|"I say he did it.|
So by now it’s old news that an American gunship bombed and strafed a hospital in Afghanistan.
The hospital was run by an organization called Doctors Without Borders, also known by its French name, Médcins Sans Frontiers (MSF). It’s a Nobel Prize-winning group of brave and public spirited medical professionals, whose “political” objective is to save lives in numerous locations around the world.
Good job, military! You killed 22 MSF staff members and patients, evidently all of them civilians. Three were children. I’m not sure how many others were wounded. One report had, just for openers, six intensive care patients burned alive in their beds. MSF has called it a war crime.
Number of Taliban shot up? Zero. Why? Simply because there wasn’t a Tabiban soldier or official there.
It gets worse. MSF is pulling it’s people out of Afghanistan. There’s nothing to take its place. The hearts and minds of the people, as well as the hearts and minds of an international organization devoted to saving lives are down the toilet so far as their view of the the United States is concerned.
So whodunnit? MSF sent its coordinates to the U.S. Military, warning them please not to strike there. During the bombardments, they got on the pipe and pleaded with the military to stop, because doctors and nurses and patients were getting killed. All to no avail.
Now General John F. Campbell is trying to explain what happened, but his story seems to change as often as a $20 hooker changes johns.
First it was “collateral damage.” As in “Hey, you know, stuff happens.” You can’t blame anybody when stuff happens, can you? Oh, you can? And innocent people aren't mere "collateral?"
Well, then, it an, umm, error, which led to the statement that the hospital “was mistakenly struck.” By whom? How come? No coherent answer.
Then it was a mistake from those wonderful Afghan fighters who seem to have, umm, called in the wrong coordinates. But as of this writing that hasn’t held up very well either, and certainly doesn’t explain how pleas from the doctors to stop were completely ignored regardless of whether the Afghans called in the hospital's coordinates or a pizza order.
The object of most blame games is to pick on the lowest-level poor schnook who came anywhere near a disastrous event and put all the blame on him. And then punish him as severely as possibly. My guess is that if they can’t find an Afghan to blame, that's what they'll do. They'll find a junior officer who was flying an airplane. Or an NCO radio operator. Maybe even a hapless private.
It’s as old as the ancient custom of putting all of humanity’s sins on a goat, and pushing the poor critter off a cliff. Or as sophisticated as this banking scheme, which took all of the sleazy financial misadventures in the American acquisitions market committed by the President of Bank Lyonnais in France, and put it squarely in the lap of a low - level executive who had been told by his boss to sign off on the deal.
Guaranteed, General Campbell, who “took responsibility” for the bombardment, according to the New York Times, will shuck off that responsibility on some low level grunt. If it’s not an Afghan, the army will find some unfortunate American radio operator, or a junior officer, and send him to Leavenworth for life. The worst that'll happen to General Campbell is that he'll start taking his pension a bit early, and lose his shot at becoming Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. Although don't count on it.
I think it was a WWI prime minister, Georges Clemenceu, who said war is too important to be left to the generals.
Case in point.