It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Hold fire, earn a medal

page: 1
3

log in

join
share:

posted on May, 11 2010 @ 06:06 PM
link   

U.S. troops in Afghanistan could soon be awarded a medal for not doing something, a precedent-setting award that would be given for “courageous restraint” for holding fire to save civilian lives.


Source: Air Force Times

I have mixed feelings about this. I certainly wouldn't want to see our troops taking out swaths of civilians to kill one or two of the enemy. At the same time, giving out a medal for something that cannot be validated.

Typically a valor medal says something along the lines of "Private Jones single handedly took out an enemy machine gun nest and a dozen enemy that had his unit pinned down."

Now we are looking at something like, "Private Jones didn't do anything, as an enemy who had fired an RPG killing his Platoon leader, because the enemy was running through a shopping area. This action potentially prevented the death of up to 200 civilians."

It seems the whole idea takes away the area of 'expected performance and behavior ' from the troops. Assuming the same situation and the soldiers actions took out dozens of civilians and one lone terrorist, he would likely be admonished. Under this, it whereas he normally would just have developed good leardership and soldier skills and behavior, maybe even gotten an atta boy from a superior and the general respect of his peers or subordinates, he gets a medal.

I think this one is along the lines of a purple heart for PTSD. There is an impact, but a medal is not warranted. What do you think?

[edit on 11-5-2010 by Wolf321]




posted on May, 11 2010 @ 06:35 PM
link   
These Ba$^@rd$ use children as human shields! Crap, some of them sell their daughters, not just for whores, but for human shields!
This is War! War IS bad! War is cruel, and unjust! And in a live or die environment, you want to live! It is Horrible for me to think that I would have to cut down 1 or 2 or 20 children to get to a Taliban sniper, or truck load of explosives barreling into camp, but to save my fellow soldiers, I'll do it! And with full knowledge that it would cause me psychological trauma the rest of my life! War IS Hell! I don't want it, G_D forbid it! I pray that it never comes over here, but if Johnny Jihad is going to try to kill us, Then Bring It!
And I'll embrace the suck!
America Love it or Leave it!



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 06:42 PM
link   
reply to post by Violater1
 


You bring up a good point. Such situations have to be handled on a case-by-case basis. If there is a terrorist screaming down the road in a truck towards a checkpoint and you can see a woman or child in the seat next to him, I'd take out the truck. Same guy trying to walk away from an area with a gun to a kids head, I'm not going to race towards him, but I'm going to be sure a sniper above takes the first clear shot. Do I and my sniper then get medals, one for using deadly force and one for showing restraint?



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 06:43 PM
link   
reply to post by Wolf321
 


If I were a soldier I'd be embarrassed to wear that medal.. you would certainly loose respect from others "oh look, here comes the coward"...

It doesn't really differentiate between "holding fire" between civilian or insurgent.. if you hold fire and everyone else shoots a civilian... well, not being paraded in front of the Liberal media as a baby killer would be big enough a medal no?

Just.... makes no sense to me.



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 06:48 PM
link   
reply to post by Rockpuck
 


why be embarrassed to wear the medal? I would think that it would symbolize the compassion and respect for human life that one must have in order to put yourself and your brothers at risk by holding fire to protect innocent people that happen to be in the line of fire by no fault of their own.



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 06:54 PM
link   
post removed for serious violation of ATS Terms & Conditions



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 06:58 PM
link   
reply to post by Gamecock
 


First off, the medal would be the same medal that is given out for valor, such as the Bronze or Silver stars. The only difference is the criteria for awarding it.

Yes, compassion can be admirable, but putting your fellow troops in harms way for the safety of one or two civilians is an awfully murky (and dangerous) area to be giving out medals for.

I think it is best left to each individual situation, and superiors can determine if there was 'unnecessary' civilian casualties and if so discipline that. Awards however, seem like a really bad idea.



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 07:42 PM
link   
I imagine it would be given out in situations where the soldier had the patience to wait until the target was alone, instead of overzealously shooting immediately. Not given out to people who refused to do anything at all, like people seem to be taking this to mean. Hold fire does not mean cease fire.



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 07:44 PM
link   
This could have happened dozens of times in the last 100 years. South park makes me laugh when they have flash backs about the ferris wheel in Vietnam. Nonetheless we should just be happy because maybe they will come home now and perhaps be discharged.



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 08:16 PM
link   
reply to post by Risen
 


That is just waiting for a clear shot. Should it really be an award-able action?



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 08:24 PM
link   
To me it almost seems like an award for not stealing. If there needn't be collateral damage and you kill civilians, you should be getting in trouble.



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 08:29 PM
link   
Explanation: S&F!

:shk:


The medal already exists... Its called BEING PROMOTED!

A soldier of any rank above private has the unenviable job of MINIMIZING HARM to both themselves and the soldiers under their command AND to the environment and the local civillian populace AND to captured enemy soldiers, whilst still engaging and MAXIMIZING HARM to the designated enemy! To do anything else would be a WAR CRIME!

A soldier of the rank of private should EMULATE his superior officers!

This applies to ALL SIDES in whatever WAR!

Personal Disclosure:


P.S. Any soldier that does his job well [i.e. minimizing harm to self and others while maximizing harm to the designated enemy!] deserves to quickly rise in both rank and reputation and have the full benefits of those attributes, such as extra priviledges and pay ect, attributed to them accordingly!

Edited to add the P.S. for clarity.


[edit on 11-5-2010 by OmegaLogos]



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 08:50 PM
link   

Originally posted by Violater1
It is Horrible for me to think that I would have to cut down 1 or 2 or 20 children to get to a Taliban sniper, or truck load of explosives barreling into camp, but to save my fellow soldiers, I'll do it! ....
America Love it or Leave it!


That's just really really sad and illustrates to me all I despise about war.

Mankind is stuck in a paradigm and appears to be too lazy and too greedy to figure a way out.

It's time for Humanity to take over and rid this planet of war.

America, love it or leave it?

Maybe it should read: America loves it, or invades it.




posted on May, 13 2010 @ 11:50 PM
link   
New update.


“There’s a great photograph from the Marjah operation,” McChrystal continued. “I think it’s a U.S. Marine shielding an Afghan man and an Afghan child with his own body. He wasn’t shooting anyone. He didn’t kill any Taliban. But I would argue that he showed as much courage as any that I’ve seen on the battlefield.

“So when we talk about courage … I don’t think we need a different medal, to differentiate different kinds of courage.”

McChrystal did not elaborate on what he might be contemplating. Possibilities might include awards of the Bronze Star or Air Medal, awarded for meritorious achievement or acts of heroism “in connection with military operations against an armed enemy.”


Source: Air Force Times

I felt a little better about the idea after reading this. However, I see that no matter what, they WILL end up giving out some medals for things that aren't deserving of one (much like they do now anyway.)

If they award a guy a low level valor medal for shielding civilians from terrorist attacks, that is heroic. They mentioned air medal in the list. Now, I don't see a guy holding fire because there are civilians sighted as warranting the same, but it will likely happen.

I think this could have been implemented without any public discussion (if under the criteria the General described) and it not have looked so bad on military leadership.



posted on May, 14 2010 @ 12:33 AM
link   

Originally posted by Gamecock
reply to post by Rockpuck
 


why be embarrassed to wear the medal? I would think that it would symbolize the compassion and respect for human life that one must have in order to put yourself and your brothers at risk by holding fire to protect innocent people that happen to be in the line of fire by no fault of their own.



It's war.. it's not about compassion.. it's about destroying our enemies. I know the new style of war is supposed to be conquer, then steal their resources, then govern them while trying not to get shot... but that's not what a soldier is supposed to do. And I know military recruiters show up at high school to recruit the wimpiest kids with the worst mental dysfunctions so they can get their free education without realizing that the military IS A WAR MACHINE. You shoot people. People die. You see horrible things. It's not for the weak at heart. And if I'm shooting at the enemy, and I look around and everyone's shooting and getting shot and one kid in the fetal position.. I'm sorry mate, that dude doesn't deserve a medal.



posted on May, 14 2010 @ 12:34 AM
link   
[edit on 5/14/2010 by Rockpuck]



posted on May, 17 2010 @ 11:45 PM
link   
reply to post by Wolf321
 


It is worse than that. As the wife of a soldier deployed to Afghanistan, I recently heard something more disturbing. The general in charge over there now is actually talking about jail time for a soldier who, even with a ricochet, accidentally kills a civilian in justifiable combat fire. So, medals for doing nothing, and jail for doing the job. Gee, is this the sort of change we are supposed to believe in?



posted on May, 17 2010 @ 11:56 PM
link   
reply to post by LadyGreenEyes
 


I hadn't heard about the issue you mentioned. I don't get it. Why are they trying their hardest to tie the hands of our fighting men and women?

The world is turning inside out.



new topics

top topics



 
3

log in

join