Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the Army

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10 October 2012

This is the most stunning and forceful letter I have read from the Afghanistan war.  It was written in 2010 from Afghanistan by Colonel Harry Tunnell, the Brigade Commander of 5/2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team.

After this letter, Colonel Tunnell was investigated and the normal smear campaign unfolded.  Having been embedded with his Brigade in 2010, it became obvious that they were put into a no-win situation, with troops spread over several provinces in Afghanistan.

photo-1000http://www.alphaphiomega.org/latestnews2_paratrooper.htm

As an example of the higher level lunacy at the time, on the morning of 01 March 2010, a powerful explosion rumbled over Kandahar Airfield.  The Tarnak River Bridge was hit by a vehicle bomb, which blew an MRAP armored vehicle off the bridge.  U.S. Soldier Ian Gelig was killed.

photo3-1000Tarnak River Bridge was closed to operations due to a giant hole when Ian was blown up.

In addition to Ian being dead, that bridge was extremely important and closed.  How did we let that get blown up?  Through the cover-up, I tried to discover how that happened.  The ultimate culprit was Canadian Brigadier General Daniel Menard who later was relieved of command and sent home for having sex with a corporal, after having nearly shot one of our helicopters with his rifle (for which he was fined).  During the night before he let the bridge get blown up, he admitted to having been watching Olympic Hockey about three miles away from the bridge, on Kandahar Airfield, where the HQ was for all the major players on the letter published below.

Who was responsible for security on this key bridge?  Americans had route security up to the bridge from both sides.  Under the bridge was the responsibility of the British RAF.  Canadian General Daniel Menard was responsible for the actual bridge, because he was in command of an American Military Police unit who was mentoring Afghans who were securing the bridge.  And so a British General was in charge of the entire area, and the Canadian general was in charge of a small American unit who was in charge of mentoring Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge, so important to our operations. You can’t make up nonsense like that.  And that is only the beginning.

Colonel Harry Tunnell does not even bother to mention this incident and command mess in his letter to SecArmy, because on the scale of the insanity, believe it or not, this was peanuts.

Without further narration, please read Colonel Tunnell’s stunning letter.  As far as I can tell, during those times when he mentions things I am familiar with, Colonel Tunnell is completely accurate.

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To download and read the entire letter please click the download link below:

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Comments   

 
+29 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyA Mom 2012-10-10 14:23
This is not very encouraging to have our sons and daughters working under these conditions with any one who is less than the BEST in command. Why does the incompetence seep up? I say my prayers everyday for our soldiers.
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# IncompetenceGI JOE 2013-08-16 23:28
STRIKE AND DESTROY
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+34 # EOD dadDavid Marshall 2012-10-10 14:31
Once again we see what "liberalsim" has done to our most cherished istitutions.
The men we need, those like Colonel Tunell, are beaten down or driven out by the usless fools who could not operate in the real world. The damage to our forces is so significant that inspite of our "overwhelming" superiority we have become unable to win at war.
We need a purge from the top down before it's too late to rebuild.
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+9 # RE: EOD dadA Mom 2012-10-10 14:43
Mr. Marshall,
In full agreement with your statement.
EOD Mom
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# RE: RE: EOD dadRuss Perry 2012-10-13 11:41
We are discussing the lives of dedicated professional patriots here. This is not the policy of "liberals." It is the policy of Marxist-Leninis t revolutionaries seeking radical change to the United States and the world. This is definitely not change that most of us can believe in.
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-29 # Liberalism!?Jerry McKenzie 2012-10-11 07:52
Last survey I saw showed an 80% tilt in the US armed services towards the Republican Party. Spewing your own inane dogma does not help.
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+16 # Yes, LiberalismJP 2012-10-11 16:04
Jerry,
Let's take a lesson in government. What the military is composed of is of little relevance. The fact is the military is being LED by a liberal government whom, wether you believe it or not, calls a lot of the shots by virtue of telling the generals how to conduct operations.
Soldiers (me included) regardless of political affiliation, go where we are told and do what we are told to do. We operate within the bounds of orders, directives, and regulations that are in some cases very restrictive and emanate from the CDR in Chief.
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+5 # RE: Yes, LiberalismJerry McKenzie 2012-10-12 06:42
Take a lesson? Done. There's nothing liberal about the government. No where in this article is liberalism or conservatism mentioned. Why would we win in a place no one has won (with overwhelming force too) in a couple of millennium? Take a history class or read a book.
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+1 # exactlyMona 2012-10-14 00:00
I think the letter very clearly details WHY no one has won there. :-|
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+1 # It's not the history...John_G 2012-10-14 20:15
A lot of people like to go back to the Alexander, the Brits and the Soviets and say that this place has "crushed empires" - it's true, but irrelevant. There's at least 100 things that are wrong with the war in Afghanistan, but some of the biggest ones are that we don't have to troops required to hold the ground to make COIN work (think triple at least) and we don't control the borders. Hearts and Minds doesn't work if AQ/TB/HQN/HIG can come back in and behead anybody that cooperates with us. Which they do, all the time...and then the bad guys sneak back across the border.
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+3 # nice tryfollow the money 2012-10-11 17:42
The 80% you speak of is the enlisted men and women not the guys in charge. Nice try
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+6 # RE: nice trySSG B 2012-10-13 08:19
Sir, the officers make the decisions only. The REAL leadership is done by the NCO's!!!
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+12 # WrongYukon5G 2012-10-11 16:38
@ David - Liberalism has NOTHING to do with the command climate COL Tunnel describes. If you want to call it "Political Correctness" in its original intent, then that fits. The subordination of tactical and operational necessity to DOCTRINAL orthodoxy for fear of ending career options is a sterling example of the term.

"Conservatives" are just as likely to subscribe to political correctness as "Liberals." Just look at how the Log Cabin Republicans are treated by their own party.
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+2 # RE: WrongASG 2012-10-11 16:47
It is Liberal Progressiveism. It is a clear cut example of Obama's lead from behind strategy. Having experienced US troops who are with out a doubt the best in the world taking orders essentially from an inexperienced Canadian command is something every American should be embarrassed of. And then to see they are also taking a back seat to the biggest Clinton debacle of all, NATO, is horrifying.
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+17 # Political bullshitThomas Dikel 2012-10-11 20:03
No, "liberalism" or "liberal progressivism" is NOT the point. It has become so accepted in some circles to blame everything from rising oil prices to diarrhea on "liberals" when most of those spewing that dogma have never defined the word beyond anything and everything they don't like. Our soldiers are being maimed and killed due to incompetence in the highest ranks and greed in the political sector, and the Republicans are certainly no less greedy than their Democratic counterparts. The mentality of stifling incompetence is a culture that pervades the military "leadership", who as were noted, are not known to be particularly liberal. They are selfish, greedy, and cowardly, if they are allowing subordinates to die in the field for political reasons. THAT is the point. Period.
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+1 # RE: Political bullshitASG 2012-10-11 20:23
Not sure about diarrhea, not an expert, I'll leave that to you. But are you actually trying to claim the anti War Movements of the 60's 70's 90's and currently were right wing incarnations? To even suggest that they were even remotely bipartisan is humorous. Sure, the symptom of the overall disease is the leadership decisions we just read about. But the root of the virus is these "leaders" bending to populous pressure. And as they say the squeaky wheel gets the oil, no one has been squeakier over the last century than the anti-war left. Oh if I had a nickel for every time I have been accused of being a warmonger. And when I think back to the imagery of people jumping from one of the tallest skyscrapers in the world to their certain death as the flames burned so hot they melted steel, I say so what if I am a War Monger. After 9/11 we all should be. It is clearly a defective Liberal/Progres sive gene that makes someone want to placate the enemy to the point of what is in the Colonel's letter.
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+1 # RE: RE: Political bullshitChris Higgins 2012-10-13 21:10
[quote name="ASG"]" But are you actually trying to claim the anti War Movements of the 60's 70's 90's and currently were right wing incarnations? To even suggest that they were even remotely bipartisan is humorous. "

Yeah those liberal hippies like Walter Cronkite, Paul Harvey and Billy Graham who all opposed the Vietnam War were a bunch of socialist commies.
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# RE: RE: RE: Political bullshitASG 2012-10-15 13:09
Quoting Chris Higgins:
Yeah those liberal hippies like Walter Cronkite, Paul Harvey and Billy Graham who all opposed the Vietnam War were a bunch of socialist commies.



After your rant about name calling, it should pointed out that the arogance and condesention you demonstrate is far more demonstrable than accurately tagging the far left's anti war anti military protests for what they are. The impact of which has caused gun shy politicians to micro manage all combat efforts in fear of inspiring another Weather Underground or OWS movement. Had you removed your head from your ass long enough to consider what I was discussing, Walter Cronkite, Paul Harvey and Billy Graham would not have been the first names to enter your ignorant mind. Instead you would have been left with names like Bill Ayers, Bernadine Dorn, Cindy Sheehan et al. My comments were based on historically provable facts and not partisanship, as it is undeniable that the Asscoiation of Young Conservatives were not present at Woodstock or waiting at airports to spit at brave soldiers returning from Viet Nam. They were not at Walter Reed Hospital in 2004 throwing bricks at people like me when I was released while holding a sign that read "Killing Babies for Oil is Unacceptable."

I'll continue to pray for your son, and I'll pray that he doesnt' have to return home to that kind of treatment. Had you actually served in Nam like you claimed you in fact would be more aware of the way Soldiers were treated in returning home. MY father who served in Nam has a nice scar on his face from a brick that struck him while "Walter Cronkite" (as you put it) was screaming baby killer as he returned from hell. But the emotional scars Soldiers have in facing Letist bottom feeders is far worse.
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# RE: RE: Political bullshitmikestevens 2012-10-16 18:56
warmonger.
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+4 # You need a history lesson from someone besides George W. BushDavid Kaelin 2012-10-14 18:44
Afghanistan has been conquered many times in the past one thousand years.

Genghis Khan, Tamerlane, Babur Khan, several Indian Princes, the Ghorids, the Ghaznavids, the Safavids.

If you are going to spout off, pls have at least one or two facts instead of G.W. Bush propaganda and lies or the plagiarized, re-tread lies of Obama and Company.

RIF ~ Reading is Fundamental
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+3 # RE: EOD dadChris Higgins 2012-10-13 17:17
Sorry David, but name calling based on political affiliation only contributes to the ongoing disfunction. This name calling prevents honest disagreements and productive lessons learned sessions. The letter above shows what happens when top leadership ignores advice traveling upward from the field. It has nothing to do with 'liberalism' or 'Conservatism' People who insist on applying these labels are less likely to accept ideas that conflict with their own dogma. One reason I enjoy Mr Yon's posts is that he refrains from political labels, he presents the facts as he sees them, labels his opinions as his own opinions and presents the logic behind his conclusions. He gives me tool to evaluate his conclusions and I can determine if I agree. I am a blue star dad. I have a vested interest military actions that place my only child and his comrades at risk. As the father of a platoon leader who recently completed a year in Afghanistan I find that Mr Yon's observations match the descriptions of activities I have heard from my son, his commanding officer (who has become a family friend), my son's colleagues and the stories I have heard from other bkue star parents.
As a veteran from 40 years ago in another conflict, I try to avoid using that status to add credence to any of my opinions. Most military members signed up to fulfill their duty, or as many of my friends from 40 years ago, did, to get the safest job possible to avoid being drafted into a dangerous job. (btw anyone with military experience knows this is an impossible task) Most of us do not consider ourselves military experts. Those that do consider themselves military experts most likely never saw a sucking chest wound.
Rather than parse through who is a coward and who is an idiot, I recommend we all take a step back and ask ourselves one question. What can we possibly accomplish in Afghanistan that we have not been able to accomplish in over 10 years? If you can answer that question to my satisfaction, I will support continued involvement over there. Otherwise, please bring our soldiers home. My son's commanding officer has been away at war for over half the life of his young children. Let's give him a chance to be a dad.
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+23 # WriterBing West 2012-10-10 14:49
Michael - your work is invaluable. S/F BING
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+27 # SFC (Ret) USAPaul B. Davis 2012-10-10 15:02
Michael,

This letter needs to be blasted out to all of the sources that could conduct an inquiry.

This sounds frightening at the very least and has been my assessment for a long time.

I felt the same regarding much of the war in Iraq when sending FA folks out to run combat patrols.

This guy knows his stuff and should be protected by several knowledgeable Congressmen. I would suggest forwarding your article and the COL's letter to the House Armed Services Committee. I would not even bother with the Senate where Lindsay Graham and are very busy trying to involve us in yet another cesspool (Syria).

Quite thought provoking and one of your better columns of recent. I also like you article last weekend.
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+14 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyMore Liberty 2012-10-10 15:18
Oh yes the "open door" policy, professed to be used by all leaders but when something of significant substance surfaces the brass gets infuriated as opposed to keeping an open mind. Thanks for posting this Yon. The Marine Corps isn't immune to such stupidity either. I recall shaking my head in amazement as an artillery battalion, in the spring of 2004, was tasked and given a BPT to operate as a provisional infantry unit in Iraq. They had three months to prepare/train stateside so what does the brass do....they task them to do artillery training while in CONUS.
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+13 # The BridgeLTC. Jeffrey Plants 2012-10-10 15:47
MIKE:
This is clearly some of your best work. And it is also an excellent example of how powerful this medium is. Let's not forget that the British have made sacrfices of thier own, but as you point out they can be sooooo..condese nding towards U.S. You have spoken of this particular bridge many times in your previous articles...a resonable person would have had thier guard-up, simply based on what you had written. I have enjoyed this article the best of what you have put togther in the last four years.
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+15 # Here we go again...Sun Tzu 2012-10-10 16:25
This letter to me smacks of a general court martial for all those in the chain of command facilitating this absoulute, unmitigated, criminal stupidity and political pandering at the cost of our troops lives :sad:

No wonder idiots and morons like the "Mouse Masher" are allowed to sully the good name of our military and our country :o

As said before, every general should be schooled in the Art of War doctrines, and a copy of AoW handed out to every troop with a follow-up knowledge test every Friday :-*

Our military seems to have lost it's way, AGAIN :-?
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+3 # Mr. (Former Marine)Christopher Cilley 2012-10-13 10:18
Seems as though we haven't learned the lessons we were taught in Viet Nam! Very true that the NCO's are the backbone for what needs to be done, but when the beaucrats are running things and assigning incopetent officers to command, how can we expect positive results. Our military hasn't lost it's way, they are being led astray!
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+1 # RE: Mr. (Former Marine)Maluka 2012-10-13 19:30
Christopher Cilley: excel comment. The problem with the troops in the field is the morons in DC. As with LBJ, McNamara and others in the 60's the problem now is the anti American Islamic Communist in the white house. My nephew was KIA in the sandbox two years when they requested arti to cover they butts. They were refused because they were too close to a residential area. Results: they were over run and 8 USA troops were killed. All due to obama's ROE. The maggots in DC start the wars and our young die fighting them. Oust this liberal anti American administration before it is too late. Signed, a pi$$ed off VETERAN.
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+6 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyBiff 2012-10-10 16:51
Meanwhile, former ISAF commander, General McChrystal, has settled into comfy billet at Yale. Presumably, he is instructing future State Department officials in sound strategy and tactics.
http://jackson.yale.edu/mcchrystal
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# RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyGary 2012-10-10 17:02
I read the first page of Colonel Tunnell's letter then attempted to download the entire PDF file to read. All I got was 8 blank pages. I have not had a problem in reading other PDF files. Is this my problem or do others get the same result?
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# RomarRomar 2012-10-10 17:40
Yes, I got the same thing: Adobe needed to install a font file before it would render the PDF. After downloading a Japanese font set from Adobe, the doc displayed fine.
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+2 # Converted Letteraustenlennnon 2012-10-11 17:19
I have converted this important letter and placed a link to the converted letter here. www.AustenLennon.co.uk/letter.html
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+9 # As a Brit I am embarassed but not surprisedCharles, Bath 2012-10-10 17:25
Michael

As a Brit it is embarassing to read of the incompetence of a senior British commander. I am not however really surprised. The British Army has always has its fair share of dimwits - the famous 'lions led by donkeys'.

I was surprised by the level of incompetence and muddle that you report.

However, poor execution of a mission does not make that mission wrong. I still think that the mission in Afghanistan has merit and that we should do everything possible to win.

Is it possible to expand on what the officer in the article means by 'people-centric ' doctrine? What does that actually mean in practical terms?
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+9 # NOT THE WHOLE PICTUREhippiepooter 2012-10-10 22:40
Michael said that this Colonel is saying what he's saying for a long time, but to me knowledge M.Y. has never said this about our British forces in Afghan.

I'm sorry to say, that I did always think M.Y was being on the generous side to us. The overall sense I get is of a considerable deterioration in our military nous and prowess.

Frankly, with the ROE that British, US and allied forces have to fight under, the only thing that would matter to me if I was serving (how much worse things would be if that was so!) would be getting home safely. With ROE that doesn't allow a soldier to fire upon the Taliban carrying a weapon if he's not using it, clearly the West has no political will to win this war.

Things looked up in Britain when we had a Defence Secretary, Liam Fox, who pointed out we're not in Afghanistan so girls can go to school, we're there to protect our security. While such things are a very welcome by-product of us doing so, its not why we're there.

Because we've got this back to front is why we're wasting precious life.
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+2 # RE: As a Brit I am embarassed but not surprisedSeadragonconquerer 2012-10-11 20:20
The British Empire could not defeat the Pashtun goathumpers. The Russian Empire could not defeat the Pashtun goathumpers. The American Empire will not defeat the Pashtun goathumpers. Long past time to leave this evil place. If it again becomes an international terrorist base, as is likely, just use the drones and other appropriate technology. In short, get out of the nation-building business. And stay out.
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+1 # RE: As a Brit I am embarassed but not surprisedKJKraemer 2012-10-12 15:56
"People Centric" means the well being of the Afghan civilians is the most important aspect of any mission. CRAZY.

Quoting Charles, Bath:
Michael

As a Brit it is embarassing to read of the incompetence of a senior British commander. I am not however really surprised. The British Army has always has its fair share of dimwits - the famous 'lions led by donkeys'.

I was surprised by the level of incompetence and muddle that you report.

However, poor execution of a mission does not make that mission wrong. I still think that the mission in Afghanistan has merit and that we should do everything possible to win.

Is it possible to expand on what the officer in the article means by 'people-centric' doctrine? What does that actually mean in practical terms?

Quoting Charles, Bath:
Michael

As a Brit it is embarassing to read of the incompetence of a senior British commander. I am not however really surprised. The British Army has always has its fair share of dimwits - the famous 'lions led by donkeys'.

I was surprised by the level of incompetence and muddle that you report.

However, poor execution of a mission does not make that mission wrong. I still think that the mission in Afghanistan has merit and that we should do everything possible to win.

Is it possible to expand on what the officer in the article means by 'people-centric' doctrine? What does that actually mean in practical terms?
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+4 # Stunning Letter!Barry Sheridan 2012-10-10 18:07
Michael, I see this letter is dated the 20th of August 2010, something that provokes the question, has nothing changed since these complaints were made. I feel you would say not, and to some extent that maybe so, although that really is more to do with the fact that Afghanistan, in particular the Pashtu element of its population, are culturally imbued with ideas that are to us medieval and not really conducive to the construction of a modern state.

In this its attitude and treatment of women stands out, though this pattern of backward behaviour is hardly restricted to just Afghanistan. That aside, I sense that what is really in the way are the centuries long influences that have inculcated casual acceptance of physical hardship and the role of fate, combinations that have stunted thought and inhibited social progress. However there are those who work for better, Afghans from all sides who have ideas for a life beyond the subsistence level. Unfortunately there are not enough of these educated souls, of these few, too many realise how hopeless it is and just want to escape to the outside world. Certainly the authors recognition of these problems, especially in the Pashtu dominated south cast doubt on the notion that Afghanistan can develop either socially or economically enough to becomes a viable member of the world community.

As for the suggestions of incompetence by British staff officers, well this connects to the ever present undercurrent of both anti-American sentiment and anti-British attitudes that have a place on both sides of the Atlantic. These complaints may have weight, but I have not experienced much of this amongst those whose bacon has been saved by freely given mutual assistance between what are old allies. Perhaps one of the major difficulties here is the role of politics in what is an unpopular war. In essence the aims were unrealistic given the size of Afghanistan and the small numbers of boots committed to the ground. I cannot escape the feeling that the niggling contained in this letter is more a reflection of this than anything else.
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+6 # Chimes with suspicions here in the UKCharles, Bath 2012-10-10 18:34
Michael

For years now in the UK we have seen a parade of politicians and senior military figures (who also seem like politicians these days) appearing on TV to tell us that all was well in Afghanistan. It was hard to believe them, and this letter suggests that we are right not to believe them.

To a non-military person like me, it seems utterly obvious that the feeble British force in Afghanistan had zero chance of controlling even a small area of the country.

There has been several excellent series on TV here in the UK (especially the ones by Ross Kemp) which have shown the tiny British forces seemingly making pointless occasional patrols through hostile territory. It was very clear that British forces were too small to do a good job and very unclear how these patrols were going to bring about victory.
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+5 # A Politically-Dri ven Military Disasterdfp21 2012-10-10 18:54
Obama’s “surge” of troops into Afghanistan was a foolish mistake, aggravated by Obama’s announcement that America would abandon Afghanistan at a fixed date.
The foolish mistake was to mix large numbers of Americans with Afghans on the ground, literally and figuratively bringing American soldiers “down to their level”, rather than maintaining the initial impression established in 2011 of limitless American power unleashed any time, at will. The fear is gone. This is a disaster.
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# RE: A Politically-Dri ven Military Disasterdfp21 2012-10-10 19:07
Quoting dfp21:
rather than maintaining the initial impression established in 2011 of limitless American power unleashed any time, at will.

Meant to say 2001, of course, not 2011.
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+5 # WOW, that hurts!Chris G 2012-10-10 19:12
The author of the letter had better watch his six... Obummer will be quietly ordering him to be dealt with like a certain SEAL team was...
Take copies of the full letter to your Senators and personally ask them to read it. Ditto local media, wherever you are. This needs to get around.
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+3 # Michael, what needs to change?Charles, Bath 2012-10-10 19:19
Michael

Your last group of posts have been the best from you for ages.

However, what we have heard is all pretty negative - it tells us what has gone wrong.

But what should we be doing instead? How should we be fighting this war? How can we win it?

I still say, God help America and the West if we cannot beat a very poorly equipped and small enemy like the Taliban. What will happen if we ever come up against a big and well armed enemy?
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# RE: Michael, what needs to change?Sun Tzu 2012-10-11 17:54
Quoting Charles, Bath:
Michael
But what should we be doing instead? How should we be fighting this war? How can we win it?
enemy?


See my comment on the Art of War, it was used against us in Vietnam, and if the NV generals had fully implemented it's principles during the TET offensive, the outcome would have been totally different. :o

We would have had our asses handed to us, and we would have had a major military and foriegn policy disaster as we watched on TeeVee :eek:
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+3 # Winning.MT 2012-10-11 22:25
Quoting Charles, Bath:

But what should we be doing instead? How should we be fighting this war? How can we win it?


There is no defined, achievable goal so there is no possibility of "winning". There will be a purchase of ammunition and equipment and the destruction of lives though but body counts and spending are not "winning".

It's actually kind of sad that the author doesn't get this either, he seems to be under the impression better tactics, training and equipment would achieve something. I'm sure they could secure some bases against constant attack, but WHY? What for? What strategy is being served by going around trying to shoot Taliban? All we do is _create_ more enemies, faster than we can kill them.

Either commit to genocide of the indiginous people and takeover of their land or leave, half-measures are all risk with no reward. I don't think we even got an oil pipeline out of this whole mess.
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# Not all wars have a definable endCharles, Bath 2012-10-14 11:57
The Cold War and the war in Northern Ireland never really had a definite end. They just sort of faded away. And even now there are still some people pursuing the so-called 'armed struggle' in Northern Ireland and we are still very much living with the consequences of the Cold War (which is also reviving to some degree with Russia).

How do you know we are creating more enemies than we are killing? I would say our policy of killing our enemies has been remarkably successful.

Winning in Afghanistan may simply involve hanging on until extremist Islam is no longer a serious threat. A really determined effort to change our tactics, equipment and numbers in Afghanistan may well provide a way to hang on at lower levels of casualties.

In my view if we leave now we will provide a major boost to radical Islam and a new safe haven will be created.

I also strongly doubt that we would ever have killed Bin Laden without a substantial presence in Afghanistan.
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# RE: Not all wars have a definable endMT 2012-10-15 20:35
That doesn't seem right, the Cold War ended very definitively with a coup d'etat in Moscow and the Troubles ended with the Good Friday agreement. A few lone criminal groups in Ireland do not a Troubles make.

I think you should read a book about Vietnam, I'm currently reading Karl Marlantes book on the subject. That should tell you what you need to know about using body count as an objective.

What do you think of the families of the indigenous people who are killed by American strikes? Do you think they are grateful for losing their brothers and sisters, husbands and wives, children and parents? Or do you think that those left behind might be interested in Justice or Revenge? What would you do if your Father or Brother were killed by a foreigner, would you expect these people to be any different?

Your belief that there can be a winning or that we are at war with extremism or with Islam or that Islam is a threat is the product of sustained propaganda over the last decade or more and is not related to reality in any way. Basing decisions on propaganda and feeding it back into the system only causes nonsense decision making. Don't eat your own BS.

What would you do if Iran set up bases in the US and was running armed excursions into our cities and homes? How would you feel about your neighbors being killed on their drive to work, in their homes and churches for expressing anti-Iranian sentiment. Does that seem right to you? Is that how you want the world to work? Why should the Iraqis, Afghanis, Pakistanis, Iranians, etc. tolerate such things?

Our civilians were attacked, once, by a group of criminals who don't even exist anymore. What is the goal anymore? To kill Muslims? To kill anyone who doesn't bow down to the whim of US policies? The shoe will eventually be on the other foot, are we demonstrating to others how we wish to be treated?

I do agree that in another alternate history OBL wouldn't have been killed but would have instead been captured and brought to Justice. Too bad we don't live in that world.
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+1 # logical fallacy againJohn_G 2012-10-16 00:32
"...we are at war with extremism or with Islam or that Islam is a threat..."

Maybe flip on over to Memritv.org and find out what the Jihadis have to say about that. We can say "we're not at war with Islam" to our hearts content, and yet it's irrelevant, it's not what they think, and they're the ones strapping on the bombs.

"What would you do if your Father or Brother were killed by a foreigner, would you expect these people to be any different?"

The NAZIs and Japanese didn't love our killing their brothers and fathers either, this is a bogus argument. As if we could just find a way to kill people and they would like it! Maybe if we do more sensitivity training and grovel a little more around the Koran, maybe then the Jihadis will start appreciating us killing them!
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-14 # ErDarren Stewart 2012-10-10 21:40
OK, so let me gather my thoughts here. This letter slates UK forces and declares only the rotary and medical staff are prtofessional. The rest have a bucket of shit thrown over them.
I think Michael you personally should have thought carefully about actually publishing this letter. I'm not against critique or pointing out failure, or error and some of the contents of the letter have value and lessons beyond the letter have failed to be learned for 9 years on all sides.
I do not regard this letter as a fair rebuke, or a fair assessment of many men and women on the ground who are not leading officers, and who day in day out do astonishing work.
Further, the bulk of this Afganistan mess is US in nature - so throwing buckets of shit over more junior members of a wide coalition does what? Apart from seeding bad feeling, and feeding the Taliban propaganda props.
I understand the war goes ill. I understand some dark aspects to it, and many failures. But I really would ask that in your eagerness to show a public face to bad things that you don't just tip into being a propaganda feeding frenzy for the enemy.
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+5 # Get some larnin on the subjectSun Tzu 2012-10-11 18:18
Michael is trying to educate us all on the realities of our present military lack of intelligence and logic. :o

He has repeatedly called a spade a, spade, and duck, a duck, no varnishing of the facts or the truth here 8)

If you disagree with his reportage, then so be it, but I would look at the number of negatives your comments have received as indication of your failure to comprehend the facts of the colonels letter and the grave implications therein. :-?

If the facts bother you so much then maybe you should seek other venues for solace and a KUMBYAH feeling, which you will not find here :-*

Shalom
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+7 # um.. yepRoss Elder 2012-10-10 23:34
That is all I really have to say about this letter. (well, other than it is improperly formatted for a personal letter to SecArmy lol)

But, to everything this Colonel wrote... um.. yep. Saw every bit of it and more while I was there, which was 2 years after this letter which only shows it had no impact on how big army is managing the war. I've hinted at it in a few of my articles, but its still too early for me to spill too many beans at one time hahaha
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+7 # RE: Darren StewartTJ 2012-10-11 08:05
He was not throwing buckets of shit on our allies or those working over there. It clearly labels exactly who is responsible for what and the issues at hand. Get your thong out of your butt and calm down. This is not a letter bashing anything except leadership in various roles. And its spot on. No military is perfect and it never will be. The Taliban will feed on whatever it feels like and this information is not hidden or secret so I don't see how you think this posting is going to tip the scale and the Taliban will somehow conquer the world? If you really "know"... then you would not be making those comments.
Michael... keep up the great work.
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+5 # The worse is yet to comeBlain 2012-10-11 08:07
I don't think anyone doubts that Afghanistan will end badly for us. Even if Mtt Romney is elected we are too far down the road of defeat to salvage this. There are also bigger fish to fry,

Michael and Bing, thank you both for speaking up for our troops.

At some point someone will need to write a book about what happened to the US military between Iraq and Afghanistan. At first glance it was a failure of leadership - presidential leadership definitely but also our general officers. Did they learn nothing from H R McMaster's Dereliction of Duty? Petraeus looks bad. Instead of taking a payoff for Obama with the CIA post he should have resigned - the same for McChrystal and John Allen. Have they no honor?
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+4 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyHeath 2012-10-11 08:17
I could not sleep after reading this letter. I went outside on the porch then read the letter this time entirely in American Sign Language. I visualized the empty road as that bridge and my eyes were opened further as I read the letter and after I got done reading & visualizing things. I got on my knees and prayed for the U.S. Troops and Coalition troops. I am praying for Colonel Tunnell to be promoted and to have free reins for his fighting 82nd Airborne to go after the enemy. Those who tried to threaten to demote Colonel Tunnell for doing his job as a military officer, those people should be kicked out of political office as well any military officer be kicked out for stopping Colonel Tunnell from doing his job. Thank you to Colonel Tunnell and the 82nd Airborne for staying in the fight despite these setbacks. Please know that all of you are in my prayers. My grandfather served with the 82nd Airborne during WW 2. I am glad there are fighting leaders ready to lead fighting men into battle.
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+1 # Thank you and a correctionBlake Selesnew 2012-10-19 04:43
Thank you for your kind comments of our great Brigade Commander COL Tunnell. I severed with him during our deployment to RC-South, in Kandahar, Helmand and Zabul provinces in 2009-2010. I was just making a comment that he was the Brigade Commander of the 5th Brigade 2nd Infantry Division Stryker Brigade Combat Team (5-2 ID (SBCT) and not the 82nd ABN. The 82nd took over our operations in the Argandab District about mid way through our deployment. Just wanted to clear that up because everyone has forgotten about our BDE since it got disbanded and re flagged to 2-2 ID (SBCT), thanks again for your kind words.
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+1 # squidGary Scott 2012-10-24 17:33
I think you're right on, Heath and thank you for continued prayer. I did four VN tours and have a son who is a disabled specops vet.
Lyndon Johnson, Robert McNamara, their patsies, both civilian and military; and their political successors in this era, are failing to do anything worthwhile, and they are criminally responsible for the death and maiming of so many good people. Leave goats to the goats.
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+3 # Letter to Sec of ArmyDJSM 2012-10-11 10:31
Interesting views from the Colonel. Someone somewhere must think Lt General (as he now is) Carter is good at his job. Let hope so as he is one of the architects of the remodelled British Army.

The letter is somewhat of a rant but merely serves to describe the different political direction, approaches and cultures of the various nations and their armed forces that make up the NATO coalition. Is the American army and its chain of command that perfect?

I suspect the military's actions are heavily influenced by their political masters.

History shows us that insurgency on the North West Frontier can never be defeated absolutely. It can only be contained and surpressed for a period of time. After which it will rear its ugly head and return. The British fought 3 wars in Afghanistan during their time in India. After each one they had to go back sometime later and bang heads together.

The war has become too politicised, controlled by politicians who only care for public option ratings the votes of their electorate. Doing the right thing militarily is no longer an option. It is time to cut and run.
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+1 # Somewhat of a Rant?Sun Tzu 2012-10-11 18:57
Please explain to all of us sir, how Col. Tunnels factual and line by line dissection of the sickness that pervades our present military structure, is an "extravagant, or violent declamation" :-?

I see none of that, please point it out, so all us can understand the new definition you ascribe, to the word, RANT :o

Otherwise your comments are relatively spot on 8)
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+4 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyASG 2012-10-11 12:45
God bless Col Tunnell, at least he tried. I wonder how many of colleagues just sit back and accept this type of insanity rather than take a stand for fear of repercussions. I kept noticing the "Open Door Policy" mentioned by the Colonel, I am sure this DC degenerate made a phony appeal like this when they met, and as soon as the Colonel attempted it he was summarily demonized by a bunch of Chicken Hawks in DC with their soft delicate handshakes.

Bring them home or get out of their way and let them do their jobs. This Obama philosophy of Leading From Behind just doesn't make sense. Canadian Military is ordering US troops??? It turns my stomach and makes me thank God I was smart enough to not re-up after my tour. One was enough for me, I saw enough of this crap, but it sure as hell wasn't this demented.

Once again thank you and God Bless you Michael for the amazing work you do.
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+3 # Saudi Arabia and Northern Ireland may point the wayCharles, Bath 2012-10-11 13:09
I still argue that the West cannot leave Afghanistan now without a terrible loss of prestige. It will encourage our enemies to attack us in future. They will say "the West couldn't even beat the Taliban, they are weak and frightened, we can hit them".

We should only leave Afghanistan either when we have won or when it no longer matters.

There are some parallels with the American presence in Saudi Arabia. Remember that for years this was a high profile presence and a source of terrorism. However, after 9/11 and the Iraq war, it became irrelevant and nobody really even noticed when US troops left in 2003. It was a total non-event. No-one say it as a US defeat.

That too may be possible in Afghanistan. Ten years from now, or 20, nobody may care anymore that the US is leaving Afghanistan. The global terrorist threat may have died down.

And I would still argue that the way that the British smothered the IRA with roadblocks, observation posts, electronic surveillance, informers and sheer time, may provide a way to weaken the Taliban. Remember, the IRA was never reduced to zero activity, only to a level which made their military victory impossible. Eventually they saw that and have given up the military option.
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+2 # RE: Saudi Arabia and Northern Ireland may point the wayASG 2012-10-11 13:53
Charles- Our International standing does not supercede the lives of our finest oung men and women who have been abandoned by the current leadership in DC. It would be one thing if they were allowed to at least defend themselves but this letter is just one more example of the absolute lack of leadership is running the show. There was a story in the USA Today of all places just about a week ago about a Brittish officer reporting that they were ordered not to shoot at enemy combatants planting mines because the gunfire might disturb the population.

I agree with you that victory would be great. And that leaving now would put our country in a bad position globally, but under the circumstances, one more death of US personel is unacceptable.
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+3 # But what about future casualties?Charles, Bath 2012-10-11 14:18
I suspect that leaving now may cause greater casualties in the future.

It really sticks in my mind that Bin Laden and others were partly motivated to do 9/11 because of the apparent 'success' of the Beirut marine barracks bombing, the Black Hawk Down attack and the embassy bombings. They both got away with hitting America and America withdrew.

What happens if China or others decides America is a soft target? Could we end up encouraging someone to make a much bigger attack on the West if they feel that they can make us retreat?
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+3 # RE: But what about future casualties?ASG 2012-10-11 14:33
But the part you are missing is how puffed out their chests are as they hammer us in their own land. Look, I cringe at the idea of retreat just as much as you. But we can't continue to be target practie for the Taliban while our own POTUS is sitting across a table from Taliban leadership and negotiating.

I was in Iraq from 2002-2005. We received orders that we were not allowed to load our weapons while out on patrol until we were fired upon and only if we feared our lives were in danger. Even then, we only had a clip or two each on us. Our air support was spot on in those days so usually two clips were enough. But the idea that we had to wait until one of our firends was shot and most likely dead before we could defend ourselves in a war zone was horrific.

From everything I read over the last 4 years, it has gotten worse. Soldiers are dieing and they don't even have a chance to fight back. We all know, that our military and the men and women serving in it our the best in the world and can defeat anyone and aything. We have a better chance of doing so however outside of the military. Strengthen our 2nd Amendment rights, bring the troops home and bypass completely the US uper echelon especially DC. DC lost the war in Viet Nam, and they are doing it all over again. The saddest part, even if we vote the current incompetants out in Nov, the replacement isn't going to be much better. It will be 8 years minumum until we could possibly have leadership capable of accomplishing something other than getting us killed. We're on our own.
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+1 # Logically we should be able to winCharles, Bath 2012-10-11 15:10
The West contains perhaps 500 million people with troops that are in Afghanistan. And all those Western countries are far richer than Afghanistan.

And we are trying to control or defeat, what, 3 million dirt poor people in southern Afghanistan? And only a proportion of those will be active Taliban - you can rule out the very young, the very old and most women.

And we are doing it in terrain that in many ways plays to our technology.

There is something going very, very wrong when we cannot find a way to win in that scenario.

In addition, if we cannot force our politicians and our senior military to make the changes necessary to win, then something else is also very wrong in our political system and with our people.

How can it be that the people tolerate this stinking failure for year after year, and the pointless loss of lives and limbs that go with it?
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# What do you think we could do?Charles, Bath 2012-10-11 15:12
Given you experience, what do you think we should be doing in Afghanistan? In order to win that is.

To me it seems to be both a massive lack of resources (certainly our British force of 10,000 is hopelessly small) and also dud tactics. I have never seen how periodic patrols were going to achieve anything.

What do you think?
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+3 # RE: What do you think we could do?ASG 2012-10-11 15:44
But if you want to know how we could have won, we need to first stop pretending there is such a thing as a "Moderate" or "Secularist" version of Islam. Islam is and of itself is an extreme ideology. This chorus of placating political correctness that says we have to proclaim that "not all Muslims want us dead" is the problem. They might not want us all dead, some want us to be their slaves. They call it Dhimmi. They have successfully used our own political correctness against us. It is their most effeective weapon. Our over concern for civilian casualties has cost our own lives. Now I understand the philosophy here, no one wants innocents to die, but at the same time the saying used to be "War is Hell", and the hell wsa supposed to be brought to them. The hearts and minds strategy is almost as bad as the counter insurgency strategy mentioned in the Colonels letter. It all in all has allowed as the Colonel states, the ability for the enemy to hide amongst the civiian population. And the cowards in charge forbid fighting in that situation.

We could have ended this 6 or more years ago by using the same strategy they used to kill bin Laden. Small Spec Ops operations that target the bad guys go in do your job and get out.
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+4 # Will the West ever win another war?Charles, Bath 2012-10-11 15:14
Sometimes you wonder if the West will ever win another war.

American might win another war, but I think that most, if not all, of European countries have really given up on the whole idea of fighting and winning.

Perhaps they should just get rid of their militaries and save the money.
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+6 # RE: Will the West ever win another war?ASG 2012-10-11 15:36
When you look at everything in our current political structure it becomes more clear. You have the left, that almost since day one have been protesting our efforts both in Afghanastan and Iraq. We were never meant to defeat the country of Afghanastan, we were supposed to liberate it from the Taliban and al Qaeda. Iraq was a different story since it was primarily their government that was the issue.

We have evidenc of hih level beuraucrats with significant ties to the very enemies we are trying to defeat. The Muslim Brotherhood is a parent organization to several terror groups including al Qaeda and the Mujahadeen, the later has now morphed into the Taliba. When the Secretary of State's top aid is the daughter of a man who essentially authored the current MB charter, and then her Mother is still a current member, her brother was a coconspirator in the Holly Land Foundation Trial, and she herself was the editor in chief of their primary propaganda publication and fundraiser, and all allegations are dismissed as a "Witch Hunt", it all starts making at least a little sense.

The MB's oal in North America was to infiltrate our Government and influence their policies from within. Check! They started that mission 40 years ago. When both sides of the aisle, a war hero like McCain even takes their side, you see what we are up against. This is why the establishment Republicans fought the TEA Party so hard, they weren't in on it.

Unfortunately at this point it may not be an option to do what needs to be done, because the guys on the ground and the guys in DC had two different reasons for engaging in Afghanastan. Soldiers do it because we believe in the Propaganda behind the mission. That if you kill 3000 of our people, we will make you pay. But DC sees it differnetly. And they will tell you they don't. But when it comes down to it, all they want is their name in the History books. Tey look at their privaledged intel and pick a side and hope they fall on the winning side. Islam has over a Billion people world wide, so some tried to play the Vegas odds and bet against us.
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+1 # RE: But what about future casualties?Heath 2012-10-11 15:53
Quoting Charles, Bath:
I suspect that leaving now may cause greater casualties in the future.

It really sticks in my mind that Bin Laden and others were partly motivated to do 9/11 because of the apparent 'success' of the Beirut marine barracks bombing, the Black Hawk Down attack and the embassy bombings. They both got away with hitting America and America withdrew.

What happens if China or others decides America is a soft target? Could we end up encouraging someone to make a much bigger attack on the West if they feel that they can make us retreat?


Exactly, I did not know how to put it into words. I had the picture of many concerns in my head about pre-9/11 then now after Sept. 11th.
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+2 # RE: RE: But what about future casualties?ASG 2012-10-11 16:05
Quoting Heath:
[quote name="Charles, Bath"]I suspect that leaving now may cause greater casualties in the future.

It really sticks in my mind that Bin Laden and others were partly motivated to do 9/11 because of the apparent 'success' of the Beirut marine barracks bombing, the Black Hawk Down attack and the embassy bombings. They both got away with hitting America and America withdrew.

What happens if China or others decides America is a soft target? Could we end up encouraging someone to make a much bigger attack on the West if they feel that they can make us retreat?


As sad and as difficult as it is to hear it, currently, the United States is a soft target right now. We are $16,000,000,000 ,000.00 in debt. We are dependant on everybody but our selves for fuel. We can't even guard a consulate building. The US left in particular does not have the stomach for war. If China were to actually attack our mainland, I am sure Codepink or Media Matters or Alternet would be out protesting against any US effort to fight back. Our government is crawling with covert Muslim Brotherhood operatives. The last thing we have left is the spirit of our average people and the ability to arm ourselves and protect our families.
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# WowStephenP Jones 2012-10-11 14:21
Thank you so much for posting this. Amazing, and sad. I really hope the best for our troops, but I know that our casualty numbers keep going up and up over the last four years.

I've read for the last few years but never contributed, but this is really extraordinary so I'm going to change that. Best to you Michael.
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+3 # is anyone surprised?MYFan 2012-10-11 16:10
This was Obama's goal all along, to sabotage our war efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. He has already accomplished that in Iraq and thrown away everything that the blood of our troops had gained. And he is doing it in Afghanistan, a little at a time. But the Coup de Grâce was removing Gen. Petraeus. Leaving him in place assured a good chance of achieving our goal. Removing him guaranteed the opposite. And removing him took him out of the loop that would have enabled him to have a say in what happened in Iraq. Petraeus had to be removed before both of Obama's goals could be realized.
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+8 # Accurate and trueSGT K 2012-10-11 16:27
Being deployed with task force Stryker from 09-10 I am forced to relive many experiences that are spoke of in this letter. They are deadly accurate! There were many times when things just didn't make sense to us and all we were told was that it was coming from higer. Missions that didnt have a proper and adequate resupply plan were still carried out because that's what higher wanted and directed. One of the hardest things for us to get over was the fact that we weren't aloud to occupy the road when civilian traffic was present. We were, at times, forced to pull over and let them pass putting ourselves at danger just to protect the civilian populace. To this day it still boggles my mind how one civilan casualty seems to be more of an issue that an entire Stryker vehicle with brave men being lost.
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# shuddersquid 2012-10-24 17:57
shades of Vietnam
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+5 # Somewhere....CJ 2012-10-11 17:18
Gen. Patton rolls over in his grave.

We have sooooo lost the courage for war.
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+3 # PattonCharles, Bath 2012-10-11 17:27
"And that's why America will never lose a war, because the very idea of losing is hateful to Americans."

General George S Patton
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+2 # Conversion of letteraustenlennnon 2012-10-11 17:20
For those who can't read the PDF.

I have converted this important letter and placed a link to the converted letter here. www.AustenLennon.co.uk/letter.html
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+12 # Gold Star MotherJill 2012-10-11 17:29
My son was wounded (and died eight days later) in southern Afghanistan in July of 2009. This is not the first time I have felt unbelievably sick to my stomach that my only child did not die at the hand of the enemy, but rather by the very issues described in this letter. When is enough going to be enough? Thank you Michael for continuing to bring attention to these important issues. God willing it will save lives and heartache.
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+2 # Thank youCharles, Bath 2012-10-11 17:52
For what it's worth, millions of people here in the UK are deeply grateful for what our troops (and by that I mean all Western troops, including US troops of course) are struggling to do in Afghanistan.

God bless everyone of those wonderful men and women and their families.
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+2 # RE: Thank youASG 2012-10-11 18:00
I was hanging out with a bunch of SAS guys in Iraq. Although a bit crazy, they are among the best in the world. I also hold admiration for your Prince who despite his wealth and fame still opted to serve and deploy twice. Just remember, it's the leadership in either London or Washington DC, not the guys and leaders on the ground. Politics will always get in the way of doing what is right.
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+1 # RE: RE: Thank youHeath 2012-10-12 11:04
Quoting ASG:
I was hanging out with a bunch of SAS guys in Iraq. Although a bit crazy, they are among the best in the world. I also hold admiration for your Prince who despite his wealth and fame still opted to serve and deploy twice. Just remember, it's the leadership in either London or Washington DC, not the guys and leaders on the ground. Politics will always get in the way of doing what is right.


Amen.
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+3 # God Bless You JillSun Tzu 2012-10-11 18:31
There is no greater loss that of your child, as a parent we live with that shadowed fear from the day they are born until the day we leave this earth :sad:

My your grief grow softer with time and your loving pride stronger :sigh:

Peace be unto you and yours :-)
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+3 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the Armyannie 2012-10-11 17:50
It's the enemy within that is killing us. But then we don't seem to be smart enough any more to see who our real enemies are. God help our Military because our present Government is not. Where does the buck stop people....wait. ..the one in charge never takes credit for things gone terrible wrong....He blames everybody else in the world. This is trickle down destruction of our Nation and that includes our Military. Stop blaming middle men who have become nothing more than puppets of the State now days. The truth hurts but we have to face it....and I hope like heck this situation can be turned around come November....but it's hard as heck to rid yourself of a dictator once he has taken over pretty much every institution in a country. Stop trying to put bandaids on the situation and start stomping out the disease.
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# the buck stops heresquid 2012-10-24 18:08
Truman meant it. But the incumbent says, after Hillary did mea culpa for the security failure at Bengazi, "I'm the Commander in Chief, so I'm responsible..." ummmm, seemed to lack sincerity. In fact, if the leaders who are so powerfully indicted in this article and series on comments, could actually overcome their narcissism and do their DUTY, much of this might have been prevented, and we might have a better hope for future outcomes.
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+1 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyGenie 2012-10-11 19:00
God bless you, Michael Yon. ♥
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+1 # Gold Star MotherTraci Wilberger 2012-10-11 19:29
Jill, I am so, so desperately sorry to hear of the loss of your son. I am not from a military family, but not long after 9/11 I got involved in any way I could to show my support and appreciation to our military. I thought....how would I feel if my boys were there? Your pain touches me deeply. Your attitude shows the honor and courage you possess, I am sure your son had the same qualities. There are no words...except to say you inspire me to keep involved and show my appreciation and thankfulness in any way that I am blessed.
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+2 # Politics asideThomas Dikel 2012-10-11 20:26
All politics aside, this letter is of deadly importance. Thank you Michael for acquiring and disseminating it. I will try to spread it where I can also. Outstanding work.
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+2 # Col Great Big CojonesSun Tzu 2012-10-11 20:46
Don't know if everyone here has really caught the impact of what Col Tunnel did with this letter, unless you spent sometime inside the military industrial complex :-?

This type of letter written on DoA letterhead as an "official memorandum", is a death sentence to anyone's career on the "inside", civilian or military :-*

Only pure desperation brought on by patriotic fervor and/or love of fellow man, would drive a career officer, with a possible bright future, to write such a damning letter to the second highest civilian officer in his chain of command, next to POTUS :-?

To call this "Memorandum" sicking, does not begin to describe just how foul the points he makes really are in my mind and the far reaching disastrous repercussions that have resulted in AfPak. :eek:

But there are more issues here at play than just the inane criminal ineptness of the current military structure in AfPak and the Middle East as a whole, much more, military industrial complex geo-political strategies are at work here :o

It is that factor, which holds the reins of power on these issues, and is part and partial to blame for the cluster f**k that has become our Middle Eastern foreign policy, been there, done that, got the T-Shirts :-?

This comment is not an indictment of the MIC, far from it, we need it and will always need it as long as humans continue to act like barbarians and attempt to use fear, murder, and torture as international stepping stones to power and wealth(that is what this really all about, not some medieval ideology), rather this is an indictment of the elected officials who are supposed to be watching the hen house but have let the foxes in to run the place through political kickbacks and "favors" from MIC Lobbyists and PAC's :eek:

Has anyone taken the time to search the web and see how many MIC contractors have Political Action Committees :-?

What do you think these folks in these MIC PACs do, sit around all day smoking fat cigars drinking brandy, while thinking up ways to save the taxpayers money? Really :-?

NOT? They out there in the Beltway with their sexy offices and sexy secretaries, running around wining and dining committee chairpersons and influential politicians, for said politicians vote, for more MONEY, period!

Now tell me again who controls our foreign policy :-*

EOL
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+2 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyPD Quig 2012-10-11 21:49
I was going to say that MajGen Carter was a complete idiot, but then read where Tunnel said that Carter made disparaging comments about Pelosi in public...

So, the guy can't be all bad.
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-2 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyMT 2012-10-11 22:32
Quoting ASG:
That if you kill 3000 of our people, we will make you pay.


Make _who_ pay, the perpetrators, many of who died in the attack, or do we just randomly start killing people who can't effectively fight back? How many people do we need to kill to feel better, to feel like we've been paid?

We even assassinated OBL rather than caputure him and put him on trial, trial which is demanded by our Constitution and which was afforded to much greater monsters such as Goering. That we treated OBL with less humanity than Goering says more about us then about them.
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+1 # RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyPD Quig 2012-10-11 23:46
Goering was tried by military tribunal. Not in our courts--and certainly not as per any constitutional requirement. It's okay to be pacifist--or antiwar--but let's keep the facts straight.
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-1 # RE: RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyDavid Kaelin 2012-10-15 13:18
YEs, it is ok to be pacifist as long as there exist others willing to protect the pacifist.

Pacifism is at it's core cowardice.
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+1 # RE: RE: RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyMT 2012-10-15 19:42
Pacifism requires integrity, discipline and superior testicular fortitude.

I find that violent over-reaction is generally a trait of the fearful, of cowards. The strong can stand up to their fear and think rationally, cowards piss their pants and attack anything that frightens them.
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+4 # Could you BE any more naive?Charles, Bath 2012-10-12 11:17
I suggest you go back to signing KumBayYah!

Listen, anytime you want to go out and arrest a member of Al-Qaeda, please volunteer. Or is it only other people who should have to risk and lose their lives to satisfy your moral sensibilities?
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# RE: Could you BE any more naive?MT 2012-10-15 19:46
Are you staying that the troops aren't risking their lives now?
That's hard to reconcile with the over 7000 American troops dead and the over 100,000-200,000 indigenous peoples killed.

How many people have to die to satisfy your "morals"?
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-3 # RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyASG 2012-10-12 12:32
Make _who_ pay, the perpetrators, many of who died in the attack, or do we just randomly start killing people who can't effectively fight back? How many people do we need to kill to feel better, to feel like we've been paid?

We even assassinated OBL rather than caputure him and put him on trial, trial which is demanded by our Constitution and which was afforded to much greater monsters such as Goering. That we treated OBL with less humanity than Goering says more about us then about them.


Make who pay? So are you saying that only the men who physicaly highjacked the planes are involved here? Now this is the correct forum to educate you on the inner workings and philosophy behind what our enemy calls "Jihad" and judging by your comment I doubt you would be able to comprehend it anyways. I'll just say that there are people who follow an extreme dogma that want you dead. We don't need to commit genocide, but we do need to dismantle institutions like al Qaeda and the Taliban that fire up an entire populous to want genocide of us.

And by the way, when did you grant US citizenship to Osama bin Laden. why would we be obligated Constitutional to do anything regarding Constitutional rights to a foreign enemey? Where in the founding documents are Middle Eastern Terrorists granted Habius Corpus rights? This has to be the dumbest thing I ever read.

Now I agree, that issuing a kill order on an old Dialysis patient whose entire life has revolved around the ideology of martyrdom was not the best justice we could issue to him. But hummanity? Are you feeling ok?
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# RE: RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyMT 2012-10-15 19:55
You apparently aren't an American. The American Constitution, the Bill of Rights, etc. are great guidelines for a minimum standard of legal and ethical behavior. They are something to live up to and be worthy of, not an obstacle to get around.

I am saddened by how many people no longer believe in the Constitution or in America (Land of the Free, Home of the Brave) anymore. Building a police state and pissing yourself over a bunch of clowns like Al-Qaeda is neither Free nor Brave.
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+1 # RE: RE: RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyASG 2012-10-16 13:12
MT- With all due respect I like your enthusaism about the US Constitution but logicaly speaking it has never nor was it ever intended to extend across the globe or especially to our enemies. The Constitution is meant to protect American Citizens, and until Liberals succeed in establishing a one world government that's just how it is. The Un-Americanism being displayed is you wanting to extend the Constitution of the United States of America to Terrorists half way around the World who follow the rules of Islam known as Sharia, and would piss on that Constitution if given the chance. Nor have they ever extended Constitutional rights to any of the Millions of victims they have killed, captured, raped, tortured and murdered.
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+1 # RE: RE: RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyASG 2012-10-16 13:17
What is un-American however is accusing someone you disagree with of being un-American. Apparently you love the Constitution minus that pesky First Amendment.

Also your understanding of the Document is comparable to the levvel of a third grader. It is not a "guideline for a minimum standard of legal and ethical behavior". They are the unalienable rights gaurenteed to US citizens and protected by our government. Not World Wide Law or code.
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+3 # RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyGene 2012-10-12 22:01
Quoting MT:
Quoting ASG:
That if you kill 3000 of our people, we will make you pay.


Make _who_ pay, the perpetrators, many of who died in the attack, or do we just randomly start killing people who can't effectively fight back? How many people do we need to kill to feel better, to feel like we've been paid?

We even assassinated OBL rather than caputure him and put him on trial, trial which is demanded by our Constitution and which was afforded to much greater monsters such as Goering. That we treated OBL with less humanity than Goering says more about us then about them.

Trial, my ass. The only reason to capture prisoners is for battlefield intel. Once that is extracted, end them.

In this game the most committed wins.

"Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." (G. Patton)
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# RE: RE: RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyMT 2012-10-15 20:06
I don't know how you think the world works but I certainly don't want to live in whatever nihilistic "Mad Max" hell-scape fantasy world you seem to live in. What you describe is not America and trying to quote Patton would be an embarrassment if he saw it.
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+3 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyGene 2012-10-12 21:53
Last I heard Col Tunnel had been reassigned to riding a desk in Fort Knox. And WTF is being "too lethal" supposed to mean? Is combat now only supposed to be semi-lethal? Is that like being a little bit pregnant?

I have a real problem (since 1963) with politicians (civilian or military) screwing around trying to be nice guys. If you're not in it to win it, then don't get in the fight to start with!
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+3 # Re: COL TunnellBeth 2012-10-12 22:23
http://mobile.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/foreigners/2012/06/the_war_in_afghanistan_and_harry_tunnell_s_stryker_battalion.html

Here's a different perspective on COL Tunnell
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+2 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyJAQUEBAUER 2012-10-13 08:12
Hell, our enemies can stay home and smoke their camel dung--the incompetence of IFOR will destroy itself. The US has not overwhelmingly won a major war since WW2. And we seem to have great and powerful weapons but weak and incompetent Leadership--fro m CIC down.
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+2 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyLCDR J-P 2012-10-14 02:58
Loved Strongest Tribe - Michael, keep up the good work!
V/r
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+1 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyASG 2012-10-16 19:15
Quoting mikestevens:
warmonger.



Dhimmi
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# Is this just too damned simple?Bob T Guy 2012-10-17 02:33
Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge,Afghans who were in charge of securing this bridge!
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+1 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyRob Lane 2012-10-28 02:16
A few years back I read the book "The Only Thing Worth Dying For..ODA 534 and their operations with the Northern Alliance and their success in dealing with the Insurgents. I remember there was a suggestion made that Afghanistan be fought as for what it was a guerilla war and be fought by our
Special operation people . This purely second guessing true but Michael the war grinds on and young
Americans are dying as I write this. It's been said America doesn't know how to win a Guerilla war .
After watching how the Seals, Delta force, the Green Beret and Rangers work together I find it
hard to believe.
b
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+1 # RE: Stunning Letter: Infantry Colonel Communiqué to Secretary of the ArmyPopsiq 2012-10-31 02:04
So what? Tunnell was probably as 'right' as anybody else.

The proof? That when the brass conned Obama into a 'kaiserschlacht ' to break the insurgency for once and for all. It, too, fell flat on its duff - with the prognosticating 'honchos' heading for retirement packages and big jobs in other aspects of the 'defense industry'.

The Surge laboured and brought forth a litter of mice, even given free rein to all the 'new blood', new 'focus' and 'kinetics' Tunnell claimed to be missing.

No Brits or wandering Canuck swains to blame for another great failure to thrive.
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# MSG, USA (ret)Mark Szyman 2012-11-05 19:15
After reading this letter I sure don't want any of my 3 Infantry sons deploying to Afghanistan.
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