First, an excerpt. These were Owen's reflections on the rules of engagement in the spring of 2011 (pg 140-142):
"Everything in Afghanistan was getting harder. It seemed with every rotation we had new requirements or restrictions. It took pages of PowerPoint slides to get a mission approved. Lawyers and staff officers poured over the details on every page, making sure our plan was acceptable to the Afghan government.............
For years, we had been sneaking into compounds, catching fighters by surprise.
.....we were slapped with a new requirement......After surrounding a building, and interpreter had to get on a bullhorn and yell for the fighters to come out with their hands raised.......If we found guns, we arrested the fighters only to see them go free a few months later.
It felt like we were fighting the war with one hand and filing out paperwork with the other. When we brought back detainees, there was an additional two to three hours of paperwork. The first question to the detainee at the base was always, "Were you abused?" An affirmative answer meant an investigation and more paperwork.
And the enemy had figured out the rules,
Their tactics evolved as fast as ours. On my earlier deployments, they stood and fought. On more recent deployments, they started hiding their weapons, knowing we couldn't shoot them if they weren't armed. The fighters knew the rules of engagement and figured they'd work their way through the system and be back to their village in a few days.
If was frustrating. We knew what we were sacrificing at home; we were willing to give that up to do the job on our terms. As more rules were applied, it became harder to justify taking the risk to our lives. The job was becoming more about an exit strategy than doing the right thing tactically."
Who was president in 2011? Who was Secretary of State? Does anyone doubt that these regulations came from the pantywaist Obama administration?
Asking if they were abused? Asking them to come out with their hands up? Not being able to shoot if they hide their guns?
Are you kidding me?
These people have got to go.