If, in 1943, Franklin Roosevelt had exact knowledge that Adolf Hitler and his top henchmen were doing their main work from a mostly unguarded building, with no real bomb shelters, on the Wilhelmstrasse in Berlin, do you think that the President would have told General Dwight Eisenhower, “No, we can’t bomb that building, because there are too many families with children living nearby”? From The New York Times:
With ISIS in Cross Hairs, U.S. Holds Back to Protect Civilians
by Eric Schmitt | May 26, 2015
WASHINGTON — American intelligence analysts have identified seven buildings in downtown Raqqa in eastern Syria as the main headquarters of the Islamic State. But the buildings have gone untouched during the 10-month allied air campaign.
And just last week, convoys of heavily armed Islamic State fighters paraded triumphantly through the streets of the provincial capital Ramadi in western Iraq after forcing Iraqi troops to flee. They rolled on unscathed by coalition fighter-bombers.
American and allied warplanes are equipped with the most precise aerial arsenal ever fielded. But American officials say they are not striking significant — and obvious — Islamic State targets out of fear that the attacks will accidentally kill civilians. Killing such innocents could hand the militants a major propaganda coup and alienate both the local Sunni tribesmen, whose support is critical to ousting the militants, and Sunni Arab countries that are part of the American-led coalition.
But many Iraqi commanders, and even some American officers, argue that exercising such prudence is harming the coalition’s larger effort to destroy the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or Daesh, and that it illustrates the limitations of American air power in the Obama administration’s strategy. A persistent complaint of Iraqi officials and security officers is that the United States has been too cautious in its air campaign, frequently allowing columns of Islamic State fighters essentially free movement on the battlefield.
There’s more at the original.
In 1956, the West German government estimated that there were 436,000 civilian casualties from American and British bombing raids, not including another 134,000 who were refugees on the Eastern Front. Let’s face facts here: we won World War II not just by fighting the German Army on the battlefields, but by bombing strategic targets throughout Germany: airfields, railroad depots, munitions factories, fuel storage facilities, ports, really anything which would have been of use to the Third Reich and its war effort. We weren’t specifically targeting houses and apartment buildings, but in the mass bombing raids, thousands upon thousands of residential areas got hit, and thousands upon thousands of complete non-combatants, including small children and even babes-in-arms, were killed, blown apart and burned to death. In Japan, something on the order of 590,000 civilians were killed during World War II, including the firebombings of Kobe and Tokyo along with the atomic bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. They were hideously ugly, but they were also thought necessary to win the war; in Japan, the firebombings and the two atomic bomb attacks destroyed so much of the Japanese will and ability to resist that the country surrendered without the necessity of an invasion of the home islands. We might not want to kill civilians and non-combatants, but, in war, it is sometimes necessary.
But, as we have seen, Barack Hussein Obama is no Franklin Roosevelt, nor is he anywhere as good a President as Harry Truman. Neither President Roosevelt nor President Truman particularly wanted to see civilians killed, but they were concerned with actually winning the war, and doing so with the fewest American casualties possible, and that meant that they could not afford to be squeamish about civilian casualties.
And that is how you actually win a war.
War is a brutal, nasty business, and if you are going to engage in it, you had damned well better be prepared to be brutal and nasty. When you have the enemy leadership in your gun sights, you kill them! Not killing them lengthens the war and puts your own soldiers at greater risk. Not killing the enemy leadership when you have them in your sights means that they will be alive to keep targeting your own troops. What kind of Commander-in-Chief is Barack Hussein Obama that he would allow Da’ish leaders to live and continue to fight when he has a chance to stop them?
To your Editor, it’s pretty simple: if you are going to fight a war, then fight the war! If you don’t have the guts to fight the war, then quit, pull out, bring your personnel home and as far out of harm’s way as possible.