I know, I almost couldn't believe I wound up using it myself despite it's fitting there so well. I blame your use of wog.
I have to go do penance or something.
Not the one to use that racial epithet, actually, although it did pop up in the thread. Two and a half years in Dhubai, two years in Balikpapan and a few odd months in other Islamic friendly climates have left me less able to dehumanize Muslims with 19th century slurs. ^_^ But I get your point.
Sadly, there are times I have to wonder if we wouldn't have gotten the same effect by spending a few million to have the all of the heads of the Bath party and Hussein's government assassinated. It would have been blatantly illegal, but it certainly would have been cheaper and I'm not sure how it could have lead to a worse situation. I'm sure it could have, but I don't see how.
Speaking of barbarism. ^_^ But seriously, that's a tough call, and I wouldn't want to be the one making it. We did actually score some points letting Sadams own country hang him, but seem to have lost them again immediately over not letting the same government try Blackwater employees. Which also has the side effect of putting a hole big enough to drive a scud through in my previous argument about not allowing them to try Blackwater because of internal corruption and stability issues.
I had a chat with a fellow once who seemed to think the best thing to do to solve problems in the Middle East was to all turn about face for a few years and let the Israelis and the other lot sort it out as they might and then offer a favorable rate for oil, some discount repair contracts and McDonalds franchises to whoever was still standing when we turned back around. While I'm pretty sure that would go badly, I can't say with certainty that it would go much worse than anything else we've tried.
Well, except for Reagan era. It was all different in the Reagan era. Because it isn't technically an assassination attempt if the entire planet knows your coming and the weapon of choice is an F-111 with full load out, even if you do blow up the guys house with his kids inside. And that seems to have shut old Mo' up for a while...
Did you mean prepared for the assault there?
Not actually, no. The guy that won the Victoria Cross did so in hand to hand combat in a cave. I won't downplay the awesomeness of his achievement, indeed I applaud it, but people with small arms shouldn't properly be getting into hand to hand combat. Our guys have continued to get into new stuff every day that they aren't really prepared for, though they've done a remarkable job adapting. Goes back to the rule of combat about what happens to O-plans, really. We don't get into enough scraps to have a truly veteran military at our disposal. Afghanistan and Iraq may well be fixing that problem, and leaving us more prepared for near future conflicts should they arise...but it's been one hell of an expensive learning curve.
Granted, we also shouldn't have essentially anointed the Taliban to take over the country after the USSR left, but that's sort of a moot point anymore.
The power to bring stability rested in the hands of the muj/Taliban and the opium dealers. Our dumb luck to pick the fundamentalists over the capitalists.
There are those who would argue that any form of violence is barbaric. Granted I think those people need to go back to their hermitages and leave the rest of us alone, but it's worth considering, especially as most proscribed arms treaties reinforce the old chestnut that one injured man costs an army more the ten dead ones. (Or something like that, I can't recall the quote or who said it.
Here's to that. But the concept your describing is key to the military snipers trade. Police snipers just kill you. That's their job, despite the occasional video clip of a SWAT guy shooting someone's gun and other such theatrics. But a military sniper is generally there to harry an enemy force by making them carry wounded men, damage essential equipment and to cultivate caution: because caution is slower than courage.
If the State Department felt it needed ex-special forces to guard it's people, it should have hired them directly into Diplomatic Security, not contract a third party.
No government agency will hire directly and pay what high end labor is really worth. You can take that to the bank...pun intended. But there's a good reason they are having to go outside for the talent: government agencies generally tend to overpay contractors and underpay staff. It was true at NASA, it was true in the Air Force and it's likely true at the State Department. And when you underpay staff and overpay contractors, you get both sloppy staff (why should they care? You pay them beans...and not even magic beans) and sloppy contractors (why should they care? They're going to rake it in no matter what because that's how the system functions). And this sort of situation makes it even worse: how are you going to justify keeping guys at that level of operational readiness full time once the current hostilities wind down? Training operatives of that caliber isn't slam-bam-thank you ma'am, but an expensive ongoing process. What they are paying for the temporary use of Blackwaters ops is a bit more of a bargain based on that larger view.