Read an article on the GMA news website, and it got me to thinking about a couple of things.
First, the headline: "Military washes hands off civilian fatalities in air assault" - spelling/grammar weirdness aside, it seems to me that they could have gone with a more neutral/equitable headline. Off-hand, I cannot think of a single non-hygiene related instance where "washing your hands" of something is considered a good thing. (See: Pontius Pilate, Lady Macbeth)
That being said, and I realize that they aren't trained for this, but the military brass might need some lessons in how NOT to appear like you're engaging in the aforementioned washing of hands. Whether or not the military made a mistake, there are better, more palatable ways of defending your actions than:
* Blaming someone else: "He started it!" is just not the most sympathetic of defenses.
* Pre-judging your own investigation: Here's a tip - if you say: “We are not seeing any lapse but I do not want to pre-empt any investigation." - then uhm, you're giving quite a good impression of pre-empting the investigation.
And finally, for the moment of zen: "The military leadership has directed field commanders to limit use of artillery assets and air strikes in deference to Ramadan. Such firepower, however, could be used in case of overwhelming enemy force."
If this is about limiting possible civilian injuries/deaths then this should be the Rule and not some sort of Ramadan 'bonus'. And if this isn't about civilian injuries/deaths, then I don't really see the point, unless it somehow matters during Ramdan whether you die directly by a bolo to the head or indirectly by a shrapnel to the heart.