Why risk soldiers lives to go across the river to get a couple prisoners in a night patrol?
Dark of night hides actions of soldiers. This makes it so it is actually safer for them rather than more dangerous.
The U.S. always had a policy; "No soldier left behind". It has always been "worth the risk" to free prisoners. To some degree this policy was abandoned in Vietnam, as evidenced by the whole POW - MIA movement and evidence of many POWs from that war. However, even in Iraq and Afghanistan we have risked lives to free US prisoners.
Working under cover of darkness gives an advantage to the side that knows the operation is in progress, so Night Patrol made more sense than doing it in the middle of the day.
This patrol was ordered to catch German soldiers to interrogate them. After the 1st patrol (which no one questioned) and finished with catching some small fry prisoners + KIA of one of colleagues there comes order to go for another patrol with the same target.
At this point it becomes obvious that the patrol is some high command whim and nobody cares about soldiers lives the company reacts accordingly.