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May 14, 2004

The Frogs Are Slowly Cooking

The US Military is pushing further and further into "forbidden" holy areas in Najaf.

But slowwwwwwly.

They seem to have done the same thing in Karbala.

Is this the new tactic? Rather than storm in from the get-go -- which might set the crazies off -- just keep going a little bit further each time, so that the crazies accomodate themselves to the new reality bit by bit without going berserk?

Dave offers:

Actually, it's standard U.S. urban warfare doctrine, developed after watching the Russians get butchered in Grozny.
-- Cordon off the urban area, no one gets in or out w/o US permission
-- Let out civilians to get them out of harms way, and obtain valuable intelligence
-- Launch quick raids using combined arms at known targets, avoiding the "block by block" slugfest that, while satisfying to watch, can result in lots of fatigue, attrition, and collateral damage.

Such a deliberate process allows us to dictate the terms of the fight by playing to our strengths (intel integration, precision weaponry, and good ISR) and avoiding the enemy's strengths (ability to blend in, harness the media exploitation of casualties and collateral damage, and their general penchant for intimidation through savagery).

The problem is, these methodical tactics are slow, and may or may not pay off (witness Fallujah, where the Marines did it for weeks, until. . . they suddenly stopped doing it, at least publically). I trust our guys know what they're doing, but these tactics require patience-- patience a lot of politicians, let alone our militarily-ignorant media-- don't always seem to have.


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posted by Ace at 06:39 PM

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