Michael's Dispatches

Crucifixion of Common Sense

03 February 2012

Nobody crucifies common sense like the US Army.  During my morning search for anything MEDEVAC related, several new stories emerged, including one with these illustrative quotes from a Soldier returning from Iraq:

“You have to land where you never had to land before,   surrounded by the enemy.”

In conventional warfare a vehicle or aircraft bearing a red cross is considered almost sacrosanct. Not so during the open, no holds barred atmosphere that permeated Iraq.

“There are no rules. They see a red cross, they see a target,” Nicoletti said of rebels. “They don’t abide by the Geneva Convention.  You know they’re there,” he added. “You try to avoid them.”

“Technically a medivac is unarmed, though Nicoletti did have a rifle and handgun. In extreme cases, an Apache gunship would be called to provide cover when a medivac landed.
That was Iraq in a story this Thursday morning in the Palm Beach Daily News.

Now this comment, also on Thursday, but from a Dustoff MEDEVAC pilot currently in Afghanistan:

“A German friend pointed at the red cross on my helicopter the other day and told me how he'd heard that the Taliban will pay anyone who can prove they shot one. Peachy. How much of a laughingstock must we be to our allies here.”

What more is there to say?

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