Understanding Rules of Engagement
The art of war has rules that are in place to insure that even in war, discipline is maintained. The Rules of Engagement (ROE) work well when each level adheres to the specific details assigned to them. The ROE also works well when the two opposing sides are equally matched. Understanding the ROE is key to understanding what went on during the war in Viet Nam. Each level of military combat has a responsibility and a role to play in the ROE.("," para. 4) Soldiers in the battlefield
It is important that the people on the ground in direct combat understand the reason for the war, in order to be free from second-guessing and incorrect assumptions. It is safe to say that many of the soldiers in the Viet Nam war did not really understand the war in which they fought and died. Unfortunately, the Viet Nam soldiers did not share in the understanding of the Rules of Engagement so they attacked swiftly and frequently. Rendering the American soldiers weak and unable to fight back. Battalion Commanders
Battalion commanders were in no better position than the on ground soldiers and they were given instructions and told to abide by them. They were also not previed to certain information that could have helped them with the war.
Division Commanders had a more definite set of goals and deadlines that needed to be met in order to win the war. The followed the rules of engagement and taught them to their soldiers. But even they did not fully understand or agree with the war and after a while became frustrated.
General William Westmoreland
General William Westmoreland was a decorated General who understood the war in Viet Nam, but could not lead the troop to victory in that war. He used every available resource he had but in the end he was not able to lead the troops to victory. (Ricks, 2011, para. 3) Robert McNamara
Robert McNamara was the eighth secretary of defense...