You guys are gamers, and pretty hard core ones at that, so designing a system of any complexity that completely eliminates gamey tactics is more or less impossible.
In our view, the AO system has a number of compelling benefits which deserve to be listed against any possible problems.
They inform the human player, as mentioned above, as to what is expected of his formations. This is critical in a large battle like ATD.
They likewise inform the AI, and make it much, much smarter than it could possibly be without them.
They do prevent a whole range of abuses which gamers were guilty of inflicting on our earlier game systems which didn't have AOs.
Notice that I said gamers were guilty, because I think people should take a measure of responsibility for your actions. Most competitive human endeavours have both a spirit and a letter of the law, and I don't think gamers can abuse the spirit while heaping sole blame on us for not configuring the letter of the law to stop them.
Ask yourselves whether you would prefer SSG to spend time tying our scenarios in knots in a probably futile attempt to prevent all possible cheesy tactics, or providing as level a playing field as possible and letting sensible men make sensible decisions, while we make new scenarios and games.