View Full Version : Military proposes medal for troops showing restraint

May 13th, 2010, 02:41 PM

U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan could someday be awarded medals for restraint that prevents civilian casualties in combat. The possibility is under consideration by the staff of Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander in Afghanistan, according to Lt. Col. Tadd Sholtis, McChrystal's spokesman.

The idea of rewarding battlefield restraint was proposed by British Maj. Gen. Nick Carter, who is in charge of the international forces in southern Afghanistan. Sholtis said the idea is still in its "conceptual stage."

"Although no decisions have been made on the award itself, the idea is consistent with our strategic approach," Sholtis said. "Our young men and women display remarkable courage every day, including situations where they refrain from using lethal force, even at risk to themselves, in order to prevent possible harm to civilians. In some situations our forces face in Afghanistan, that restraint is an act of discipline and courage not much different than those combat actions that merit awards for valor."

Interesting idea.

July 24th, 2010, 04:18 PM
I'd personally rather our troops show restraint anyway, and that a specific medal for it be unnecessary.
But, hey, what can you do? Considering the reality, this seems like a nifty idea.

July 24th, 2010, 04:45 PM
I feel kinda mixed about this. On the one hand, it makes me feel alittle sad that showing restraint is such an uncommon act that it merits a medal. But on the other, it feels like the right thing to do and something that should have been done earlier. War and battle is a nightmare, a hell that shows us humans at our ugliest. To show restraint, some quality of the better parts of humanity in the face of that ugliness...if that isn't an action of merit then I don't know what is.

Either way, I'm behind such an award being put into practice. I hope it serves as a lesson to any side of a conflict of what it means to hold onto that better side of your humanity when staring into the meatgrinder.