babble home
rabble.ca - news for the rest of us
today's active topics


Post New Topic  Post A Reply
FAQ | Forum Home
  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» babble   » current events   » national news   » Afghanistan: Hillier cuts and runs II

Email this thread to someone!    
Author Topic: Afghanistan: Hillier cuts and runs II
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 16 March 2006 02:29 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I thought I'd start a new thread on Afghanistan using the last post from the old thread that actually mentioned Afghanistan.

quote:
IgnoramusMaximus

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I have to toss my hat into the ring of those who find our current mission in Afghanistan highly questionable.

That is not because I feel that we should not attempt to help Afghanistan to re-build its national structures. That is because the mission itself, in its current form, is a knee-jerk reaction to a dare to join a hare-brained, American "with us or against us" style activity based on demagougery and exploitation of emotions, rather then a thorougly planned, thought-out and carefully executed attempt at getting a nation back on its feet.

The refusals to debate the issue in Parliment are just underscoring the fact that this "mission" has no one at the helm planning things, it simply "is". And by its nature, this un-planned, haphazard operation is slowly devolving and morphing into a mini-Vietnam-style quagmire involving increasing casualties, random attrocities and ficticious "progress" in support of nebulous "good guys" fighting equally, if not more, nebulous "bad guys".

And that is on top the wider issue of not only the general futility and counter-productive nature of using military to "nation build", but more importantly of issues of moral clarity of deploying Canada's defense forces abroad with a mandate to kill people.

If we are going to do "nation building", it is my strong view that the Canadian military is not the entity to do it with and attempting to do so will yeld not only the failure of this mission but will result in years if not decades of escalating conflict and a complete loss of our international standing, not to mention a great increase of determined enemies, generations lasting hate towards us, a long list of ever more serious attrocities and eventually quite likely some serious war crimes to be added to this list.

[ 13 March 2006: Message edited by: IgnoramusMaximus ]


Well said.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
skeptikool
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11389

posted 16 March 2006 02:58 PM      Profile for skeptikool        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I have no time for Hillier but reintroducing this thread under the same title, I see as a guise to keep the charge of cowardice on the front page.

These threads on Hillier have included much hyperbole that may not be recognized as such. Being accused of cowardice is right up there with child molestation in the eyes of many. Saying that, I have no fear in referring to Bush and Blair as war criminals - not to smear, but as a statement of fact.


From: Delta BC | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Hephaestion
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 4795

posted 16 March 2006 03:44 PM      Profile for Hephaestion   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by skeptikool:

I have no time for Hillier but reintroducing this thread under the same title, I see as a guise to keep the charge of cowardice on the front page.


Well, if you're curious, the REASON I chose the phrase "cut and run" for the first thread was not so much to highlight any perceived "cowardice" as it was to use the words of one posturing blowhard neo-con -- Stephen Harper -- to emphasize that another posturing blowhard neo-con -- Rick Hillier -- is nothing but a bombastic hypocrite. If he wants to sound like a tough-guy gunslinger, then he'd better be able to personally back it up. Otherwise, he might do better to STFU and carry himself with quiet dignity, more akin to Romeo Dellaire, or even Lewis McKenzie. The latter might be a conservative too, but he is *not* cut from the same cloth as that numbnuts, Hillier.

From: goodbye... :-( | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 16 March 2006 04:48 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I only used the title to show it as a continuation of the previous thread.

However, I wasn't entirely satisfied with the title myself, and propose to shift this thread to

"A small gift".

You'll see what that means if you look there.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 16 March 2006 09:37 PM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Hephaestion:

Well, if you're curious, the REASON I chose the phrase "cut and run" for the first thread was not so much to highlight any perceived "cowardice" as it was to use the words of one posturing blowhard neo-con -- Stephen Harper -- to emphasize that another posturing blowhard neo-con -- Rick Hillier -- is nothing but a bombastic hypocrite. If he wants to sound like a tough-guy gunslinger, then he'd better be able to personally back it up. Otherwise, he might do better to STFU and carry himself with quiet dignity, more akin to Romeo Dellaire, or even Lewis McKenzie. The latter might be a conservative too, but he is *not* cut from the same cloth as that numbnuts, Hillier.


He's hardly a hypocrite because his staff removed him from a potentially dangerous situation. He's the Chief of Defense Staff, not some random private. As such, he's to be kept out of harm's way as his loss would be catastrophic to the military. Hillier did his time in the field and on tour, he has no need to prove himself now. Having the highest authority in the military chain of command stand around in a potentially lethal situation simply to be seen as "tough" (by civilians, no less) is the height of stupidity.


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
S1m0n
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11427

posted 16 March 2006 10:14 PM      Profile for S1m0n        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
Hillier did his time in the field and on tour...

No he didn't--he stood garrison duty in Germany, and was a staff officer thereafter. As far as his official bio shows, the other day's IED was the closest he's ever come to enemy fire. No wonder he scooted--a thing like that could put a fellow off his lunch!


From: Vancouver | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 16 March 2006 10:27 PM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by S1m0n:

No he didn't--he stood garrison duty in Germany, and was a staff officer thereafter. As far as his official bio shows, the other day's IED was the closest he's ever come to enemy fire. No wonder he scooted--a thing like that could put a fellow off his lunch!


Hillier served about 6 tours of duty with NATO and the UN in the former Yugoslavia.

[ 16 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
Hephaestion
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 4795

posted 16 March 2006 10:28 PM      Profile for Hephaestion   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
(by civilians, no less)

Those civilians are his BOSSES. And if he didn't wanna play the "tough guy" role, he shouldn't have been shooting his mouth off last year, right?

Plus, I'm sure his loss would not be as "catastrophic" as all that -- I'd bet he could be replaced within a day. Okay, maybe two.


From: goodbye... :-( | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 16 March 2006 10:37 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

He's hardly a hypocrite because his staff removed him from a potentially dangerous situation. He's the Chief of Defense Staff, not some random private. As such, he's to be kept out of harm's way as his loss would be catastrophic to the military. Hillier did his time in the field and on tour, he has no need to prove himself now. Having the highest authority in the military chain of command stand around in a potentially lethal situation simply to be seen as "tough" (by civilians, no less) is the height of stupidity.


I doubt Hillier's loss to the Canadian forces would be catastrphic. After all, an army must carry on despite the loss of it's leader. I assume the Canadian forces have a chain of command which dictates which officer would take over should Hillier be incapacitated for any reason.

However, if it's true that

"Having the highest authority in the military chain of command stand around in a potentially lethal situation simply to be seen as "tough" (by civilians, no less) is the height of stupidity",

then what the hell was he doing there in the first place?

Are the Canadian military not aware of the danger out there in the Kandahar suburbs. Apparently they are, 'cause they just shot and killed a cabbie for getting 'too close' to their vehicle. Hardly the thing you'd do if you felt things were pretty secure.

Like Harper's foray into the wilds of suburban Kandahar, Hillier's was a propaganda exercise, designed to stifle debate at home. That's what all the fooforaw is, plain old garden variety propaganda, undertaken after someone polled the Canadian citizenry, and found them largely not onside.

It became clear to the powers that be that with the majority of the public opposed to the mission, it was necessary, not to debate the mission, nor return the soldiers to Kabul, nor return them home until a debate could take place, but to crank up the photo op machine, and get the Walter Durantys of Canadian media (Margaret Wente, Christie Blatchford, Marcus Gee, Jonathan Kay, etc.) to start earning their pay.

But what is this all about? So far the bulk of the casualties suffered by Canadian troops have been at the hands of the US (4), Afghani cab drivers (2), and an axe wielding teenager (1 injury).

They've fought back by shooting and killing another of those dangerous Afghani cabbies, and the teenage axe wielder.

You couldn't write a story this ridiculous, no one would believe it.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
S1m0n
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11427

posted 16 March 2006 10:50 PM      Profile for S1m0n        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

Hillier served about 6 tours of duty with NATO and the UN in the former Yugoslavia.


...as a staff officer, well away from any action.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
S1m0n
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11427

posted 16 March 2006 10:52 PM      Profile for S1m0n        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

He's hardly a hypocrite because his staff removed him from a potentially dangerous situation.


Wait - isn't he supposed to be the one in charge? Why yes, yes he is. What's he doing being pushed around by his staff?


From: Vancouver | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 16 March 2006 11:00 PM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by maestro:
[QB]

I doubt Hillier's loss to the Canadian forces would be catastrphic. After all, an army must carry on despite the loss of it's leader. I assume the Canadian forces have a chain of command which dictates which officer would take over should Hillier be incapacitated for any reason.


Of course - there's always a successor in the CoC. That hardly downplays the importance of the man currently filling the position, though. It's somewhat akin to losing Brock during 1812 - no, it didn't paralyze the entire military, but it was definitely a serious blow.

quote:
However, if it's true that

"Having the highest authority in the military chain of command stand around in a potentially lethal situation simply to be seen as "tough" (by civilians, no less) is the height of stupidity",

then what the hell was he doing there in the first place?


As a leader, Hillier has certain duties to perform, both official and unofficial. That includes things like "being seen", both for political and morale purposes. Visiting a village and speaking with the residents is one thing, staying in the village and exposing oneself to real and extant harm unnecessarily is just irresponsible.

quote:
Are the Canadian military not aware of the danger out there in the Kandahar suburbs. Apparently they are, 'cause they just shot and killed a cabbie for getting 'too close' to their vehicle. Hardly the thing you'd do if you felt things were pretty secure.

Of course they're aware - I'm sure they took every precaution possible to ensure the CDS's safety. Unfortunately, one can't account for every possible eventuality, especially IEDs. All they can do is make their best effort at mitigating the threat for his visit, which I have no doubt they did.

quote:
Like Harper's foray into the wilds of suburban Kandahar, Hillier's was a propaganda exercise, designed to stifle debate at home. That's what all the fooforaw is, plain old garden variety propaganda, undertaken after someone polled the Canadian citizenry, and found them largely not onside.

Hillier's foray wasn't intended solely for the civilians at home, it was for the troops in theatre and the Afghanis themselves. Having the CDS visit and take part in your daily operations as a a soldier instills confidence in the military leadership and reinforces, for the troops, the importance and legitimacy of their mission. For the Afghanis, it demonstrates A) a continuing commitment, and B) their importance, both to the military and, by extension, to Canadians.

Now, obviously it's a matter of whether or not you believe that.

quote:
It became clear to the powers that be that with the majority of the public opposed to the mission, it was necessary, not to debate the mission, nor return the soldiers to Kabul, nor return them home until a debate could take place, but to crank up the photo op machine, and get the Walter Durantys of Canadian media (Margaret Wente, Christie Blatchford, Marcus Gee, Jonathan Kay, etc.) to start earning their pay.

But what is this all about? So far the bulk of the casualties suffered by Canadian troops have been at the hands of the US (4), Afghani cab drivers (2), and an axe wielding teenager (1 injury).


You're forgetting the casualties caused by IEDs. I don't necessarily disagree with you about Harper's visit being political. Hillier's was as well, though I view Harper's as more targeting the civilian side and Hillier's targeting the military side. That being said, having Harper visit the troops does help with their morale and resolve.

quote:
They've fought back by shooting and killing another of those dangerous Afghani cabbies, and the teenage axe wielder.

Yes, they shot at a cabbie, killing a passenger. The investigation will hopefully determine if there was wrongdoing. I won't pass judgement until as much of the events are known as is possible, but assuming the facts are as they lie currently, I'd venture to say that the soldier was simply following his ROEs, which authorize (indeed, dictate) that he fire on vehicles which approach the convoy and refuse to respond to hand signals, spotlights, and warning shots.

As for the axe-wielding teenager, are you seriously criticizing the troops for shooting someone that attacked one of their officers with an axe?


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 12:50 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
Yes, they shot at a cabbie, killing a passenger. The investigation will hopefully determine if there was wrongdoing. I won't pass judgement until as much of the events are known as is possible, but assuming the facts are as they lie currently, I'd venture to say that the soldier was simply following his ROEs, which authorize (indeed, dictate) that he fire on vehicles which approach the convoy and refuse to respond to hand signals, spotlights, and warning shots.

Gee, on this thread, someone also named Grape said (25 minutes earlier):

quote:
Until the facts are known as well as they can be, I would suggest that rendering judgement is premature.

I guess the "facts" are coming in fast. Or rather, the facts "as they lie".


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 12:57 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
As for the axe-wielding teenager, are you seriously criticizing the troops for shooting someone that attacked one of their officers with an axe?

Absolutely, the troops have been criticized by many on this forum in various threads since the incident was reported. From the eye-witness reports available so far, they shot, immobilized him, then shot again to finish him off. They used excessive force, even assuming they had any legal right to be where they were.

In order to justify their actions, various stories were then concocted, such as: "He was a Taliban" (during the cold war, they would have said "Marxist" or "communist"). They also said it was a "coordinated attack", with unidentified firing from across some river and a grenade lobbed. All these initial stories have just faded away in recent days -- have you noticed?

Now it's the taxi passenger. I think trigger-happy troops, who are incoherent when asked to explain their mission, are inevitably going to dig themselves deeper and deeper. Viet Nam was like that. But you can't blame the troops. It is callous politicians, trying to curry favour with the Americans, that send them there to kill and die under false pretences.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 12:57 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

I guess the "facts" are coming in fast. Or rather, the facts "as they lie".


Nope, just speculation - no judgement, as evidenced by:

quote:

but assuming the facts are as they lie currently, I'd venture to say that the soldier was simply following his ROEs, which authorize (indeed, dictate) that he fire on vehicles which approach the convoy and refuse to respond to hand signals, spotlights, and warning shots.

If I said "the truth of the matter is that the soldier was just following ROEs", THAT would be passing judgement. As it stands, I spoke in the hypothetical ("assuming") and speculated ("I'd venture to say"). I was far, far from definite.


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 01:00 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

If I said "the truth of the matter is that the soldier was just following ROEs", THAT would be passing judgement. As it stands, I spoke in the hypothetical ("assuming") and speculated ("I'd venture to say"). I was far, far from definite.


You're not far, far from sophistry. Why don't you just say what you think. Don't mince words. Tell us which side you're on and get on with life. I preach that and I practice it too. I want Canada out of there now, yesterday.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 01:09 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

Absolutely, the troops have been criticized by many on this forum in various threads since the incident was reported. From the eye-witness reports available so far, they shot, immobilized him, then shot again to finish him off. They used excessive force, even assuming they had any legal right to be where they were.


Excessive force? They killed him - excessive would have been cutting off his head or some other sick post-death treatment. These are not policemen, they're soldiers - they don't tazer people and take them into custody after someone AXES one of their own (nor do the police, for that matter).

When you attack soldiers, you're the enemy, regardless of the legitimacy or illegitimacy of your political cause. Soldiers kill the enemy - that's what they're there to do. The soldiers reacted in a split second after having one of their officer's heads cleaved - they shot the attacker. What are you suggesting they should have done? Talked to him while he's standing over their critically wounded officer with an axe?

quote:
In order to justify their actions, various stories were then concocted, such as: "He was a Taliban" (during the cold war, they would have said "Marxist" or "communist").

Justify their actions? The gaping head wound on Capt. Greene was all the justification they needed.

quote:
They also said it was a "coordinated attack", with unidentified firing from across some river and a grenade lobbed. All these initial stories have just faded away in recent days -- have you noticed?

No, I haven't noticed. Perhaps you could point out where that specific aspect of the story has "faded out".

So you're suggesting that, after shooting an axe-wielding attacker, the troops (including their officer) dreamt up an ambush, just to spice things up a bit? Ok...

quote:
Now it's the taxi passenger. I think trigger-happy troops, who are incoherent when asked to explain their mission, are inevitably going to dig themselves deeper and deeper. Viet Nam was like that. But you can't blame the troops. It is callous politicians, trying to curry favour with the Americans, that send them there to kill and die under false pretences.

I don't necessarily disagree with you about the original impetus behind the deployment. I don't think the troops are "trigger-happy", though - I don't see any evidence of that.

As I said before, the cabbie incident is still pending.


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
rici
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2710

posted 17 March 2006 01:14 AM      Profile for rici     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
Yes, they shot at a cabbie, killing a passenger. The investigation will hopefully determine if there was wrongdoing. I won't pass judgement until as much of the events are known as is possible, but assuming the facts are as they lie currently, I'd venture to say that the soldier was simply following his ROEs, which authorize (indeed, dictate) that he fire on vehicles which approach the convoy and refuse to respond to hand signals, spotlights, and warning shots.

The only evidence I have is the CBC story; there is no mention of warning shots at all:

quote:
"The soldier tried to warn the oncoming vehicle with a light and hand gestures before he opened fire, but I'll leave it to investigators to determine the exact events," Maj. Erik Liebert, told The Canadian Press in an interview.

And:

quote:

As for the axe-wielding teenager, are you seriously criticizing the troops for shooting someone that attacked one of their officers with an axe?

Yes, actually; it's excessive force. I'm not saying I don't understand it; but I think it is criticizable.


From: Lima, Perú | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 01:19 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rici:
The only evidence I have is the CBC story; there is no mention of warning shots at all:

On the National tonight, they interviewed the Afghan policeman who was on the spot when the incident happened. He said there were no warning shots. He said he heard three shots in succession: "one - two - three", and the third one hit the man.

Well, if our troops won't "allow" the Afghani civil authority to question our hero, perhaps they will at least call the Afghani policeman as a witness? No, I guess not, there won't be any charges laid. It was just an unfortunate incident.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Webgear
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 9443

posted 17 March 2006 01:22 AM      Profile for Webgear     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Rici

I saw a few articles (Ottawa Citizen, Toronto Star) mentioning warning shots being fired, I think there was also an initial CBC report that did mention warning shots.

I do not believe it was excessive force due to the circumstances.


From: Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
rici
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2710

posted 17 March 2006 01:25 AM      Profile for rici     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Grape: I think the reason that you and I are disagreeing (I don't pretend to speak for unionist) is that we disagree on a fundamental assumption: the purpose of soldiers' presence in Afghanistan.

The only rationale that I will accept is that we are there in order to help Afghanistan become a functional country whose citizens coexist in peace. That's not an easy task, and I'm not convinced that an occupying army is the ideal resource to accomplish it.

It certainly is not consistent with the attitude that what soldiers do is "kill the enemy".

I know that it is disturbing to see a comrade felled by an axe-wielding lunatic; I cannot say that I've ever been in that position but I have seen an axe wielded in the direction of a friend (fortunately he got out of the way and the moment passed). So I understand that it is not a moment of rationality.

So I find it understandable, but I think it is not optimal strategy. Showing mercy (even to lunatics) seems like a better way of conveying the message that non-violent behaviour is better, and that is, ultimately, the message which is at the heart of the task of building a peaceful Afghanistan.


From: Lima, Perú | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 01:32 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rici:

Yes, actually; it's excessive force. I'm not saying I don't understand it; but I think it is criticizable.


Excessive in what way? Should they only have shot him 5 or 6 times? How many rounds are excessive? As I posted elsewhere, the C7 rifle is capable of 10-12 rounds/second. Considering he was shot by 3 people, I wouldn't call 14 rounds excessive considering that rate of fire.

quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

On the National tonight, they interviewed the Afghan policeman who was on the spot when the incident happened. He said there were no warning shots. He said he heard three shots in succession: "one - two - three", and the third one hit the man.


You're saying there were no warning shots while at the same time stating that there were shots. Who's to say the first two weren't warning shots? Who's to say they weren't intended to stop the vehicle (by shooting at the hood/grill -a common tactic by patrols)? Also keep in mind that soldiers aren't perfect - they miss sometimes.

The vehicle ran a checkpoint and got to within 2 feet of the convoy - if anything, I think the soldiers waited too long. The vehicle should never have got that close.

quote:
Well, if our troops won't "allow" the Afghani civil authority to question our hero, perhaps they will at least call the Afghani policeman as a witness? No, I guess not, there won't be any charges laid. It was just an unfortunate incident.[/qb]

Gee, those sound like conclusions to me... and hasty ones at that, considering this only happened yesterday.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
rici
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2710

posted 17 March 2006 01:34 AM      Profile for rici     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Webgear:
I saw a few articles (Ottawa Citizen, Toronto Star) mentioning warning shots being fired, I think there was also an initial CBC report that did mention warning shots.

Well, it could be. I assumed that it was removed from the later reports as a correction; I would have thought that Major Liebert would have mentioned that detail.

Early reports are often incorrect, as was clearly shown by the killing of Jean Charles de Menezes in London last July. The early reports said that he was wearing a bulky coat with wires sticking out of it. That was simply untrue, but is likely the result of second-hand reports unconsciously embellished to justify the actions of the authorities.


From: Lima, Perú | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 01:47 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
The vehicle ran a checkpoint and got to within 2 feet of the convoy - if anything, I think the soldiers waited too long. The vehicle should never have got that close.

Right. It could have been filled with suicide axe-throwers.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 01:49 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rici:

Well, it could be. I assumed that it was removed from the later reports as a correction; I would have thought that Major Liebert would have mentioned that detail.


The first reports say he "ran" a checkpoint. Subsequent reports say he either "crossed" a checkpoint, or that the incident took place "at" a Canadian-Afghani checkpoint. Grape uses the early versions. He thinks the soldiers should have fired earlier. He joined babble yesterday.

Grape -- are you sure you don't also have another name on babble?


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 01:50 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

Gee, those sound like conclusions to me... and hasty ones at that, considering this only happened yesterday.


No, Grape. This happened on March 15. You only happened yesterday (in babble time, that is).


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 01:51 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rici:
Grape: I think the reason that you and I are disagreeing (I don't pretend to speak for unionist) is that we disagree on a fundamental assumption: the purpose of soldiers' presence in Afghanistan.

The only rationale that I will accept is that we are there in order to help Afghanistan become a functional country whose citizens coexist in peace. That's not an easy task, and I'm not convinced that an occupying army is the ideal resource to accomplish it.

It certainly is not consistent with the attitude that what soldiers do is "kill the enemy".


That's their purpose. The stated raison d'etre of the infantry is "to close with and destroy the enemy". That doesn't mean shooting civilians, that means establishing security, patrolling, and rooting out those that seek to destroy or disrupt the effort that you stated. That means killing people, unfortunately, since I doubt the resistance/insurgents/whatever you want to call them will just up and surrender if we ask them to.

quote:
I know that it is disturbing to see a comrade felled by an axe-wielding lunatic; I cannot say that I've ever been in that position but I have seen an axe wielded in the direction of a friend (fortunately he got out of the way and the moment passed). So I understand that it is not a moment of rationality.

So I find it understandable, but I think it is not optimal strategy. Showing mercy (even to lunatics) seems like a better way of conveying the message that non-violent behaviour is better, and that is, ultimately, the message which is at the heart of the task of building a peaceful Afghanistan.


I understand your point (and your reasoning) but I disagree. Showing mercy to someone that has attacked you (be it with an axe, AK-47, or RPG), will only promote more attacks. This isn't criminal rehabilitation, it's counter-insurgency (IE low-intensity war). You don't show mercy to an armed enemy that has just attacked you. All that does is demonstrate to the enemy that you lack resolve and that you're weak. All that will achieve is to encourage them to attack you. The insurgents, Taliban or otherwise, will stop at nothing less than driving us out, regardless of our good intentions.

quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

Right. It could have been filled with suicide axe-throwers.


Or 2 or 3 artillery rounds wired together on a command detonation device similar to that which blew up an Afghani man and his son near a Canadian checkpoint not too long ago.

It doesn't even have to be a suicide bomber - all it took was a taxi cab colliding with a LAV to kill a couple soldiers.

quote:
Originally posted by unionist:
[QB]

No, Grape. This happened on March 15. You only happened yesterday (in babble time, that is).


I stand corrected - I was off by an hour. Nice little jab at me, though, very witty (seriously).

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 01:52 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
oops... accidental post.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 01:54 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
The insurgents, Taliban or otherwise, will stop at nothing less than driving us out, regardless of our good intentions.

See? I knew we'd finally end up agreeing on something.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 01:58 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

See? I knew we'd finally end up agreeing on something.


lol At last!! Don't read me the wrong way - I'm not some idiotic altruist that believes all that "freedom" and "liberty" crap that gets thrown around like punctuation. I'm not a huge fan of our Afghanistan commitment and I take a relatively cynical view of the Western policy on the Middle East in general, but we're there and there are certain realities that we have to face if we're to do a suffucient enough job to allow us to leave.


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
rici
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2710

posted 17 March 2006 02:15 AM      Profile for rici     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

I understand your point (and your reasoning) but I disagree. Showing mercy to someone that has attacked you (be it with an axe, AK-47, or RPG), will only promote more attacks. This isn't criminal rehabilitation, it's counter-insurgency (IE low-intensity war). You don't show mercy to an armed enemy that has just attacked you. All that does is demonstrate to the enemy that you lack resolve and that you're weak. All that will achieve is to encourage them to attack you. The insurgents, Taliban or otherwise, will stop at nothing less than driving us out, regardless of our good intentions.

That's simply an appeal to primitivism; it translates as "they're primitive, we must be primitive, too." I don't buy it. It doesn't work on the streets of Toronto, either.

I think that the use of the word "counter-insurgency" is problematic, and I think it really is a question of rehabilitation. The problem is, there is a whole country to rehabilitate, so that is difficult -- but not impossible.

I'm given to understand that at least some of the country is not full of suicide bombers and axe wielders. However, it is filled with very poor people whose only plausible economic activity is growing opium poppies, an activity which is also incorrectly considered hostile. (Growing opium poppies is not a hostile act, it's a desperate way of earning money.)

If there were significant support for the development of non-opium based livelihoods in some region (and by significant, I mean funded at a level similar to the funding of the military effort; i.e., enough to guarantee a real livelihood for everyone and not just a few "pilot projects"), then the Taliban (or whoever) would rapidly run out of recruits. All the potential recruits would be scurrying off to grow carrots (or whatever). (The carrots come from another thread, it's sort of a joke.)

There would still be a few really angry criminals kicking around, but bereft of public support, they would become much less dangerous.

In the end, generosity is better strategy. In my opinion.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: rici ]


From: Lima, Perú | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 02:53 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rici:
That's simply an appeal to primitivism; it translates as "they're primitive, we must be primitive, too." I don't buy it. It doesn't work on the streets of Toronto, either.

It's not that they're too primitive or that we're too primitive, it's the nature of the situation. It's a war, and war is a pretty base, primitive activity. Lofty principles like mutual respect and friendly resolution don't enter in to it.

quote:
I think that the use of the word "counter-insurgency" is problematic, and I think it really is a question of rehabilitation. The problem is, there is a whole country to rehabilitate, so that is difficult -- but not impossible.

Our position, vis-a-vis the Taliban, resistance, insurgents, or whatever you want to call them is one of counter-insurgency. They are the challenge to the established power (insurgency) and we are fighting that challenge (counter-insurgency).

I agree to a point about rehabilitation of the country, but my point was that we are not going to be able to rehabilitate the insurgents. Their agenda is concrete and their motivation is absolute. I'm making no assertions of "right" or "wrong" here, just describing things as I see them. They will not stop and they will not accept any government that comes into being while we're there. The only option is to kill, imprison, or force them out. I wish there was another option, but I don't see there being one. I don't hate them, I even sympathize with certain aspects of their position (like "this is my home, my country"), but the situation is how it is.

quote:
I'm given to understand that at least some of the country is not full of suicide bombers and axe wielders. However, it is filled with very poor people whose only plausible economic activity is growing opium poppies, an activity which is also incorrectly considered hostile. (Growing opium poppies is not a hostile act, it's a desperate way of earning money.)

I agree. It's similar to coca farmers in South America - they aren't doing it because they want us all to be coke/crack addicts, they're doing it because it's one of the few ways to make a living.

quote:
If there were significant support for the development of non-opium based livelihoods in some region (and by significant, I mean funded at a level similar to the funding of the military effort; i.e., enough to guarantee a real livelihood for everyone and not just a few "pilot projects"), then the Taliban (or whoever) would rapidly run out of recruits. All the potential recruits would be scurrying off to grow carrots (or whatever). (The carrots come from another thread, it's sort of a joke.)

I agree, funding issues aside, but you're not going to be able to do that when workers are being killed, kidnapped, or intimidated, shipments blown up, government workers ambushed and assassinated, etc. That's where the military comes in.

quote:
There would still be a few really angry criminals kicking around, but bereft of public support, they would become much less dangerous.

In the end, generosity is better strategy. In my opinion.


You're looking at it as an either/or scenario, which it isn't. Quite a bit of money and work has been done towards the goal you identify. The military's job is to provide an environment in which such projects can realistically exist. If we yanked the military out tomorrow and sent in waves of aid workers, all you'd get would be a lot of wasted money and a lot of dead aid workers.


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
rici
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2710

posted 17 March 2006 02:59 AM      Profile for rici     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

You're looking at it as an either/or scenario, which it isn't. Quite a bit of money and work has been done towards the goal you identify. The military's job is to provide an environment in which such projects can realistically exist. If we yanked the military out tomorrow and sent in waves of aid workers, all you'd get would be a lot of wasted money and a lot of dead aid workers.


Check my little bio to see how I feel about the last phrase

It's not an either/or scenario, but the amount of money dedicated towards replacement economic activity is really trivial. (This is true in the Andes as well.) And that's a huge problem.

It seems like a lot of money, but when you put it beside either the amount we're willing to pay on military non-solutions (at least, they've been non-solutions in Colombia) or the size of the need, they really are trivial.

My view is that if we spent a lot more on guaranteeing the economic viability of the country, we could rapidly spend a lot less on the military aspects. If we don't, we'll going on spending through the nose on military intervention, and there will be a lot of dead Afghanis, who unlike soldiers or aid workers have nowhere else to go home to.


From: Lima, Perú | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 04:33 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rici:
Check my little bio to see how I feel about the last phrase

Then you know what I'm getting at - how effective would you be at supplying aid if you your supplies couldn't get through and you and your staff (as well as those accepting your help) were being harassed and killed?

quote:
It's not an either/or scenario, but the amount of money dedicated towards replacement economic activity is really trivial. (This is true in the Andes as well.) And that's a huge problem.

Maybe you're right - maybe more effort needs to be put into aid. This isn't the military's fault, though - they don't control the government's purse.

quote:
It seems like a lot of money, but when you put it beside either the amount we're willing to pay on military non-solutions (at least, they've been non-solutions in Colombia) or the size of the need, they really are trivial.

I have no doubt. But without the military "non-solutions", you can't apply the non-military solutions.

quote:
My view is that if we spent a lot more on guaranteeing the economic viability of the country, we could rapidly spend a lot less on the military aspects. If we don't, we'll going on spending through the nose on military intervention, and there will be a lot of dead Afghanis, who unlike soldiers or aid workers have nowhere else to go home to.[/QB]

Again, you could very well be right. I recall reading an article to the same effect somewhere recently. I don't see it as needing to spend less on the military, just more on aid maybe. As it is, our military can barely manage to get to where we send them, let alone do their jobs once they're there. Give them the funding they need as well as putting in sufficient funds to make aid viable.

There's also the issue of how aid money is spent. It seems there's alot of money spent on band-aid instead of on infrastructure and other projects that provide long-term benefits.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 17 March 2006 05:18 AM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Grape, like Reason, another defender of Canadian troop deployment in Afghanistan, you have absorbed and now regurgitate the headlines of the day.

If someone says 'warning shots were fired', then you're convinced warning shots were fired.

I find it interesting though you refer to Afghanistan as being in the Middle East. You should buy an Atlas. You'll probably find that Aghaninstan is in Central Asia, a long way from the Middle East.

Interesting that another apologist referred to Afghanis speaking Arabic, which also indicates ignorance of where Afghanistan is.

In any case, so far the Canadian troops haven't done much of anything but look like a bunch of keystone cops with deadly weapons.

Hillier is obviously in way over his head, and probably will end up being replaced before his term reaches it's natural conclusion.

Now that poor cabbie that got killed has relatives, probably quite a few. What do you think those relatives will do if they ever get a chance to pop off a Canadian soldier? Think they'll hesitate because after all, we're just there to 'reconstruct'?

You refer to the 'established power' in Afghanistan:

quote:
Our position, vis-a-vis the Taliban, resistance, insurgents, or whatever you want to call them is one of counter-insurgency. They are the challenge to the established power (insurgency) and we are fighting that challenge (counter-insurgency).

Gee, the French that fought off the occupiers of their country were also challenging the established power. Because a power is 'established' doesn't mean it's legitimate.

Would you accept a government in this country elected while the country was occupied with Chinese troops? Would you accept that those who ran in such an election were legitimate representatives of the population?

All foreign troops are in Afghanistan to prop up the Karzai regime, a regime so well respected by Afghanis that Karzai won't use Afghani troops as his personal guard. First he used US marines, then farmed out the job to a US company that close ties with the Pentagon.

This shows clearly that the only people in Afghanistan that truly support Karzai are the ocuupying armies. The people fighting that occupation are not 'insurgents', they're just people who want their country back.

I bet you'd feel the same way if it was Chinese, or Russian, or Irani troops that were patrolling our streets, providing protection for the prime minister they themselves chose.

I'm willing to bet you wouldn't consider that government 'established power' for a second. You might even take an axe and try bury it in some Irani soldiers head.

In the end it won't make a lick of difference. The Soviet Union had 115,000 trooops in Afghanistan for ten years and all it got them was a bunch of dead soldiers, and live junkies.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 06:04 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I missed these earlier - apologies:

quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

You're not far, far from sophistry. Why don't you just say what you think. Don't mince words. Tell us which side you're on and get on with life. I preach that and I practice it too. I want Canada out of there now, yesterday.


I guess you know where I stand now, eh?

A day late and a dollar short, but I don't like not replying to posts that people have taken the time to write.

quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

The first reports say he "ran" a checkpoint. Subsequent reports say he either "crossed" a checkpoint, or that the incident took place "at" a Canadian-Afghani checkpoint. Grape uses the early versions. He thinks the soldiers should have fired earlier. He joined babble yesterday.


All the reports I've read have said "ran" or "refused/failed to stop when asked to do so" in relation to the checkpoint.

quote:
Grape -- are you sure you don't also have another name on babble?

What would that be??

quote:
Originally posted by maestro:
Grape, like Reason, another defender of Canadian troop deployment in Afghanistan, you have absorbed and now regurgitate the headlines of the day.

If someone says 'warning shots were fired', then you're convinced warning shots were fired.


Lets put it this way: if a CF member says warning shots were fired, and an Afghan policeman confirms shots were fired, I'm inclined to believe that warning shots were fired, yes. The "warning shots" fired at vehicles on patrol are usually fired AT (or very near to) the vehicle itself. It may very well be the case that it was warning shots and/or shots intended to disable the vehicle that hit the passenger, not shots fired intentionally at the occupants.

quote:
I find it interesting though you refer to Afghanistan as being in the Middle East. You should buy an Atlas. You'll probably find that Aghaninstan is in Central Asia, a long way from the Middle East.

http://worldatlas.com/webimage/countrys/me.htm

Potato, potahto. Depends on whose definition of the Middle East you're dealing with.

quote:
Interesting that another apologist referred to Afghanis speaking Arabic, which also indicates ignorance of where Afghanistan is.

Indeed...

quote:
In any case, so far the Canadian troops haven't done much of anything but look like a bunch of keystone cops with deadly weapons.

Mmm... maybe you could establish this fact with some sort of evidence.

quote:
Hillier is obviously in way over his head, and probably will end up being replaced before his term reaches it's natural conclusion.

Again, where are you getting this? This CDS was installed by a Liberal government and the Conservatives love him. About the only people that seem to dislike him are the NDP, but they're about as likely to form a government as I am to sprout wings.

quote:
Now that poor cabbie that got killed has relatives, probably quite a few.

Tsk tsk, watch that ignorance if you're going to go pointing the pedantic finger. The cabbie wasn't killed, it was one of his passengers.

quote:
What do you think those relatives will do if they ever get a chance to pop off a Canadian soldier? Think they'll hesitate because after all, we're just there to 'reconstruct'?

Maybe, maybe not. Who knows. We can either have cars zooming up to our convoys and run the risk of our troops being blown to smithereens or we can establish convoy rules that keep traffic back.

quote:
You refer to the 'established power' in Afghanistan:

Gee, the French that fought off the occupiers of their country were also challenging the established power. Because a power is 'established' doesn't mean it's legitimate.


I didn't say it was legitimate or illegitimate, I simply stated it was the established power.

quote:
Would you accept a government in this country elected while the country was occupied with Chinese troops? Would you accept that those who ran in such an election were legitimate representatives of the population?

That would depend on the state of my country before the new government, my opinion of that state and the old government, my opinion of China, my opinion of the new government, and my opinion of the situation after the change, as well as my political affiliations. In short - who knows? I know I don't. If you can spell out each of those factors in this hypothetical, I might be able to give an answer.

quote:
All foreign troops are in Afghanistan to prop up the Karzai regime, a regime so well respected by Afghanis that Karzai won't use Afghani troops as his personal guard. First he used US marines, then farmed out the job to a US company that close ties with the Pentagon.

If my country was in the state Afghanistan is/was in, especially with all the factions and corruption, I wouldn't want Afghani troops as my personal guard either.

quote:
This shows clearly that the only people in Afghanistan that truly support Karzai are the ocuupying armies. The people fighting that occupation are not 'insurgents', they're just people who want their country back.

What do you think insurgents are? Assuming they're indigenous, they're just people that want a different government and are willing to use force to achieve it. In this case, the major impetus seems to be to put the old government back in place.

As for Karzai's support - you could be right, we'll have to wait and see.

quote:
I bet you'd feel the same way if it was Chinese, or Russian, or Irani troops that were patrolling our streets, providing protection for the prime minister they themselves chose.

If Harper's government had been busy shooting, hanging, stoning, and hacking people to death for the most minor of infractions while subjugating 50% of the populous based on its gender, I'm not so sure I'd object.

quote:
I'm willing to bet you wouldn't consider that government 'established power' for a second. You might even take an axe and try bury it in some Irani soldiers head.

Of course it's the established power. If I was of the opinion you want me to be, I just wouldn't consider it the legitimate power. There's a big difference.

quote:
In the end it won't make a lick of difference. The Soviet Union had 115,000 trooops in Afghanistan for ten years and all it got them was a bunch of dead soldiers, and live junkies.

Perhaps - we'll have to wait and see. The Soviet approach was also somewhat less "pleasant".


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 17 March 2006 04:21 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ah yes, Grape, er, Reason, er, Grape has it all figured out.

Shots were fired, an Afghani policeman heard them, a Canadian trooper said they were warning shots, therefore they must have been warning shots. The fact a person was killed by them must have been a figment of that persons imagination.

Perhaps the shots the Afghani policeman heard were the shots fired at the person who was killed. Is that possible?

Not in the world of the apologists. In the world of the apologists there can be no evidence of anything which may tend to decrease support for Canadian 'Provincial Reconstruction Teams' in Afghanistan.

In the world of the apologists, there is no sophistry too sophisticated, no argument too nonsensical.

Too ignorant for words.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 07:57 PM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by maestro:
[QB]Ah yes, Grape, er, Reason, er, Grape has it all figured out.

I'm not Reason, as even the most superficial of investigations will reveal.

quote:
Shots were fired, an Afghani policeman heard them, a Canadian trooper said they were warning shots, therefore they must have been warning shots. The fact a person was killed by them must have been a figment of that persons imagination.

Not at all - as I've said, warning shots are often fired AT, or very close to, the vehicle. Considering that the vehicle is a moving target, it's not beyond the realm of possibility that a round went higher than intended.

quote:
Perhaps the shots the Afghani policeman heard were the shots fired at the person who was killed. Is that possible?

I doubt it. If the soldier had purposefully been trying to kill the occupants of the vehicle, he would have fired far more than 3 shots. If you're trying to kill the driver and occupants of a vehicle, you don't plink away at them, you fill the windshield with as many holes as you can in the shortest amount of time.

quote:
Not in the world of the apologists. In the world of the apologists there can be no evidence of anything which may tend to decrease support for Canadian 'Provincial Reconstruction Teams' in Afghanistan.

Whereas in the world of knee-jerk reactionaries lacking any semblance of intestinal fortitude, anything and everything the military does is bad and motivated by a malicious hatred for anyone and everyone not military. Of course, this is blended with the typical "I sympathize with our troops" lip-service.

quote:
In the world of the apologists, there is no sophistry too sophisticated, no argument too nonsensical.

Nonsensical? If my argument is nonsensical, yours is equally so. Hop off the high-horse.

quote:
Too ignorant for words.

Ditto.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
Stargazer
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 6061

posted 17 March 2006 07:59 PM      Profile for Stargazer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
As much as they may have some similarities, I really don't think Reason would post with a different account.
From: Inside every cynical person, there is a disappointed idealist. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 8273

posted 17 March 2006 08:13 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm wondering, were the lethal shots (whether warning shots or otherwise) fired before the taxi passed within two feet of the Canadians, just as the taxi passed within two feet of the Canadians, or after the taxi passed within two feet of the Canadians (i.e., as it was driving away)? Anybody have any "intel"?

In the first scenario, it would be odd to justify the shooting on the basis of something that happened after the shots were fired (the justification I refer to, of course, being the fact of coming within two feet of the Canadians).

In the second scenario, the shots would have been fired at very close range. That would hardly justify the conjecture that the victim was hit unintentionally. [Edited to add:] Or the theory that the shots were "warning shots"; by then it would be too late.

In the third scenario, what's the justification for shooting as the vehicle is moving away?

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: M. Spector ]


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 08:30 PM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
I'm wondering, were the lethal shots (whether warning shots or otherwise) fired before the taxi passed within two feet of the Canadians, just as the taxi passed within two feet of the Canadians, or after the taxi passed within two feet of the Canadians (i.e., as it was driving away)? Anybody have any "intel"?

I dunno - I would think the vehicle would stop pretty soon after the shots were fired. If so, then the shots were likely fired when the vehicle was quite close.

quote:
In the first scenario, it would be odd to justify the shooting on the basis of something that happened after the shots were fired (the justification I refer to, of course, being the fact of coming within two feet of the Canadians).

The buffer distance on a convoy is likely far more than 2 feet, considering it's intended to protect the convoy from suicide bombing and provide the soldiers sufficient time to warn, react, etc. I would imagine the "2 feet" thing is where the vehicle rolled to a stop after the shooting.

quote:
In the second scenario, the shots would have been fired at very close range. That would hardly justify the conjecture that the victim was hit unintentionally. [Edited to add:] Or the theory that the shots were "warning shots"; by then it would be too late.

Try firing at a moving target at close range while in the standing position and see how many of your rounds go exactly where they're supposed to.

quote:
In the third scenario, what's the justification for shooting as the vehicle is moving away?

I don't think they fired after the taxi passed, otherwise the entry wound would have been in his back, not his abdomen.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]

quote:
Originally posted by Stargazer:
As much as they may have some similarities, I really don't think Reason would post with a different account.

I can see why people think we're the same person - he's as long-winded as I am and we're both serving members.

That being said, I'll say it once and for all - I am not he and he is not I.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 8273

posted 17 March 2006 09:23 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I can't understand why anyone would mistake Grape for Reason.

Grape doesn't engage in over-the-top namecalling and threats of physical violence. He also doesn't keep posting the same bloody message over and over again for hundreds of posts. And he knows some three-syllable words, and has mastered the quote function.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 8273

posted 17 March 2006 09:38 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
The buffer distance on a convoy is likely far more than 2 feet, considering it's intended to protect the convoy from suicide bombing and provide the soldiers sufficient time to warn, react, etc. I would imagine the "2 feet" thing is where the vehicle rolled to a stop after the shooting.
So I take it you're not buying this story:
quote:
Canadian troops say they fired warning shots after the taxi came within a metre of a Canadian patrol vehicle, said Lt.-Col Derek Basinger, chief of staff for Task Force Afghanistan.
If the taxi had been a suicide bomber, I would think there would be no reason to wait to set off the bomb once you get within a metre of the target.

So why fire the warning shots retroactively, as it were?

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: M. Spector ]


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 518

posted 17 March 2006 10:02 PM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
but assuming the facts are as they lie currently, I'd venture to say that the soldier was simply following his ROEs, which authorize (indeed, dictate) that he fire on vehicles which approach the convoy and refuse to respond to hand signals, spotlights, and warning shots.

An acquaintance of mine is working in Iraq as a journalist, outside of the Green Zone. He speaks Arabic, and passes for a Jordanian. He has been inside Iraq for 24 of the last 30 months.

According to him, THE most dangerous place to be in Iraq is following a US military convoy. They have "Rules of Engagement" that authorize them to kill you, but they never let you know what the rules are. How close is too close? It's a secret.
He also says that whenever there is an incident, the soldiers always claim handsignals, warning shots, and whatnot. But the reality is, if they think you are too close, they shoot you because they think you are a threat.

It's a situation guaranteed to cause the death of innocents.


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 10:33 PM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
I can't understand why anyone would mistake Grape for Reason.

Grape doesn't engage in over-the-top namecalling and threats of physical violence. He also doesn't keep posting the same bloody message over and over again for hundreds of posts. And he knows some three-syllable words, and has mastered the quote function.


Thanks - I do try. Every once in a while I find an opportunity to use a 4 or 5 syllable word - I usually record such exciting events in my journal ("Dear Diary: Jackpot.")

quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
If the taxi had been a suicide bomber, I would think there would be no reason to wait to set off the bomb once you get within a metre of the target.

So why fire the warning shots retroactively, as it were?

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: M. Spector ]


The explanation I read included: '"... Despite repeated warnings by our crew in our vehicles, (the cab) approached to within two feet of one of our vehicles," said Lt.-Col Derek Basinger of Task Force Afghanistan.'

Now that's a quote - the other source paraphrased it, and did a bad job at that. The wonderful world of journalism, I guess.

I don't know what happened for sure, all I can do, like you, is piece things together from what I read. The most plausible scenario in my head is that the cab went through the checkpoint(possibly wrongfully, possibly not) and began approaching the convoy. The taxi was warned off using oral and hand signals (and possibly a spotlight). It continued approaching, at which time 2 or 3 shots (I've read some reports with 2, some with 3) were fired at the vehicle, allegedly to warn it and/or disable it. One of those shots passed through the abdomen of a passenger and exited through his back/flank. The military says it was unintentional and I'm inclined to believe them.

That's what I've managed to piece together thus far.

Edit:

quote:
Originally posted by jeff house:

An acquaintance of mine is working in Iraq as a journalist, outside of the Green Zone. He speaks Arabic, and passes for a Jordanian. He has been inside Iraq for 24 of the last 30 months.

According to him, THE most dangerous place to be in Iraq is following a US military convoy. They have "Rules of Engagement" that authorize them to kill you, but they never let you know what the rules are. How close is too close? It's a secret.
He also says that whenever there is an incident, the soldiers always claim handsignals, warning shots, and whatnot. But the reality is, if they think you are too close, they shoot you because they think you are a threat.

It's a situation guaranteed to cause the death of innocents.


I've heard about this quite a bit - most recently in relation to a Canadian vehicle being fired on. ROEs definitely are a secret - that's a matter of operational security. Having the rules known publicly under which you're allowed or not allowed to use force is just begging for the enemy to take advantage of those rules.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
siren
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7470

posted 17 March 2006 11:13 PM      Profile for siren     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

I've heard about this quite a bit - most recently in relation to a Canadian vehicle being fired on. ROEs definitely are a secret - that's a matter of operational security. Having the rules known publicly under which you're allowed or not allowed to use force is just begging for the enemy to take advantage of those rules.



I can see instances where keeping the ROE a mystery might be beneficial to the military.

HOWEVER - in the case of warning CIVILIANS away from military convoys, surely it is in the best interest of all to know what, roughly, is the respected distance. After all, this is more like a policing event than a military engagement.

The fact that canadians are taking out taxis, and taxi drivers are often the people who know the rules of the road the best, indicates that the "safe distance" rule is not well understood.

Another irk -- "warning shots" at/into the vehicle? Not much of a warning shot is it? Somewhat like turning a street corner, and accidently bumping into a solider who fires a "warning" shot into your head.

The whole policy stinks. It doesn't work in Iraq, it doesn't seem to be working in Afghanistan and needs serious re-consideration.


Oh, and welcome to babble, Grape.


From: Of course we could have world peace! But where would be the profit in that? | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
Jingles
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3322

posted 17 March 2006 11:16 PM      Profile for Jingles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Warning shots. I like how apologists keep saying that like it's the most natural thing in the world to hear shots fired at you. And I bet if these occupation apologists were driving along and suddenly came under fire, their first response certainly wouldn't be "oh my goodness gracious, someone is firing warning shots. Perhaps I should stop", it would be to stomp the gas and get the hell out of there.

But these apologists for murder seem to think that people around the world should understand immediately that the people shooting at them, our brave freedom warriors, don't actually want to kill them, but they will anyway. If I'm wrong, oh well. Shit happens. Better you than me.

Oh yeah, Hillier is a chickenshit scumbag. Just thought I'd throw that out there.


From: At the Delta of the Alpha and the Omega | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 8273

posted 17 March 2006 11:27 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
The explanation I read included: '"... Despite repeated warnings by our crew in our vehicles, (the cab) approached to within two feet of one of our vehicles," said Lt.-Col Derek Basinger of Task Force Afghanistan.'
OK, let's accept that quote for a minute, and unpack what Basinger is saying.

First off, it's clearly incompatible with your speculation that the vehicle might have rolled to a stop within two feet of the Canadian vehicle after the shooting. We're told it approached to within two feet "despite repeated warnings", which implies that the close proximity was the result of the driver ignoring warnings, not the result of loss of control of the vehicle after a shooting.

Second, the two-foot proximity of the taxi is offered as an explanation for the shooting. That means it happened before the Canadians opened fire. So they were either shooting at point blank range or shooting as the vehicle moved away.

So this quote is hardly a satisfactory explanation.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 17 March 2006 11:38 PM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by siren:
I can see instances where keeping the ROE a mystery might be beneficial to the military.

HOWEVER - in the case of warning CIVILIANS away from military convoys, surely it is in the best interest of all to know what, roughly, is the respected distance. After all, this is more like a policing event than a military engagement.


I agree. I'm not sure whether the buffer distances are made known but I think they should be. Another option is tossing flashbangs from the back of the convoy to give a definite "KEEP BACK" message when other options fail. The problem is that there isn't always time - especially in a city.

quote:
The fact that canadians are taking out taxis, and taxi drivers are often the people who know the rules of the road the best, indicates that the "safe distance" rule is not well understood.

From my experience (in Canada), it's usually the taxi drivers that have the least regard for the rules of the road. That being said, I'm not sure that the prior incidents of shooting all involved taxis.

quote:
Another irk -- "warning shots" at/into the vehicle? Not much of a warning shot is it? Somewhat like turning a street corner, and accidently bumping into a solider who fires a "warning" shot into your head.

The warning shots, from what I know, are fired near to or at the hood/front grill of the vehicle. The problem with firing warning shots away from the car is that the driver isn't necessarily going to hear the muzzle report. He's more likely to hear a round pinging around inside his engine block.

quote:
The whole policy stinks. It doesn't work in Iraq, it doesn't seem to be working in Afghanistan and needs serious re-consideration.

It depends on what your interpretation of "working" is. There haven't been any other casualties reported as a result of this policy. If someone can think up a better way of making vehicles stay away from convoys, I'd love to hear it.


quote:
Oh, and welcome to babble, Grape.

Thanks! The quality of discussion here is much better than alot of other boards, from what I've seen so far.

quote:
Originally posted by Jingles:
Warning shots. I like how apologists keep saying that like it's the most natural thing in the world to hear shots fired at you. And I bet if these occupation apologists were driving along and suddenly came under fire, their first response certainly wouldn't be "oh my goodness gracious, someone is firing warning shots. Perhaps I should stop", it would be to stomp the gas and get the hell out of there.

Assuming you're looking ahead of you while you drive, you should know that the shots are coming from the gigantic miliary vehicles ahead of you with the warning signs and from which the soldiers were just previously waving/shouting at you but are now discharging firearms in your direction.

In that case, hitting the gas and getting closer to the source of gunfire would likely be the exact opposite of your instincts.

quote:
But these apologists for murder seem to think that people around the world should understand immediately that the people shooting at them, our brave freedom warriors, don't actually want to kill them, but they will anyway. If I'm wrong, oh well. Shit happens. Better you than me.

If the soldier wanted to kill these people, he'd have filled their front windshield with holes.

quote:
Oh yeah, Hillier is a chickenshit scumbag. Just thought I'd throw that out there.

Riiiiight.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]

Edit:

quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
OK, let's accept that quote for a minute, and unpack what Basinger is saying.

First off, it's clearly incompatible with your speculation that the vehicle might have rolled to a stop within two feet of the Canadian vehicle after the shooting. We're told it approached to within two feet "despite repeated warnings", which implies that the close proximity was the result of the driver ignoring warnings, not the result of loss of control of the vehicle after a shooting.


On your first point - maybe - I could be completely wrong, as I said, this is just what I've put together in my mind from descriptions. What you're saying sounds logical, though.

quote:
Second, the two-foot proximity of the taxi is offered as an explanation for the shooting. That means it happened before the Canadians opened fire. So they were either shooting at point blank range or shooting as the vehicle moved away.

Alright, lets assume they fired at the last second - when the vehicle was about 2 feet from their convoy. We'll also assume that the soldier was in the rear vehicle, either the sentry hatch of a LAV or the gunner's turret of a G-Wagon. He fired 2 or 3 shots at a moving target, at night. One of them either over-penetrated or went astray. I don't think you can really fault the soldier for that.

quote:
So this quote is hardly a satisfactory explanation.

Hey - I agree - the quote by itself isn't a satisfactory explanation of events. Hopefully there'll be a more in-depth explanation later on.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]

I keep screwing up the bold function.

[ 17 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 11:51 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

Making the world safe for democracy, Day 1537

More heroic exploits of our Canadian forces

quote:
At about 5 p.m. yesterday, Alpha Company of Task Force Orion — the battle group aspect of Task Force Afghanistan — was patrolling a remote road near the village of Shinkay when the soldiers stumbled upon a man planting an improvised explosive device, or IED.

"He was trying to plant an IED next to the trail that the Canadian patrol and Afghan patrol was using, when he was surprised," said Peebles. "It would seem our presence ... caused him to prematurely detonate the bomb. He detonated it before he wanted to."

The man managed to flee, although there's no explanation how one individual could elude a platoon that had him squarely in their sights.

Earlier in the day, Charlie Company, working with the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police, came across eight armed individuals near the village of Safi, northeast of the city of Kandahar.

The eight, who were armed with assault weapons, were spotted running toward a walled family compound in Safi.

Canadians and Afghans searched the compound and one individual was apprehended. He was questioned and let go.



From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 17 March 2006 11:53 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

I keep screwing up the bold function.

So do our troops (see item above).


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Webgear
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 9443

posted 18 March 2006 12:01 AM      Profile for Webgear     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
They missed because the military no longer teaches soldiers how to fire their weapons properly (personal point of view).

This is due to the lack of resources and training (personal point of view).

I believe in Vietnam, the average American soldier fired about 1000 rounds per every enemy soldier killed.


From: Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 18 March 2006 12:03 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Webgear:
They missed because the military no longer teaches soldiers how to fire their weapons properly (personal point of view).

Comparing this with earlier reports, I have concluded (admittedly on thin evidence) that they missed because the suspects were on foot rather than in a tuk-tuk.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 18 March 2006 12:03 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

So do our troops (see item above).


How is that screwing up the bold function?

Seriously though, I don't really see that as a screw up based on the information provided - no ranges are given, context established, geography explained, etc.

As for letting that last man go, would you rather our running-dog imperialist oppressor stormtroopers have detained him and handed him over to their fascist, exploitative bourgeois masters for torture and summary execution? If they had no grounds on which to hold him, there's no reason they should detain him.

Edit;

quote:
Originally posted by Webgear:
They missed because the military no longer teaches soldiers how to fire their weapons properly (personal point of view).

This is due to the lack of resources and training (personal point of view).

I believe in Vietnam, the average American soldier fired about 1000 rounds per every enemy soldier killed.


The latter point is true. Soldiers in our military don't get as much time on the ranges as they should, but I wouldn't say they're not taught properly. The fact of the matter is that many of these troops probably have very little experience shooting at moving targets, especially at long ranges.


quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

Comparing this with earlier reports, I have concluded (admittedly on thin evidence) that they missed because the suspects were on foot rather than in a tuk-tuk.


I got a good laugh from that.

[ 18 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
rici
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2710

posted 18 March 2006 12:12 AM      Profile for rici     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
When I first arrived in England, some ten years ago, I was seriously freaked out while walking down a street to hear a somewhat robotic voice maniacally repeating "Caution. Vehicle reversing". Eventually I got used to it; apparently all heavy vehicles in England do that when you throw them into reverse.

Is there some reason why Canadian military convoys cannot be equipped with that technology, appropriately translated into local languages? "Warning. Keep your distance or you may be shot"...

Would that be worse PR than actually shooting? It's got to be more effective than having soldiers gesticulate madly with flashlights.


From: Lima, Perú | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 18 March 2006 12:17 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:
As for letting that last man go, would you rather our running-dog imperialist oppressor stormtroopers have detained him and handed him over to their fascist, exploitative bourgeois masters for torture and summary execution? If they had no grounds on which to hold him, there's no reason they should detain him.

Grape -- sense of humour, please! Our brave boys (with the screwed-up bold function) give hot pursuit to eight (8) armed terrorists into a "walled family compound" (otherwise known as a house). They enter, finding one (1) lonely "individual", whom they question and release. It's hilarious! Something between Keystone Cops and Harry Houdini.

Kidding aside, the true explanation has been variously attributed to Regis Debray, Che Guevara, or Mao Zedong: Guerrillas move among the people like "fish in water". Now you see 'em; now you don't.

The Canux haven't got a hope.

[ 18 March 2006: Message edited by: unionist ]


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 18 March 2006 12:21 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rici:
When I first arrived in England, some ten years ago, I was seriously freaked out while walking down a street to hear a somewhat robotic voice maniacally repeating "Caution. Vehicle reversing". Eventually I got used to it; apparently all heavy vehicles in England do that when you throw them into reverse.

Is there some reason why Canadian military convoys cannot be equipped with that technology, appropriately translated into local languages? "Warning. Keep your distance or you may be shot"...

Would that be worse PR than actually shooting? It's got to be more effective than having soldiers gesticulate madly with flashlights.


There are signs on the vehicles in a couple different lanugages, if I'm not mistaken. The problem is that so much of the populous is illiterate. That's where hand signals and shouting come in, as well as frequent ads on the Afghan radio (and the handing out of free radios) informing people to stay back.

The only other thing I can think of is to throw flashbangs or similar pyrotechnics from the back of the convoy. There could be issues with that, though, as pedestrians could be injured. The loudspeaker idea wouldn't really work, I don't think, since it probably wouldn't reach the drivers until they were too close.

quote:
Originally posted by unionist:


Grape -- sense of humour, please! Our brave boys (with the screwed-up bold function) give hot pursuit to eight (8) armed terrorists into a "walled family compound" (otherwise known as a house). They enter, finding one (1) lonely "individual", whom they question and release. It's hilarious! Something between Keystone Cops and Harry Houdini.


Hey, my sense of humour is alive and well - I just didn't recognize you were making a joke.

quote:
Kidding aside, the true explanation has been variously attributed to Regis Debray, Che Guevara, or Mao Zedong: Guerrillas move among the people like "fish in water". Now you see 'em; now you don't.

That's the advantage of indigenous insurgency.

quote:
The Canux haven't got a hope.

[ 18 March 2006: Message edited by: unionist ]


I wouldn't go that far.

[ 18 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
Webgear
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 9443

posted 18 March 2006 12:23 AM      Profile for Webgear     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Grape

I have been on the range twice in the last six months with various support trades and even some artillery gunners. These men and women had poor weapon drills, could not zero and sight their own weapons, and lacked basic shooting knowledge.


From: Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
Grape
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12275

posted 18 March 2006 12:28 AM      Profile for Grape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Webgear:
Grape

I have been on the range twice in the last six months with various support trades and even some artillery gunners. These men and women had poor weapon drills, could not zero and sight their own weapons, and lacked basic shooting knowledge.


That's what you get with support trades. It's not really their fault - they just don't get enough practice. The teaching isn't faulty, it's the amount of practice they're given. When you don't get any practice or opportunity to use your drills, you forget them. I've forgotten alot of my drills over the past few months. I could use the weapon and hit my target, but I'd probably make procedural mistakes on the load/unload, make-safe, etc.

I see you're in the CF - are you with the RCR?

[ 18 March 2006: Message edited by: Grape ]


From: Quebec | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
rici
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2710

posted 18 March 2006 12:46 AM      Profile for rici     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grape:

There are signs on the vehicles in a couple different lanugages, if I'm not mistaken. The problem is that so much of the populous is illiterate. That's where hand signals and shouting come in, as well as frequent ads on the Afghan radio (and the handing out of free radios) informing people to stay back.

The only other thing I can think of is to throw flashbangs or similar pyrotechnics from the back of the convoy. There could be issues with that, though, as pedestrians could be injured. The loudspeaker idea wouldn't really work, I don't think, since it probably wouldn't reach the drivers until they were too close.


If they can't hear a loudspeaker, they're not going to be able to hear shouting. You can always up the volume on a loudspeaker.

By the way, I know you won't take this the wrong way; even though "spelling flames" are forbidden on babble, just so you know: "populous" is an adjective meaning "having a lot of people". The noun, referring to the people themselves, is "populace". Ain't English spelling a treat


From: Lima, Perú | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 18 March 2006 12:59 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Afghan insurgents stow and blend

quote:
Peebles declined to speculate why Canadian soldiers were unable to find the suspects who fled from both encounters Thursday.

Rural Afghan communities -- usually a warren of rooms and pathways surrounded by dried-mud walls -- make easy hiding places for ununiformed insurgents who can quickly stow their weapons and blend in among other villagers.


Hmmm... Does that mean they are villagers? Or that all those Central Asian type short and brown people look alike, even to each other??

Did I mention this was a CanWest article?

quote:
On Thursday, Ali Hassan's family said their vehicle was not stopped by the police just prior to the shooting, and that the Canadians issued no verbal or other warnings before firing at the taxi.

Family members also said they asked the Canadian troops after the shooting to help take the injured Ali Hassan to hospital, but their request was ignored.

The family is asking for $30,000 US in compensation from Canada for Ali's Hassan's death.

Military spokesmen declined to discuss the family's version of events Thursday, saying Canadian investigators need to complete their report into the incident before the facts become clear.

"We realize some people in Kandahar are upset by this incident. It's regrettable," said Maj. Scott Lundy. "The decision of the crew to take the action that it did, that was done at the spur of the moment.


So - no denial of the family's account, as of now.

And some people are apparently upset, but just in Kandahar. Go figure. How does a person like this achieve the rank of Major?


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Webgear
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 9443

posted 18 March 2006 01:18 AM      Profile for Webgear     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
unionist

"In the last seven or eight attacks, more than two dozen Afghans have been killed or injured," he said. "So we're telling the Afghan people that this is as much their problem as our problem."

That qoute was from the article you posted. It seems Afghans are also being killed in great numbers by the insurgence also, why is that?

“And some people are apparently upset, but just in Kandahar. Go figure. How does a person like this achieve the rank of Major?”

First off, you have to be edmucated from a university, you must a degree.


From: Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
Webgear
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 9443

posted 18 March 2006 01:23 AM      Profile for Webgear     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Afghanistan's feared woman warlord

Who says Afghan women do not have rights and power?

"Amid the brooding mountains on the borders of Baghlan province, Afghanistan's only female warlord clings to her remote fiefdom."


From: Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
siren
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7470

posted 18 March 2006 02:12 AM      Profile for siren     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Webgear:
Afghanistan's feared woman warlord

Who says Afghan women do not have rights and power?

"Amid the brooding mountains on the borders of Baghlan province, Afghanistan's only female warlord clings to her remote fiefdom."



quote:
Her only concession to social mores is that she insists that a male relative accompany her into battle, in line with Afghan tradition for women outside the home.


Sure, sure. But is she the type of woman who likes to see other women get ahead as well?


From: Of course we could have world peace! But where would be the profit in that? | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
up
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 9143

posted 18 March 2006 05:00 AM      Profile for up     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
many of these troops probably have very little experience shooting at moving targets, especially at long ranges.

1 metre is long range for our military?? And just how fast do you imagine the tuk tuk was going on an afghani road passing military vehicles??

quote:
I have been on the range twice in the last six months with various support trades and even some artillery gunners. These men and women had poor weapon drills, could not zero and sight their own weapons, and lacked basic shooting knowledge

It wasn't a car it was a tuk tuk, and it was 1 metre away.
Somebody panicked, it was not an accident, and it will be better when everyone stops treating it as such.

[ 18 March 2006: Message edited by: up ]


From: other | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
Webgear
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 9443

posted 18 March 2006 02:12 PM      Profile for Webgear     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Up

Those quotes were not about the taxi shooting, they are referring to another incident.

Please look at unionist post on the 17 March 2006 11:51 PM


From: Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 18 March 2006 07:06 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
All the discussion of the details of the murder of an Afghani are avoiding the central point, which is that Canadian troops have no business being there in the first place.

The endless examination of chicken entrails doesn't address the killing of the chicken, it serves to distract and dissemble.

Canadian troops have no business in Afghanistan, especially under the command of the US, a state which kills and tortures, and has recently reiterated it's illegal pre-emptive strike policy.

Those who are in command of this mission place themselves in the position of being charged with war crimes, and crimes against humanity.

This mission itself is designed to shore up a 'Vichy' administration imposed on Afghanistan by the US, and which has zero popular support in Afghanistan, as evidenced by the fact the 'president' Karzai does not believe there are enough Afghanis loyal to him to make up a personal guard.

In any case, the 'mission' such as it is, will fail utterly, as all such missions before it have, unless one accepts that the mission is to impose further death and destruction on a country which has seen far too much of it already.

As has been reported by Micahel Den Tandt in an interview with Mullah Ahmed in Kandahar:

quote:
Mullah Ahmed knows who’s responsible for the bombings, he says in the relative quiet of his aerie in the mosque, a thermos of tea on the faded rug in front of him. The bombers are not acting alone. "A lot of countries support them," he says. "There’s Pakistan. And behind Pakistan is the United States."

...But it doesn’t make sense, he adds, that the Afghan government and its coalition allies can’t defeat the insurgents. They were able to topple the Taliban so easily. The insurgents now have few weapons and must live in the mountains. "There are countries supporting them," he repeats.

American and Canadian soldiers are not wanted in Kandahar, he continues in the same polite, measured tone. They simply draw the suicide bombers into the cities, where they kill innocent Afghan people. "They kill people in the cities, and children, just because the foreigners are here," he says. "If they were not here [the insurgents] wouldn’t do it."

Before the foreigners came, he says, life was stable.


Ahmed brings up a very good point, which is the continuing support of Pakistan by the US, even though they were the biggest supporters of the Taliban throughout.

Then there is the strange dichotomy of the US rhetorically opposing the 'Taliban', but at the same time having a long time supporter of the Taliban within the Bush cabinet (Zalmay Kahlilzad), who was appointed ambassador to Afghanistan after the US invasion, and now holds the position of ambassador to Iraq.

If the Canadian forces were to be used for something useful in Afghanistan, they would be helping the Afghanis fight the Americans.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 18 March 2006 10:26 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
More consequences of the humanitarian mission:

MSF leaves country following staff killings and threats

quote:
Tragically, on 2 June 2004, five MSF staff members were shot and killed on the road between Khairkhana and Qala-i-Naw in northwestern Badghis province. After weighing the options, MSF sadly decided to close all of its medical projects in Afghanistan by the end of August 2004.

...Although Afghan officials presented MSF with credible evidence that local commanders conducted the attack against the three international volunteers and two national staff members, these officials had done little to bring the perpetrators to justice. In addition, after the killings, a Taliban spokesperson claimed responsibility for the murders and later stated that organizations like MSF work for US interests and are therefore targets for future attacks.

...The targeted killing of MSF staff, the government's failure to arrest the culprits and the false allegations made by the Taliban made it impossible for MSF to continue providing assistance, despite the great needs.

The violence directed at humanitarian aid workers in Afghanistan comes amid consistent efforts by the US-led coalition to use humanitarian aid to build support for its military and political aims. MSF has repeatedly denounced the coalition's attempts to do so.

The organization has also spoken out against the military's attempt to usurp humanitarian aid. In May 2004, MSF publicly condemned the coalition's decision to distribute leaflets in southern Afghanistan that conditioned the continued delivery of aid on local people's willingness to provide information about the Taliban and Al-Qaeda.


Note that Medicins Sans Frontieres does not differentiate between US forces and the coalition forces, of which the Canadian forces are a part.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged

All times are Pacific Time  

Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic    Move Topic    Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
Hop To:

Contact Us | rabble.ca | Policy Statement

Copyright 2001-2008 rabble.ca