Thursday, January 20, 2011

Destroy the Village to Save It

It became necessary to destroy the town to save it.
This became an iconic quote from the Vietnam War (and, yes, it actually happened). It is American strategy in Afghanistan.
The village of Tarok Kolache was controlled by the Taliban. The Americans wanted to clear the village and were afraid of house-to-house fighting so they called in artillery and aerial bombardments to reduce the village to dust.

Of course, for commanders in the modern high-tech battlefield war just a big video game. All this reminds me of another old quote:
The bombing of Adowa failed to give us any satisfaction, owing to the fact that there were only small huts, which flattened out without raising smoke or flames. ~ Vittorio Mussolini during the Italian invasion of Ethiopia in 1937

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