.
    Getting back to the question, you are assuming that Bin Laden is dead from logic, correct? Thats fine, in my eyes. And let's not start calling "logical fallacy" on him please....

    And frankly, he was pretty old when he bombed us in the first place, and he doesn't exactly have a hospital to drop in every day...
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    Re: C.I.A. Had Plan to Assassinate Qaeda Leaders

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    And, all three cases the order to strike should have been given. Just think of the hundreds of thousands of lives it would have saved. As long as we allow the enemy to use civilians as human shields, they will do it.
    I never disagreed with that. But saying that assasination is "surgical" is an overstatement when there will likely be collateral damage.


    The particulars of this operation are classified, so no, we don't know how the engagements were executed, or that there even were any.
    We know that UAV's were used to operate in the tribal regions while we did not use conventional aircraft or weapons. This was mostly due to us trying to lower the pressure on Pakistan, who see it as less agressive if there is not actually pilots flying over their airspace. So if there were engagements involving these hit team squads, they would rely on UAV's.


    And, after a while the civilians of the area figured out that the reason their homes were getting blown up was because there was an indirect fire weapon hiding in the living room. When the houses stopped being used as a base of fire, the houses weren't getting blown up anymore. It was called, "The Anbar Awakening".
    That's not how it happened at all. Two battles of Fallujah, Abu Gahraib scandal, Sole Al Jazeera reporting(No competing news agencies so that Al Jazeera was able to spew propaganda) etc. took place before the "Anbar Awakening" in 2006. By that time, a whole new fleet of commanders had taken reins with Petraeus at the forefront. (Well, to be fair, General Casey did a lot to faciliate change in the military and in how the Coalition was fighting the war in Iraq... foremost by forming a formal, nation-wide strategy, which Sanchez had failed to do.)



    However, you can't spare civilians to the point that your force can't effectively fight the enemy.
    You need to fight with a scalpel, not a hammer or even a knife. That is how to be most effective in counter-insurgency.


    Anytime you allow the enemy sactuary, they're going to take advantage of it.
    Another one of Casey's accomplishments was to make it policy to not allow any enemy sanctuaries. That had not been true before, when places like Tal Afar and others were used as safe havens.
    When you show the enemy, as well as the civilian populace that you're going to engage the enemy whenever and where ever, the enemy will stop using civilians as human shields and the civilians will stop allowing themselves to be used as human shields.
    Civilians aren't used just as human shields. They quarter troops, supply troops, join the ranks... They are the pool which the insurgency swims. So if you can provide the people with their basic needs: Jobs, security, water, electricity etc., then they will have no need to turn to the insurgency to fulfill those needs and the insurgency will begin to starve.

    Its much more complicated then just human shields and the underlying point is that killing the enemy is one factor in defeating the insurgency.
    Last edited by Tubub; 07-18-09 at 01:44 AM.
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    Re: C.I.A. Had Plan to Assassinate Qaeda Leaders

    Quote Originally Posted by Tubub View Post
    I never disagreed with that. But saying that assasination is "surgical" is an overstatement when there will likely be collateral damage.
    Assissination, by it's nature, is a surgical attack. In actuality if we're not killing a political figure, it's not an assissination. Targetting an killing a terrorist honcho isn't an assissination, technically.



    We know that UAV's were used to operate in the tribal regions while we did not use conventional aircraft or weapons. This was mostly due to us trying to lower the pressure on Pakistan, who see it as less agressive if there is not actually pilots flying over their airspace. So if there were engagements involving these hit team squads, they would rely on UAV's.
    You're talking about a completely different operation.



    That's not how it happened at all. Two battles of Fallujah, Abu Gahraib scandal, Sole Al Jazeera reporting(No competing news agencies so that Al Jazeera was able to spew propaganda) etc. took place before the "Anbar Awakening" in 2006. By that time, a whole new fleet of commanders had taken reins with Petraeus at the forefront. (Well, to be fair, General Casey did a lot to faciliate change in the military and in how the Coalition was fighting the war in Iraq... foremost by forming a formal, nation-wide strategy, which Sanchez had failed to do.)
    But, ultimately, the people in Anbar figured out that if the terrorists were gone, they would stop being killed by American fire.


    You need to fight with a scalpel, not a hammer or even a knife. That is how to be most effective in counter-insurgency.
    Hence the need for sniping operations. Which we've done in both Afghanistan and Iraq to great effect.


    Another one of Casey's accomplishments was to make it policy to not allow any enemy sanctuaries. That had not been true before, when places like Tal Afar and others were used as safe havens.
    They were allowed to used as safe havens, because no one wanted to hose the place down, in fear that there might be collateral damage.

    Civilians aren't used just as human shields. They quarter troops, supply troops, join the ranks...
    At which time they stop being civilians and start being members of the enemy force, making them a ligit target.

    Its much more complicated then just human shields and the underlying point is that killing the enemy is one factor in defeating the insurgency.
    [/quote]

    But, it's the primary objective in fighting any war. Obviously the avoiddance of civilian casualties is of the ighest priority, however you don't want to let that take away the momentum of your offensive operations thereby losing your combat effectiveness.

    A good historical example is the invasion of Normandy, where 15,000+ French civilians were killed.
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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    Counter-Insurgency

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Assissination, by it's nature, is a surgical attack. In actuality if we're not killing a political figure, it's not an assissination. Targetting an killing a terrorist honcho isn't an assissination, technically.
    to kill suddenly or secretively, esp. a politically prominent person; murder premeditatedly and treacherously.
    Killing Osama Bin Laden would befit the definition of assassination since he is a politically prominent person and it would be done premeditatedly.

    You're talking about a completely different operation.
    I'm talking about all operations in the region where Osama Bin Laden finds safe haven. Since we know that UAV's were used in this region--instead of manned aircraft for reasons detailed before-- then any operation in that area would have to rely on UAV's and not "precise and accurate long range"

    But, ultimately, the people in Anbar figured out that if the terrorists were gone, they would stop being killed by American fire.
    You have a failed idea as to how they reach that conclusion.

    Hence the need for sniping operations. Which we've done in both Afghanistan and Iraq to great effect.
    Sniping operations is only an element.

    They were allowed to used as safe havens, because no one wanted to hose the place down, in fear that there might be collateral damage.
    No. That's simply not true. There was very little precaution in the military hierarchy when it came to collateral damage in 2003-2004. They lacked sufficient manpower and the proper strategic resolve to assault such safe havens.

    At which time they stop being civilians and start being members of the enemy force, making them a ligit target.
    What you are talking about is genocide. The Sunni populace was alienated early on in the conflict, so virtually the entire Sunni community was against the Shi'ite led government and the Coalition. So your logic tells you that the entire Sunni community is a legit military target? WRONG.

    But, it's the primary objective in fighting any war. Obviously the avoiddance of civilian casualties is of the ighest priority, however you don't want to let that take away the momentum of your offensive operations thereby losing your combat effectiveness.
    No. The primary objective in fighting a war is victory, which depends on your ultimate goal. Since our goal in Iraq was to ensure a stable and free government in Iraq, then killing the enemy is not the sole priority. When killing your enemy is sole priority, then you get a purely attritional conflict... which we have experience with, and know does not work well against Insurgencies(ie Vietnam).

    A good historical example is the invasion of Normandy, where 15,000+ French civilians were killed.
    Invasions are much, much different than Insurgencies.
    Last edited by Tubub; 07-18-09 at 04:22 PM.
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    Re: Counter-Insurgency

    Quote Originally Posted by Tubub View Post
    Killing Osama Bin Laden would befit the definition of assassination since he is a politically prominent person and it would be done premeditatedly.

    I'm talking about all operations in the region where Osama Bin Laden finds safe haven. Since we know that UAV's were used in this region--instead of manned aircraft for reasons detailed before-- then any operation in that area would have to rely on UAV's and not "precise and accurate long range"[/quote]

    Again, you're talking about a different operation.


    You have a failed idea as to how they reach that conclusion.
    Post something to prove your point.


    Sniping operations is only an element.
    Snipers are combat multipliers.


    No. That's simply not true. There was very little precaution in the military hierarchy when it came to collateral damage in 2003-2004. They lacked sufficient manpower and the proper strategic resolve to assault such safe havens.
    Prove it.


    What you are talking about is genocide. The Sunni populace was alienated early on in the conflict, so virtually the entire Sunni community was against the Shi'ite led government and the Coalition. So your logic tells you that the entire Sunni community is a legit military target? WRONG.
    It's not genocide to kill the enemy. That's totally naive. The Sunnis who are actively engaged in combat operations, are legitimate targets, yes. When defining combat operations, that includes logistical support.


    No. The primary objective in fighting a war is victory, which depends on your ultimate goal. Since our goal in Iraq was to ensure a stable and free government in Iraq, then killing the enemy is not the sole priority. When killing your enemy is sole priority, then you get a purely attritional conflict... which we have experience with, and know does not work well against Insurgencies(ie Vietnam).
    Yes, and vitory is achieved by engaging the enemy in close quarter combat and destroying his ability to fight. You can spin it however you want, but in ANY combat situation, destroying the enemy's combat power is priority #1. Using Vietnam as an example of a tactical failure is erroneous on your part. US forces defeated the enemy on the battlefield in Vietnam.
    Last edited by apdst; 07-18-09 at 04:46 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
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    Re: Counter-Insurgency

    Quote Originally Posted by Tubub View Post
    Invasions are much, much different than Insurgencies.

    It all has the same objective: take away the enemy's ability to resist.
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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    Re: Counter-Insurgency

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Snipers are combat multipliers
    I thought this was specifically about assasinations, not all out offensives. While your statement is true, it lends credence to the fact that you are starting to get off base a little bit. Please stick to it, this is fun to watch
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    Re: Counter-Insurgency

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    It all has the same objective: take away the enemy's ability to resist.
    ...easiest way to do that: Nagasaki and Hiroshima. That's essentially what you're saying....and it's not something even thought of as likely to happen, so dismiss it.
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    Re: Counter-Insurgency

    Quote Originally Posted by repeter View Post
    I thought this was specifically about assasinations, not all out offensives. While your statement is true, it lends credence to the fact that you are starting to get off base a little bit. Please stick to it, this is fun to watch
    Combat multipliers aren't only used to effect in offensive operations. Combat multipliers give a commander more flexibility on the battlefield, whether it be offensive, or defensive operations.

    The doctrinal definition of a combat multiplier is: “Supporting and subsidiary means that significantly increase the relative combat strength (power) of a force while actual force ratios remain constant.”

    With sniping operations, one, or two men can provide as much combat power as a 12 man squad, or even a 30 man platoon, depending on MET-T.


    Quote Originally Posted by repeter View Post
    ...easiest way to do that: Nagasaki and Hiroshima. That's essentially what you're saying....and it's not something even thought of as likely to happen, so dismiss it.
    The, "easiest", way? That's debatable, but certainly not the only way. Sometimes, depleating the enemy's combat power is to take out key military leaders. In other cases, it may be important for certain key military leaders to remain in place, because of their inability to command troops in battle.

    There are five elements of combat power: leadership, maneuver, firepower, protection and information. If you deny the enemy's ability to access these elements, then you're on the road to defeating him.
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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    Re: Counter-Insurgency

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Combat multipliers aren't only used to effect in offensive operations. Combat multipliers give a commander more flexibility on the battlefield, whether it be offensive, or defensive operations.

    The doctrinal definition of a combat multiplier is: “Supporting and subsidiary means that significantly increase the relative combat strength (power) of a force while actual force ratios remain constant.”

    With sniping operations, one, or two men can provide as much combat power as a 12 man squad, or even a 30 man platoon, depending on MET-T.
    Doesnt mean anything if you need to take out 1 man, and don't know where he is. In that case, it'd be far better to have a UAV over a sniper team.

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    The, "easiest", way? That's debatable, but certainly not the only way. Sometimes, depleating the enemy's combat power is to take out key military leaders. In other cases, it may be important for certain key military leaders to remain in place, because of their inability to command troops in battle.

    There are five elements of combat power: leadership, maneuver, firepower, protection and information. If you deny the enemy's ability to access these elements, then you're on the road to defeating him.
    Hmm...like everything it's much easier to talk about it then actually do it. How are you going to limit any of those 5 elements? Leadership I can imagine, but they replace those rather quickly don't they? And we can't even think of reducing their maneuver, firepower, protection or information can we?

    They have tunnel networks everywhere, and masquerade as civilians, thats maneuver.

    Firepower, those same tunnels, and unless we somehow eliminate Iran from the equation, we can't stop the weapons going in.

    Protection, they can walk right by our troops without being spotted, and they have tunnel networks which we sometimes can't find, and are not going to necessarily clear out.

    Information...I don't think I really need to explain that, do I?

    You are talking about how we would fight the Russians for Western Europe, not how we would fight some psycho's in a desert. What combat troops? They are all goat herders, who take a few cheap shots, and blend back into the crowd...we can't effectively stop them without pacifying the entire population, and we cannot do that bloodlessly.
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