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Rules of Engagement - Essay Example

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Rules of Engagement Name of Institution Date Rules of Engagement It is no doubt that in war, like any other arranged activity, the potential of discipline breakdown is usually present. The consequences of such can be direr in a military set-up more than in any other set-up because of the nature of operations that involve use of weapons (Schulzinger, 1998)…
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Rules of Engagement
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Download file to see previous pages ROE can be specific or general. Since they were developed, ROE have had large variations between various wars. It should be noted that ROE may be derived from national or regional law in order to be applied in a particular operation. It is designed to ensure victory through disciplined and appropriate use of force (Collins, 2005). This paper will seek to correlate the understanding of ROE with the limited war ideology and its assumptions as they are seen through the experiences and perspective of the six levels in the Vietnam War: individual soldiers in the field; battalion commanders; division commanders; General William Westmoreland; Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara; and President Lyndon Johnson. In the Vietnam War, President Lyndon Johnson made a decision of not mobilizing the National guards because he felt that doing so might signal wrong intentions to the Chinese and Soviets, leading to direct intervention into the war (Moss, 2010). The then Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara recommended to President Johnson on July 20, 1965, that he should mobilize about 235,000 National reserves and guards. However, the President felt that the war in Vietnam would end within one year and that the soldiers would be needed to be involved in a war in Korea in case it erupts again (Dorschel, 2011). It came to emerge later that the United States failed because it underestimated the scale of the challenges in the war. Also, it failed because it backed undemocratic and unpopular government and failed to gain the approval of the people of America (Schulzinger, 1998). In direct correlation of ROE to the war, it occurred that the ranks of the National Guards swelled at the same time as the resentment of the active army. The active army started to view the Guards as dodgers. The period after the Vietnam War witnessed the beginning of the Total Force Policy era which saw the active army treating the National Guards with indifference and bias (Moss, 2010). What became clear was that the Guard infantry soldiers were able to rise to the occasion as required by ROE and completed their missions successfully (Logevall, 1999). ROE requires that the employment of National Guard combat units should be done by the combatant combatants for planning and requesting their participation in the campaign. The National Guard is the Army’s reserve force. They are trained and are always ready for deployment to areas of operations and can also assume the departing active units’ role. The Active Army is made up of 33 combat bridges (Moss, 2010). In the Vietnam War, General William Westmoreland commanded the United States’ military operations during its height from 1964 to 1968 (Dorschel, 2011). Later on, he served as the Chief of Staff of the Army. In accordance to ROE, General Westmoreland expressed optimism in his public statements regarding the war; he reported that American ground and air forces were wearing down the Army of the North Vietnam (Schulzinger, 1998). It should be pointed out that ROE relates ideology with international or aggressive actions. It is against this background that the American foreign policy during the war was aimed at pushing the American’s mission, and particularly safeguarding its security interests in the international arena (Collins, 2005). Ideology served to define the legitimacy of the action, as well as defining what ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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