Army Staff Sergeant Matthew Sitton wrote his Congressman and warned his chain of command. His words were prophetic. He was KIA on 2 August, 2012.
On June 4, Sitton wrote Rep. Bill Young (R-FL) to describe the conditions under which he was fighting and the types of duties he and his men were being asked to undertake.
In that correspondence, SSG Sitton wrote:
“I feel myself and my Soldiers are being put into unnecessary positions where harm and danger are imminent. There is no…purpose for the patrols given to us for our chain of command, only that we will be out for a certain time period. We are walking around aimlessly through grape rows and compounds that are littered with explosives.”
……SSG Sitton’s mother says her son told her that he and his men were given a certain amount of foot patrols they had to perform in such areas over a certain amount of time. She recalled he said they frequently had to “patrol in urine and feces soaked uniforms” just to meet the foot-patrol quota — but no clear objective or end for the patrols was ever given.
As pointless as these endeavors appeared to SSG Sitton, he wrote that he remained “totally on board with sacrifice for [his] country.”
Evidently, the chain of command is looking for quantity, not quality. Sending Soldiers out on patrol just to fill a time quota is bullshit. Missions are supposed to carried out with a FRAGO. For the uninitiated, THIS is a FRAGO, with an emphasis on “mission” and “execution”.
But then, “victory isn’t necessarily the goal.”
RIP SSG Sitton. In November we’ll get a new leader who knows that victory is the goal.