Media frenzy, overreaction, and the art of war

Since I’m sure to get flamed for this, I’ll just dive right in and say what’s on my mind, rather than pussy-footing around.

I just don’t get the reaction to the killing of Mr. Berg. Yes, it was barbaric. Yes, it was unpleasant, horrible, and nasty. But an outrage? A violation of the rules of war? Well, I suppose so, but why would anyone expect anything different? These folks are 1) radical militant extremists, 2) in a state of war with us and 3) not the kind of guys you’d ask over to watch NASCAR.

Perhaps I have too much of a historical bent, but the idea that people should be nice to one another when they are at war is very odd to me. And when only one side agrees on what the rules of war are, it makes it a little hard to impose your world view on the other guys. No number of hearings or media frenzy is going to persuade these fruitcakes that they need to put a mint on the pillow of their prisoners.

And, while on the topic of treating prisoners nicely, there’s the stuff that “the good guys” did to their prisoners. I find the reactions to that to be odd too. Our soldiers have rules that they are to obey. They are, presumably, steeped in a code of honor from their first day on the job. These gutless cowardly savages broke those rules, and treated enemy combatants like animals. A hearing is not what is called for here. Congress can determine nothing in a hearing that is worthwhile, or advances us one whit towards what needs to be done. The US military has its own justice system, and it is there specifically for these kinds of events. These people broke the rules. They should be court martialed and punished according to the age-old traditions of the military, and they should be punished swiftly. Dragging this into Congress for hearings is inappropriate, wasteful, and gives the Iraqi people the message that there is a question as to whether what they did was wrong. There is, of course, no such question. These soldiers should be treated like the animals they are, and this should be done swiftly. The military is all about discipline, right?

Is this a double standard? You *BET* it’s a double standard. I expect the military of the United States of America to be people of honor. I do not expect that of radical militant islamic terrorists. That seems very clear-cut to me.

So, what should our reaction be to the killing of a non-combatant? Well, it was an act of war, and really not any different from any other act of war. Yes, we should hunt them down, but it’s a military operation, and however much of a frenzy the press tries to work itself up into, that doesn’t help, and only serves to provide political advantage to a group of old white guys in DC that don’t really understand the situation. Can we please leave the war to the warriors?

Ok, you can send me hate mail now. I’m done ranting.