Should army be free to make decisions in war-like zones?

Should army be free to make decisions in war-like zones?

Should army be free to make decisions in war-like zones?

Union minister Arun Jaitley spoke in support of Major Leetul Gogoi who had previously tied a man to the bonnet of a jeep to evacuate poll officials from stone pelting people of Srinagar. Jaitley said that in war-like zones, the army should be allowed to take decisions without having to consult or get permission from the parliament or any ministry. The statement came at a time when Major Gogoi was honoured with a Commendation Card by Army Chief Bipin Rawat.

This wasn’t well received by those who lashed out at the instinctive action taken Gogoi and awarding him for that was like insult to injury. However, this statement by the union minister could mean that the army will act autonomously without having to answer for their actions which might not always be morally correct. Should this kind of autonomy be given to the army?

Yes

1. The lives at stake

They are the ones putting their lives on stake so that we could stay safe, sleep sound and be well fed enough to make moral judgements that question their ethical values and professionalism. They should surely have the freedom to save themselves when they can and not be made to feel guilty about it.

2. The parliamentarians have no say in this

It is not the ministers who are facing the stone pelting and petrol bombing. The poll is all that the ministers are concerned about and their precious vote banks of people. The major had a team of officers to evacuate from a crowd of 1000 armed protesters. There was no way in the world that he would have waited to take permit from the parliament to take action which he instinctively and rightfully took.

3. The army knows best

They are the ones facing the situation. They are dealing with it on a daily basis. It is not up to the keyboard warriors or the members of parliament to decide what they should have done. Had the major opened fire on the crowd, it would have been lethal. Pellet guns too drew controversy. This course taken by the officer to use a human shield did turn out to be the safest. We should leave the matter to the experts.

4. It would cause delay

When have our ministers not taken days to decide upon a matter after hours of debate, slamming and screaming at each other? If the army waits to get the nod from the members of parliament before the execution of a strategy in war zone, they are likely to get killed or lose their hold in the area and the MPs would still not come to a conclusion.

No

1. Too much freedom

We don’t want an army that looks like the replica of the Pakistan’s military. The army has to be governed and answerable to higher authorities. If left free, they could act out of instinct each time they face a major crisis and there will be no questioning their ethics and morals.

2. For protecting people

And not treating them as the enemy! This should be the main motto of the army. The whole image of the army gets trampled when such happen. People are supposed to trust the army and the trust has to be earned when it comes to the people of a war zone. Instinctive decisions and rash actions will only worsen the fear and the situation.

3. It will apply on severe situations too

In more severe situations, the army should not be allowed to implement a strategy without getting the nod from the parliament. This can lead to war which is not something we are keen on having with any of the neighbours. The army should only get limited freedom.

The army should be free to act accordingly in war-like zones without having to take permission from the government but this should be restricted to certain situations only. Along with all the authority comes the responsibility, which applies to the army as well!
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