Topic: "Stragedy" (2)
On purpose, Frodo has spent several days thinking about the world outside the Shire. Despite his intense distrust of anything proposed by George W. Bush, Frodo felt that context was a necessary next step. Despite Frodo's grave doubts about the course chosen by the American President, he felt it was important to dissect the variables. Failure to do so is exactly what Frodo uses to base his criticism of the Bush, dare he use the word, leadership. Frodo feels that George W. Bush had never heard the terms "Sunni" or "Shiite" until after the commencement of the Pre-Emptive War. That is why the conflict has spiraled totally out of his control.
Under the new, and improved, Bush plan, American troops are to be "embedded" with units of the Iraqi Army as "trainers" and "logistical support." The Bush Administration argues that this places the onus on the Iraqis to do the actual fighting, and puts them in the "lead."
Frodo questions the definition. Do the Iraqis interpret this to mean that the American troops embedded in one of their units come under the direction, and hence military command, of the Iraqis? Do the American soldiers obey direct orders issued by Iraqis, even if it contradicts instructions issued by their senior officers before they were embedded? If, dear reader, you were to ask George W. Bush, you might get one answer, but if you ask Mr. Maliki, you might get another. The point being that the variable of "command" is at best, unclear. It seems virtually impossible to issue definitive guidelines when the heat of battle may change the situation to one of life-and-death, or to one of criminal-versus-civil.
Imagine, for a moment, that you are embedded with an Iraqi unit, which just happens to be predominantly Sunni in its' make-up, and the unit comes under heavy fire from an "insurgent" group, say it just happens to be al Sadr's Mahdi Army, which is of course Shiite. Following your orders from the American command, you help to deploy the unit and to lay down small arms fire. It is becoming evident that the unit you are with is about to be overrun, and that the lives of all are in peril. The Unit commander orders you to lead a flanking movement and to "take no prisoners." Are you going to stand there, or squat if you don't want to risk getting shot, and tell him that you cannot do so? Is he going to draw his pistol and tell you to obey his command, or he's going to blow your infidel head off?
George, not having engaged in combat outside the auspices of the Alabama Air National Guard, didn't discuss that in his stirring speech, did he? Frodo asks, who is in command? The result of this obfuscation is blood in the street, and it will probably be from some kid from Pittsburgh, or Daly City, or Rollins, or Greeneville, and quite possibly from all of them. Mistakes, he's made a few, so who's to think that what is now proposed is error-free?