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(The Daily Beast)   The Battle of Mogadishu is better known in the American consciousness as Black Hawk Down. Twenty years later, the men who fought that battle look back on what it was to be there   (thedailybeast.com) divider line 25
    More: Hero, Black Hawk Downs, Battle of Mogadishu, Blackhawks, Mogadishu, Americans, Delta Force, Clinton White House, Fort Benning  
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5027 clicks; posted to Main » on 10 Oct 2013 at 12:03 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

2013-10-10 02:07:01 PM  
5 votes:

J. Frank Parnell: American Commandos retreated under fire without capturing their target - to avoid civilian casualties.

According to the article they killed around 1000 civilians.

1000.


Civilians only in the sense that they were not wearing uniforms.

They were bearing arms and attacking US troops, and that makes them the enemy.  This wasn't a typical American combined arms operation that used overwhelming firepower to destroy all WWII style.  Nobody was blowing away women and children with a drone strike while they sat at the dinner table.  Every single bit of this action took place in close quarters using small arms almost exclusively.

No artillery support.  Not even mortars.
No fixed wing air support.
Not true (as in Apache or Cobra) helicopter gunship support.  Just machine guns and rockets from a few AH-6s
No armor support until the very end of the battle.

Those 1,000 learned the hard way that American soldiers are quite good even without all their fancy toys.
2013-10-10 12:14:06 PM  
4 votes:

croesius: How many hundreds or thousands of natives did we kill during that failed abduction mission? Why didn't they just lay down and let True American Exceptionalism run its course? It's almost like people react badly to foreign invaders conducting assaults on their sovereign soil. I for one am positive that if China launched commando units into NYC we would be understanding and wouldn't put up such a fuss, right?


Weak troll bait.  Why do you hate the U.N.?
2013-10-10 01:03:13 PM  
3 votes:
Somalia is still a shiathole, what has been accomplished? Somalis just go to other countries and try their best to turn it into lil' Mogadishu.
2013-10-10 12:36:30 PM  
3 votes:

croesius: Or would you think it is every American's duty to repel the foreign invaders? The hypocrisy is atrocious.


I understand your perspective, but in the same way you can't take a single frame and say you've seen the whole movie, we were there not out of American exceptionalism but at the request of the U.N., intervening in a civil war where food aid was being stolen and famine used as a weapon killing or threatening hundreds of thousands.  The clan in charge had just murdered a dozen or so Pakistani troops that were delivering food and medical supplies.  The people fighting the Americans weren't being "Patriotic Somalis", they just wanted to retain the upper hand against rival clans, starving them out of existence if possible.  Few people there affiliate with "Somalia" as a whole, they identify with their clan.  You can choose to look at it as Patriotic Somalis v. foreign invaders, but that is pretty simplistic.
2013-10-10 12:30:31 PM  
3 votes:

croesius: No troll ko_kyi, (sorry, can't quote on this phone), but I find it sickening to think that we make such a huge deal out of losing 18 invaders in the process of killing upwards of 1,000 people. What the fark do you think is going to happen when you send in strike teams to kill/capture people our government doesn't approve of? What would you honestly do if countries started sending in assault teams to America? Would you think them heroes for their duty to their country? Or would you think it is every American's duty to repel the foreign invaders? The hypocrisy is atrocious.


What if assult team invaded Australia, Belgium, Botswana, Canada, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, Kuwait, Morocco, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sweden, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and Zimbabwe?  It wasn't just Americans there, pally. 

Your view of this is narrow, naive and uninformed.  Perhaps this will help explain the background and execution better.  Careful, there are words with multiple syllables.  http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/past/unosom1backgr2.html
2013-10-10 12:09:30 PM  
3 votes:
My port engineering company was preparing for deployment when this happened, and Clinton pulled the plug. I would have gone, as was my duty, but the men who died in that attack kept me out of harm's way. I'm grateful I did not have to experience that hell hole, and I think about those events quite often with modesty and humility, and a great sense of responsibility to enjoy the life I have.

HERO tag, indeed.
2013-10-10 03:04:49 PM  
2 votes:

J. Frank Parnell: Obama's Left Nut: They were an armed mob at least, a not so well regulated militia at best. They had RPG's, fully automatic assault weapons and .50 Cal machines guns mounted in the beds of pick up trucks.

I find that pretty hard to believe, but who am i to argue with a movie.


I find it pretty hard to believe that unarmed men downed two black hawk helicopters and killed 18 US marines.
2013-10-10 01:41:26 PM  
2 votes:

J. Frank Parnell: Lyonid: No. According to the article, they killed around 1,000 Somalis. Unless you believe they just wandered through the streets unopposed, shooting anything that moved, then presumably you'd have to accept that at least some portion of those were armed combatants actively trying to kill them.

Realistically, a small group of soldiers would have died in that situation if just an equal number of people were actively trying to kill them. Forget the hollywood fantasies where the hero can mow down wave after wave of enemies. The only way such high casualties could have been reached is if the majority were unarmed.


Ah, so ignoring #2 wherein it's pointed out that you don't read so good.  Got it.  Understandable.

Moving on then.

As to the civilian casualties, as long as we can agree that your entire point is based in fantasy, absent of any actual facts, I think we're done here.

/remember kids, no lopsided battles have ever happened.  ever.
2013-10-10 01:25:28 PM  
2 votes:

J. Frank Parnell: but who am i to argue with a movie.


sounds like this is where you got your military expertise:

blog.hyland.com
2013-10-10 12:58:29 PM  
2 votes:
Not going to comment one way or the other on the politics of the thing, but Gordon and Shughart were hard men. Balls the size of canteloupes. I think they deserved their Medals of Honor.
2013-10-10 12:58:01 PM  
2 votes:

croesius: Sorry I didn't explain it better KidneyStone. If it would help you, change my statement to "what if a multinational coalition sent assault teams into America".


If they were sent because most of the population was starving to death after the cities were destroyed in a civil war. And then warlords blocked the delivery of food aid to the starving millions. . .

They would be welcomed with open arms, as they should be. As such people always have been. As they were welcomed in Somalia. Before a petty thug was able to turn world opinion (of idiots) against the effort.


On one side we have Warlord thugs murdering people and fostering starvation. On the other side UN food convoys.

Which side exactly are you choosing? Choose only one answer. And one answer comes with about a billion scumbag points.
2013-10-10 12:55:03 PM  
2 votes:

croesius: Father_Jack, it might not have been a full scale invasion as you said, but I'm just playing devil's advocate and trying to view it from their side. The civilians there might not even be wordly enough to know of "international mandate" or even what the U.N. was. To the best of their knowledge, as far as I can tell having not spoken to any Somalis, they most likely saw armed men on their native soil, capturing and/or shooting their friends and families. If the situation were reversed, you can bet your sweet ass most of us would fight back.


the 1000-2000 people killed were not civilians.  They were an armed mob at least, a not so well regulated militia at best.  They had RPG's, fully automatic assault weapons and .50 Cal machines guns mounted in the beds of pick up trucks.

Calling them civilians is trolling at best, intellectual dishonesty at best.

/also I think you forgot Poland.
2013-10-10 12:32:32 PM  
2 votes:

Father_Jack: croesius: No troll ko_kyi, (sorry, can't quote on this phone), but I find it sickening to think that we make such a huge deal out of losing 18 invaders in the process of killing upwards of 1,000 people. What the fark do you think is going to happen when you send in strike teams to kill/capture people our government doesn't approve of? What would you honestly do if countries started sending in assault teams to America? Would you think them heroes for their duty to their country? Or would you think it is every American's duty to repel the foreign invaders? The hypocrisy is atrocious.

the US was not invading the place a la Iraq. We were there under international law with a UN mandate.

while your point about american exceptionalism and losing 18 guys when 1000-2000 civis were killed is a decent one, its not just "our govt doesnt approve of" unilateral type intervention. dont forget, this happened back when the US still abided by international law.


The UN had to go in. Over 200,000 Somalians had starved to death. The UN was supplying food but the warlords were stealing the majority of it. So the UN went in and secured the supply routes and distribution. Yeah, there was some mission creep when we started to try and go after the warlords but on the whole an altruistic mission.
2013-10-10 12:11:38 PM  
2 votes:

croesius: How many hundreds or thousands of natives did we kill during that failed abduction mission? Why didn't they just lay down and let True American Exceptionalism run its course? It's almost like people react badly to foreign invaders conducting assaults on their sovereign soil. I for one am positive that if China launched commando units into NYC we would be understanding and wouldn't put up such a fuss, right?


Surely you can appreciate the unique perspective of the troops on the ground in Mogadishu, though.
2013-10-10 04:06:19 PM  
1 votes:

JustGetItRight: J. Frank Parnell: American Commandos retreated under fire without capturing their target - to avoid civilian casualties.

According to the article they killed around 1000 civilians.

1000.

Civilians only in the sense that they were not wearing uniforms.

They were bearing arms and attacking US troops, and that makes them the enemy.  This wasn't a typical American combined arms operation that used overwhelming firepower to destroy all WWII style.  Nobody was blowing away women and children with a drone strike while they sat at the dinner table.  Every single bit of this action took place in close quarters using small arms almost exclusively.

No artillery support.  Not even mortars.
No fixed wing air support.
Not true (as in Apache or Cobra) helicopter gunship support.  Just machine guns and rockets from a few AH-6s
No armor support until the very end of the battle.

Those 1,000 learned the hard way that American soldiers are quite good even without all their fancy toys.


When I was being in-processed at Ft. Benning for boot camp (this was around 2002), we were waiting in line one day (in processing consists of waiting in lines about 80% of the time for those unaware) when a drill seargent from downrange was walking by, and for some reason decided that it was a good time for a story.  I think someone had made a joke while waiting, or didn't seem serious enough.

He proceeds to tell us that he was in Somalia on the ground during Black Hawk Down (dude was dead serious, looked the part of an elite soldier, and I have no reason to doubt him) and he had 33 confirmed kills during the operation.  30 with an M-16 and 3 with an E-Tool.  A farking E-Tool.  Doesn't get much more close quarters than that...
2013-10-10 02:10:08 PM  
1 votes:

spmkk: If 100 civilians die because you refused to carry out a mission that might kill 10, you haven't saved 10 people - you have killed 90.


No, the person who killed those 100 people killed those 100 people.  Of course retard logic like yours explains why we now live in a country that accept that our government engages in torture.
2013-10-10 01:38:18 PM  
1 votes:

Crunch61: Seth'n'Spectrum: The UN did the right thing.

The UN's refusal to recognize or support Adid as the only viable leader led Somalia directly into the clusterfark we see today.


The proxy war we played between Somalia and Ethiopia over a strip of desert for twenty-five years, even swapping sides half way through, had nothing to do with it either. Those sneaky Russians tricked us into selling all those weapons.
2013-10-10 01:36:31 PM  
1 votes:

J. Frank Parnell: Obama's Left Nut: They were an armed mob at least, a not so well regulated militia at best. They had RPG's, fully automatic assault weapons and .50 Cal machines guns mounted in the beds of pick up trucks.

I find that pretty hard to believe, but who am i to argue with a movie.


That was actually in the book which is an actual history book. Plus what do you think took the Blackhawk down ??? Small arms fire?
2013-10-10 12:57:45 PM  
1 votes:

J. Frank Parnell: American Commandos retreated under fire without capturing their target - to avoid civilian casualties.

According to the article they killed around 1000 civilians.

1000.


1 - No.  According to the article, they killed around 1,000 Somalis.  Unless you believe they just wandered through the streets unopposed, shooting anything that moved, then presumably you'd have to accept that at least some portion of those were armed combatants actively trying to kill them.

2 - That phrase isn't even talking about the same freaking event.
2013-10-10 12:46:43 PM  
1 votes:

Father_Jack: dont forget, this happened back when the US still abided by international law.


wklondon.typepad.com

This is not the 1993 Tomahawk strikes into Iraq you are looking for....
2013-10-10 12:45:36 PM  
1 votes:

croesius: Father_Jack, it might not have been a full scale invasion as you said, but I'm just playing devil's advocate and trying to view it from their side. The civilians there might not even be wordly enough to know of "international mandate" or even what the U.N. was. To the best of their knowledge, as far as I can tell having not spoken to any Somalis, they most likely saw armed men on their native soil, capturing and/or shooting their friends and families. If the situation were reversed, you can bet your sweet ass most of us would fight back.


Unless of course they were the ones who were starving to death and now finally were getting some food to eat thanks to those very same armed men.



Operation Restore Hope (Somalia, 1993-1994)

United Nations Security Council Resolution 794, adopted on Dec. 3, 1992, authorized the United States to lead a multi-national force into Somalia "to use all necessary means to establish a secure environment for humanitarian relief operations in Somalia as soon as possible." U.S. Marines landed on the beaches of Mogadishu, the Somali capital, on Dec. 9.

At its peak, Operation Restore Hope involved some 30,000 American soldiers and 10,000 soldiers from 24 other nations. By March 1993, mass starvation in Somalia was significantly reduced. Operation Restore Hope ended on May 4, 1993, when the United Nations assumed control of the humanitarian mission from American command.

American involvement did not end then. It was replaced with Operation Continue Hope, designed to give protection to United Nations efforts in Somalia. But having been conceived almost exclusively as a humanitarian operation, Operation Continue Hope did not take enough into account the political situation on the ground in Mogadishu, which progressively deteriorated and enmeshed American forces in guerrilla attacks led by General Mohamed Farrah Aidid, the Somali leader and warlord. Clashes culminated in the downing of two U.S. Black Hawk helicopters on Oct. 3-4, 1993. Eighteen American soldiers were killed and 73 wounded, as well as hundreds of Somali fighters (an exact figure was never confirmed). Most American forces had withdrawn by March 1994, but the last remaining U.S. personnel weren't withdrawn until a year


cdn.c.photoshelter.com
2013-10-10 12:20:04 PM  
1 votes:

Fubini: Tragic story. Great book. Below-average movie.



I rather enjoyed the movie when it came out in theaters.  It's been a while.  I think I'll head over to Netflix and toss it in the queue.
2013-10-10 12:09:40 PM  
1 votes:
How many hundreds or thousands of natives did we kill during that failed abduction mission? Why didn't they just lay down and let True American Exceptionalism run its course? It's almost like people react badly to foreign invaders conducting assaults on their sovereign soil. I for one am positive that if China launched commando units into NYC we would be understanding and wouldn't put up such a fuss, right?
2013-10-10 12:08:55 PM  
1 votes:
Jesus Christ, it's been twenty years already? Damn, I'm getting old in a hurry.
2013-10-10 10:30:43 AM  
1 votes:
Tragic story. Great book. Below-average movie.

Thanks guys.
 
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