Jun 202012

For those not in the know the SOF community calls the recovery of personnel from hostile territory Special Recovery Operations or SRO. SRO jobs are usually conducted by a nation’s most highly trained personnel. Why? Because they involve a lot of complex parts: long range comms, isolated recon teams, sophisticated intel gathering, high-end aviation assets and highly trained door kickers. Millions of dollars of assets and the nation’s finest are all focused on this one type of very ‘special’ operation.

One of the hostages recovered by UK and US SOF.

One of the hostages recovered by UK and US SOF.

The recent recovery in Afghanistan of a bunch of UK NGO workers by UK  and US SOF has got me thinking. Do stupid fuckers really deserve to be rescued? I mean, dumb arses that venture -with no security- into areas that allow them to be captured by bad guys. The prime candidates are usually journos but NGO’s and battlefield tourists are also serial offenders. Yeah I get executing a SRO for a downed pilot, or even a kidnapped government worker, but what about the people who really don’t need to be in harms way? Are the lives of SOF operators worth risking just to keep one more self-righteous idiot in the gene pool? I know what Charles Darwin would say…

Toy figurines that are probably not suitable for conducting 'actual' SRO.

Operators will follow orders, they’ll put their lives on the line time and time again without question. They’ll argue that everyone needs to be rescued, that the kidnappers need to be found, fixed and finished. It’s a moral dilemma; put soldiers in harms way to recover some self-absorbed dick head gallivanting around in a high risk area or let him have his head hacked off on the internet. The default response is usually to bring it back to the bad guys, bang in, shoot the fuckers in the face and send a message to all potential hostage takers – you will be slotted if you try this shit! But we also need to think about the risk associated with sending men deep into hostile territory to pull someone out who’s own stupidity resulted in their capture.

Maybe it's better to let special kids hang out together?

Hopefully a few journos, NGOs and the like read this little diatribe and pause in thought. You may think you’re a bit of a hero for chasing the story or visiting the war zone but also spare a thought for the families of the men sent in to recover the retards. Don’t take risks that might end up claiming the lives of our nation’s finest.



  4 Responses to “Do Retards Deserve Recovery?”

  1. I couldnt agree more and thank you for saying it!!

  2. I suppose the argument can be made that said retards are still citizens of the free world and as such should be protected from those who seek to destroy our way of life. However over time there must be a build up of resentment on the part of the soldier who has to bury 1 or more of his battles after an SRO for some pouge who wanted to have stories for his cubical mates.
    This resentment can fester and grow in a person and infect a close knit group. While the average American operator makes Batman and Superman look like Sunday school teacher, he is still in fact only human. When you march through the mud and the blood with a group of guys long enough the bond created is stronger than anything. Yet when one of you die the rest want it to mean something. You need it to mean more than just one more name on the list.
    Kill BinLaden, free POWs destroy the enemy sure these are all worth while reasons to give you life.
    Dodging bullets and RPGs to rescue some reporter or NGO who wanted to make their name in the bad guys back yard, and now needs help getting home, I don’t think it is worth the price.
    My opinion only.

  3. Couldn’t agree more, if they intentionally put themselves in a hostile environment then the onus is on them, they deserve to get lifted and/or slotted. Very well said that man!

  4. There is a similar argument made in the world of civilian rescue operations, of which I have some experience. When idiot hikers wander off into the wild unprepared and ill-equipped, and backcountry rescue professionals have to risk their own lives to find these people, there is going to be some…tension regarding the recovery especially if one of the rescuers gets hurt along the way. At the end of the day it it a calling and you do what you have to do to bring them home, but you certainly wish they’d been a little smarter beforehand.

    Some rescue organizations do bill the unfortunates for their services, and that can be quite a hefty bill when it involves helicopters and four-wheelers or snow mobiles or watercraft, as well as dozens of employees, many of whom are being paid overtime. One can only imagine the bill for sending in a SOF element to pluck someone out of a third-world hellhole…

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