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Did bad decisions in DC kill troops on the ground in Afghanistan?
allenwest.com ^ | 6/10/14 | LTC Allen West

Posted on 06/10/2014 9:44:29 AM PDT by Lacey

If we had a commander-in-chief who had served in the military, the following story would mean more than just a headline. According to a report by NBCnews.com, five U.S. soldiers killed in Afghanistan may have been the victims of a friendly-fire incident.The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said five of its servicemen had died Monday during a security operation in southern Afghanistan when their unit came in contact with enemy forces. “Tragically, there is the possibility that fratricide may have been involved,” ISAF said in a statement. “The incident is under investigation.”

The soldiers were members of U.S. special forces working with the Afghan military and were conducting security sweeps on polling sites in advance of this weekend’s run-off for the Afghan presidential election when they came under ferocious attack from Taliban forces. Yes, the same Taliban forces who just got back their five senior leaders.

When the Special Forces group came under attack, they called in for close air support. The Americans called in an airstrike amid fierce fighting and, according to U.S. officials, the B-1 Stealth Bomber strike somehow went terribly awry.

I know, you’re all saying, so what West?

Here is the so what. I spent my 22-year career in the Army as a Field Artillery Officer assigned to infantry units as a Fire Support Officer, meaning I coordinated mortar, artillery, rocket, attack helicopter, and close air support for ground maneuver operations.

I can testify that a B-1 stealth bomber is not the preferred weapon of choice for close air support basically because of the circular error probable (CEP) considerations for the munitions it drops. Close air support is better done with an aerial weapons platform that can come in low over the shoulder of the friendly forces, and with the assistance of colored smoke, direct its munitions directly on the enemy.

Such is the mission of the A-10 Warthog aircraft, the preeminent weapon of choice for close air support, or an AV-8B Harrier, used by the U.S. Marine Corps.

But if you recall, it was U.S. Secretary of Defense Hagel who announced that not only would he take the Army to pre-World War II levels, he would also retire the A-10 aircraft. (Honestly, I prefer the A-10 rather than waiting for the development of the F-35 system. We could use service life extension programs (SLEP) to maintain this great close air attack platform).

Instead, we have five dead U.S. Special Operators because they did not have the appropriate close air support tool. This is why having more veterans of this current battlefield in office is important. If I were Secretary of Defense, I would transfer all A-10s to the U.S. Army where they can be better utilized and appreciated.

As well, I would develop more AC-130 Specter gunships which would be the Special Operations close air support weapon of choice and immediately available. We witnessed the results of an inappropriate response to a request for AC-130 gunship support during the Battle of Mogadishu during the Clinton administration.

My sincere condolences go out to the families of these fallen warriors. This did not have to happen, and it would not have if we had lions leading lions — not lambs.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: afghanistan; hagel

1 posted on 06/10/2014 9:44:29 AM PDT by Lacey
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To: Lacey

Being Spec Ops is getting more and more dangerous it seems under Obama.


2 posted on 06/10/2014 9:46:00 AM PDT by Bogey78O (We had a good run. Coulda been great still.)
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To: Lacey; All
LBJ's Viet Nam redux.

3 posted on 06/10/2014 9:46:48 AM PDT by skinkinthegrass (The end move in politics is always to pick up a gun..0'Bathhouse/"Rustler" Reid? d8-)
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To: Lacey

Probably using a JDAM and the target coordintes were wrong. Or maybe one of the tools bam bam gave them was something to jam the weapons targeting.


4 posted on 06/10/2014 9:47:50 AM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
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To: Bogey78O

I’m now skeptical of anything put out my this Administration, and although I might expect a friendly fire accidet from regular troops...I am not so quick to believe that is what happened with our special forces.

No one is perfect, however I will wait until the whole debacle is clearly investigated....and the truth is fully exposed.

Benghazi has taught me you can’t believe this bunch.


5 posted on 06/10/2014 9:49:24 AM PDT by Kackikat
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To: Lacey

I too thought it was strange to characterize a B-1 mission as “close air support”- so wth


6 posted on 06/10/2014 9:49:51 AM PDT by silverleaf (Age takes a toll: Please have exact change)
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To: Bogey78O

As far as I know the Secretary of the Air Force is a split-tail. I don’t wish to be unfair, but I suspect she is likely unqualified to run a lemonade stand.

God, I wish I was less bitter about this circus of ass-clowns but I saw too many good men die for too many years.


7 posted on 06/10/2014 9:50:13 AM PDT by the anti-mahdi
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To: Lacey

“Taliban Mullah in Chief” Hussein Obama has chosen “Secretary of Defending the Taliban” Hagel to continue to make “Grand Bargains” with Gitmo Prisoners so that Gitmo can be closed on the last day that all US Military Personnel finally abandon Afghanistan to the Taliban.


8 posted on 06/10/2014 9:50:25 AM PDT by Graewoulf (Democrats' Obamacare Socialist Health Insur. Tax violates U.S. Constitution AND Anti-Trust Law.)
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To: Lacey

We have lions led by braying jackasses, not lambs.
Lambs wouldn’t act as if getting people killed is a “smart thing”.


9 posted on 06/10/2014 9:51:00 AM PDT by Darksheare (Try my coffee, first one's free..... Even robots will kill for it!)
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To: Lacey
B-1 Stealth Bomber

I don't think so.

10 posted on 06/10/2014 9:55:27 AM PDT by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: Lacey
Is this a trick question?
11 posted on 06/10/2014 9:55:31 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum ("The more numerous the laws, the more corrupt the government." --Tacitus)
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To: Lacey

Obama, Carter....they are horrible commanders. troop morale suffers, they don’t have good leaders, more accidents happen.

Obama is now losing Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Lybia, Ukraine, Cuba

America is on the run, thx to obummer


12 posted on 06/10/2014 9:57:11 AM PDT by 1Old Pro
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To: Lacey

And why not Black Hawks? Apaches?


13 posted on 06/10/2014 10:00:26 AM PDT by TangledUpInBlue (I have no home. I'm the wind.)
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To: Lacey

“they came under ferocious attack from Taliban forces”

this is sickening
and
does not make sense

maybe the sf were taken as hostages


14 posted on 06/10/2014 10:09:28 AM PDT by Selene
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To: Lacey

Didn’t Jenjiss John say we weren’t fighting in Afghanistan anymore?


15 posted on 06/10/2014 10:15:13 AM PDT by TigersEye ("No man left behind" means something different to 0bama.)
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To: Lacey

Bad decisions in Washington DC have been killing troops on the ground for decades.


16 posted on 06/10/2014 10:17:41 AM PDT by strider44
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To: driftdiver

Our panel of self-styled experts came to the same conclusion, albeit with limited information. Someone, probably the troops on the ground, mistakenly input own location instead of enemy location and the JDAM impacted exactly where it was told to go.


17 posted on 06/10/2014 10:38:18 AM PDT by centurion316
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To: Lacey

Why the hell are Americans still in Afghanistan? What is our goal there?


18 posted on 06/10/2014 10:58:11 AM PDT by Count of Monte Fisto (The foundation of modern society is the denial of reality.)
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie

Good catch. It’s either a B-1 ‘Lancer’ or a B-2 ‘Spirit’ semi-stealth (and maybe not even semi-stealth based upon advances in technology). Guess we’ll see in the next real conflict.


19 posted on 06/10/2014 11:07:04 AM PDT by Portcall24 (aer)
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To: TangledUpInBlue

Black Hawks are not a CAS platform. The apache, while awesome, are much more vulnerable and slower than an A10

The use of a B1 in a CAP role is just excessive and strange. A good CAS platform needs to be able to loiter, have precise weapons, and able to take serious damage. The B1 is a supersonic bombing platform built to deliver nukes overseas.

The Douglas Skyraider is a great example. In an age of jets and fast movers, it was a godsend to troops in Vietnam. The A10 was perfect in fillings its very large shoes. It is both physically and psychologically devastating thanks to the GAU weapon system. It might not be pretty or fast but it can take a hell of a beating. Nothing... I repeat... nothing can replace it. It was purpose built for this role and there is no multirole wizbang super duper stealth uber jet that can come close to replacing it. CAS requires a purpose built aircraft and it will likely be brought back in once the morons making these decisions realize their fancy crap simply wont cut it.


20 posted on 06/10/2014 11:08:02 AM PDT by drunknsage
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To: drunknsage

I don’t know the circumstances surrounding the CAS request, but it may be that the SOF request was urgent and the B1 was in close enough proximity vs. other air assets?

Tough call and I bet the aircrew feels like $hit right now...

RIP soldiers and condolences to the families of the fallen.


21 posted on 06/10/2014 11:12:11 AM PDT by SZonian (Throwing our allegiances to political parties in the long run gave away our liberty.)
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To: Lacey

don’t believe everything you read -

jus’ saying


22 posted on 06/10/2014 11:31:57 AM PDT by maine-iac7 (Christian is as Christian does - by their fruits)
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To: Lacey

As a Korean war (52-53)FO and then Battery CO of 105 battery I completely concur. He is right on.


23 posted on 06/10/2014 11:49:20 AM PDT by elpadre (AfganistaMr Obama said the goal was to "disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-hereQaeda" and its allies.)
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie

B-1 was named in first report published


24 posted on 06/10/2014 11:51:03 AM PDT by elpadre (AfganistaMr Obama said the goal was to "disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-hereQaeda" and its allies.)
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To: Lacey

The question is how many troops died because of bad decesions in D.C.?


25 posted on 06/10/2014 12:05:42 PM PDT by Phlap (REDNECK@LIBARTS.EDU)
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To: Portcall24

No stealth about it. Just ignorance on the part of the writer.

It’s like Clips/Mags, Auto/Semi-Auto.

No doubt the writer is FNG under 25.


26 posted on 06/10/2014 1:02:48 PM PDT by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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