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November 16, 2004

"Fool Me Once" Means You Don't Get A Chance To Fool Me Twice

From the BBC.

The US military has announced it is looking into whether an American marine in Falluja shot dead a severely wounded Iraqi insurgent at point-blank range.

Television footage shows US soldiers entering a building as injured prisoners lie on the floor.

The soldier, who has not been identified, has been removed from the field and faces possible charges.

Hmm. From a later story on the shooting, it seems obvious that the soldier in question considered the "insurgent" an active threat.

He said a marine noticed one prisoner was still breathing.

A marine can be heard saying on the pool footage provided to Reuters Television: "He's f***ing faking he's dead."

"The marine then raises his rifle and fires into the man's head," Sites said.

Assuming that the Marine in question is charged with breaking the rules of war that Amnesty International complains about later on in the second story, and not some other violation, I suspect he'll walk. According to those rules, It is prohibited to kill or wound an enemy who is surrendering or who is hors de combat.

There's nothing to suggest that the enemy combatant had previously surrendered, and "hors de combat" is basically a judgment call. If there's reason to suspect he was faking, then the safest thing to do is shoot him some more--especially given the fact that the enemy in Falluja has demonstrated that they are perfectly happy faking a surrender in order to kill Americans.

"In one incident, some Iraqis are reported to have come out of a building waving a white flag. When a Marine approached this group, insurgents opened fire on the Marines from different directions."

Given the behavior of the enemy, even the slightest supposition that a certain situation is unsafe on the part of a Marine should warrant whatever action he decides to take in order to exit the area unharmed.

Update: A war of words is being waged in the press. The AP calls the dead man a "prisoner." The Marines are calling him an "enemy combatant." The Red Cross says it's impossible to tell.

Florian Westphal, a spokesman for the International Committee for the Red Cross, said he couldn't say for sure whether the men were prisoners or not.

"The fact that was reported was that he was wounded. But whether he was already a prisoner or not was not clear to me," Westphal said.

"We cannot, on the basis of TV images _ no matter how disturbing and disconcerting they are _ arrive at a judgment about an incident. We were not on the spot so we cannot be aware of all the circumstances of this incident," he said.

I'd like to know on what basis the AP decided the men in the mosque were prisoners. Last I heard the Marines didn't practice counting coup.

Posted by Bigwig at November 16, 2004 12:09 PM | TrackBack
Postscript:
First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself.
Comments

Three in the head, then they're dead. Never leave a living enemy at your back.

Posted by: Kai Jones at November 16, 2004 12:38 PM

Heh, courageous hero goes to jail for killing terrorist psychopath in the heat of battle. That's rich.

Posted by: Jim at November 16, 2004 01:58 PM

Well, at least those on the left complaining about this Marine's conduct still "support" our troops. If we lose that, we're all lost.

Posted by: Stuart at November 16, 2004 02:07 PM

We should respect human rights and the Geneva Convention on the battlefield as much as is possible. We owe it to ourselves, our military personnel, our enemy, and the rest of the world to investigate these incidents carefully whenever they arise.

But by the same token, every consideration and the benefit of the doubt is owed to those military personnel and others who are right there, right then, having to make life and death decisions in the middle of combat or crisis.

It's far too easy for us to criticize and second guess their actions with the benefits of hindsight and the luxury of time, safe and sound in our snug homes and communities far from the scene.

And we must begin to acknowledge that we are facing an enemy, in a fight to the death, who scoffs at international "rules of war" and "civilized" behavior.

Enemies who use mosques, schools, and hospitals as fortresses, who shield themselves behind civilians, who booby-trap dead and wounded bodies, and who attack after pretending to surrender FORFEIT all expectations and rights to be treated with the same humane treatment and rules of conduct that we reserve for others who extend the same courtesy to us.

Posted by: fdcol63 at November 16, 2004 02:11 PM

One should also remember that one of the Geneva Conventions requirements for treating irregular forces as "soldiers" subject to the Convention is that they ALSO observe the normal laws of war.

Considering that only last week, there were numerous reports of "insurgents" executing Iraqi prisoners, not to mention today's report of another non-combatant hostage murder, one must seriously question the applicability of the Geneva Convention to these "people."

Frankly, our problem is not that we are killing too many of these clowns, but we are killing too few.

Posted by: Kevin Murphy at November 16, 2004 02:27 PM

The right slides further from the "loyal majority" into outright insanity.

We're not talking about a guy who's wounded but able to fight -- we're talking about a not-quite-dead soldier who's been critically wounded and laid bleeding on the ground for hours.

The Miligram experiment has never been more true -- people really are willing to shed their humanity at the slightest provocation.

Even if it meant we would take double the casualties, we should be respecting the rule of war and not just execute wounded and surrendered soldiers. Our humanity depends on it.

I view you here, while members of my own country, as more of a threat to the United States than the Iraqi insurgents are. They do not have the military power to demolish us from the outside in; even respecting the rules of war, we will handily defeat them.

You, on the other hand, you seek to destroy us from within. Unconscionable. Borders on treasonous.

Posted by: Joe at November 16, 2004 02:27 PM

The problem is that we see what, a whole 30 seconds of video footage. There's no reference before or after (although the press is more than happy to give their "version" of events).

We are AT WAR. People get shot and die. As far as I'm concerned, one less nutjob on the planet.

Semper Fi. Keep up the good work.

Posted by: John at November 16, 2004 02:28 PM

Or maybe the marine was concerned that the "faking it" freedom fighter was waiting for the room to fill with Marines before detonating an IED, killing them all. The Left is right, he should have waited for the initial flash of the exploding grenade, etc., before firing. It's the only way to be sure. Just because it turned out, there was no IED didn't mean it wasn't a reasonable suspicion.

Posted by: OCBill at November 16, 2004 02:30 PM

Kill 'em all, let God sort them out.

Posted by: MojoMark at November 16, 2004 02:34 PM

Joe, let us all know when you take off the diaper and can use the potty like a big boy.

"Even if it meant we would take double the casualties" you say. Well that right there disqualifies you from throwing the word "treason" at other Americans.

1 terrorist = 1 American

That's shitty math, if you ask me. If that equation works for you, fine. It won't make you the worst American I know. It'll just put you in the running.

Posted by: Hrairoo at November 16, 2004 02:35 PM

Joe,

"Even if it meant we would take double the casualties, we should be respecting the rule of war and not just execute wounded and surrendered soldiers."

Have you actually READ the "rule of war" you site? These insurgents are NOT protected by the Geneva conventions for soldiers because they are not, by the Geneva convention dfintion "soldiers".

To be protected, one must be in uniform and part of a chain of command. The uniform part is actually somewhat negotiable, but obvious differentiation from civilians is a bare minimum - these guys aren't even doing that.

By the wondrous Geneva Conventions and International Law, which you apparently hold so highly, WE CAN LINE THESE GUYS UP AFTER THEY SURRENDER AND SUMMARILY EXECUTE THEM. That's what the Geneva Conventions say about people who fight like this. Go look it up.

And that's without even considering that they have been faking surrenders, faking dead, and booby-trapping the dead. Oh, and using mosques (which is where this was), hospitals, and schools as bases, and using civilian shields. ALL OF WHICH ARE WAR CRIMES.

Freak, man, come back to the real world - or even come to it for the first time, that would be OK, too.

Posted by: Deoxy at November 16, 2004 02:45 PM

Joe, imagine that you had been that soldier. Walking wounded. Having seen a buddy blown up by a booby-trapped body the day before.

What would you have done?

What would you want your kid brother to do?

What would you want your son to do?

Posted by: corrie at November 16, 2004 02:58 PM

Couple of things:
I can't really tell from the video I saw, but looks like his hands are out of sight. That can mean wounded and wrapped up, or holding a weapon out of sight.
Even if hands are in sight, if they're closed, could be holding something, grenade or detonator. In either case, I'd shoot.

In law enforcement, if they're making an arrest and the hands are hidden, they say "Show me your hands!", you don't your chance of being shot goes way up. You show your hands but they're closed, they generally will tell you to open them. You don't, again your chance of being shot goes way up. And cops don't generally have to worry about you holding a detonator.

In a battlefield situation, I'd shoot. Especially with an enemy that makes a habit of using wounded/dead to try to kill you.

Posted by: Mark at November 16, 2004 03:09 PM

Where can I send this Marine a case of beer and a box of bullets?
With all of the terrorist tactics employed by the enemy, he was right to put a few in the guys head w/o waiting for a bomb to explode, killing the marine and all the guys with him.
We need a few more that think like him.

Posted by: Fred Connolly at November 16, 2004 03:10 PM

What would you have done?

If you were John Kerry, you would write up the after action report, embellish your courage facing the enemy and then recommend yourself for a bunch of medals.

Posted by: perfectsense at November 16, 2004 03:18 PM

the bad guys are illegal combatants. Illegal combatants are subject to summary execution. When the jihadists begin to follow the Geneva Convention, then I will worry (just a little) about this.

Posted by: Don Meaker at November 16, 2004 03:21 PM

Iraqis condemned the act as "cowardice" and "something forbidden in Islam."

Wouldn't chopping off the head of a hog tied prisioner be "cowardice", or "something forbidden in Islam"?

Posted by: Buck at November 16, 2004 03:27 PM

Joe said:

"The Miligram experiment has never been more true -- people really are willing to shed their humanity at the slightest provocation."

You just failed your Psychology exam.

Posted by: Bill at November 16, 2004 03:30 PM

International law has continuously evolved to provide greater protections to all combatants and non-combatants who heed the rules. Insurgents, as belligerent parties to a conflict, should be afforded the protections of applicable conventions if they follow the conventions.

However, it is manifestly obvious that the Iraqi insurgents have not heeded the conventions (eg. the pattern of using protected sites such as mosques as positions from which to fight and to store weapons). This is not merely a failing on an individual case-by-case basis, it is evidently a command-driven policy. They are therefore all, to a man, liable to be held responsible as unlawful combatants.

As a practical rather than legal matter: once rumours or facts emerge of perfidious conduct (eg. feigning death as a pretext to ambush), to attempt to surrender during or in the immediate aftermath of battle is a poor risk.

Posted by: lrC at November 16, 2004 03:31 PM

I wish I could put Joe in that Marine's shoes. I wish I could put Joe in St. Pancake's place, I wish I could put Joe in with Zarqawis angels of peace. I can't do any of these things so I'll just say a great big Semper Fi to another Marine hero who put his life on the line to protect Joe's right to trash him and perhaps he even saved his entire squad from a hidden IED.

Too bad Joe didn't have nieces and nephews in Beslan, or taking the train in Madrid, or working with Theo Van Gogh in Amsterdam. The Marine was facing the same kind of people who had just cut off a womans arms and legs and beat her face into a pulp, and then disemboweled her.

I say shoot first, ask questions later, unless they are wearing an identifiable uniform.

Posted by: Ed Poinsett USMC 1482250 at November 16, 2004 03:33 PM

So cute when Kerry voters start talking about treason.

Posted by: BMN at November 16, 2004 03:33 PM

"We're not talking about a guy who's wounded but able to fight -- we're talking about a not-quite-dead soldier who's been critically wounded and laid bleeding on the ground for hours."

Joe, how did you know that he was critically wounded? Did you see the wound? Did you check it for extent of damage or check his vital signs? How do you know how long he had laid bleeding on the ground?

Posted by: digitalbrownshirt at November 16, 2004 03:39 PM

I saw the video last night, and had the same feelings when it was over - the marine thought the guy was supposed to be dead, noticed he wasn't (which he said out loud!!), and acted to save the soldiers there. I would have done the same thing in that situation. The fact that there's even a question of him acting improperly just from what I saw on the video with my own eyes is mind-boggling. What do people think happens in a war?

It would be interesting to hear from the cameraman to see what he thought.

Posted by: Kendall at November 16, 2004 03:42 PM

Have any of you seen the videotape? IF you have you would know that while they were in a combat zone, there were no bullets flying about, thus the marine had not need to make a snap judgement. Also clearly the guy was no threat from watching the video. The only thing the marine could possibly be worried about was him triggering a bomb. If this was the case, why did the marine talk about the guy for a bit and then stand directly over him before firing? The marine was in no rush to kill him as he would be if he was truely in a threating situation.

Posted by: nathaniel at November 16, 2004 03:44 PM

One thing that all of the commenters have left out is that the milatary is doing the right thing here. There is an allegation, they are investigating and will make a recomendation. In the meantime the soldier is pulled from duty. That is the right thing to do. Review the actions by soldier who do know what it is like to be in combat.

Posted by: Bruce at November 16, 2004 03:50 PM

Kendall said:
"It would be interesting to hear from the cameraman to see what he thought."

Words from the embedded cameraman, from a Yahoo News story:

Sites said: "I have witnessed the Marines behaving as a disciplined and professional force throughout this offensive. In this particular case, it certainly was a confusing situation to say the least."

Posted by: Chris at November 16, 2004 03:59 PM

Nathaniel wrote:
Also clearly the guy was no threat from watching the video

Clearly, if you are watching the video, the guy is no threat to you.

If you are actually in the room with him, you can't see his hands and he is faking being dead, then it is quite a different story.

Of course, the guy was injured while using a place of worship as a fighting place. He violated the Geneva Conventions and thereby forfeited their protections.

Notice that the Marines didn't shoot the fifth insurgent, who did show his hands.

Posted by: Kevin P. at November 16, 2004 04:04 PM

The wounded terrorist was not mistreated in any form or fashion. He was a combatant who had disregarded the Geneva Conventions by posing as a civilian. Furthermore, this terrorist was inside of a mosque, a "religious" facility which the Geneva Conventions forbids combatants to use for military purposes.

On two specific counts he does not merit POW status.

Generally, the "Lions of Islam" in Falluja executed civilian hostages, both Iraqi and non-Iraqi citizens. Terrorists in Falluja have utilized the tactic of attempting to surrender then opening fire on US soldiers and Marines. They have also booby trapped bodies of both wounded and dead terrorists. All three of these are not only violations of the Geneva Conventions, but that enemy can not come back later and claim the US troops are violating the Geneva Conventions for making the assumption that surrender attempts by non-uniformed terrorists are ambush attempts or that wounded terrorists are bait for an IED.

Sorry, the Geneva Conventions cannot and do not require one side to sacrifice it's troops needlessly to an enemy who refuses to abide by the Convention. That assertion is asinine.

Posted by: johnb at November 16, 2004 04:08 PM

Guess the previous comments about Kerry were too, uh, subtle for some people.

Or maybe they just conveniently forgot that John Kerry got a Silver Star with Combat V for doing exactly the same thing in February 1969.

Posted by: John D'oh at November 16, 2004 04:14 PM

Nothing lies like a camera. We don't know what happened. That's especially true of a bunch of knee-jerk anti-mil libs whose total exposure to the military is through multiple exposures to b*****t propaganda movies like "Platoon".

Posted by: Spike at November 16, 2004 04:17 PM

It appears the Marine may have had legitimate reason to believe the man was a threat, especially since he had been wounded during fightint while firing on American troops from the mosque.

I think the Marine did the right thing. I believe the military, after proper review, will vindicate him.

I suspect that the MSM will go on and on, touting this as evidence of American 'war crimes', regardless of the facts or final outcome.

War is hell. War should be hell. It's what makes it a thing to be avoided. But sometimes the alternative to war is worse than hell. And so we must fight.

Posted by: Claire at November 16, 2004 04:18 PM

I want to know why the media had to air the video before the military could do an investigation? Kevin Sites says it was a confusing situation but now the video is running on Al-Jazeera without concealing the identities of any of the soldiers.

So I guess the only chance this marine has now is to tell the MSM he is a democrat who wants to run for president. Then they'll forgive him and even support him.

Posted by: Gary B. at November 16, 2004 04:28 PM

Some of what is being said in these comments is incorrect. We know the dead prisoner in a perfect world should not have been shot. He had previously been disarmed and treated for his wounds.

The question is what the Marine reasonably thought. I am all for giving him the benefit of the doubt. The reporter, Kevin Sites, has a lot of experience in the last couple of years and he said the situation was confused.

I would like to comment on someone saying the use of schools and religious buildings is a "War crime." This is false. My own brother's very first rally point in northern Iraq over 18 months ago was a a school with a mosque. It became a command post. It was not being used by Iraqi forces. So don't kid yourself.

Posted by: James at November 16, 2004 04:31 PM

Only goes to show,when this kind of thing happens it's best to shoot the embeddeds as well.

Posted by: Peter at November 16, 2004 04:47 PM

Just remember the media want America to lose and if that takes more allied casualties then so be it. The left has lost the war of ideas and wants to take the other side with it. Jihadis are just a useful vector for this outcome.

Remember the media are on the other side. They should not be trusted AT ALL.

How prominently displayed was the 21 Billion USD UN Oil-for-Food fraud in your media? Didn't see it, funny that eh?

Posted by: Rob Read at November 16, 2004 04:49 PM

thanks for clearing that up Rob, I dind't realize the "media" shot the guy.

Posted by: Ben at November 16, 2004 05:52 PM

Just to voice my two cents...

The military is doing the right thing in reviewing the case. If nothing else, many understand that the Marine was injured with the 24 hours previous, and another Marine fighting with him was killed. With that stress, though common and expected in war, he could use a break. Would I have liked to see him handle the situation differently? Yes. Do I expect I would have handled it any differently? No.

At the end of the day, he's alive and the terrorist is dead. No one has convinced me that this "victim", although unarmed, was not a combatant. The international sign for surrender is not lying on the ground covering your hands. You don't need a white flag, but even a seriously injured person can lay spread eagle on the floor palms open.

Posted by: Leland at November 16, 2004 05:57 PM

Don't weep for me Fallujah.In Joe's (and Michael Moore's)fevered moral mindswamp;the guy was a freedom fighter,a patriot of the highest order,a veritable Hassan Bin Patrick Henry.In reality he was either a cheap thug who ed and d in the employ of Saddam or a Wahhabi fascist who craved .Either way good shooting Jarhead!
I saw the photos of what those losers did to the four American contractors,they were killed,mutilated,burned and hung on a bridge while demonic mobs danced at their feet around a hellish fire.That city in a just war would be Dresden or Hiroshima.Go have a good cry Joe,you sorry little sissy.

Posted by: bill at November 16, 2004 06:19 PM

The difference between that guy and me (I was in GW I and a couple of "peacekeeping" theaters) is that upon entering this Mosque during the fight, I might well have ventilated the fellow right then, instead of checking him for breathing. The Mosque had apparently been cleared the day before (when the combatant was injured, evidently) but then it was re-occupied by the jihadis again, so the Marines were essentially making a fresh entry again.

The other parts of the story that seem to have been dropped off the more recent press coverage are (1) these Marines had just been with another squad that entered a house up the street, which had blow up when they entered; and (2) the Marine had just returned to duty after being shot in the face the day before.

Hmmmm... Wonder why those facts got dropped from the later versions of the story.

And Joe - if we were going by the traditional laws of war, the commanding general would hold courts martial in the field for these non-uniformed illegal combatants, and find them guilty of fighting outside of the laws of war, and have them executed. That the soldiers and Marines are taking prisoners at all shows remarkable discipline and forebearance, and I would be hard pressed to show that much in their shoes right now.

Posted by: Blackavar at November 16, 2004 06:30 PM

The Geneva Convention just says treat them humanely, that you can execute 'em, but you just can't torture them for kicks. It denies irregulars from any more consideration because it wants to discourage men from taking up arms without uniform. If we start giving these irregulars all the consideration we give to uniformed prisoners, we will encourage our enemies to become irregular fighters in the future. Fighting as an irregular is dirty pool. It should be punished, though, as the Convention says, not inhumanely.

So, the Marine broke no rule, even if he wasn't reasonably worried that the guy had a weapon.

Only if the guy had a uniform on and the Marine could have no reason to fear that the guy was a threat is there any reason to prosecute the Marine. But neither of those was the case, so there is no reason to prosecute the Marine.

Posted by: Jim at November 16, 2004 06:32 PM

Unfortunately, killing a wounded iraqi insurgent in a mosque of all places has pretty negitive optics...This war is about hearts and minds - this didn't win over many...

Posted by: skelly at November 16, 2004 06:41 PM

Hey Joe,

Where are you going with that gun in your hand? Whats the frequency , Kenneth?
Amazing the different standards applied by cBS news (and their kool aid drinking viewing public) when they have a camera aimed at a latter day John Kerry, in an action which if it were to be writen up in Vietnam days, was good enough for a Silver Star.
If it is any consolation for you Joe, I wouldn't vote for that young unnamed Marine for President either.

Posted by: papertiger at November 16, 2004 06:51 PM

Right on, Skelly. Although the optics of a squad of Marines with their brains splattered on the walls, along with a dead camerman and news correspondent, would probably play as bad at home as the non-execution execution plays abroad.

Honestly, with the jihadis running around eviscerating anti-American female relief workers, if we are losing the battle for hearts and minds its because we are too f***ing stupid to fight it...All the optics are going to be bad, because AQ picks the time and place to fight, and they are going to fight out of mosques. If we can't make hay out of their invidious choices... then that's our fault. We ought to be running that NBC tape in ads - "They defiled your mosque. We are removing them and giving it back to you to worship as you see fit. Stop by the local American post to pick up a check to get any necessary repairs on the mosque completed. I'm George Bush, and I approved this ad."

Posted by: Blackavar at November 16, 2004 07:03 PM

skelly,, I want you to walk in the same boots that Marine had to walk the last six days, get wounded in the face, see dead and wounded Iraqi bodies blow up and kill your comrade in arms. Then I want you to come back here to this site and write the same antiseptic can't-we-just-be-reasonable-and-take-the -high-road-here-for-the-good-of-the-univ erse post? Marines aren't robots and with the liberal pinheads in the lamestream media second-guessing every soldier in a battle zone, this will certainly cause some of our fighting men to hesitate that fraction of a second and possibly get a whole squad blown away. I guarandamntee you that is exactly what will happen. Whereas these Marines are putting their ass on the line, you have the luxury to kick back in your nice warm barcolounger spouting pious platitudes about not wanting to "subvert the purpose"... of what? I'd say killing more Islamofascists who are shooting our soldiers.

What you advocate, the paralysis of analysis, can get an American soldier seriously dead in short order in a battlezone. How can we ask the American patriot soldiers to kill the enemy but we're going to cut them off at the knees if the make a mistake in a free fire zone? Go tell that to John Fraud Kerry, he chased down a wounded, unarmed combatant and killed him during the heat of battle, and he almost became president!

Let's apply your standard across the board if we're going to go PC on all this. My God, American WWII pilots in the European theater admitted they began shooting parachuting German pilots because they got tired of them landing in friendly territory and climbing back into another BF-109 or FW-190 and killing more American airmen. Are these Americans war criminals? Hell no. And by those standards you seem to advocate, what right did we have to drop TWO A-Bombs on Japan, on "innocent civilians"? And firebombing Dresden? I'd order it myself if I were president instead of FDR or Truman.

War is hell and once the dogs of war are unleashed against an implacable enemy, it should be total. Fallujah is a war zone, emotions run high, the enemy is deceitful and resourceful, and they already demonstrated that even dead men could still kill. Give that Marine a medal and a parade. There should be no quarter given to enemy combatants, particularly those OUT OF UNIFORM who have taken up arms against our soldiers.

I want the partisan media syndicate to also show footage of the blonde-haired woman who was mutilated beyond recognition by these Islamofascists every time they show the Marine offing dead/not-so-dead enemy combatant. I want fair and balanced coverage, not some ginned up Abu Ghraib "atrocity" media coverage. I'm sick of such intellectual dishonesty on the part of so-called objective journalists. I guess it's alright for journalists to ditch their standards of fairness when they are in a war zone but not the soldier, eh? Figures.

Posted by: usajihad at November 16, 2004 07:07 PM

non-uniformed illegal combatants, and find them guilty of fighting outside of the laws of war, and have them executed.

The Geneva Convention just says treat them humanely, that you can execute 'em, but you just can't torture them for kicks. It denies irregulars from any more consideration because it wants to discourage men from taking up arms without uniform. If we start giving these irregulars all the consideration we give to uniformed prisoners,

thank you for making it clear you two have never been in the US military and have no idea of either the Geneva conventions or our own intepretations. Illegal combatants would be those who fiegn surrender, as well as those who are armed but do not carry weapons openly.

No doubt we are fighting many "terorists" in Iraq, but there is also no doubt we are fighting a large number of perfectly legal combatants as well.

press reports saying this man was a "prisoner" are incorrect and inflammatory. But by the same token, there is, at this time, no evidence that the person shot was a terrorist, an illegal combatant, or even a combatant at all.

Posted by: OldVet at November 16, 2004 07:07 PM

In the News this AM Radical Islam is now believed to had wilfully killed Margaret Hassan, an Irish-born convert to Islam who married to an Iraqi, reportedly considered herself Iraqi and Muslim, and had resided in Iraq proper for nigh on 30 years. She worked for the humanitarian aid group CARE INTERNATIONAL. If these news reporters are true, then Radical Islam has once again violated the KORAN/QURAN by killing not only a dedicated Muslim and loyal convert; but also in addition,
by grotesquely dismembering her body thus denying appearance before Allah AND, if what I've read about certain regional practices is correct, by killing her wo her Muslim husband's consent!? HER KILLERS HAVE NOT HELPED WORLD ISLAM, OR EVEN RADICAL ISLAM, BY THIS HORRENDOUS ACT.

Posted by: JosephMendiola at November 16, 2004 07:10 PM

In the News this AM Radical Islam is now believed to had wilfully killed Margaret Hassan, an Irish-born convert to Islam who married to an Iraqi, reportedly considered herself Iraqi and Muslim, and had resided in Iraq proper for nigh on 30 years. She worked for the humanitarian aid group CARE INTERNATIONAL. If these news reports/
articles are true, then Radical Islam has once again violated the KORAN/QURAN by killing not only a dedicated Muslim and loyal convert; but also in addition,
by grotesquely dismembering her body thus denying appearance before Allah AND, if what I've read about certain regional practices is correct, by killing her wo her Muslim husband's consent!? HER KILLERS HAVE NOT HELPED WORLD ISLAM, OR EVEN RADICAL ISLAM, BY THIS HORRENDOUS ACT.

Posted by: JosephMendiola at November 16, 2004 07:11 PM

How do we know this guy was "faking being dead"? Maybe he was just passed out or asleep? If the same 30 second videotape can't prove much about the Marine, why does it prove so much about the guy he shot?

It's probably impossible to really know everything that was happening, especially since the dead guy is too dead to tell his side of the story. I suspect that the Marine will get one of those stern reprimands and a loss of some pay, but he'll not get even accused of anything big. It's too cloudy to convict. My gut tells me he shot too soon, but my mind knows I can't know.

Posted by: jon at November 16, 2004 07:13 PM

The Kerry argument goes both ways. How come you chickenhawks were so willing to accuse Kerry of a crime, and now, all of a sudden you're so understanding.

Same goes for the purple hearts. Any of you "big men" willing to tell a soldier in Iraq that the purple heart he got from a little shrapnel in a firefight isn't deserved? No? Thought not.

I know how we can solve the whole Iraq problem. If half the supermen who posted here volunteered and went to Iraq, we would win the war in no time! Any takers? Noooo? Hmmph, thought not. Why don't you wimps go back to watching "Desperate Housewives". Or maybe "Will and Grace" is more your style.

Posted by: Patriot99 at November 16, 2004 07:19 PM

What a leap, the injured and probably unconcious guy is the person who killed Margaret Hassan?

As long as we are there people will be resisting and fighting us for a variety of reasons. Lumping all the various factions and methods is really simplistic.

Posted by: Cal at November 16, 2004 07:34 PM

usajihad

I made no moral judgement of what the marine did. It looked to me like the kind of F-up in a confused situation that is, if not common, not unexpected in a war zone. But it would definitely be for the best if the war over there was won. As in a friendly, reasonably democratic gov't is put in place.

To do that you need two things. Security and more iraqi's willing to vote for a friendly gov't then for hardcore islamists in January. Security is being worked on (in my useless opinion, a couple of hundred thousand more boots on the ground would be a help here). The getting the iraqi's onside part is going not so well.

Having embedded film crews so that the public can get there jolly's, the news company's can get good ratings and the insurgents can get film of confusing situations that they can spin for a powerful propaganda hit doesn't seem to me to be a good trade off. The (civilian) Pentagon brass should stop playing political games with the soldiers and try to achieve the military objectives.

Simple fact - killing a wounded insurgent in a mosque ON FILM is a PR disaster. I expect similar situations have happened elsewhere in iraq and been swept under. This one would have too had the damn camera not been there.

Posted by: skelly at November 16, 2004 07:34 PM

This was not a wounded person who was fleeing (as in the Kerry incident mentioned), this was someone inside a building being cleared (or re-cleared, in this case).

When you take a building, you shoot everyone who doesn't surrender. Period. It doesn't matter if he's armed, unarmed, wounded, or dead; if he isn't doing what you tell him to, he gets shot. These people have feigned death and used all sorts of dirty tricks, what the guy did was appropriate. Let the Marines do their freakin' job.

And Patriot99, some of us did enlist, so fuck you.

Posted by: Tim in PA at November 16, 2004 07:41 PM

Patriot, I did my tour in Iraq. So, yeah, I'm willing to tell someone who got a nick in a firefight that they don't deserve a Purple Heart. I don't have one, and I have several pieces of the Iraqi countryside and assorted metal shards still inside me. I wouldn't bother requesting a Purple Heart nor would I let anyone do it for me if it all it was is a scratch.

I don't recall anyone calling Kerry a war criminal over the VC incident. But some may have. People HAVE called it less than heroic, and that is even debatable. If the kid had a weapon (he did, a rocket launcher) then he was fair game.

Same goes for this guy here.

Lots of good points raised here, and the bottom line is the video doesn't and can't tell the whole story. It makes for compelling TV, but that Marine could have been perfectly justified under the laws governing land warfare.

You wanna go to Iraq, Patriot? You want to put up or shut up? All kinds of businesses, State, USAID and other government agencies are hiring.

Put your money where your mouth is. If you can't, then try not using that argument. Come up with something more original.

At least the Army taught me SOMETHING....never have your men do anything you wouldn't do.

I see civilians don't quite "get" that. Huh, Patriot?

Jesus, what a four year-old.

Posted by: M.P. Gilroy MAJ, USA at November 16, 2004 07:42 PM

Two points:

The Geneva Conventions were and are concieved as a body of rules to prevent the waging of total war by codifying the rights of both combatants and non-combatants. Not only do they protect the combatants from the effects of total warfare, they protect the civilian populace also. The conventions also require that neither combatants ro non-combatants do not game the systems. For instance, while there are strictures against bombing clearly marked hospitals, the Geneva Conventions very specifically call storing munitions in a hospital or staging military operations out of one as much a violation as bombing it. The same goes for churches or places of worship. All that being said, once the insurgents used a place of worship as a redoubt, they put themselves outside the rules of war.

Second Point: The fifth insurgent was not harmed. He showed his hands in proof of his now non-belligerant status and was let be. Had the marines been capriciously or premeditatively killing wounded, he would have died also. This is probably the most compelling evidence that the marine(s) were acting within the rights of combatants under the Geneva Conventions even though the insurgents were wounded while operating outside the Geneva Conventions.

The Geneva Conventions can easily be googled and I suggest anyone who hasn't done so read them. They are clear, rather concise for something so important, and neither easily misinterpreted nor open to differing interpretations. The commission of a war crime tends to be a black and white determination.

Posted by: Just Passing Through at November 16, 2004 07:46 PM

Sorry,

'The conventions also require that neither combatants or non-combatants game the system.'

Posted by: Just Passing Through at November 16, 2004 07:48 PM

I thought that all video was supposed to be approved before it is aired. If that imbed did not follow the rules than he needs to be sent home. We can't make a determination based on a snippet of video. Reports state that he had been wounded in battle the day before, he is heard to say that the insurgent was playing dead. HIS split second thought. I love all these armchair quarterbacks. Not only are they the master of all sports and all politics, they are also combat experts. The very same experts that are complaining that the head terrorists got away--Because we warned everyone to get out to save civilians--anyone left should be assumed to be an insurgent and they have to make that judgement call. They are waving white flags and killing our guys. They are rigging dead bodies to kill out soldiers. They wear no uniform and they are not the army of any country unless France just gave them a territory of their own. We need to leave it to the people who can best judge these incidents as they occur. I don't hear the media crying over their dirty tricks or any public outpouring of emotions for the mass graves over there. Where is their vigil? I would have a lot more sympathy for peace actvists if they made their issues beyond snippets of media dialogue. Investigate your subject matter. Against the war? Good for you--But support our troops who have to make split second decisions and be thankful it is not you.

The military has to act on a threat or a perceived threat. He has to protect himself and others in his group. If history is any indicator he should be able to come home and run for president of the united states!

Posted by: camper at November 16, 2004 08:05 PM

Terrorists are not covered under the Geneva Convention period. They are not fighting for their country, their country is fighting with the United States.

Posted by: camper at November 16, 2004 08:15 PM

I've got a resolution for next time: Have the marines stand back so that Kevin Sites, et. al., can take a brief walk through and check all of the "freedom fighters" for a pulse. This will make sure any wounded who are NOT faking it, or hiding a bomb or weapon, can be given humane treatment.

Posted by: Merry Whitney at November 16, 2004 08:26 PM

The jarhead was just helpin' him get to his virgins. I don't understand what all the yapping is about.

Posted by: arlo at November 16, 2004 08:28 PM

"Terrorists are not covered under the Geneva Convention period. "

Neither are criminals masquarading as US Marines and bringing shame of cowardice to the Marines as well.

BTW, what rules did the embed break? It is clear you have no military backgrund since he broke not one rule.

Posted by: Earl at November 16, 2004 09:16 PM

>

Making any pretense to civil society requires us to do so.

Posted by: Joe at November 16, 2004 09:45 PM

"Even if it meant we would take double the casualties, we should be respecting the rule of war..."

What's this "WE" stuff, Joe? You want to be part of that "double"? Then go volunteer. When a known terrorist makes a move, you turn your own back on him and hope for the best.

It always kills me how easy the armchair ethicists find this stuff. How easily the accusations ring out against the men who put their lives where their mouth is while you sit home nice and snug. Surely you are right, in the abstract, that we must hew to a higher standard. In the world as it really exists, however, it strikes me that you are pretty damn quick to pass judgement against those who actually have their lives on the line.

Posted by: WildMonk at November 16, 2004 10:38 PM

Our own news organizations say it is fight to the death. So be it.

Posted by: Ed Price at November 16, 2004 10:45 PM

Kill them all but six, and keep them for pallbearers - as we used to say when I was in the Army.
I challenge any of you, who happened to be in that situation, fighting those fanatics not to do what the marine did. It's better to be cautious then dead, and he obviously did what he thought was the safest thing to do. I'd give him a promotion for, under those circumstances, taking the one course of action to guarantee his, his fellow marines, and even the photographer's, lives. It's easy to second guess when you aren't there and have never lived through such hell as the fighting in Fallujah was. Face it - this is war against a brutal and determine enemy. Negotiating is not an option when you feel you are in lethal peril.

Posted by: Humanoid at November 16, 2004 11:08 PM

Can anyone say Neutron bomb? That'll solve that whole "don't hurt the mosque" thing and take care of the terrorists. Gotta love a weapon that will only kill the people without breaking the things.

Posted by: MARK W at November 16, 2004 11:23 PM

Humanoid, if we aren't going to try and win hearts and minds, then killing them all is the only other solution...

There are 1.3 billion muslims, should we really radicalise them all and then kill them ??- That is not a world I would care to live in.

Whether it was the "right" or "wrong" thing for the Marine to do, this event was a definite bad thing for the war, because of the PR. Results matter.

Posted by: skelly at November 16, 2004 11:29 PM

I'm hoping REAL hard that one of these tattle tale titty baby reporters gets gut shot by a "wounded prisoner."

It's only right.

Posted by: Sy Coe Pathe at November 16, 2004 11:42 PM

Maybe the liberals are on to something here. Because if this Marine comes home to lead an anti war protest, perhaps it is better if we stick him in a dungeon.
We don't want him winning the war for Allah.

Posted by: Papertiger at November 16, 2004 11:48 PM

Wake up, Skelly - we are in a war and you are here and the marines are there, fighting and risking there lives. Not all Muslims are bad, and you can't believe I was serious about killing all Muslims but six. Personally, I think the only language the Muslim extremists (call them what you will) understand is strength, and any sign of what they perceive as weakness will only strengthen their actions against the West. And no, I don't advocate shooting prisoners, but I also don't believe any Marine should risk his life if he believes he is in mortal peril, as I said before. 9/11 and all that happened before (the Cole, Khobar Towers, The Embasies, the first World Trade Center bombing, etc.) came at a time when we believed we were at peace with the Muslims. Tell me, good friend, under what has happened to the West, how do you win the hearts and minds of 1.2 billion people, except by eliminating the extremists, and hope and pray that the good Muslims will see the light that we really are not their enemies. Personally, I am very pessimistic about the future.

Posted by: Humanoid at November 17, 2004 12:12 AM

I have a question for all of you, how do you know this man was an insurgent? Most likely he was, but that marine never asked any questions nor gave any instructions, that person could have just been a wounded civilian, surely not likely in the least, but a slight possibility. Being in a combat zone loses him the benifit of doubt in a combat situation, but from what I could tell from the video, which isn't a lot, there were no gun shots taking place at the time so it doesn't seem to me to be a direct combat situation. Some of you have said terrorists are not covered under the Geneva convention, and iffy proposition to say the least, but if that is the case, how does one determine who is a terrorist and who is a civilian? Are you saying that it is okay to kill all Iraqis? Again it is most likely that this man was an insurgent, but if there is time, which I believe there was in this case, then make the effort to find out. Also someone said that they entered the mosque as if it had not been cleared. I'm calling bull on that, they entered it in a very lackisdasical manner as if they knew it was clear. A couple different people make comments about the Iraqi men in there being the same ones from yesterday, they knew he had not been reoccupied.

Posted by: nathaniel at November 17, 2004 12:34 AM

we live in a world that has walls. And those walls have to be guarded by men with guns. Who's gonna do it? You? You, Lt. Weinberg? I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom. You weep for a terrorist and you curse the Marines. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know: that this terrorist's death, while tragic, probably saved lives. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives...You don't want the truth.
Because deep down, in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall. You need me on that wall.
We use words like honor, code, loyalty...we use these words as the backbone to a life spent defending something. You use 'em as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom I provide, then questions the manner in which I provide it! I'd rather you just said thank you and went on your way. Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand a post.

Posted by: Jessup Col. USMC Guantanamo Bay, Cuba at November 17, 2004 01:04 AM

It should be remarked that:
the US is investigating the incident,
the US *is* committed to the Geneva protocols,
the US *will* issue a report
for all the world to see.

OTOH:
has the other side ever done anything
but cheer those of it's adherents who
decapitate, on camera, civilian aid workers?

The distinction should be clear to
anyone who has
eyes to see,
a brain to think,
and
a heart with which to feel.

Give this Jarhead a Silver Star.
His proper response saved lives.

Posted by: oreb at November 17, 2004 01:59 AM

Making any pretense to civil society requires us to do so.

Umm, Joe? Which do you think I care more about??

Posted by: Edward Yee at November 17, 2004 02:08 AM

Making any pretense to civil society requires us to do so.

Georgetown freshman, right?

Posted by: BMN at November 17, 2004 08:11 AM

Can I just say, good for the Red Cross here for not having the usual knee-jerk reaction of "human rights" groups? Upon a full investigation, it may be concluded that the Marine did the wrong thing, albeit under circumstances where those of us who haven't walked in his shoes aren't really fit to sit in judgment. But the Red Cross is showing good sense by not leaping to any conclusions.

Posted by: Crank at November 17, 2004 08:32 AM

PBS, on the Jim Lehrer report, last evening showed more of the tape. Immediately after the guy is shot the remaining terrorist starts hollering in English, "I have information! I have information!"

Posted by: duck at November 17, 2004 10:01 AM

I don't know whether the marine is guilty of a crime. As many have said it is not a violation of the Geneva Conventions, but it might have been against the rules of engagement. Frankly we don't know and should withhold judgement.

What I would suggest is going easy on Kevin Sites. He has done very good reporting from Iraq and Fallujah and has demonstrated admiration for our troops and how they conduct themselves. I suggest you check out his blog which has terrific stuff on it and is quite sympathetic to the troops.

Posted by: Lance at November 17, 2004 10:36 AM

Here is a link to Kevin's blog. He is definitely on our side. Don't paint him with the same brush as many other journalists who truly deserve our scorn.

http://www.kevinsites.net/

Posted by: Lance at November 17, 2004 10:39 AM

To this Marine, I have one thing to say:

Carry on.

Posted by: Eugene at November 17, 2004 10:53 AM

Reply to "Patriot":
"The Kerry argument goes both ways. How come you chickenhawks were so willing to accuse Kerry of a crime, and now, all of a sudden you're so understanding."

I guess I'm a "chickenhawk". I used to jump out of perfectly good airplanes while carrying weapons, but - though hugely provoked - my peanut farming CINC was a pathetic bed-wetter. I never saw combat.

"Same goes for the purple hearts. Any of you "big men"..."

I'm about 5'10". That's just shy of averge.

"...willing to tell a soldier in Iraq that the purple heart he got from a little shrapnel in a firefight isn't deserved? No? Thought not."

It doesn't appear that the Marine in question was trying to claim three insignificant scratches as PHs in order to lawyer his way out of combat.

"I know how we can solve the whole Iraq problem. If half the supermen who posted here volunteered and went to Iraq, we would win the war in no time! Any takers? Noooo? Hmmph, thought not."

I don't know these guys, but some of them sound like they've gotten their boots muddy. There are millions of combat arms vets around. Calling a whole board wimps and cowards seems rather extravagant.

Bottom line is this: We don't know enough about what happened in that Mosque to judge that Marine. I'll admit that I'm predisposed to giving him the benefit of the doubt, because he's defending us and because one of my nephews could easily be in that situation tomorrow.

Posted by: Spike at November 17, 2004 11:11 AM

I'm on the side of all the U.S. soldiers over there. I wouldn't presume to judge the actions of anyone in combat, having never been there myself. This incident is only being discussed here at home because it was caught on film. While I agree that this may be a pr disaster, it also may turn out to be a military masterstroke. The terrorists we're fighting have been consistently using the rules of war against us. Footage of a marine shooting a "wounded prisoner" just may cause the other side to contemplate what their fate will be, should the U.S. military take off the gloves, and fight them on their own terms. The dogs of war? Hell, we could give them the grizzlies of war. Are mistakes being made by our guys over there? Undoubtedly. War is messy and unscripted and it fries my beans that anyone sitting and watching tv, much less those elites ON tv would even dare to comment on the actions of the men and women who have put themselves on the line for us.

Posted by: mlp at November 17, 2004 11:17 AM

Most of you people here are seriously insane. I fear for our nation.

Posted by: vic at November 17, 2004 11:48 AM

My step-son returned to Germany from Iraq a few months ago. Were he "God forbid" have been placed in that position I would hope and pray that he did exactly what that wonderful young Marine did and make the necessary and appropriate action to save the lives of the men he served with. Quite possibly the life saved may end up being that of one of my children or one of my Civil Air Patrol Cadets because the job our kids are doing today in Afghanistan and Iraq sets the stage for the war others may have to fight tomorrow.

My father served 20 in the USMC, retired as a Master Gunnery Sargent and I know he taught his men to protect each other first. If that protection of fellow Marines errs on the side of safety for US Marines, the error was, is, and always will be justified.

I cannot begin to imagine having to face the choices our children face in Iraq each day (and having people who never have or will face those choices judge them) so I can only say to that Marine and every Sailor, Soldier and Marine serving, good job, keep up the good work and SEMPER FI.

Posted by: Merry at November 17, 2004 12:07 PM

I support the marine!

Posted by: Pat in NC at November 17, 2004 01:43 PM

"Most of you people here are seriously insane. I fear for our nation."

I fear for Vic.

Posted by: TexDriver at November 17, 2004 01:46 PM

That Marine did his duty...Thank you soldier.

Joe and his "pals" should be located, placed on a C7 and flown directly to Iraq where they can be embedded with US troops to check the status and condition of all the wounded and surrendering anarchists. Time to walk the talk jackasses.

Posted by: lugh lampfhota at November 17, 2004 01:50 PM

Combat Situation: When you take fire, or go after an objective, you shoot.

You shoot to kill.

Economy of Ground Warfare: Bullets are cheap. Trained, combat-seasoned infantry, whether dead or incapacitated by wounds are not.

Dead enemy don't kill or wound you - if "dead" ones aren't, make them dead again.

Two in the head does it, every time.

The ONLY time this "combat math" doesn't work: When, on occasion, the REMFs get busy with "humane" investigations.

War is a dangerous thing - the idea is, the more dangerous it is for the enemy, the less dangerous it is for yourself and your own people.

Until you've been there, you're unqualified to say what's right or wrong.

Posted by: BeenThere at November 17, 2004 02:23 PM

Not to say these two things are the same, but to all of you who say if you haven't been there you can't make a judgement, well then I guess you can't make a judgement on whether what enron did was wrong. Clearly it is possible to make judgement on things you have not experienced yourself. Right is right, wrong is wrong. Yes somewhere who has experience a situation may be able to make a better judgement, but me who have not been there still can make some sort of judgement

Posted by: nathaniel at November 17, 2004 03:08 PM

Why is it that every fighter in Iraq that is not part of the Coalition is called a terrorist?

I can tell you all right now that if the US ever invaded my country, replaced my government with it's own, killed my friends, neieghbours and children, I would be cararying a gun, a bomb, a knife or a piece of broken glass and doing whatever I could to get every stinking last one of you bastards OUT!

These people are resistance fighters, just like the French, Poles, Czechs, etc. in WWII. They have killed and injured less civilians in Iraq than the US and coalition forces and are fighting with the only weapons at their disposal.

That a marine killed a wounded fighter is really such an irrelevant story in the midst of everything else and is likely a contrived situation in order to show the US as a benevolent, and just leader willing to investigate it's own. This marine will likely be given the same warm treatment soldiers at Abu Graib were given when sentenced for crimes which were sanctioned and authorized by superior, yet bameless officers and civilian authorities.

It all just sickens me.

Goon Out

Posted by: Goon at November 17, 2004 04:17 PM

So tell me Goon, If your country was invaded Would you also lop off the head of aid workers? Would you kill families of those who you thought collaborated? What are the fighters from Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Etc. Etc. doing there since it wasn't there country that was invaded? I guess the thousands of Iraqis who risk their lives everyday to rid themselves of the people who lop off aid workers heads are invaders too. And you know that the insurgents have killed less people than we have how? Oh I'm sure you read it on some froth mouthed shreiking moonbat web site. Well don't worry Goon. Someday maybe that soldier will return to the U.S and Run for President, admit to war crimes and then you can vote for him. You have no idea what these people are about and comparing them to the resistance fighters of Poland etc. does not only a diservice to them but to yourself as well. Then again anyone like you who is obviously suffering from dillusiuons will never get it anyway. Seek counseling freak.

Posted by: Christopher at November 17, 2004 07:52 PM

The failing here is not the shooting itself, but a breakdown in communication. From an NYT article:

Iraqi PM 'Very Concerned' Over Shooting
November 17, 2004
“Earlier in the footage, as the Marine unit that Sites was accompanying approached the mosque, gunfire can be heard from inside. Marines who were already in the mosque emerge, and a lieutenant in the approaching unit asks if there were insurgents inside and if the Marines had shot any of them. An exiting Marine can be heard responding affirmatively. The lieutenant then asks if they were armed, and the Marine shrugs.”

This is not acceptable in an environment in which an unarmed injured body could be a suicide bomber just as easily as they could be a prisoner. It should have been clearly communicated.

The details about this will come out in the military court, but in terms of its impact on the war, that damage has been done.

Think of this: There is a wounded US soldier on the ground. You see a video of a guerilla soldier yelling at him as he lies bleeding on the ground, in a church. He is then shot in the head.

Yes, there could be a million extenuating circumstances, but how many Americans would think of those if that video was all over the news? I can almost promise you that the cries would not be for understanding, but for retribution.

Thinking about this on a global scale: This kind of talk, from either side, plays right into Al-Quaeda's hands. This is guerilla war on a global scale. You attack enough to invite reprisal, fade into the populace, and wait for innocents to get killed in the firefight. Use those who are now mourning for their dead brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers because of US "smart" bombs as your new recruitment base.

While this is happening, your initial attack is still pissing off your enemy, leading them to further attacks. You piss off the enemy and polarize them against you, so that your formerly moderate country men now see an angry dangerous enemy.

The more militant and polarized EITHER side becomes, it swells the ranks of the opposition. This is why Al-Quaeda has not attacked again. They don’t need to. Shit like this is giving us all the bad publicity they need to recruit.

We need to win. The more I learn about this situation, the more I think he was justified. According to the NYT, someone in his unit was killed by a wounded bomber just days before. However, if we do not make it mission critical to act humanely and with honor evening the face of death, every attack we make against them will hasten our defeat.

Please note that I spoke of the happenings in Iraq and Al-Quaeda in this article, but I am not insinuating that Al-Quaeda was responsible for this specific event. I am only saying that they are capitalizing on the negative American publicity this generates.

Posted by: David at November 17, 2004 08:45 PM

Well perhaps the moonbats would be interested to know that the reporter responsible for the story wasn't so quick to condemn him. Here's what Sites had to say.

Sites said: "I have witnessed the marines behaving as a disciplined and professional force throughout this offensive. In this particular case, it certainly was a confusing situation to say the least."

Perhaps the bad P.R from it is coming from those with an agenda? Nahh couldn't be.

Posted by: Christopher at November 17, 2004 08:58 PM

Sorry, here's the URL for Sites' quote.

Sites said: "I have witnessed the marines behaving as a disciplined and professional force throughout this offensive. In this particular case, it certainly was a confusing situation to say the least."

http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,11412539%255E401,00.html

Posted by: Christopher at November 17, 2004 09:00 PM

Why is it that every fighter in Iraq that is not part of the Coalition is called a terrorist?

"But we were happy you did what you did because Fallujah had been suffocated by the Mujahidin. Anyone considered suspicious would be slaughtered. We would see unknown corpses around the city all the time."

The same story of arbitrary executions was told by another resident, found by US troops cowering in his home with his brother and his family.

"They would wear black masks, carry rocket-propelled grenades and Kalashnikovs, and search streets and alleys," said Iyad Assam, 24. "I would hear stories, about how they executed five men one day and seven another for collaborating with the Americans. They made checkpoints on the roads. They put announcements on walls banning music and telling women to wear the veil from head to toe."

I can tell you all right now that if the US ever invaded my country, replaced my government with it's own, killed my friends, neieghbours and children, I would be cararying a gun, a bomb, a knife or a piece of broken glass and doing whatever I could to get every stinking last one of you bastards OUT!

No, you would whine and whine, and get down on your knees, and rat on others, like the good little self-loather that you are. You talk tough, it means nothing.

Posted by: BMN at November 17, 2004 09:10 PM

This same reporter must have forgot to file the video of the relieved Fallujans cheering the Marines for clearing out their city of the terrrorists. Likewise he must have missed filming the numerous Execution houses which were reported on by AP , Rueters, and the BBC.

Don't any of you dare tell me what a good guy this reporter is.

Posted by: Jessup Col. USMC Guantanamo Bay, Cuba at November 17, 2004 11:34 PM

This same reporter must have forgot to file the video of the relieved Fallujans cheering the Marines for clearing out their city of the terrrorists. Likewise he must have missed filming the numerous Execution houses which were reported on by AP , Rueters, and the BBC.

Don't any of you dare tell me what a good guy this reporter is.

Posted by: Jessup Col. USMC Guantanamo Bay, Cuba at November 17, 2004 11:34 PM

Kevin Sites is on one side - - his own.

Look through some of his past television reports on Iraq. He emphasized and repeats anything that puts the military in a bad light.

Yes, he said a nice thing. (The Marines are usually disciplined and professional, and it was confusing) But then, why release the tape worldwide knowing full well what the ramifications would be? His "moderating" comments provide excellent cover for the overall anti-US policy in Iraq tone of his reporting.
Playing the pristinely objective journalist, Sites is hiding behind the principle of freedom of the press to advance his agenda and his own career.
Sites was the only person that was in the mosque both when the first unit entered, and when the second unit entered (when the shooting occurred.) His version of how this whole thing went down is all we have. Sites reported that the first unit treated the wounded, said another unit would pick them up, and then moved on. Sites is heard on tape with the second unit saying "these are the wounded that were never picked up." Then, he questions the Marine, asking if he knew the guy was a "wounded prisoner", and Sites reports, the soldier says "I didn't know, sir".
Hmmm.
Then, Sites shows the footage to the unit's superiors, suggesting they investigate the tape. Things sure did move along in a certain direction.
I am not being overly critical of Sites or his motives. Regardless of the quality of his reporting (with its anti-US policy in Iraq bias) or the beauty of his photos, this particular incident reveals what his true objectives and viewpoints are. He is a danger to any soldier he can train his camera on, and I sincerely hope his efforts to undermine the US military's actions in Iraq are ended by this.
By the way, don't tell me about the journalist's sacred duty to expose the truths of war. We already know its hell.

Posted by: jordan at November 20, 2004 05:19 PM

Good work.

Posted by: Terry at December 4, 2004 01:24 AM
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