"The problem, of course, was that it was impossible to distinguish militant Taliban members or Al Qaeda from innocent civilians. Everyone became a suspect." Yes, that would be the problem. We send soldiers into a culture that they know nothing about, and a language that they don't understand, and we expect them to figure out who is who.
Imagine for a moment that you are dropped off in a gang-ridden neighborhood in an American city, and you speak only Chinese. What are your odds of gaining a clear understanding of what's going on? Now imagine that you have a machine gun, just to help you solve the problems in this American city. Gee, how's that going to work for you?
The military can fight battles. The military cannot negotiate peace or mediate differences between rival ethnic groups.
Los Angeles, CA
May 21 2009 - 4:18pm