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For troops, Afghanistan 'like Vietnam without napalm'
Seattle Times ^ | 10/2/2009 | Hal Bernton

Posted on 10/04/2009 6:22:22 PM PDT by Saije

The men of Bravo Company have a bitter description for the irrigated swath of land along the Arghandab River where 10 members of their battalion have been killed and 30 have been wounded since the beginning of August.

“Like Vietnam without the napalm,” said Spc. Nicholas Gojekian, 21, of Katy, Texas.

A prime agricultural area of vineyards and pomegranate orchards, the 18 miles of valley that the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment patrols includes Taliban insurgents, booby traps and buried explosives...

...So far, the Army mission has been an uneasy mix of trying to woo elders with offers of generators, roads and other improvements while fighting a nasty war with an often-unseen enemy.

Bravo Company arrived in Afghanistan with 24 Strykers, the first of the eight-wheeled combat vehicles outfitted with high-tech communications and surveillance gear to arrive in Afghanistan. One-third of the vehicles are now out of service due to bomb attacks or maintenance.

The bomb threats are so pervasive that Stryker drivers have abandoned some stretches of road in favor of driving through the deserts on different routes. The road to one smaller outpost has so many homemade bombs that the soldiers usually arrive on foot, a treacherous hike due to buried land mines.

“We have had enemy contact almost every day,” said Lt. Col. Jon Neumann, the commander of the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment. “Until we do clearing, we can’t hold or build here right now,” a reference to the U.S. counterinsurgency tactic of “clear, hold and build.”

Neumann said that a host of factors has bolstered the Taliban in the Arghandab. They include a successful spring insurgency campaign, the death of a strong tribal leader who supported the U.S.-backed Afghan government, and the wounding of a charismatic police chief.

(Excerpt) Read more at seattletimes.nwsource.com ...


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: afghanistan; soldiers; stryker; vietnam
Not sure if Spc. Gojekian is wishing there was napalm or not. Interesting to read that "clear, hold and build" is part of counter-insurgency because we don't seem to be able to do much holding. Hope the Almighty keeps a good watch over them.
1 posted on 10/04/2009 6:22:23 PM PDT by Saije
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To: Saije

Maybe a little ‘Death from Above’ would get the ‘elders’ attention? Why do I get the feeling that that entire COUNTRY is in on this, and will just be milking our resources and the blood of our kids from here on out?

Sorry to be cynical, but this is not going well, and the Poser in Chief hasn’t a clue; nor does he really care!


2 posted on 10/04/2009 6:25:55 PM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin (Save The Earth. It's The Only Planet With Chocolate.)
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To: Diana in Wisconsin

There is a muzzie in the white hut working for the saudis. Their orders are to humiliate our military and to lose. Hussein’s rules of engagement means our boys are sitting ducks. This is how LBJ ran vietnam but he was not viet cong as someone is a muslim.


3 posted on 10/04/2009 6:32:53 PM PDT by Frantzie (Do we want ACORN running America's health care?)
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To: Frantzie

I usually don’t agree with you on things because you can be QUITE the curmudgeon, but on this point, you are spot on.

Don’t let it go to your head. ;)


4 posted on 10/04/2009 6:35:11 PM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin (Save The Earth. It's The Only Planet With Chocolate.)
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To: Diana in Wisconsin

I listen to what the Marine Generals here in San Diego say, not the left wing media sucking the uneducated in with their anti war propaganda.
The left wing media did the same thing with Vietman,
the war was lost not on the battle field but in the livingrooms of America with dolts believing the anti war Left.


5 posted on 10/04/2009 6:35:34 PM PDT by SoCalPol (Reagan Republican for Palin 2012)
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To: Diana in Wisconsin

I believe you’re right!


6 posted on 10/04/2009 6:36:00 PM PDT by DirtyHarryY2K (The Tree of Liberty is long overdue for its natural manure)
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To: Saije
The bomb threats are so pervasive that Stryker drivers have abandoned some stretches of road in favor of driving through the deserts on different routes. The road to one smaller outpost has so many homemade bombs that the soldiers usually arrive on foot, a treacherous hike due to buried land mines.

The Chinese were reputed to have executed entire villages of Vietnamese over these kinds of things (i.e. assisting or not informing on Vietnamese militia who mounted ambushes against the Chinese invaders), during their 1979 invasion of Vietnam.

7 posted on 10/04/2009 6:37:32 PM PDT by Zhang Fei (Let us pray that peace be now restored to the world and that God will preserve it always)
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To: Saije
Hey Mr President, did you get enough 'face time' with the General to get off your stupid stick and MAKE A DECISION? You flew to Copenhagen to make a speech for Chicago, you campaigned saying Afghanistan was the NECESSARY WAR, you put in your own selection as General - WHY THE HE-"double hockey sticks" AREN'T YOU LISTENING NOW!!!

Never elect the village 'organizer' to do a man's job AND NEXT TIME GOP ... PUT SOMEONE who has "got a pair" on the ticket and that DOES INCLUDE AN ALASKAN!

8 posted on 10/04/2009 6:40:40 PM PDT by SES1066 (Cycling to conserve, Conservative to save, Saving to Retire, will Retire to Cycle.)
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To: Zhang Fei

First you have to execute the journalists ... then you can get to the ville ...


9 posted on 10/04/2009 6:41:39 PM PDT by sailor4321
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To: Diana in Wisconsin

“Why do I get the feeling that that entire COUNTRY is in on this”

because it is......chump America has built Iraq into a decently modern country as far as infrastructure and industry.....now the afghani’s want theirs.


10 posted on 10/04/2009 6:44:45 PM PDT by Vn_survivor_67-68 (CALL CONGRESSCRITTERS TOLL-FREE @ 1-800-965-4701)
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To: Vn_survivor_67-68

We don’t need to build nations with the blood of our son’s. What we needed to do was kill bin laden for attacking our country. What we needed to do in Iraq was get the damned oil.We aren’t doing either!!! Get the hell OUT!!!


11 posted on 10/04/2009 6:49:38 PM PDT by londonfog
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To: Squantos

ping


12 posted on 10/04/2009 6:53:36 PM PDT by Cindy
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To: Vn_survivor_67-68; All

See? I knew I was right! :)

Is it just me, or does anyone else want to just close the borders and be totally self-sufficient and stop playing ‘watchdog’ for the rest of the world?

We have all the oil and natural gas and fresh water we’ll ever need! We can grow just about any food crop to sustain ourselves (I can live without bananas and a few spices) and aside from a few uneducated doofuses (doofi?) we have very talented people that can build homes and schools and roads and water works, etc. And we could trade with Mexico and Canada for drugs and lumber, LOL!

Why do we NEED the rest of the world? Truth is, we don’t. Screw this Global Economy stuff and the billions we waste on wars. I’ll gladly sacrifce a decade of my life (it wouldn’t take that long) while we re-set our sights to make us a free and independent Nation once again. :)


13 posted on 10/04/2009 6:53:47 PM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin (Save The Earth. It's The Only Planet With Chocolate.)
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To: Saije
The title you created

"Afghanistan's deadly hold on Bravo Company 'Like Vietnam without napalm' "

did not match the source you linked and had to be changed. In order to reduce the number of duplicate threads we have to pull, we ask that everyone use published titles only. Please do not alter any published title nor make up your own version of a published title.

After using Free Republic's search function to verify that a published article has not already been posted, just copy and paste the title found above the article you wish to post. Thanks.

14 posted on 10/04/2009 6:56:03 PM PDT by Admin Moderator
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To: Saije

Obama has yet to publish a National Security Strategy as required by Goldwater/Nichols. The US Military is rudderless all over, not just in Afghanistan.


15 posted on 10/04/2009 6:57:47 PM PDT by Jet Jaguar (A mob of one.)
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To: SoCalPol

Hopefully (Marine) Judge Carter is also listening. Our troops are being pawned and set up to lose for the glory of allah.


16 posted on 10/04/2009 6:58:48 PM PDT by Frantzie (Do we want ACORN running America's health care?)
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To: Saije
One-third of the vehicles are now out of service due to bomb attacks or maintenance.

In Vietnam I was with a 155mm self-propelled Howitzer battery. Because of break-downs, we rarely had more than three guns ready. Always waiting for parts. We were hit at our base camp once and fired flechette rounds at the tree line. We sure could have used the three Howitzers that were out of action..

17 posted on 10/04/2009 7:00:54 PM PDT by ExtremeUnction
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To: londonfog

My sentiments exactly. If this effin sob president of ours isn’t going to commit to winning, then we need to get the hell out. It will be a catastrophic mistake to leave for many, many reasons, but I don’t want another of our sons to die for Obama’s sport.


18 posted on 10/04/2009 7:01:10 PM PDT by demkicker (Helping Democrats Become Extinct)
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To: Jet Jaguar

This is by design. He and his bosses in Riyahd know what they are doing.


19 posted on 10/04/2009 7:01:20 PM PDT by Frantzie (Do we want ACORN running America's health care?)
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To: Diana in Wisconsin

Let’s finish what we set out to do. That is destroy terrorists in their strongholds and prevent their ability to operate.


20 posted on 10/04/2009 7:01:21 PM PDT by mamelukesabre (Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum (If you want peace prepare for war))
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To: Admin Moderator
The title you created "Afghanistan's deadly hold on Bravo Company 'Like Vietnam without napalm' " did not match the source you linked and had to be changed. Just to clarify, and not that it probably matters, but I didn't "make up" the headline, at least not on purpose! Found the article at News Tribune and then saw that it was originally published at Seattle Times so linked from there. Just forgot to make sure the headlines were the same. Sorry!
21 posted on 10/04/2009 7:02:02 PM PDT by Saije
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To: SoCalPol

“I listen to what the Marine Generals here in San Diego say...”

I wouldn’t recommend paying too much attention to GOs. Particularly ones in the USA.


22 posted on 10/04/2009 7:03:43 PM PDT by Mr Rogers (I loathe the ground he slithers on!)
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To: Jet Jaguar

I’d forgotten that until today reading Zinni’s statements about it- it’s due 150 days after the new administration takes over. By my count we’re somewhere around 250 days.

I’d say this makes Obama the DIC.

(Ditherer in Chief)


23 posted on 10/04/2009 7:04:11 PM PDT by SE Mom (Proud mom of an Iraq war combat vet)
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To: demkicker

Right. This is one world government obama crap. Bring the men home and put the Mexican border and do huge tax cuts and get the engines of economy going before we fade into third world nothingness. NATIONALISM NOW~!@!!!


24 posted on 10/04/2009 7:06:04 PM PDT by londonfog
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To: Diana in Wisconsin
"Is it just me, or does anyone else want to just close the borders...snip"

No need to go any further. Obama and his ilk are welcoming the illegal border crossers with all kinds of perks. He's too much of a coward to defend OUR OWN borders..

Oh, America..what have you done??

sw

25 posted on 10/04/2009 7:07:08 PM PDT by spectre (Spectre's wife)
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To: Mr Rogers

The Marines in San Diego have been through many many tours
and the Gen. I speak of is returning in a few months with 10,000 returning Marines based in San Diego to Afghanistan.


26 posted on 10/04/2009 7:12:18 PM PDT by SoCalPol (Reagan Republican for Palin 2012)
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To: Saije

Understood. Thank you.


27 posted on 10/04/2009 7:14:05 PM PDT by Admin Moderator
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To: SE Mom

I am curious if he will ever, or can ever, present his National Security Strategy for the US.

We are waiting.


28 posted on 10/04/2009 7:17:55 PM PDT by Jet Jaguar (A mob of one.)
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To: Saije

http://www.michaelyon-online.com/latest/

tHIS Link tells you the latest ROEs from Gen. Stanley McCrackhead saying basically that you can’t use CAS against any dwellings where there could be civys, you can’t even enter a home without
Afghan troops going in first and you can’t even shoot at a mosque.

This General is aiding the enemy, plain and simple.

Its bad enough that Obambots are allowing the enemy to hide in Pakistan and Iran, but to worry about alienating the civilians of Afghanistan? Against who? THe Taliban, the same Taliban who cuts of the hands and heads of the civilians if they violate the slightest precept of Sharia Law.

Hey General! Why don’t you go on the Political Offensive and tell the Afghan Civilians that we don’t cut off heads, we educate woman, we free them from Taliban Terror and so forth!

Vietnam Redux

What the heck, its a waste anyway if you don’t get Islam out of the mix. Islam and Freedom don’t coexist. By making mosques sanctuaries you are legitimizing this religion of hate.

Of course Gen. McKook was appointed by B.H. obambi.


29 posted on 10/04/2009 7:20:49 PM PDT by TomasUSMC ( FIGHT LIKE WW2, FINISH LIKE WW2. FIGHT LIKE NAM, FINISH LIKE NAM)
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To: Vn_survivor_67-68

chump America has built Iraq into a decently modern country as far as infrastructure and industry.....now the afghani’s want theirs

EXACTLY

Not much of a deterrent to harboring terrorist is it.

They harbor our enemies. We go in with a million Rules of Engagement so that the only folks getting killed are American, we pay for it in Billions and Blood, We take no Land, we build up their Country all the while being called Infidels then we let them kick US out.


30 posted on 10/04/2009 7:26:51 PM PDT by TomasUSMC ( FIGHT LIKE WW2, FINISH LIKE WW2. FIGHT LIKE NAM, FINISH LIKE NAM)
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To: mamelukesabre
Let’s finish what we set out to do. That is destroy terrorists in their strongholds and prevent their ability to operate.

I agree. To cut and run now would be a massive victory for Al Queda, and a huge recruiting booster for them. We need to push through. Take the gloves off.

31 posted on 10/04/2009 7:29:21 PM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us... one chance in three. More tea?)
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To: sailor4321
First you have to execute the journalists ... then you can get to the ville ...

I don't there were any journalists hanging around in Vietnam at the time. The Chinese would simply have killed them and vaporized the remains. The accounts come from discoveries of mass graves and narratives from survivors who escaped the dragnet. Stuff like this always gets out. The difference is that the Chinese weren't fazed by the accounts - their reaction was denial, and the average Chinese probably thinks the enemy civilian body was too low...

32 posted on 10/04/2009 7:33:36 PM PDT by Zhang Fei (Let us pray that peace be now restored to the world and that God will preserve it always)
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To: TomasUSMC
This General is aiding the enemy, plain and simple. Honestly I don't think he's intending to do that. I believe the General is a patriot. And that he and Petraeus and others have studied long and hard and know quite a lot about how to win this war. I don't post articles like this intending them to be an indictment of the General or the strategy. I don't know enough about it all to do that anyway. What I'm interested in is what our soldiers are going through as they try to live by the ROE, what their situation is. Any one story about a battle or a day in the life of a soldier or marine out there is just one snapshot. It doesn't mean that McChrystal isn't right about what it's going to take, if he's given what he needs. And if we here at home are willing to accept that there are going to be bad moments over there. But I also don't think that stories like this shouldn't be written or published just because they're upsetting and make people want to throw in the towel. If we're going to keep faith with our military, we owe it to them to know what's happening over there. Just my opinion.
33 posted on 10/04/2009 7:33:49 PM PDT by Saije
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To: Vn_survivor_67-68
chump America has built Iraq into a decently modern country as far as infrastructure and industry.....now the afghani’s want theirs.

I don't really agree. Iraq was already a decently modern country before we got there. We just got them out from under a despotic regime. Afghanistan will never be even remotely modern. I've never seen anything to suggest that they even want it. But it doesn't matter, all we need to care about is clearing it of muslim fanatics. If it takes another year or ten years, or fifty, as long as our ROE is appropriate. THAT is our only problem. Bad ROE. Gotta fix that.

34 posted on 10/04/2009 7:37:42 PM PDT by Ramius (Personally, I give us... one chance in three. More tea?)
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To: mamelukesabre

The insurgency has a “surge” and WE don’t??? Recipe for disaster...Order those damn burkas for Katie Couric, Hillary Clinton and Barbara Streisand NOW!!! The Taliban is coming to America and you better get used to it now.


35 posted on 10/04/2009 9:13:26 PM PDT by Semperfiwife (Where is Patrick Henry when we need him most? Liberty or Death!)
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To: Ramius

If it takes another year or ten years, or fifty, as long as our ROE is appropriate. THAT is our only problem.

//////////////////
Time is not on our side. Pakistan has nukes now, in ten years, how many more will have them? Lets keep that in mind. 40,000 more troops going into combat handcuffed is not acceptable. Unless obambi somehow gets out of power or the Congress turns back into GOP control, get out.

More bombs less bullets. Especially Nuclear Bombs. Use ‘em before they use ‘em on US.


36 posted on 10/04/2009 10:10:51 PM PDT by TomasUSMC ( FIGHT LIKE WW2, FINISH LIKE WW2. FIGHT LIKE NAM, FINISH LIKE NAM)
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