Jack Murtha: Open Mouth, Insert Foot

According to a report in today’s Los Angeles Times, the general in charge of finding out if a cover-up occurred in the killing of 24 civilians has completed his report, finding that Marine officers failed to ask the right questions. According to the Times article, “Nothing in the report indicated to a “knowing cover-up” of the facts by the officers supervising the Marines involved in the November incident.

Rather, officers from the company level through the staff of the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force in Baghdad failed to demand "a thorough explanation" of what happened in Haditha."

Thus it is apparent that someone was negligent in not asking the right questions, but no deliberate cover-up took place. How about them apples, Jack Murtha?

If this case falls apart, as it seems to be doing, you should do the right thing and resign. The harm you have caused the Corps, the marines in question, and the justice system is irreparable.

Looks like your "sources" went "over the horizon" on this one, Congressman. Perhaps when you return home you can re-open your car wash.

What a complete disgrace.

Posted by Sicilian Eagle at June 19, 2006 10:53 PM
Comments
Comment #159330

Here’s the complete article:

linktext

Posted by: sicilianeagle at June 19, 2006 11:06 PM
Comment #159332

Here’s how Michele Malkin is reporting it:


linktext

Posted by: sicilianeagle at June 19, 2006 11:19 PM
Comment #159340

Murtha has had his 15 minutes of fame. I predict that he will be almost unheard of by September. The Dems will shut him up.

Posted by: Don at June 19, 2006 11:47 PM
Comment #159341

It wont matter to the lefties. They will just deny the facts and pretend that they arent there.

Just like they keep saying Bush stole 2000 with articles like this still available:

WASHINGTON (CNN) — A comprehensive study of the 2000 presidential election in Florida suggests that if the U.S. Supreme Court had allowed a statewide vote recount to proceed, Republican candidate George W. Bush would still have been elected president.

The National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago conducted the six-month study for a consortium of eight news media companies, including CNN.

http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2001/florida.ballots/stories/main.html

Posted by: scott at June 19, 2006 11:49 PM
Comment #159342

Upon further thought… If I were a Dem I would shut him up, but most Dems are not as insightful as I am. Therefore, they won’t shut him up, but he will still be almost unheard of come September.

Posted by: Don at June 19, 2006 11:50 PM
Comment #159344

I’m guessing Murthra used the same sources that Dan Rather used in his Bush National Guard investigation. Is there a problem with that?

Posted by: Carnak at June 19, 2006 11:54 PM
Comment #159348

Yeah, sure. Murtha was way off base. Just like it was way off base to suspect that senior officers might have ordered torture at Abu Ghraib. This was all above board, and no one ever really tried to look the other way.
The little girls who survived this just don’t understand what actually happened that day when their families got killed “accidentally” and when the supervising officers “just failed to ask the right questions”:

Eman Waleed, a nine-year-old girl, was a few minutes walk from the site of the bomb which caught the Humvee, at the home of her grandfather Abdul Hamid Hassan Ali, an 89-year-old amputee in a wheelchair. Eman recalls the moment the killings started. “We heard a big noise that woke us all up. Then we did what we always do when there’s an explosion – my father goes into his room with the Koran and prays that the family be spared any harm.”

While her father prayed, Eman, her mother, grandfather, grandmother, two brothers, two aunts and two uncles stayed together in the main room. Eman recalls sitting in her pyjamas and hearing shooting as the marines moved towards her home. They stormed into the house, went to the room where Eman’s father was praying and shot him dead. Then they entered the room where the rest of the family were huddled together.

“I couldn’t see their faces very well,” said Eman, “only their guns sticking into the doorway. I watched them shoot my grandfather, first in the chest and then in the head. Then they killed my granny.”

The marines started to spray the corner of the room with automatic fire where Eman and her eight-year-old brother Abdul were being shielded by the other adults. Both Eman and Abdul were wounded but survived. Eman’s aunt fled the house as the shooting started, taking her five-month-old niece with her. She escaped. Her husband, who also tried to escape, was shot in the head. In total, seven family members died. Eman’s grandfather was shot nine times. His death certificate notes that his intestines had spilled through the exit wounds in his back.

Only one of the adults in the house that day survived. Eman and her brother hid under a bed, with their family lying dead around them, and waited two hours before Iraqi soldiers arrived to help them.

The marines then moved to the house of Younis Salim Khafif, which he shared with his wife, Aida, and their six children. Aida was in bed recovering from an operation so her sister was in the house to help out with family chores. A neighbour says he heard Younis beg for his life, telling the marines in English: “I am a friend, I am good.” They shot him anyway. Eight people in the house that day – everybody apart from a 12-year-old girl – were murdered as the marines opened fire and then lobbed in hand grenades. The children who died were aged 14, 10, five, three and one.

The surviving child, Safa, said she lay on the ground, pretending to be dead and covered in her sister’s blood. She recalls the blood spurting out of her sister like water from a tap, and the soldiers kicking the bodies of the dead. “I was wishing to be alive,” she said. “Now I wish I had died with them.”

Further up the street, four brothers aged between 20 and 38 were at home. The women inside the house were forced outside at gunpoint by the marines – then the men were shot dead. A relative said the Americans put the brothers in a wardrobe and machine-gunned them.

Finally, back at the bomb site, a taxi entered the street and was stopped by marines. The four students inside and the driver were ordered out of the car and shot dead. Of the 24 people killed, only one had been carrying a weapon.

When the killings were over, the marines cordoned off the area. They later took the dead to Haditha hospital – they left them in body bags in the garden and drove off.

What a complete disgrace.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 12:01 AM
Comment #159349

The reason I say that is in response to posting this on another blog I got the response tha CNN read and got the report wrong. He just hadn’t read to the 2nd paragraph to see CNN was involved with the investigation. My response?:

So what you are saying is CNN Misunderstood CNN.

CNN must have not paid very close attention to CNN.

CNN must not have comunicated clearly enough with CNN.

I would encourage everyone to do their own research.

He will figure someway around the facts… They always do!

Posted by: scott at June 20, 2006 12:02 AM
Comment #159350

Another fat, bald chickenhawk calling a veteran a traitor?

Must have gotten the new Rove Memo.

Posted by: Aldous at June 20, 2006 12:03 AM
Comment #159352

SE & Don,
Murtha is defending the military.

Why do you think troops are rotated?

It is not because officers are a bunch of nice guys.

Those soldiers in Haditha were on their third tour. That is a lot of combat. That is a tremendous amount of pressure. Something went very wrong, and a lot of civilians, including little children, were blown away in their homes by our troops.

I am not going to talk about what we all know happened. But an officer delegates authority, not responsibility; and responbility for this went way past the enlisted and NCO levels, and someone did not do what duty required them to do.

There is a part of human nature which is dark. “Too dark, altogether.” Put anyone, and I mean anyone, under enough pressure, for a long enough time, and subtly suggest sadism and revenge and murder are justifiable, and there is a side of human nature which will come out. No one is immune. I repeat. No one is immune.

So when people pretend they are supporting the troops by refusing to believe anything bad can happen to troops who have been left in a pressure cooker for long enough, well, that is just bs.

A battle for hearts and minds is not just a battle for Iraqi hearts and minds.

And when these guys come back from Iraq, it will be liberals like me that will be fighting for their benefits, and for the government to fund the VA, and provide help. And it will be conservatives who piss on homeless people for being lazy, because you do not want to know who some of them are.

Posted by: phx8 at June 20, 2006 12:14 AM
Comment #159355

|Why do you think troops are rotated?

|It is not because officers are a bunch of nice guys.


???????????????????????????????????????????????

Keep up statements like that ‘Howard Dean’!

Posted by: Talondegato at June 20, 2006 12:20 AM
Comment #159357

Well said, phx8. You’re so right.
I cannot believe that these “troop supporters” over here in the rose colored column actually believe that the supervisory officers in charge of investigating this incident wouldn’t just want to look the other way on this. None of these rightwing folks even seem to want to try to understand what happens when soldiers, as you said, are left in the pressure cooker too long — they’d rather try to excuse any kind of totally crazy behavior than face up to what is happening to our troops over there.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 12:28 AM
Comment #159359

Indeed. We never hear “Tours of Duty” from the wingnuts at all.

We hear “Stay the Course”

We hear “Cut and Run Libs”

but we never hear “3rd Tour in Iraq with more to Come”

Wonder why?

Posted by: Aldous at June 20, 2006 12:42 AM
Comment #159360

Talondegato,
Si peccasi negamus, fallimur, et nulla est in noblis veritas.

Posted by: phx8 at June 20, 2006 12:44 AM
Comment #159361

phx8

Was that intended to be spanish? If it was, would you please decipher it for me. Even my spanish only speaking mother-inlaw doesn’t comprehende

Posted by: Talondegato at June 20, 2006 12:51 AM
Comment #159363

Latin, at least two mispellings. Appy-polly-woggies.

Si pecasse negamus, fallimur, et nulla est in nobis veritas

Very roughly translated, he who denies sin has no truth in him.

Posted by: phx8 at June 20, 2006 12:56 AM
Comment #159364

Actually, that is pretty funny. Did your mother-in-law not recognize it, or not want to recognize it?

Posted by: phx8 at June 20, 2006 1:03 AM
Comment #159366

Oh It was an attempetd bible quote. You should have used greek and I would have got it:

εαν ειπωμεν οτι αμαρτιαν ουκ εχομεν εαυτους πλανωμεν και η αληθεια ουκ εστιν εν ημιν

If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

1 John 1:8


Still does not make troop rotation because of mean officers.

Posted by: Talondegato at June 20, 2006 1:10 AM
Comment #159367

sorry about that. I typed the greek in WORD and cut and pasted. It seems that the browser never studied all of the greek alphabet.

Posted by: Talondegato at June 20, 2006 1:14 AM
Comment #159370

ean epo hoti echo ou hamartia planao heautou kai ho aletheia esti ou en hemin

There that is better.

Posted by: Talondegato at June 20, 2006 1:22 AM
Comment #159373

Just because you’re a combat veteran doesn’t mean you can’t be a complete idiot. Take John Three Purple Hearts in Three Months and I’m Outa Here Kerry for example. Such a lineup the Dems send out there, Howard Dean, Cindy Sheehan, Michael Moore, Jack Murtha, the witches of Eastwick. Why can’t a democrat stand up and say this is what I believe, this is my plan, and this is how I’m going to do it? Because they have no core beliefs, no plan and not a clue how to go about implementing it. Now if it’s pandering you want, then that’s another story.

Posted by: Rickled at June 20, 2006 1:31 AM
Comment #159374

Chicken hawk vs. chicken? Hmmm…

Posted by: Rickled at June 20, 2006 1:33 AM
Comment #159381

Don,

You are right on target. Murtha seems as if he doesn’t get or understand the point we are at with the Iraq situation. We are on a freeway doing 90 with no pull over lanes available. We don’t have an option anymore as pulling out could be dangerous to everything in that region, and that should be the Democratic stance, and I’m saying that as a blue dog centrist/indy Democrat.

But what would happen if that ever were the stance is that the Juan Cole’s and others at College Campuses around the country would be fit to be tied and blog on it to no end. We’d have to pry them off the ceiling even if reallistically we are correct in this that a pull out strategically and geopolitically would prove hazzardous not to mention a detriment against the war against Islamic terror. They’d use it for political gains and say Osama won, it would be devestating not only to America but to the western world to do that.

I honor Mr. Murtha’s service to our nation, and I am not going to judge or misjudge that, but really he needs to get it straight that a pull out from Iraq now is dangerous in multilateral directions. The majority of congressional Democrats are seeing things in the same linearity I am apparently.

Fortes Fortuna Juvat (the only latin phrase I know—yet strangely befitting)

Posted by: Novenge at June 20, 2006 2:15 AM
Comment #159384

If someone was investigating you, wouldn’t you say that you just asked the wrong questions, it wasn’t intentional?

Intentional or not, neglect at that level is incompetence, and maybe even an attempt to cover up the truth with “whoops, I guess we asked the wrong questions”. Which is better, to cover up what happened or to cover up incompetence?

It is very likely that an investigation wouldn’t have been done on this part of the issue without Murtha.

Having been there, I always worry when it is the military investigating the military. Same with any other profession supposedly policing themselves. There needs to be some outside oversight on all of them.

Now lets hear how I am a traitor and don’t support the troops.

Posted by: womanmarine at June 20, 2006 2:39 AM
Comment #159385

Rickled,

Howard Dean—really lousy choice by babyboomers
Cindy Sheehan—Visited Hugo Chavez
Michael Moore—Don’t get me started
John Murtha—means well but otherwise wrong
John Kerry—whore

…But calling the 9-11 widows names as you have insinuated really really truly disgusts me that anyone would do that! I know it seems to be popular in the Right as Coulter think she has any right to but think before you speak. Do you really want to know how their husbands died???—NO YOU DO NOT. Some things are still tasteless Rickled and yes they still have their rights to the first Amendment in these United States of America last time I looked.

Posted by: Novenge at June 20, 2006 2:41 AM
Comment #159386

Adrienne:

What is the source of that description of the Haditha incident you posted above?

Thanks.

Posted by: goodkingned at June 20, 2006 2:44 AM
Comment #159392

Parts can be found at the world socialist website.

Other parts like :

Finally, back at the bomb site, a taxi entered the street and was stopped by marines. The four students inside and the driver were ordered out of the car and shot dead. Of the 24 people killed, only one had been carrying a weapon.

Cannot be found in a search. The quote is either modified or non existant.


Part of the original story was in time magazine.

One Morning in Haditha


If you read the actual article it is not quite as cut and dry as adrienne would like to make it.

Posted by: scott at June 20, 2006 3:10 AM
Comment #159393

BTW

Even the World SOCIALIST website doesnt have the crazy part about the taxi!

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2006/may2006/mass-m20.shtml

Posted by: scott at June 20, 2006 3:15 AM
Comment #159398

Thanks for the info Scott. That source seems to be potentially biased to say the least. It seems unlikely that a slaughter such as is described would only receive coverage in one, two or even a handful of offbeat sources. Abu Garaib was covered in every publication and news outlet with the same vigor that Fox News covers dead blondes and CNN covers dogs in hats. Something like this would explode into public eye.

In any event, Murtha’s stance hasn’t served to improve the situation. His outspoken acceptance of yet to be proven US guilt has only inflamed the situation, increasing tension in the region and intensifying the danger to the US and her allies.

One thing is certain, Murtha has suceeded in increasing his name recognition. I wonder what Murtha plans to do with all that political capital he has generated?

Posted by: goodkingned at June 20, 2006 3:54 AM
Comment #159400

The part:

-She recalls the blood spurting out of her sister like water from a tap-

can be traced to 3 blogs and a far left indy news site and has no source referenced.

I would always encourage people to research some of these ‘facts’ people present on these blogs. Is is easy to cut and paste in the search box and find the truth.

And stay away from those far left bombthrower sites. If you do go there, Check the sources.

Posted by: scott at June 20, 2006 4:14 AM
Comment #159401

So, does the dead iraquis children, women and elders were found innocent or guilty?
Sure, sounds like another great victory for the Good Guys side.
Congratulations.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 4:16 AM
Comment #159404

BTW, when you killed some civilians while “clearing” an house, that’s could count as an incident or collateral damage in army lingua, but when you fail to switch tactic and move on others houses and kill some more, I fail to see how it’s just an “incident”. 24 civilians dead. I’ll bet the bad side call such “incident” a quite successfull terrorist attack but on the good side, it’s a too small number compared to their usual volumetric…

Seems to me what really matter to you guys is if a cover-up happened or not, while the killing itself clearly don’t.

Now that’s a complete disgrace.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 4:23 AM
Comment #159414

Rickled:

Give the Democrats control of Congress and White House and they will give you a Plan.

Thing is… Republicans are incharge. GOP Plan all the way to the cliff.

You’re demand of a Dem Plan is worthless and pointless. Try asking the idiot Bus Driver Bush instead of the passengers.

Posted by: Aldous at June 20, 2006 4:51 AM
Comment #159416

Phillipe:

I used the word incident because it does not have exaggerated emotional connotations. These events and the parts played by the Americans and the Iraqi citizens is under investigation. In addition to the fact of the dead and injured Iraqis, we also have the fact of a concealed explosive device in the area of the conflict. If the US military committed wanton violence with no provocation the guilty should be punished. If, after proper due process, the men deemed guilty are not punished that will be a disgrace, however no one has been deemed guilty at this point so it is inappropriate to vilify the accused, presumed innocent, soldiers.

Posted by: goodkingned at June 20, 2006 4:58 AM
Comment #159417

Aldous,

Any plan for Iraq whether right, wrong, or indiferent would be a political hot potato for the Dems. They can’t win without it and will split the party with it. The Republicans mess is fixable. The Dems mess isnt.

Posted by: scott at June 20, 2006 5:06 AM
Comment #159427

ALCON,

The Stars and Stripes described what happened at Haditha in the following manner. I don’t have a link, but I read the article on paper and can remember the specifics. As a Marine patrol was moving down a street, an IED placed in a vacant lot by the roadside went off and killed one of the Marines. It would appear that 4 of the Marines snapped and went into three houses one by one and killed everyone they saw, including women and children. Some were shot “execution style.” Immediately following this, a taxi with 4 students and a driver came upon the scene. I can’t recall if the occupants of the vehicle were pulled out of the car or not, but all were shot to death. It would seem that the patrol then went on to report that the patrol had come under fire as the IED went off, but no evidence has been presented to verify this.

What happened in Haditha, by all accounts, was not collateral damage. Collateral damage occurs when civilians are wounded or killed in the course of combat operations, such as the woman who was killed when we bombed Zarqawi’s house (assuming she was innocent). This is more reminiscent of the Mi Lia massacre than anything else if the report is true.

I don’t agree with Murtha’s views, but I don’t think Murtha deserves credit for anything. The Marine Corps was already investigating this based on the fact that the evidence at the scene did not match the description given by the Marines who were involved. I agree with womanmarine that an outside agency should be involved to investigate allegations like this.

What is truly sad about Haditha is that the insurgents were being defeated. The main reason they put the bomb in a vacant lot was to try to avoid killing civilians. IF these Marines did in fact commit these crimes, I think that our credibility, as well as our honor, demands the harshest punishment possible, to include the death penalty.

Posted by: 1LT B at June 20, 2006 6:04 AM
Comment #159431

Thank God the truth can be known…

The MARINES investigated the marines, and found out that the guys in charge did nothing wrong. I can sleep at night knowing that the CYA principle still works in the military.

GMAFB

If you actually made an effort to figure out why Murtha is doing this, you’d realize he is the only one who is really supporting the troops.

Posted by: Loren at June 20, 2006 6:29 AM
Comment #159435

All

The point that I posted this article BEFORE the officilal Marine report came out was to show to the Congressman and to my friends on the left how, just on the strength of ONE newspaper story (here, the LA Times) a person can be instaantaneously be made to look like a dolt without having that document as a source for defense.

Alledgedly ,a “leaker” provided the gist of the report, not the report to the Times. As a result, Murtha looks like shit, doesn’t he? How would he feel if, instead of one article, 5,000 articles world-wide were simoleutaneously broadcasts, just as he did? The world, not just a few who read it in the LA Times, or on Michele’s site, or hear would know.

That’s the point. He used his powerful position to vilify both the marines who took part in the operation (he said the killing was done “in cold blood”), and then he said the Corps covered it up. Both said before any investigation was complete. He then used those lies as a basis to further his own adgenda, which is to get the coalition out “over the horizon”, even suggesting on the Sunday talk shows that this might be Okinawa (which by the way, wants to CLOSE the base there ), so as far as I am concerned, anything he gets regarding this story, he deserves.

1LT 8

The attorney for the squad leader has a substantially different story. Sweetness-Light, a terrific blog site has done an unbelievable job unearthing all the conflicting bits of mis-information on this case, and if you are as interested about this case as I am, you should benchmark the site because it is now a clearing house for others to use. Michele Malkin has done a wonderful job following the facts as well, and should be lauded for her efforts. Based on the conflicts of info found already,even IF the Corps charges these marines with murder, I think there is more than evidence now to get a not guilty on that charge…maybe something else will stick, but I now doubt the murder charge will stick.

The point all along though was never Murtha and proving he was a shmuck. I too admire his service to this nation. That service isn’t a blanket, cover all “get out of jail card” to be used for the rest of his life though. He did something terrible in my view, and that was to convict people, using his position of authority as a sitting Congressman,without giving them their day in court. He deficated on the presumption of innocence to further his view on this war. It gave him a convienient platform.One of my favorite posters above, phx8, used Latin a little while ago. I will too. “Rutus Auditorium, Congressman”. I will even save you the trouble of translating: It means “stick it in your ear, Congressman”

Posted by: sicilianeagle at June 20, 2006 6:52 AM
Comment #159436

Michelle Malkin is a narrow-minded mean-spirited Ann Coulter wannabe. She is O’Reilly’s favorite ventriloquist dummy, and clearly needs to get out more.

Posted by: Loren at June 20, 2006 7:10 AM
Comment #159437


1LT 8 and All

Here’s the marines’ side of the story

linktext

Posted by: sicilian eagle at June 20, 2006 7:15 AM
Comment #159444

Loren,

I gather you personally witnessed this alleged cover-up? Or perhaps you were privy to the papers of the investigating officer? If not, then perhaps you should rein in your loose tongue. its one thing to discuss the contents of an allegation, its quite another to accuse military officers of misconduct without any evidence. Actually, I’m surprised you’d even believe us capable of that. Aren’t we all just a bunch of ignorant knuckle-dragging baby killers to you? And I bet you wonder why it is that the military has nothing for radical liberals such as yourself but contempt.

Posted by: 1LT B at June 20, 2006 7:55 AM
Comment #159445

Loren

That may be so, but for the last 2 years she has exposed more mis-statements by the left than any other on the internet.

Her political views are what gets you mad, not her ability to find the facts.

In this instance, she has been dead on.

Or, if you prefer, we could all just wait for the Micheal Moore movie. Now THERE’S an honest journalist from the left, no?

Posted by: sicilianeagle at June 20, 2006 7:56 AM
Comment #159447

1LTB:

its one thing to discuss the contents of an allegation, its quite another to accuse military officers of misconduct without any evidence.

You said it, brother!! This is the problem I have with Murtha—he already has accused military officers of misconduct BEFORE the full evidence was gathered.

Imagine Murtha at the scene of the following: On the ground lies a bloody dead body with a stab wound in the throat area. Over the dead body is a weeping distraught man, holding a bloody knife, saying over and over “Why did I do it? Why did I do it?”

Is the man guilty of murder? Possibly. It’s also possible that the distraught man came upon an attack, chased away the attackers, who had stabbed the dead man in the throat. Panicked, the ‘Good Samaritan’ pulls the knife from the throat, whereupon the man bleeds to death and dies, leading the Samaritan to question his action of pulling out the knife.

Evidence could eventually prove the Samaritan’s story, but on first glance, Murtha would have been claiming guilt. While its possible for him to have been rightly doing so, the other possibility exists as well, which is why you wait for the investigation to review all the facts, witnesses and information.

You say an outside party should handle the investigation….who would you consider to be able to do so? Would there be ramifications for military justice by setting precedent of having non-military people handling such cases—-or would this be a one-time only situation?

Womanmarine:

I read the entire thread. I’ve not heard Murtha being called a traitor, nor have I seen you being called a traitor, or even anything close. I suspect the “traitor” thing is just a ploy.
Murtha is a war veteran who deserves credit for his service, as do all veterans. What he did regarding Haditha was reprehensible. It has nothing at all to do with his service decades ago, and deserves to be judged on its own merits.

Posted by: jeobagodonuts at June 20, 2006 8:14 AM
Comment #159450

1ltb

Anyone policing themselves is suspect, liberal or conservative. I’ve worked in bureaucracy long enough to know that CYA is a survival skill, as is my cynicism. This is way too conveniently clean.

Sicilian Eagle,

I was almost going to buy what you had to say until you did exactly what you accused me of by dissing Michael Moore. You can’t have it both ways. IMO, Michelle Malkin is a little Daddy’s girl who hasn’t ever stopped to think why she believes what she believes. She looks at the world through the blinders put in place by her upbringing

Posted by: Loren at June 20, 2006 8:34 AM
Comment #159451

If you really listen to what Murtha says, you realize that he cares about our troops, and his argument that the incident at Hadditha is not a surprising result of the policies that have totally screwed over our military. More and more soldiers will suffer and die until the people who got us in there do more than spin control.

Posted by: Loren at June 20, 2006 8:39 AM
Comment #159453

joebagodonuts,

To answer your question about an outside agency, I would suggest a panel of JAG officers from other services with one member being from the branch of the accussed. The head of the panel should not be from the same branch as the accussed. By this, it would be less likely that a sense of defending the honor of one’s own service would be a factor in the findings. However, the JAG officer from the accussed’s branch could speak with authority to the training and policies of that service. In addition, military lawyers from Iraq should also be involved to ensure proper representation for the victims.

As for Murtha, his “plan” for what we should be doing is so far out to left field its amazing. Apparently, we won WWII and Korea through airpower alone. As a former Marine, he should know that airpower can be a decisive advantage, but it can’t hold ground. He said that the whole mission to take out Zarqawi was executed from outside Iraq. Apparently, our intelligence guys communicate with the Iraqis through telepathy from somewhere in Germany in his view.

As far as the credit one deserves for being a veteran, I’m not at all shy about pointing out that I serve. I’m proud to wear the uniform and to point out where I see mistakes from people who aren’t in the military. However, being a veteran doesn’t make one infallible. I’ve been called on being wrong before and admitted to it. No one had any sympathy for McViegh even though he was a decorated veteran of the Operation Desert Storm. Murtha is just plain wrong about this. I initailly supported Murtha as someone who was mischaracterized by smear tactics, but the more I read his words, he’s just wrong.

Posted by: 1LT B at June 20, 2006 8:49 AM
Comment #159464

iLTB:

Thanks for the reply. I was thinking you were talking about investigations OUTside the military, not just outside the Marines. I could see potential conflicts as a result, but I like your idea of involving JAG and heading the investigation from outside the Marines.

I also agree with your opinion of Murtha and his statements. We should both recognize that we may be accused of calling Murtha a traitor or of demeaning him and his service. That’s a ploy from some on the left to ignore the message and focus on a strawman.

I have yet to demean Murtha, but I will take exception to his suggestions and his actions. His suggestions are unworkable and his actions reprehensible. Calling our troops “murderers” before the investigation is complete is simply NOT supporting the troops. Its possible his heart is in the right place, but his actions are most definitely not.

Thanks for your service and thanks for your thoughts.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 20, 2006 9:18 AM
Comment #159477

Every one is overlooking two facts:
1. NIS (a civilian indipendent investigating organization) was investigating these events months ago. From these acts is where the “leak” came from.
2. John Murtha is opposed to the war and has demonstrated this through his votes and speeches. Bad news for the military is good news for his political ambitions

Posted by: Frankxcid at June 20, 2006 10:19 AM
Comment #159478

The source for what I quoted was The Sunday Herald, a Scottish independent newspaper. Here’s the link to the full article:
Haditha: the worst US atrocity since Vietnam … Iraqi women and children massacred by American marines. How did it happen?
SPECIAL REPORT BY NEIL MACKAY

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 10:23 AM
Comment #159480

1LT B,

What is truly sad about Haditha is that the insurgents were being defeated. The main reason they put the bomb in a vacant lot was to try to avoid killing civilians. IF these Marines did in fact commit these crimes, I think that our credibility, as well as our honor, demands the harshest punishment possible, to include the death penalty.

Nice post, I quite (I’m against any death penalty) agree with you position. For once :-)

SE,

That’s the point. He used his powerful position to vilify both the marines who took part in the operation (he said the killing was done “in cold blood”), and then he said the Corps covered it up. Both said before any investigation was complete. He then used those lies as a basis to further his own adgenda, …

those claims, not lies. As with Bush lying or not about WMDs, here also you must prove Murtha actually knew it was not cover-up by Corps and it was not a cold blood killing when he said his claims. Without this proof, you can’t say he was lying.

So, did he knew that was not right but still said it for his own political agenda? That’s the question many are still looking for answers about the White House too…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 10:36 AM
Comment #159486

SE, yo you’re not kidding about Murtha stepping down; that fool is a complete and utter menace to our troops and Americans for that matter. This goes way beyond libs and conservs, this is some serious sh*t when our (own) troops are presumed guitly without a trial.

And, I want to know where all the “Give me liberty or give me death”, “The terrorists deserve rights” and “We don’t want to be just like the enemy” loudmouths are on this issue?! Huh?!! Is Murtha being “Just like the enemy” by accusing our soldiers of a crime without the trial? Isn’t that what the enemy would do? Hmm!


Where are you guys now? Step up!

Posted by: rahdigly at June 20, 2006 11:05 AM
Comment #159489

Rahdigly

And, I want to know where all the “Give me liberty or give me death”

It seems 24 iraquis get death, not liberty.
I agree that these soldiers should not be considered guilty unless a trial does but I’ll bet that nobody will be found breaking any rules, even if 24 civilians, many being kids, women and elders, were killed by US ammo.

Let’s see how it come but, please, tell us now what will you position if at end no responsability is taken while iraquis kids, women and elders was “cleared”?
Or is Murtha discredit more important to you?

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 11:13 AM
Comment #159490

Sorry for my poor english these days, guys, I’m shamefull…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 11:14 AM
Comment #159491

“If this case falls apart, as it seems to be doing,…”

As it seems… - um, BigBird, I thought we weren’t supposed to rush to judgement on this case? Make up your mind, it’s hard to follow all the flipflops.

Posted by: William Cohen at June 20, 2006 11:15 AM
Comment #159492

Philippe:

Good point about whether Murtha knew he was “lying” or not. Because we do not know the full facts yet, we should not call him a liar or even wrong in his conclusions.

That’s why I have specifically spoken about his statements. He was wrong to publicize his conclusions before the evidence was even in. He was wrong to say the Marines are “murderers” and that there is a cover-up.

As Adrienne shows, there are those who say Haditha was a massacre. As others have shown, there are those who say it was not. Until the evidence is in, someone in Murtha’s position—especially someone with his military bully pulpit—-should know better than to spread his conclusions as if they were fact. His actions hurt our troops and their effort to win the hearts and minds of the people.

Because of Murtha, if the Marines are found to be not guilty, it will appear as if a coverup cleared them. They will be presumed guilty regardless of any alternative outcome.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 20, 2006 11:16 AM
Comment #159500

willian cohen

Well, I didn’t expect that you’d agree with me for two consecutive posts now, could I? :)

My comments were made regarding all the inconsisties that have come out since the story broke, that’s it.

The Eagle never flip-flops. He might flap-flap, but never flip-flop. :)

Semantics. :)

Posted by: sicilianeagle at June 20, 2006 11:49 AM
Comment #159501

JBOD,

As Adrienne shows, there are those who say Haditha was a massacre. As others have shown, there are those who say it was not.

Whatever the name, kids of 3-4 years, women and even an old man in wheel chair were killed by US ammo, nobody is denying this, right?
My point is that the option that nobody have responsability in this kills is plain wrong! But I’ll bet that the way it will be resolved…

Until the evidence is in, someone in Murtha’s position—especially someone with his military bully pulpit—-should know better than to spread his conclusions as if they were fact.

Agreed.

His actions hurt our troops and their effort to win the hearts and minds of the people.

Do you realize that worldwide nobody knows who Murtha could be while many have heard that up to 24 iraquis kids, women and elders were killed by US ammo last november?
These death hurt may more your effort to win the hearts and minds of the Iraquis people than Murtha claims. Most Iraquis people dunno who Murtha is, really, while they ear from relatives and neighboors that US soldiers (may) have killed 24 iraquis civilians.

The Murtha case is limited to US political issue.

Because of Murtha, if the Marines are found to be not guilty, it will appear as if a coverup cleared them. They will be presumed guilty regardless of any alternative outcome.

Even without Murtha, if the Marines are found to be not guilty, it will appear as if a coverup cleared them. Don’t fool youserlf, Iraquis witnesses have made their opinion long ago, as many people worldwide.

All before Murtha even entered the political scene at home.

I personally won’t blame the soldiers alone if they actually did it cold blood, because they’re not the one who decide to fight this war, duty tour after duty tour. Responsability is way higher. But responsability there is.

You break it, you own it.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 11:53 AM
Comment #159506

“SE, yo you’re not kidding about Murtha stepping down; that fool is a complete and utter menace to our troops and Americans for that matter.”

You say “our troops and Americans” as though they’re not the same thing. But you’ve got a point there — since they are being treated like they’re second class citizens who have been forced to keep doing multiple tours of duty by an administration that is too damn chickensh*t to institute a draft so these guys can get a break from being shot at, and having IED’s go off around them, and having to kill people.

Who is the Menace to Americans?

Murtha on Meet the Press:

On the floor the other day — you may have heard this — one fella says, uh, “We’re fighting this war.” We’re not fighting this war. One percent of the American people, these young men and women, are fighting this war with heavy packs, with seventy pounds of equipment, with helmets on in…in 130 degrees. That’s who’s fighting this war. And they stay, “Stay the course.”

There’s no plan! You open up this plan for victory. There’s no plan there. It’s just, “Stay the course.” That doesn’t solve any problem. It’s worse today than it was six months ago when I spoke out initially. When I spoke out, uh, the garbage wasn’t being collected, oil production below pre-War level — all those things indicated to me we weren’t winning this, and…and it’s the same today, if not worse.

Anbar province, there’s not one project but one in Anbar province. Two million people live there. They have no water at all, no oil production. They have no electricity at all in that province where is…is the heartland of the defense. The first six months we went in there, no…not a shot was fired. So it shows you how it’s changed. It’s getting worse. That’s why I feel so strongly.

All of us know how important it is internationally to win this war. We know how important. We import 20 million barrels of oil a day. We use 20 million barrels of oil. We know how important…international community. But we’re doing it all ourself [sic], and there’s no plan that makes sense. We need to have more international cooperation, we need to redeploy our troops, to the periphery.

What happened with Zarqawi could have been done, uh, from the outside…it was done from the outside. Our planes went in from the outside. So there’s no reason in the world that they can’t redeploy the troops. They’ve become targets; they’re caught in civil war. And I feel very strongly about it.

Doesn’t sound like a menace to the troops or the rest of America to me.

jbod:
“As Adrienne shows, there are those who say Haditha was a massacre.”

“Those” who are describing how it was a massacre happen to be the children who managed to survive. If those Marines had killed every last one of those people, maybe they’d have gotten away with making up a cover story, but when there are survivors to tell the tale — well, it just doesn’t work that way.
What is very disturbing to me is that you righties seem more upset thinking that maybe these Marines aren’t being treated fairly by the media, than you are by the idea that a number of exhausted, overly stressed-out Marines appear to have massacred 24 innocent people, including old people and children.

Philippe — well said.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 12:00 PM
Comment #159508

Adrienne,

Exactly ast stated above.: ref: 12:01 post/2:44 post and following

|The source for what I quoted was The Sunday Herald, a Scottish independent newspaper.|

WHERE DOES HE SEEM TO GET THE INFO?

Some is from the Time article
some is from the world socialist website
and some of it seems to be totally made up


Posted by: scott at June 20, 2006 12:11 PM
Comment #159509

SE
I guess you don’t bother with things like context. Given that you seem to parrot everything Michelle Malkin says, shouldn’t your nom de blog be italian parrot?

So the guys in Haditha are now innocent, no other incidents have occurred, there was no failure to investigate in light of contradictory evidence, and we have won in iraq, the Sunni’s have surrendered and Osama is pledging peace to the world. Yep Murtha was all wrong… overextending the troops has no consequence….Bush is a genius.

Keep the Acid Flashback’s coming.

Posted by: gergle at June 20, 2006 12:11 PM
Comment #159515

I have to agree with the Reds on this one. It was definitely a mistake for Congressman Murtha to rail against these men without finding out the WHOLE truth. I mean look at what happened with pre-war WMD intelligence, and how about Unfit for Command? Those were just embarassing.

Posted by: Christian at June 20, 2006 12:28 PM
Comment #159517

scott:
“WHERE DOES HE SEEM TO GET THE INFO?”

Well, it seems the guy is a reporter. They have ways of collecting information, you know. But why ask me? Instead why don’t you ask the editor of The Sunday Herald yourself? Here is another article written by Neil MacKay: WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE HORRORS OF IRAQ BECOME TOO MUCH FOR A SOLDIER TO BEAR? At the bottom of the article, there is a link where you can write to the editor of the newspaper yourself.

“Some is from the Time article
some is from the world socialist website
and some of it seems to be totally made up”

Did you ever consider the fact that maybe those websites took their info from HIS article? After all, the Sunday Herald is no rag or scandal sheet, it’s a respected newspaper that has won awards for independent journalism in the UK.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 12:32 PM
Comment #159521

Adrienne,

I have said this many times on the web when replying to articles or posts I have read, stop smoking crack, it will kill you. Don’t be a fool and believe eveything you read just because it is likely, it should be pure fact, put in context, that you believe.

PHx8,

See message about crack above… Little dramatic don’t ya think? The military rotates people so they don’t get burned out/insane. It has nothing to do with nice or mean… This isn’t Mister Roger’s neihborhood for crying out loud.

womanmarine

I agree that someone has to spearpoint and bring forward an event to be investigated. But you are way off about Murtha. He is a blowhard and talks out his rear-end before all the facts have come out. Only one reason for him to do that and it has nothing to do with those 24 civilians.

Philippe Houdoin

Question? You have been possibly shot at, it came from the house on the left, you don’t know who is there or not, your job is to enter the house and take that person down. Do you enter and ask questions? If you do it means you could die, what do you do? Remember, you don’t have the priviledge of 20/20 hindsight.

Loren,

Murtha has an agenda, but it has nothing to do with the war or those 24 civilians. No one who cares that much about something talks out his ass before all the facts.

He didn’t just say you better investigate and hope those boys are not guilty. He said they were cold blooded murderers before he or anybody else not involved knew either way.


Posted by: ChrisC at June 20, 2006 12:39 PM
Comment #159523

Very weak post Eagle. The link Adrienne posted was compelling. I find it hard to believe someone would have been able to fabricate such a story. And you have nothing. Thanks for bringing attention to this.

Posted by: Schwamp at June 20, 2006 12:40 PM
Comment #159526

“What is very disturbing to me is that you righties seem more upset thinking that maybe these Marines aren’t being treated fairly by the media, than you are by the idea that a number of exhausted, overly stressed-out Marines appear to have massacred 24 innocent people, including old people and children”

What is disturbing to me is how you lefties immediately discount the idea that the Marines, your fellow Americans, could possibly be innocent, BEFORE ALL of the facts are known.
You would rather take one side of every horrible story, the side which supports your cause, and ignore the side which may benefit your opposition.

“Don’t fool youserlf, Iraquis witnesses have made their opinion long ago, as many people worldwide”

Yes they have Phillipe.
There are those who wish to automatically convict the US Marines and there are those of us who will stand behind them, wait for the facts and THEN let those facts determine what really happened and the actions that follow.

Posted by: kctim at June 20, 2006 12:48 PM
Comment #159527
Murtha has an agenda, but it has nothing to do with the war or those 24 civilians. No one who cares that much about something talks out his ass before all the facts.

As opposed to GW who talks out of his ass AFTER all the facts

Posted by: Loren at June 20, 2006 12:49 PM
Comment #159531

Adrienne:

What is very disturbing to me is that you righties seem more upset thinking that maybe these Marines aren’t being treated fairly by the media, than you are by the idea that a number of exhausted, overly stressed-out Marines appear to have massacred 24 innocent people, including old people and children.

If that’s what you think, then its only attributable to your own selective reading. You’ve obviously missed the number of times when I’ve said that IFFF the Marines are guilty, its a terrible thing they did and they should be punished as far as the law allows. To help you with the real point—just so you don’t miss it again— the real point is IFFF THE MARINES ARE GUILTY. You’ve taken the side of the Iraqis and assume it to be true, with no potential for ulterior motive. You’ll note, if you even try, that I’ve not taken either side. I’ve simply stated that the investigation must be completed before we ascribe innocence or guilt.

gergle:

SE is NOT parrotting Malkin. He is simply utilizing her website to gather information that comes from other sources. If you have a problem with THOSE sources, that’s okay. But something is neither inherently correct or incorrect just because it appears on someone’s website.

Philippe:

Back in Viet Nam, the enemy used the statements of prominent (or even secondary) politicians and public figures to dispirit US POW’s. The premise they worked on was to let the POW’s hear what their countrymen were saying negatively, which would be a blow to a POW’s mindset. It’s safe to assume, I think, that terrorists will use the same ploy, whether it be with POW’s or simply to try to convince more people of how bad the US really must be, since our own politicians say we are bad.

If, as you say, the world knows about this even without Murtha, then why would Murtha need to make his statements. The previous logic has been to spur forward an investigation and full knowledge of Haditha. Yet the investigation was in process and you say the world knew all about Haditha. What could have been Murtha’s reason for his statements, then, if not simply to further his aim to higher power within the Dem party? Is it any surprise that he tossed out his desire to run for higher position in the party, jsut after securing media attention with his statements?

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 20, 2006 12:52 PM
Comment #159532

Schwamp

Here, put this in your pipe. Read it closely.


linktext

Posted by: sicilianeagle at June 20, 2006 12:52 PM
Comment #159535

Here, smoke this one too


linktext

Posted by: sicilianeagle at June 20, 2006 1:05 PM
Comment #159538

Loren,

You have a point about the beaurocratic mindset, but its still wrong to just accuse these Marine officers of a cover up. The way this was discovered proves it. Adrienne, this may clear up some of your point about these Marines “getting away with it.” When the Marine Corps investigated what happened, the wounds on the victims and the statements of witnesses didn’t match the description of what happened as stated by the Marines who were involved. From this, an internal investigation was conducted, and it found cause to believe that the official story of the patrol was a fabrication. Due to the seriousness of the charges, the investigation was thorough and took time. While it was still in progress, Murtha decided to open his mouth prematurely and prejudge the events. He did a massive disservice to the Marines and the United States in the process.

As for his statements on Meet the Press, I’m not at all impressed by his analysis. In fact, he’s flat wrong and has no plan himself? What periphery is he talking about? He’s done nothing but spout out empty slogans.

Let me address the inevitable next retort, which is what does stay the course mean, or is it just an empty slogan as well? Stay the course means tht we stand up an Iraqi government. That’s been done. Stay the course means we kill off the terrorists. We blasted Zarqawi straight to the hell he so richly deserves and we’ve been rolling his network up since then. Thier own captured papers say they’re not in good straits right now. Of course, they’ll try a few spectacular attacks, such as the tragic kidnapping and murder of the two Soldiers, but they’re weakening. AS the Iraqi Army, which is becoming more and more competent as each day passes, takes on more of these operations, which they’re starting in Baghdad, then we will be able to start drawing down.

Posted by: 1LT B at June 20, 2006 1:15 PM
Comment #159539

I still haven’t heard from the self-loathing, hate America crowd; the same crowd that was spouting off the “Give me liberty give me death” lines back when the NSA program was outed. Where are you? All the “terrorists have rights” and “we don’t want to be just like the enemy” clowns aren’t stepping up now! B/c Murtha is certainly acting like the enemy when he accuses our troops of something that hasn’t been proven yet. Our enemy would do that and now Murtha is, too.


You guys just can’t take it; no guts at all!

Posted by: rahdigly at June 20, 2006 1:16 PM
Comment #159542

“What is disturbing to me is how you lefties immediately discount the idea that the Marines, your fellow Americans, could possibly be innocent, BEFORE ALL of the facts are known.”

Everyone is innocent before being proven guilty. The question is whether all the facts will ever be made to come out in this case. Look at what happened a Abu Ghraib — the facts have been kept from the American people, and we still don’t know the whole story. Troops are going to jail, but none of their superiors are being held accountable. And this is an obvious and major problem with this administration — their being accountable to us, and their holding those at the top of the chain of command accountable for their actions.
In this case we have children — young children — who are describing to reporters what took place when many members of their families were killed right in front of them in their own homes. For this reason, this incident cannot simply be written off with another “wait for the outcome of the investigation” statement — although it seems that many of you are trying to do that very thing.

“You would rather take one side of every horrible story, the side which supports your cause, and ignore the side which may benefit your opposition.”

My “cause” as you term it, is in seeing our soldiers brought home who have been forced to do multiple tours of duty — the kind of situation which can only lead to things like massacres where innocent people are slaughtered. My “opposition” seems to be people who think that it’s all right for this administration to treat our soldiers this way indefinitely, and that excuses can and should be made for things like torture or atrocites committed by the US military.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 1:20 PM
Comment #159545

The terrorists are just trying to push back the inevitable. We are going to win. The Iraqis will be able to take care of themselves and we will pull out.

I don’t understand why some traitors would accuse the marines killing civilians. Hard to imagine that the US Marines would do such a thing intentionally. Here is the difference between them and us: we capture some of them and give them food and water. They capture some of us and tie us to military vehicles and drag us around and behead us. This proves that they are barbarians that have no rights.

Posted by: stubborn conservative at June 20, 2006 1:33 PM
Comment #159546

1LT B:
“While it was still in progress, Murtha decided to open his mouth prematurely and prejudge the events. He did a massive disservice to the Marines and the United States in the process.”

Then so too did Republican Representative John Kline, a former Marine just like Murtha who came out at the same time as Murtha and said: “This was a small number of marines who fired directly on civilians and killed them. This is going to be an ugly story… There is no doubt that the marines allegedly involved in doing this lied about it. They certainly tried to cover it up.”

But none of you want to talk about that statement by Kline, you just want to keep dumping all over Murtha, because he’s a Democrat. It’s so godd*mned transparent is isn’t even funny.

“As for his statements on Meet the Press, I’m not at all impressed by his analysis.”

Well I am — for many reasons, not the least of which is the fact that he’s had a hell of a lot more experience with war than any of the idiotic “stay the losing course” clowns running things in the Whitehouse.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 1:41 PM
Comment #159549

Adrienne:

My “opposition” seems to be people who think that…excuses can and should be made for things like torture or atrocites committed by the US military.

This is just a stupid comment. No one in this thread has said anything—ANYthing—about condoning torture or atrocities. It’s never even been hinted at, except by people like you who claim it to be true.

Here is your challenge: Reprint a post that says that atrocities and/or torture committed by the US military should be condoned. I’ll be waiting.

Oh, and no fair getting “too busy with something else” so that you cannot respond. If you are the honorable and intelligent person that you portray yourself as, then you’ll respond with the quotations that prove your accusation.

I do love this statement of yours, though. Sometimes you make it just too darned easy….

Everyone is innocent before being proven guilty

I can see you getting called for jury duty with that attitude. “Yes, your Honor. I will keep an open mind and review all the evidence before I find the defendant guilty. Yes sir, I will.”

Adrienne, seriously, speaking for myself, I want justice. If the Marines are proven to have murdered people, they should be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law. If they went on a killing rampage, they should pay the price.

But yes, I’ll wait until the investigation is complete. If it were my son who were accused, I’d expect him to get the benefit of doubt that our judicial system calls for. If it were YOUR son, you’d be the Momma Bear protecting her cub—no way would you allow anyone to proclaim him guilty before even charges were brought. You know this.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 20, 2006 1:48 PM
Comment #159550

Scott

I repeat: CNN got it wrong in their article. There were seven “news agencies”, as you call them, that funded the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago to review the ballots, but there was only one analysis by NORC. If you actually read anything besides the news media, you’d understand better. CNN erroneously focused on NORC findings based on a compromise solution that the Florida Supreme Court authorized, but was overtuned by the US Supreme court. This is from a table in their analysis of a total recount (from this link, about 3/4 of the way down):

Candidate Outcomes Based on Potential Recounts in Florida Presidential Election 2000
(outcome of one particular study; not representative of all studies)
Review Method Winner
Review of All Ballots Statewide (never undertaken)
�€� Standard as set by each county Canvassing Board during their survey Gore by 171
�€� Fully punched chads and limited marks on optical ballots Gore by 115
�€� Any dimples or optical mark Gore by 107
�€� One corner of chad detached or optical mark Gore by 60

Ill-informed blaring about something you barely understand doesn’t help the discussion. Please retract your partisan pumping of a misleading CNN article.

Posted by: mental wimp at June 20, 2006 1:49 PM
Comment #159556

Adrienne,
“Everyone is innocent before being proven guilty. The question is whether all the facts will ever be made to come out in this case.”


No, the “answer” is to presume their innocence until you know what happened. Period! You just contradicted yourself with that statement; you “say” that they’re innocent until proven guilty, yet you question whether the evidence is real in a case that hasn’t even gone to trial.


This Haditha incident is a perfect example of why you cannot be against the war and support the troops. You can’t! The anti-war crowd keeps jumping to conclusions against our troops just to prove this war is wrong. Well, it’s not wrong; the anti-war and anti-bush crowds are the ones that are wrong. Respect the US and our troops (you know the ones the libs “claim” to support) and give them the benefit of the doubt, damn it!

By the way, Congressman Kline is (dead) WRONG, too! I haven’t heard of Kline till now, yet he is wrong just like Murtha. Murtha is wrong and disgusting for leading the charge in proving them guilty until proven innocent; that’s what communists do. It’s repulsive!!

Posted by: rahdigly at June 20, 2006 1:56 PM
Comment #159561

Joebag,

“Here is your challenge: Reprint a post that says that atrocities and/or torture committed by the US military should be condoned. I’ll be waiting.”

She’s not saying it is encouraged. Ignoring and covering up a bad act is to effectively condone that act. I think many people like Adrienne want to feel like people on the INSIDE are taking it as seriously as people on the outside. And when people blast others for questioning this, it sounds ultra-defensive…but what are you defending? Fair trial? No one said to outright hang them without a trial.

You say you wouldn’t condone the act, so don’t protect those under investigation until you have a solid basis to fall back on. At least she can fall back on her belief that killing innocent people is a terrible thing.

This has nothing to do with the legal proceeding itself. Public discourse is necessarily more all-encompassing and judgemental than courts of law.

It is good to ask: “What if?”

Posted by: kevin23 at June 20, 2006 2:09 PM
Comment #159572

Kevin:

Adrienne specifically stated that those who oppose her think that excuses should be made for torture and atrocities, which is another way of accusing them of condoning it. She has reached the conclusion that there has been a coverup. That MAY be the case, but it has yet to be established. Since she accused her opposition of thinking this way, I’ve requested that she show why she thinks that. Personally, I think she just came to the conclusion on her own with no rationale for it. But if she came by it based on what someone said, then she should be able to show that.

What am I defending? I’m defending the principle of “innocent until proven guilty”, even for Republicans and even for soldiers. It stands for EVERYONE. And my point has been that Murtha has already said the Marines are guilty, thereby flouting this great principle.

You recall the Duke lacrosse “rape” indictments, I’m sure. The DA and the media spouted off about how the players were guilty, yet the evidence is now showing a different potential outcome. Some evidence shows that at least one of the accused players made 6 phone calls, and took a cab during the 20 minutes he was allegedly raping the girl. Pretty efficient multi-tasking, if you ask me.

The point is that neither the Duke players nor the Marines should not be presumed guilty, but rather innocent until PROVEN guilty. We simply have to have faith in our system—-if we don’t follow the system, then the system should be done away with.

You say you wouldn’t condone the act, so don’t protect those under investigation until you have a solid basis to fall back on.

A good question is to ask who I’m protecting. I have yet to “protect” the Marines—I’m on record as saying throw the book at them if they are guilty. The only thing I am protecting is the concept of “innocent until proven guilty”….nothing else.

Posted by: jeobagodonuts at June 20, 2006 2:27 PM
Comment #159575

Jbod,
I think a great many of your arguments in this blog are extremely stupid too. Like many others brought by the Bush apologist crowd they are frequently of the “see not evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” type. It’s funny how many investigations you people always want to wait for, suspending all judgement and not wishing to draw any conclusions of your own — and strange how often many of said investigations end up with no wrong doing or guilty verdicts…

You all can suspend your judgement until the cows come home if you wish — but we’re not in a court of law in this blog, and I’m on no jury. I can and will form an opinion when two Congressmen hailing from both sides of the isle come out after a Congressional briefing on the incident and are upset enough with what they’ve learned to say that these people were all unarmed civilians and that they were murdered. That impression is further reinforced when there are living survivors who can recount the horror of what happened to them and their families that day.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 2:29 PM
Comment #159581

The question you all should be asking yourself is: If Hypothetically the Marine were guilty, what now?
A. Use this as an excuse to say the military is corrupt beyond repair and should not be trusted with any operations. Send them home now and disband them.
B. Prosecute and punish the guilty, move on and wint the war.

Posted by: frankxcid at June 20, 2006 2:35 PM
Comment #159586

Why does the public in open debate have to abide by the same restrictions as our formal justice system?

That would essentially cripple free speach. I’m all for holding people accountable for over-reaching statements (especially libelous ones), but we cannot just fall back on the rules of Criminal Procedure. Those rules were designed to be very narrow and only trained attorneys know how to manouver through them.

Most folks here are not qualified to deal with rules that were designed to make it VERY difficult to convict an innocent person (in other words, if the prosecutor screws up, they are not convicted). I agree with these rules when the results could be to take away liberty and freedom. But I do not agree with stifling speach in an open forum simply because someone takes offense.

Posted by: kevin23 at June 20, 2006 2:39 PM
Comment #159588

Adrienne:

I notice that you didn’t respond to my challenge. So noted.

You are free to come to any conclusions you wish. You and I are meaningless in the bigger picture of the political landscape. Murtha and Kline are both dead wrong to have assumed guilt in such a public manner. You want to find some hypocrisy in that Kline rarely gets mentioned. The reason is that he’s a non-entity, while Murtha has been given a bully-pulpit regarding Iraq.

But, I hereby condemn Kline for his statements as well. To be honest, I’ve only seen one small snippet attributed to Kline. He has not continued to be front and center in his accusations as Murtha has been. Then again, Kline has also not tossed his hat into the ring for a more powerful position, as Murtha has done, and so he doesn’t need the publicity.

As far as waiting for the evidence, I’ll always do that. Tell me now, in writing, that if a member of your family was accused of something, that you woulnd’t defend their right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty. That’s what you are not doing for the Marines. If you’d do it for your own family, but not for others, I don’t count that as “support”. If, on the other hand, you’d accept (and perhaps even praise) a public official claiming guilty for your family member before the investigation, then you’d certainly be free from hypocrisy.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 20, 2006 2:43 PM
Comment #159591

Because Kevin, it should be common sense that everyone should know but do not:

American Marines should have the benefit of a doubt because they are our fellow citizens

Terrorrist who kill civilians indicriminantly and take refuge behind other civilians should not have that benefit.

Just think of any of the viewable behaviors of each sides. Count the number of beheaded bodies, POW abuse, kidnappings, etc. This track records shows you which side is more trustworthy.

Posted by: frankxcid at June 20, 2006 2:48 PM
Comment #159593

First, a coverup did occur. The investigation just states it didn’t go far up. The Republicans treat this as good news because it means Murtha’s apparently wrong.

It’s not good news, and here’s why.

What I think the article is saying was that this was a failure of the commanding officer’s awareness of the actions of their soldiers, in addition to the failures of discipline.

The problem with Republicans on the homefront is that they are steeped in this hatred of the critics of this war, and so are unwilling to believe that Murtha is doing anything else than making wild statements just to maliciously harm the troops.

Republicans nowadays have a tough time taking us at our word, so our motivations are often misread. I don’t agree with Murtha’s stance, but I understand it, and believe that he represents a great number of people in this country whose criticisms of the war have gone unanswered for far too long.

If you want to take the steam out of critics like Murtha, the last thing you fellows need to be is attack dogs. That just justifies a view of the Right as being jealous protectors of their agenda, and ruthless political operators.

No, you have to take care of the realities of the war. You don’t have to choose Murtha’s route, but by God, choose something, do something, and don’t just sit with your Arms crossed whining about staying the course. Take care of your problems, or we Democrats will come back to take care of them for you.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 20, 2006 2:54 PM
Comment #159596

Joebag,

I’ve seen way too many families firmly pro-claim their members’ innocence even in the face of a more than justified conviction in criminal proceedings. This kind of faith adds nothing to our discussion.

And Frank…just a rediculous set of statements…I don’t even know where to begin.

Posted by: kevin23 at June 20, 2006 2:58 PM
Comment #159600

Adrienne,

You just contradicted yourself in your own statement. You say “Everyone is innocent before being proven guilty” then come up with:
“For this reason, this incident cannot simply be written off with another “wait for the outcome of the investigation” statement”

Unfortunately, yes we do have to wait. Would you prefer we just decide the outcome on what has been prited to date and just execute all the Marines involved before they have their day in court? I simply can’t believe how many people on this blog want to take what is printed in the “Self seving” media and make a life or death descision.

As for your statement:

“My “cause” as you term it, is in seeing our soldiers brought home who have been forced to do multiple tours of duty — the kind of situation which can only lead to things like massacres where innocent people are slaughtered.”

Since when did doing multiple short tours turn soldiers into people who will slaughter and massacre. Back in WWII and Korea, soldiers went to war until it was over. Currently in Iraq most Marines pull an 8 month tour Army does a year and Air Force does 6 months. Most of this time with air conditioned tents and trailers and better food than I can find here in the states. Don’t get me wrong, I think we should get everything we can while serving but for some yahoo thats never been there to have as a cause getting the troops out so they don’t turn into lunatic killers is really not giving us enough credit. There are always attrocities in war. It would be great if there were not but considering that we have attrocities without war. Like what Sadam did to his people before we went over. I seriously doubt we will ever have a war without some attrocity happening. So if you want to support the troops then do so not by calling them killers and if you want them to come home then help by doing what you can to allow us to win over terrorism and allow the new Iraqi government to get to a point where they can govern without fear of this country going back to what it was.

Posted by: Jeff at June 20, 2006 3:01 PM
Comment #159601

Well, the “facts” about this incident seem to be all over the place. It is inexcusable for Murtha to convict the soldiers based on the hodge podge of info available.

BTW, there must have been a dem talking point issued to the faithful regarding the dangers of multiple tours of duty. Concern that the military will snap are popping up like flowers in the spring. This is not much of a leap for the left who have only temporarily tabled their distrust of the military to gain political mileage. Scratch the surface of many “support the military” lefties and you can see the face of the protesters who defiled returning soldiers during the VietNam era. I’m surprised that they have kept their masks on this long.

Posted by: goodkingned at June 20, 2006 3:02 PM
Comment #159608

Jeff,

it really sounds like you are saying that we’re not even allowed to talk about it.

“I simply can’t believe how many people on this blog want to take what is printed in the “Self seving” media and make a life or death descision.”

Life or death decision? wow…now we’re making life and death decisions by talking freely? Not a very American sentiment.

“seriously doubt we will ever have a war without some attrocity happening. So if you want to support the troops then do so not by calling them killers”

I’m going to call a spade a spade every time. I don’t care if they are Military, the President, or whatever. No one is immune to public critisism, especially not in the circumstances surrounding these marines. Nor should they be in any free society.

I love it, you are all advocating making public discourse just like a court case (yet many of those same people despise the judiaciary becuase of those same rules of procudure they now hide behind.

It is not that people are innocent until proven guilty in ANY sense other than CRIMINAL LIABILITY. It’s different in Civil cases as well as every other type of proceeding.

Posted by: Kevin23 at June 20, 2006 3:25 PM
Comment #159618

wish this damn thing had spell-check - typing was never my strong-suit.

Posted by: Kevin23 at June 20, 2006 3:57 PM
Comment #159621

mental wimp

|Ill-informed blaring about something you barely understand doesn’t help the discussion.|

http://www.watchblog.com/democrats/rules.html


I’m not going to convince you.

Your facts are wrong. Your reference is from Wikipedia?

I leave it to everyone to investigate themselves.

Adrienne.


Award winning or not if the taxi part of the story truely had basis it would be bigger than Abu Ghraib. It a small independant far left leaning news organization. Much like our own “free speach tv”

Posted by: scott at June 20, 2006 4:04 PM
Comment #159635

JBOD

I’ve not heard Murtha being called a traitor, nor have I seen you being called a traitor, or even anything close. I suspect the “traitor” thing is just a ploy.

Ploy? I’ve seen the word traitor used in other threads, maybe not this one just yet. If it’s a ploy, it’s been used, but not by me.

That said, I feel like it has been said, just not with that particular word.

Posted by: womanmarine at June 20, 2006 4:37 PM
Comment #159639

Jeff:
“Would you prefer we just decide the outcome on what has been prited to date and just execute all the Marines involved before they have their day in court? I simply can’t believe how many people on this blog want to take what is printed in the “Self seving” media and make a life or death descision.”

Good heavens! This is just so over the top! Execute all the Marines involved before their day in court? Make a life or death decision? Wow, I didn’t realize that blogging my opinion could carry such a weighty responsibility!
Give me a break.

“Since when did doing multiple short tours turn soldiers into people who will slaughter and massacre.”

Just like in Vietnam our soldiers don’t even know who exactly they’re fighting — this puts so much stress on them that they can easily start losing it after multiple tours of duty. Btw, trying to fight against guerilla warfare in a conventional manner is nothing even remotely like WWII.

“So if you want to support the troops then do so not by calling them killers”

I have not called our troops who are fighting this war killers. But when troops go on a rampage murdering innocent civilians and children in their own homes, that is a very different situation.

scott, re: The Herald:
“It a small independant far left leaning news organization.”

Wrong. The Herald is Scotland’s oldest and largest selling newspaper. The Sunday Herald is an independent wing of the newspaper, but as a sister publication, it’s still directly connected to The Herald.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 4:49 PM
Comment #159643

SE,

I hope and pray to God Jack Murtha stays and does well. He is already doing GOOD.

As for your post - NOBODY said it was the MARINES who were doing the cover-up. Look to your own republican administration.

see ya in Nov.

Posted by: RGF at June 20, 2006 4:53 PM
Comment #159648

ChrisC,

Question? You have been possibly shot at, it came from the house on the left, you don’t know who is there or not, your job is to enter the house and take that person down. Do you enter and ask questions? If you do it means you could die, what do you do? Remember, you don’t have the priviledge of 20/20 hindsight.

I ask the soldier who speak arab to warn the cvilians people, if any, that are in the house that they should go outside arms up NOW or they’ll be killed in a minute.

What? My squad don’t have any soldier speaking arab?!? But aren’t we the best trained soldiers in the world!?! How come???

Also, after discovering we’ve killed many kids, womens and old people in a first room, never I’ll move to the next without changing the tactic.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 5:09 PM
Comment #159650

Adrienne:

Wow, still nothing. There’s still plenty of time though.

I have not called our troops who are fighting this war killers. But when troops go on a rampage murdering innocent civilians and children in their own homes, that is a very different situation.

Ummmm, did anyone but me notice that in sentence 1 of the above, Adrienne denies calling our troops killers, while in sentence 2 she claims our troops went on “a rampage murduring innocent civilians and children”? To paraphrase, with supporters like that, who needs enemies!@!

womanmarine:

I’ve probably seen some people call Murtha a traitor—not in this thread, and possibly not on WB, but I’m sure there are those types out there. I wouldn’t suggest, however, that they are typical.

More typical, I think, are the ones like SE, 1LTB, goodkingned and me who say that Murtha’s public statements were reprehensible. I’ve never questioned the man or his patriotism—only his lack of judgement.

Stephen:

If you want to take the steam out of critics like Murtha, the last thing you fellows need to be is attack dogs.

Here’s the rub. I’ve not attacked Murtha at all, yet I’m included by some as being part of the attack dog pack. I’ve taken exception to his statements, which some have seen fit to caricature as an attack.

So the option I would have is to remain silent, or be considered an attack dog. Given those choices, I’ll speak out, but I will do so from the high moral ground of attacking actions and words, but not the person.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 20, 2006 5:18 PM
Comment #159651

kctim,

There are those who wish to automatically convict the US Marines and there are those of us who will stand behind them, wait for the facts and THEN let those facts determine what really happened and the actions that follow.

AFAIK, even the soldiers involved don’t denied they actually killed 24 iraquis civilians, and among them kids 3-4 years old, women and old people. I guess then we could agree that’s a fact, right?

Now, tell me how you could consider an iraqui kid 3 years old as being an insurgent? Some if not all these civilians were innocents and they died under US soldiers fire.
So, someone have to take responsability for that, no? If soldiers actually follow their ROE, then the people who wrote it have some responsability, don’t you think?

Or that’s just bad luck and, heck, that’s war, who care about iraquis kids, women and elders, when flaming Murtha is the sole figth that matter to americans?!

Let me say it again: the Rest of The World don’t care about Murtha. But they do care about USA losing its moral ground. And if nobody take responability for these kids killed, you’ll lose one little bit again, you could bet.

PS: close Gitmo now. Put detainees on trial now. Good steps to get some moral credit back.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 5:20 PM
Comment #159655

SE,

I notice that this time around you’re more than happy to take a single “MSM” article and brandish it as the truth. Can you say “Hyprocricy”?

Posted by: Dave at June 20, 2006 5:32 PM
Comment #159656

JBOD,

Back in Viet Nam, the enemy used the statements of prominent (or even secondary) politicians and public figures to dispirit US POW’s. The premise they worked on was to let the POW’s hear what their countrymen were saying negatively, which would be a blow to a POW’s mindset. It’s safe to assume, I think, that terrorists will use the same ploy, whether it be with POW’s or simply to try to convince more people of how bad the US really must be, since our own politicians say we are bad.

First, AFAIK terrorists in Iraq don’t bother to keep alive US’s POWs.

Second, I’ll bet that a majority of iraquis still never had heard of Jack Murtha, while they do know Rhumfeld and several collateral damage stories from first hand or they witnessed or, worst, survived.

Last, Iraq War is not Vietnam War, nor 9/11 was Pearl Harbor. That’s urban warfare. It’s more similar to Somalia or Algeria War or first Afghanistan War (the soviet version, not the current one) than anything else, if you ask me.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 5:32 PM
Comment #159666

jbod:
“Wow, still nothing.”

Low self esteem, huh? Don’t be so hard on yourself.

“There’s still plenty of time though.”

Sure. It’s never too late to go back to college — or even charm school for that matter…

“Ummmm, did anyone but me notice that in sentence 1 of the above, Adrienne denies calling our troops killers, while in sentence 2 she claims our troops went on “a rampage murduring innocent civilians and children”?”

Hmmm. Maybe going back to school won’t help.
Let me try to explain:
In sentence one I was talking about our troops in general, while in sentence two, I was referring to those particular Marines who killed all those people in Haditha.
Does that make it clearer for you? Still too nuanced? Do let me know.

“To paraphrase, with supporters like that, who needs enemies!@!”

Indeed. No one helps our troops by trying to look the other way or by excusing them if they’ve committed an atrocity. Maintaining a sense of discipline is too important.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 20, 2006 5:51 PM
Comment #159679

Review of the links provided by other posters indicates that not all of the dead and wounded were innocent. One of the links indicated that the 12 year old witness was aware that an explosion would occur. She would know that only if the adults responsible for her safety had a hand in placing the device in the road. Where is the outcry against engaging in terrorism without regard for innocents? As long as the insurgents use civilians as body shields there will be deaths of non-involved individuals. Israel has faced this grim reality for some time due to Palestinian disregard for noncombatants.

Before sympathetic voices rally to decry these deaths, try to picture yourself planning and implementing a terrorist attack across the street from the home where your loved ones sleep.

Posted by: goodkingned at June 20, 2006 6:10 PM
Comment #159683

YOU KNOW WHAT REALLY BLOWS MY MIND ABOUT THIS WHOLE ISSUE AND THIS BLOG IN PARTICULAR?

We have a bunch os supposedly patriotic, freedom loving, law abiding Americans who are DEFENDING AN ATROCITY! A MASSACRE!

There is now NO doubt, none whatsoever, that there was a horrendous massacre in Haditha. That much is real.

Now comes Sicilian Eagle and others making excuses and defending it as though it is allright. THEY ARE EVEN ATTACKING THOSE CALLING FOR JUSTICE! i.e. Murtha.

Blows my mind. I can’t imagine what it would take to change their minds about anything. If Massacres don’t get noticed or appreciated by these people, then arguing for law or justice or moral right must be such incredibly essoteric nonesense to them as to be utterly meaningless farts in the wind.

It is stunning to me to read this thread and see what some people are willing to defend and turn their heads from.

Posted by: RGF at June 20, 2006 6:15 PM
Comment #159687

Stephen,
“First, a coverup did occur. The investigation just states it didn’t go far up. The Republicans treat this as good news because it means Murtha’s apparently wrong.”

What do you mean “apparently”?!! Be intellectually honest and admit if you agree with accusing Americans without the presumption of innocence, like Murtha did. Do you agree that Murtha was correct in presuming our soldiers guilt?!! Be honest Stephen.


Posted by: rahdigly at June 20, 2006 6:18 PM
Comment #159698

Goodkindned

Review of the links provided by other posters indicates that not all of the dead and wounded were innnocent. One of the links indicated that the 12 year old witness was aware that an explosion would occur. She would know that only if the adults responsible for her safety had a hand in placing the device in the road. Where is the outcry against engaging in terrorism without regard for innocents? As long as the insurgents use civilians as body shields there will be deaths of non-involved individuals.

So why not just nuke Iraq and go home?
Problem solved.

Israel has faced this grim reality for some time due to Palestinian disregard for noncombatants.

That’s true on both side, as the two palestinian families at beach in Gaza two weeks ago could have attested if they were not all killed by Israel rockets.

Before sympathetic voices rally to decry these deaths, try to picture yourself planning and implementing a terrorist attack across the street from the home where your loved ones sleep.

Nobody sad terrorists were goods. But try picture yourself clearing a room with a frag grenade while hearing kids crying behind the door…

“Terrorists are worst” is a laim defense for killing kids when you’re supposed to be the good guy.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 20, 2006 6:37 PM
Comment #159701

Philippe,

Not so sure Israel fired those rockets. Got to be careful when you assume. But I mostly agree.

Posted by: Kevin23 at June 20, 2006 6:39 PM
Comment #159714

RGF,

“It is stunning to me to read this thread and see what some people are willing to defend and turn their heads from.”

I presume you don’t read too many posts here?

Posted by: Dave at June 20, 2006 6:52 PM
Comment #159726

Philippe:

If the US wanted to destroy Iraq that would be easy. Our policy is not to destroy but to transform the nation into a democratic form that will represent the wishes of the citizens and stop the spread of support for destabilizing forces in the region. If we didn’t have this goal, we could have just ignored the atrocities of Saddam’s rule.

About the Gaza explosion, Kevin23 is right about the uncertainty of the cause. The Israelis maintain that the timing of the explosion does not match their artillery records and that an examination of the site does not indicate a crater appropriate to a missile fired from Israeli positions. Also, fragments removed from the injured do not meet the specifications of Israeli munitions. Unless you just don’t believe the Israelis, these factors seem to be three strikes against the theory that Israel is responsible.

Charles Krauthammer pointed out that some responsibility for civilian casualties should be laid on the Palestinians for setting up a missile site adjacent to a public beach used by civilians. I’m sure that the left will once again excuse terrorists for casually putting people in harms way. Chew on that.

Posted by: goodkingned at June 20, 2006 7:05 PM
Comment #159825

RGF,
“We have a bunch os supposedly patriotic, freedom loving, law abiding Americans who are DEFENDING AN ATROCITY! A MASSACRE! There is now NO doubt, none whatsoever, that there was a horrendous massacre in Haditha. That much is real. Now comes Sicilian Eagle and others making excuses and defending it as though it is allright. THEY ARE EVEN ATTACKING THOSE CALLING FOR JUSTICE! i.e. Murtha.”

Murtha (and others) are being attacked for “attacking” our (own) troops for something that hasn’t even gone to trial yet. They are presuming our troops guilty before they even get a “fair” trial. Communists do that, they find you guilty until proven innocent. That’s what Murtha and others on this blog are doing to our troops. Hell, some aren’t even defending our laws and won’t even come to the defense of our troops.

“It is stunning to me to read this thread and see what some people are willing to defend and turn their heads from.”


The fact is RGF, it’s your post that’s “stunning”; you (all of a sudden) care about 24 Iraqis (whom you have no idea if they were innocent in this incident), yet you make no comment about the thousands of Iraqis that were murdered by these terrorists (the real enemy), or the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis that were murdered and tortured under Saddam Hussein. No, apparantly, it’s the US Marines that are in the spotlight (in the anti-Bush people’s world) and they are (automatically) guilty. Nice patriotic Americans we have out there…

Posted by: rahdigly at June 20, 2006 9:41 PM
Comment #159837

Rahdigly-
I assume you know what the word apparently means, so I shall address what the appearance here is: That the report said there was no cover up.

There was, otherwise we would have heard about this in November. It was the soldiers who prepared the report who covered up the real circumstances of the Haditha incident. That is also why this is not good news, in the end, because what the report says is that the people up the chain of command was abysmally aware of what was going on under them, under their command.

When military command becomes this bureaucratically shortsighted, it’s a problem for America and the soldiers that discipline and information flow are not being preserved going both ways. One of the things that lost Vietnam for us was the failure of trust of soldiers in their command, and the failure of command in the country to relate information to those in Washington who needed to know.

As for the guilt or innocence of soldiers? There’s a difference between saying a unit was involved, than condemning ever soldier in the unit as guilty. We know somebody did something, but the details about that don’t even qualify as sketchy. We’re pretty much sticking to the facts. You folks, however, have spun off into fantasy-land with stories of terrorist set-ups, rather than admit that in war, some people given the power and capability to kill misuse it. You folks are trying to exonerate the troops before the investigation is even complete. To you, supporting the troops means finding them not guilty before the trial even starts.

It’s a bad attitude to take. There’s a reason these people are under suspicion, and however much you would like to believe its all just lies, it’s not. Other American soldiers had to clean up on this one, and the Report given lies about what happened.

The question is not whether the unit was involved or not in this incident. The question is who took these actions, how they went about it, and why. That is where guilt and innocence is for the soldiers there, and it’s there we must give them the benefit of the doubt until evidence proves otherwise.

Discipline must be maintained. Morale will not survive the degradation of basic human values. We do not need our soldiers, prompted by the unchecked actions of their comrades, to start asking themselves whether the invasion is truly the righteous action they were brought to believe it was. You cannot maintain discipline if you will not acknowledge the reality of atrocities, and further acknowledge that such incidents are reflective of failure, not an unfortunate prerequisite to success.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 20, 2006 10:23 PM
Comment #159861

Adrienne,
Exactly what “Isle” are you referring to “Both sides of the isle”?
The Emerald Isle?

AISLE……… be seeing you.

Posted by: chotty at June 21, 2006 12:31 AM
Comment #159862

Adrienne:

You made wonderful accusations, but when pressed for evidence of your accusations, you moved on…left it alone…acted like it never happened. That makes you a smart girl, because of course there was no evidence with which to prove your accusations. It’s what a lot of our politicians do, so you can consider yourself in their league.

You have provided two of the best comments since John Kerry’s ” I voted for it before I voted against it” comment.

“I have not called our troops who are fighting this war killers. But when troops go on a rampage murdering innocent civilians and children in their own homes, that is a very different situation.”

“Everyone is innocent before
being proven guilty.”

Both are wonderful examples of your mindset. Though I doubt you intended to reveal as much as you did, your statements reveal the truth. If that is what you count as support for our troops, then it is lackluster support at best. As soon as you have an opportunity to call Marines “murderers”, you do so.

Sometimes our statements reveal the truth. Thanks for having done so, and thanks for providing a bit of humor to the equation, whether intended or not.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 21, 2006 12:33 AM
Comment #159869

joebag:

The support of the military from the anti-war bunch will melt like ice in the summer. A large faction of the American left views all things military with the same contempt they reserve for soccer moms, nascar dads, and religious fundamentalists. This contempt has been thinly veiled for political gain, but it hasn’t diminished.

I predict that the incident at Haditha will be spun to foster a general disapproval of the military.

Posted by: goodkingned at June 21, 2006 1:08 AM
Comment #159870

joe-
How can you say “Everybody’s innocent until prove guilty” and then on no greater evidence than your own opinion accuse her of attacking innocent soldiers and condemn here without a second thought?

This whole ad hominem argument is predicated on the notion that Democrats are out to get our soldiers. We’re not. It’s just a convenient political play of flashing back to the convenient myths of the late sixties.

Ad nausem. The Republicans are still fighting a culture war most people could care less about. They should step outside of that comtemptuous point of view.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 21, 2006 1:12 AM
Comment #159872

jbod,
You’re hilarious. Just because I won’t play your little game you act as though I’ve somehow failed some “test”. The truth is, there is plenty of what you’ve asked for right here in this thread. I suggest you go find them Yourself.
By the way, the terms “innocent before proven guilty” and “innocent until proven guilty” I have heard used interchangeably. But the fact that you are reduced to nit-pickery is proof you have no real argument. Which it means it’s time for you to go and pick on someone else now Joebags — someone who may be more willing to actually play your little troll-like games.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 21, 2006 1:28 AM
Comment #159877

I repost this for Adrienne.

If you follow the links, I count 5 errors that were also passed on to your ‘Award Winning Sunday Herald’
and the editorial you quote that gives no sources, but that you quote as fact.

The following “corrections” have been added to the very bottom of Time’s two blockbuster exclusives on Haditha in their current online versions:

http://www.sweetness-light.com/archive/time-corrects-its-mistakes-about-haditha

Lets play ‘where’s waldo?’ see if you can find all 5 mistakes that are in your article. You win the bonus prize if you find more. Ill post them for you later upside down at the bottom of the page.

Posted by: scott at June 21, 2006 1:40 AM
Comment #159880

Stephen:
“The Republicans are still fighting a culture war most people could care less about. They should step outside of that comtemptuous point of view.”

I don’t think that’s likely, Stephen. It’s been giving them an edge. It’s all about acting superior — and the trouble is, it works like a charm on a huge number of morons. People who aren’t very bright are all too eager for the opportunity to look down their noses at other people, simply because of a difference in opinion.
This Rove/Limbaugh/O’Reilly/Hannity/Coulter act is one way for a lot of total losers to be “winners” in life. It doesn’t matter that the liberal stereotype they’ve created is ridiculous, inaccurate, and out of date. As long as it’s working for them, they’re going to use it every chance they get.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 21, 2006 1:47 AM
Comment #159881

It is widely reported that those 24 deaths alluded to in the house were by and large killed with a single bullet. When the marines enter a house in a situation like that in question, they first roll a percussion grenade into the room. They then enter and “spray” the room. This is standard procedure. Therefore a single bullet would have come from a different source and that would have been those terrorists that were present before the marines hit the door. And there were terrorists in the same room before the marines entered. So, it appears that the fine marines are being scapegoated one more time. There will be room in hell for those who want to lie to make a world wide story.

Posted by: tomh at June 21, 2006 1:52 AM
Comment #159882

Are you looking Adrienne? I cannot wait to post all of them mistakes!

Posted by: scott at June 21, 2006 1:54 AM
Comment #159886

scott,
I’m not playing your little games either, nor will I wallow in your rightwing disinformation blogs. The Glasgow Herald is THE most respected newspaper in Scotland. It’s a Serious Paper — much like the Wall Street Journal, or the Washington Post, or The New York Times is here. Btw, even excellent papers don’t always get every detail of a story perfect — which is why it’s always a good to read several articles from various sources.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 21, 2006 2:01 AM
Comment #159888

‘morons’ ‘People who aren’t very bright’ ‘total losers’

Adrienne, you do realize that in a debate, when one falls into name calling, it is a psychological sign that one is losing!

Better stick to fact checking your ‘Award Winning News Article’

Posted by: scott at June 21, 2006 2:03 AM
Comment #159891

Adrienne,

Number one, these are TIMES own retractions. It is one of the most Respected magazines in the world, not just in Scotland. And what you say is true about the ‘Glasgow Herald’ But that is not what you quoted from is it?

You can look for the mistakes or not. Maybe name calling is easier. But I will publish the mistakes for you anyway in a while. Ill give you time anyway

Posted by: scott at June 21, 2006 2:09 AM
Comment #159892

scott:

You might be interested in wandering over to the election predictions thread in the red column before you waste anymore time arguing with Adrienne. Go to the end of the thread for a surprise.

Posted by: goodkingned at June 21, 2006 2:10 AM
Comment #159896

Yes I just added myself

Posted by: scott at June 21, 2006 2:15 AM
Comment #159898

Please look for the mistakes Adrienne, I want to picture the look on your face when you see all those holes in the story you have so proudly stood by.

Posted by: scott at June 21, 2006 2:21 AM
Comment #159900

BTW Adrienne,

Does the LA Times fall into that same catagory of those papers you listed? I was just wondering as this blog started there with the statement :

The LA Times reported ‘Nothing in the report indicated to a ‘knowing cover-up’ of the facts by the officers supervising the Marines involved in the November incident.’

Just curious!

Posted by: scott at June 21, 2006 2:24 AM
Comment #159903

Stephen:
“The Republicans are still fighting a culture war most people could care less about. They should step outside of that comtemptuous point of view.”

If no one cares about the “culture war” why is it that Republicans have won every Congressional election for the last 10 years? There are other issues out there besides the war, and while the Democrats might have some good ideas, they get lost in placating their own radical base. If Republicans are beholden to corporations, then Democrats are beholden to the unions, pro-abortion groups, and every other radical front group out there. When Hillary Clinton makes an attempt (in my opinion, only a political ploy) to move towards the center, she’s condemned by that wingnut coffin rider Cindy Sheehan. Joe Lieberman, who’s been in my opinion a civil voice of moderation in the Senate, is being condemned by radical groups everywhere.

The problem for the Democrats is that they just can’t distance themselves from the more radical elements of thier own party. Every Republican who’s been asked about those bastards from the Westboro Baptist Church has condemned them and worked to pass legislation to protect the families of dead Soldiers from these morons. I have yet to hear the Democrats do the same for radicals in their own base.

This radical element of the Democratic party will continue to deny them long term success. They may get some milage out of the situation in Iraq this election and into 2008, but I wouldn’t count on it much longer than that. Soon enough, they’ll be replacing military spending with handouts, telling parents they don’t have the right to know if their 14 year old daughter is having an abortion, and trying once more to use the government to create more problems for the everyday American.

tomh,

Where are you getting this information? I haven’t seen any of these widely reported stories. Probably because a single bullet can’t kill 24 people simultaneously. I would love to see evidence that these accused Marines did not commit the crimes they’ve been accused of. I’ll reserve judgement for the court martial members, but you’re not helping them or yourself by fabricating a scenario that has no basis in fact.

Posted by: 1LT B at June 21, 2006 2:33 AM
Comment #159931

Kevin23, goodkingned,

I stand corrected about the recent Gaza beach families killed, no definitive proof that was an Israel one.

But my point is still that both sides don’t value much civilians casualties either. When an Israel airstrike happened in a very dense urban area, they obvioulsy knows that civilians are at risk. But they do it anyway. Both sides are both disrespecting innocents lives. None is gooder in that topic.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 21, 2006 5:02 AM
Comment #159932

tomh,

It is widely reported that those 24 deaths alluded to in the house were by and large killed with a single bullet.

Oh, the magic bullet theory, again!
Please share your sources so everyone could look at them (and eventually laught).

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 21, 2006 5:09 AM
Comment #159934

JBOD,

“Everyone is innocent before being proven guilty.”

I agree. So tell me again why Gitmo detainees are *less* innocent before being proven guilty than anyone else?
You can’t have both ways, you know.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 21, 2006 5:32 AM
Comment #159953

Stephen:

How can you say “Everybody’s innocent until prove guilty” and then on no greater evidence than your own opinion accuse her of attacking innocent soldiers and condemn here without a second thought?

I did not accuse her of “attacking innocent soldiers. Adrienne claimed that her ““opposition” seems to be people who think that…excuses can and should be made for things like torture or atrocites committed by the US military.” I said I’d never seen anyone even remotely suggest such a thing, and asked Adrienne to show where she got such an idea. She declined to do so, and wisely—-I’d already re read the thread to determine there were no such comments.

You asked me for evidence to demonstrate that she has already deemed the Marines guilty—its below in her own words. My point all along has been that its premature to determine guilt. Here’s a few examples that you apparently have missed:

If those Marines had killed every last one of those people, maybe they’d have gotten away with making up a cover story…
I can and will form an opinion when two Congressmen hailing from both sides of the isle [sic] come out after a Congressional briefing on the incident and are upset enough with what they’ve learned to say that these people were all unarmed civilians and that they were murdered.
But when troops go on a rampage murdering innocent civilians and children in their own homes, that is a very different situation.

Stephen, you should now see clearly the evidence that supports my comments. I took Adrienne to task for prematurely concluding our soldiers are guilty. They might be, and I’ve stated that if they are, they should be punished. Its the premature nature that I focus on, and Adrienne even admits forming her opinion in the second comment I listed. It is honorable to try to fight her battle for her, but she has depleted your ammunition by her own statements.

Adrienne:

Which it means it’s time for you to go and pick on someone else now Joebags — someone who may be more willing to actually play your little troll-like games.

This sounds suspiciously like critiquing the messenger to me, Adrienne, which is something you claim to decry. Have you now changed your opinion on that, or do you regret critiquing ME instead of my message?

By the way, about the “little games” you accuse me of playing…you made an accusation, I disagreed with it and asked you to show proof. You didn’t, wouldn’t, or couldn’t. You’ll note that when Stephen played the same “little game” with me—asking me to share proof of my accusation about your comments—I was able to simply cut and paste your own statements as proof of my position. It was really easy for me to do, because the comments were right there in print.

I’ve accused you of nothing less or more than prejudging our troops, which to me is not true support of them. True support would be to give our troops the same benefit that we give common criminals—innocent until proven guilty.

If proven guilty, I’ve said throw the book at them. If proven innocent, then I’ll be able to know I supported them and the innocent until proven guilty concept.

Philippe:

Very good point about the Gitmo prisoners. The similarity is that in both situations, you have people in custody—that’s part one of any kind of criminal investigation. We also know that military tribunals work differently than civilian ones, so I’d push for the military tribunal system to be employed in both circumstances.

I’ve gone on record as saying that its unfair to hold people indefinitely in Gitmo. There has to be some conclusion to their incarceration—a trial or release. Its a tough situation, because we can be pretty sure that some of those guys are bad guys. But its unfair to keep them indefinitely on the presumption of guilt. I favor having a military trial of some sort to determine their innocence or guilt, while at the same time recognizing that in wartime, there are different time standards than there are for civilians. But I’d say we’ve gone past the time frame where we can simply hold them on the accusations.

Posted by: jeobagodonuts at June 21, 2006 9:14 AM
Comment #159958

Stephen,
“You folks are trying to exonerate the troops before the investigation is even complete. To you, supporting the troops means finding them not guilty before the trial even starts.”


No! We “folks” are waiting for “ALL” the evidence to be presented before we make a judgement and for our soldiers to get a fair trial. That’s what it means to live in a “Nation of Laws”. We’re innocent until proven guilty and so are “our” Marines! That’s what we’re talking about.

The anti-Bush/War crowd are dead wrong with this issue and they are just debunking themselves.

Posted by: rahdigly at June 21, 2006 9:51 AM
Comment #159971

rahdigly,

Agreed (except for the final name calling but whatever…).

But do you agree that *someone* have to be guilty that 24 iraquis, many of them kids, women and old people, were killed by US ammo?

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 21, 2006 10:48 AM
Comment #159979

rahdigly-

The irony is that often times when you are dealing with a governmental investigation, the only way you will get ALL the evidence is if there is a public outcry from folks who sound a lot like Adrienne’s posts. Maybe they’re being reactionary (so I’m agreeing with you) but if there is any reason to be reactionary…this is it.

Even an accusation of a state-sponsered massacre has very real effects in international public opinion, so why should we be so high and mighty domestically. We should care about our reputation enough to bang on the Pentagon door and demand a complete and thorough investigation.

Unfortunately, much of our gov’t is motivated more by fear of losing votes or their cushy bureaucracy jobs than it is by serving the public good in the first instance.

Posted by: Kevin23 at June 21, 2006 11:48 AM
Comment #160020

tomh-
Your scenario has five major flaws:

1)First, flashbang grenades: damn loud, bright flash, by their very nature meant to startle folks and paralyze them for that moment

2)I’m pretty sure spraying a room is not standard procedure when it’s unknown whether hostiles are in a room. Otherwise, Haditha wouldn’t be news, it’d be the usual appalling atrocity. Think of all the raids that have to be going on, and consider whether spraying a room would be standard under normal circumstances.

3)I’m also pretty sure that the terrorists would have nowhere to hide, that the soldiers would fully search a room.

4)Why would soldiers coverup for actions not their own? The unit submitted a false report on the incident, why do that if you didn’t do anything? It’s not like they would know these people were killed by American Bullets when cleaning up the scene.

5)Photographic evidence allegedly shows the victims kneeling or otherwise pacified. You don’t need to spray to kill somebody who’s in no position to resist.

This is what I mean by exoneration before the trial begins. This kind of denial. Can you not accept that our soldiers are human beings who can be pushed over the edge?

1LT B-
What’s so radical about a union? Unions can become radical, true enough, but that’s not automatically the case. On the subject of abortion, most Americans are pro-choice, so that’s not such a radical postion there either, not if measured from the center.

In any political movement, there will be fringes. The question is, how much control do they have? Lieberman’s problem is not with a fringe, but with moderates, who in this country have united against Bush. Opposing Bush and the Iraq war might be radical in your view, but it’s become mainstream, in truth.

The Democrats have little trouble with the far left. In fact, perhaps too little. They could stand to be a bit more confident about being Democrats. As for the Westboro matter, We don’t typically have to worry about our people picketing soldier’s graves claiming their deaths are a punishment from God for Gays.

The trouble with the Republicans is that there’s practically no distance between them and their most radical fringe. From NSA eavesdropping, to tax cuts, to estate tax elimination, to whatever else, the Republicans seem to be going down a wishlist of far right items as to how the rest of the country should be governed. You can’t do that forever and expect people to remain quiet, or your job security intact.

Joe-
The question is who did what. Not every soldier necessarily participated, or could have. Just speaking of things like this in generalized terms is not condemning them. You folks are trying to say a massacre might not have even happened. There’s not much evidence for that. The unit was involved, and Haditha did happen. Reserving judgment does not mean denying anything happened.

Rahdigly-
A person can be innocent and yet be involved and under suspicion. So far, no evidence has popped up to demonstrate that there was a third party involved in killing these people, so the likely suspects are the Marines.

If your standards were applied, fair trials would be impossible, because by necessity, calling somebody a suspect would add an element of prejudice to matters under your definitions.

In our country, a person innocent under the law can still be considered a suspect, can still be alleged to have been involved in a crime, without necessarily depriving them of the right to a free trial.

My advice is that you folks quit using presumed innocence as a blunt object to win arguments with. An atrocity did happen, and our folks were involved.

Additionally, consider that the standard for conviction is not perfect knowledge; that is impossible. No, it’s proof beyond a reasonable doubt. The point of the trial is to determine whether the evidence is sufficient to warrant conviction, and subsequently punishment under the law.

It should not be the standard by which we judge news of such events. It might be convenient for those who don’t want to admit that anything happened, that our soldiers might be involved, or that anything is wrong with policy and performance in this war, but it’s a standard applied where it is for specific reasons: to put the burden of proof on those who would seek to punish criminals that they broke the law.

We can admit that our soldiers were likely involved without necessarily condemning them.

Unfortunately, folks like yourself can’t seem to apply such non-prejudicial standards to us. We’re automatically guilty of being traitors, automatically guilty of seeking to harm and blacken the reputation of our soldiers, automatically guilty of being un-American.

You’re not considering that what we might be concerned about is losing the war, and seeing our soldiers needlessly endangered. So long as policies that lead to things like these are unaddressed, it matters little if we try and hide them. Ultimately, they are landmines waiting to go off underneath our soldier’s feet, shredding their crediblity with the natives, making their lives more difficult, and lowering morale by making our soldiers think twice as to whether their army acts justly.

The only way to protect soldiers from the bad press these incidents generate is to prevent them when we can and deal with them promptly, fairly, and openly when they do happen. The more we try to sweep these things under the rug and ignore them, the more we end up making it look as if we have some dark motives and ambitions to hide.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 21, 2006 1:39 PM
Comment #160043

JBOD, you mean the complete and utter avoidance of context? Well, I think we’ve already had that argument.

Cristian,
Agreeing with the red side is fine, but J Murtha never jumped on the Marines. He attacked the administration mishandling of the fiasco in Iraq. The “Reds” sadly see dissent as not supporting troops. A complete corruption of the facts, but to each thier own delusion. The facts remain that several incidents of abuse and murder have already been documented. It’s vietnam II, an enemy that hides in an angry population, a military/political position that leaves soldiers exhausted and frustrated. During Clinton’s fiasco in Somalia which resulted in a few dead special forces, the “reds” railed against mission creep and nation building. Here we have 2500 dead soldiers and 30,000 wounded. I wonder why they don’t talk about those things anymore?

It is past time to redeploy, leave it to the Iraqis and go after Al Qaeda which is reemerging in Afghanistan. Frontline gave a great description of our “mission” and how it let Osama escape.

Posted by: gergle at June 21, 2006 2:31 PM
Comment #160045

Stephen:
“The question is who did what. Not every soldier necessarily participated, or could have. Just speaking of things like this in generalized terms is not condemning them. You folks are trying to say a massacre might not have even happened. There’s not much evidence for that. The unit was involved, and Haditha did happen. Reserving judgment does not mean denying anything happened.”

Exactly. Furthermore, we DO KNOW that there are members of that unit who have to be guilty of murder, because the victims have been paid compensations by our military, which never happens when people are killed accidentally.

As Murtha said to Soledad O’Brien on CNN:

Something like this happens, they knew about it, the Iraqis knew about it, the Americans pay them and then it goes up the chain of command and somebody stifles it. If it hadn’t been for “Time” magazine in March, this would have never became public and it’s something that should have become public immediately. We should have said, this is not something the Americans do.

It breaks my heart to think Marines did something like this. And when you hear some of the stories now that are coming out, it just makes it worse than ever.

SOLEDAD O’BRIEN: Yes, you know, when you listen to the reporters from “Time” magazine, they say that they were waved off their investigation for their reporting early on, being told that, you know, essentially what they were hearing was propaganda, anybody who is claiming a massacre. If “Time” had not continued to dig, do you believe that, in fact, this may have never come out?

MURTHA: Well, I’ll tell you how bad it was. The officials — high level officials told me just last week it will be two months before this is over. The reason I’ve been speaking out is Iraqis know about this. This has been all through Iraq. There’s no question about it. They paid people $1,500 to $2,500. This doesn’t happen unless it comes at the highest authority. I don’t know how high …

SOLEDAD O’BRIEN: When you say paid people, you’re talking an about the military compensating the families, the victims, is what you mean, right?

MURTHA: Yes. And that doesn’t happen, Soledad, if it’s an explosive device. Now I understand the troops. Troops doing a tremendous job. They carry 70 pounds of equipment. They’re out there every day. An IED goes off, it kills somebody one day, the next day.

Some of them have seen 25 and 30 of those go off and they haven’t been wounded, like the reporter that was hit. She’s been out there day after day and finally it gets to them. The pressure is tremendous. We don’t have enough troops over there and they don’t know what their mission is. Their mission is to find IEDs.

So the pressure — I don’t excuse it. There’s no way you can excuse it. But on the other hand, I understand exactly what’s happening with the troops. Think’re doing everything they can do. But for the Marines to do something like this has got to be punished as quickly as possible so the world understands that we don’t condone something like this.

Also, here is good look at some of the reasons we might speculate on the likelihood of a military cover-up.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 21, 2006 2:44 PM
Comment #160052

Adrienne,

“we DO KNOW that there are members of that unit who have to be guilty of murder, because the victims have been paid compensations by our military”

Is it military policy to only pay restitution to families where there is has been a “murder” committed?

I’m asking because I really don’t know. I am doubtful that the prosecution of soldiers based on the definition of murder in a criminal code has anything to do with the requirements for the payment of restitution.

I may very well be wrong here. If anyone knows, or has time to look it up, I’m very curious.

Posted by: Kevin23 at June 21, 2006 3:07 PM
Comment #160066

Kevin, from every thing I’ve read, these compensation/restitution payments have not been made unless the military wishes to acknowledge that the people involved were completely innocent, and that their deaths are considered terrible mistakes. Also, I don’t think our military has ever before made these kind of payments the way they have during this war. I think they started this because it is a long standing cultural tradition in that part of the world for money to be paid to the families of innocent victims in cases of wrongful death.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 21, 2006 3:40 PM
Comment #160085

Stephen:

You folks are trying to say a massacre might not have even happened.

I don’t know who “you folks” refers to, but I can say it shouldn’t refer to me, as I’ve never said anything even remotely close to what you stated above. If your complaint is that other people say that, I’ll agree with you. But then I’ll wonder what it has to do with MY comments.

There are a number of options of what might have happened in Haditha. The Marines could have murdered people, they could have killed people accidentally, they may have been set up so that it appears they killed these people, the people might or might not be innocent, the survivors could be lying about their account, the Marines could be lying about their account etc. That’s precisely why you investigate all the evidence before reaching a conclusion.

By the way, what is your opinion on the content of Murtha’s comments, as well as the timing of them?

gergle:

JBOD, you mean the complete and utter avoidance of context? Well, I think we’ve already had that argument.

Yeah, I remember. You complained that I took Murtha’s quotes out of context so I provided the entire unedited transcript of Murtha’s speech for you to read—you still complained about not having enough context. I suppose I could provide you every word uttered by Murtha since his election to the House, but you might find reason to not follow the context there as well.

You have here the entire thread at your disposal to help you understand the context of the statements I provided. I can only provide you with information; I can’t spoon feed it to you. You have to take the initiative to read it

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 21, 2006 4:43 PM
Comment #160103

rahdigly,

You said:

“The fact is RGF, it’s your post that’s “stunning”; you (all of a sudden) care about 24 Iraqis (whom you have no idea if they were innocent in this incident), yet you make no comment about the thousands of Iraqis that were murdered by these terrorists (the real enemy), or the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis that were murdered and tortured under Saddam Hussein. No, apparantly, it’s the US Marines that are in the spotlight (in the anti-Bush people’s world) and they are (automatically) guilty. Nice patriotic Americans we have out there… “

The reports from the military personnel are in, now. It is now beyond question that it happened. It is also completely irrelevent what sadaam did to his people while he was in power. We are supposed to be doing better. We claim we are there to do better. We OUGHT to do better, shouldn’t we?

You claim the marines are being blamed out of hand. Yet, WE KNOW THE MASSACRE HAPPENED!!! that much is real. The circumstances around it may or may not partially or completely exhonerate the marines involved…BUT THAT IS A DIFFERENT ISSUE FROM BLINDLY AND REATION-ARILY DEFENDING ATROCITIES!!! That the atrocity happened is now no longer in dispute.

The fact that neither you, nor SE, nor any of the wing-nuts out there seem to see that, disturbs me mightily.

Posted by: RGF at June 21, 2006 5:25 PM
Comment #160119

“You folks” refers generally to those who are arguing the position of absolute uncertainty. It’s not a supportable position. We know some things happened which preclude certain conclusions.

There’s no could be, for example, in terms of our people lying about what happened. They said that 15 Iraqis died in an explosion. That wasn’t the case. They did a whole report to support that conclusion. Could the survivors be lying? Yes. But about what, and to what extent? Certain things have been verified through sources that had no interest in supporting the insurgent side of the story. Investigations don’t cruise along on total uncertainty and just suddenly come to a conclusion. Hypotheses come and go between the beginning and the end.

As for Murtha’s comment, I’d say this: there is no good time to hear about something like this, but it’s better to hear about these things when they happen and be able to respond, than to have these things continue, covered up, with the consequences creeping up on you when its far too late to change things.

Let’s be realistic here: people will come to their conclusions about what they hear. Some will be reasonable, others won’t be. People like me, though, will be quick to point out the holes in certain theories, and counter baseless speculation that owes more to what people want to believe than what the facts we know support. See my response to tomh for an example. You can’t privilege your own speculation while denying approval for others. Just say, you can speculate, but I will punch holes where I think you’re mistaken.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 21, 2006 6:18 PM
Comment #160222

Okay, scott, here’s the original report from the Journal of the American Statistical Association, whence wikipedia got the tabled numbers. I didn’t want to burden you with it, because it’s kinda heavy going, and written for professional statisticians. If you can read it, please do. You’ll see that you are wrong, that CNN’s spin is wrong, and that you’ve been pumping an erroneous story for several days.

Not that I expect you to admit it or to even acknowledge the veracity of the document. You could, if you cared, go to the library and look up the reference, but like all victims of the Right Wing Echo Chamber (tm) you are not interested in facts, just what they tell you to say.

Posted by: Mental Wimp at June 21, 2006 9:42 PM
Comment #160341

mental wimp

First of all, When one starts alluding that the other is not bright, it is a sign of losing a debate.

Second, It amazes me that an organization working so closely with 8 media organizations didn’t cry foul when all 8 media organizations reported the first organizations findings wrong.

It amazes me that none of those organizations did any retracting of such wrong reporting.

Maybe you should call CNN! (and the NYT and LATimes) Tell them that all those people that were involved in this got it all wrong.

Now the facts:

The PDF file I you sent me from the American Statistics organization you sent me to says the exact same thing I have been telling you. (and yes I could read it. I done graduated clean out of college, I even done graduated that there High School in the middle of my Senior year after only 3.5 years.):

The only ballots up for the debate are the ones nobody could read. NOBODY! Thos ballots have never been counted in any election in the history of our country. Why, you may ask. Well, simply because no-one can read them.

If the Supreme Court had let the recount go on and on and on. Then GW Bush would still be the president of the United States.


Again I would encourage all doubters to research for themselves.

The CNN atricle:
http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2001/florida.ballots/stories/main.html

WASHINGTON (CNN) — A comprehensive study of the 2000 presidential election in Florida suggests that if the U.S. Supreme Court had allowed a statewide vote recount to proceed, Republican candidate George W. Bush would still have been elected president.

Mental Wimps PDF File from AMSTAT.ORG:
http://www.amstat.org/misc/PresidentialElectionBallots.pdf

Mental wimp…just cry uncle! You are wrong and I along with seperate mediea organizations who have not made any retractions.

Posted by: scott at June 22, 2006 2:16 AM
Comment #160345

Sorry,

Last post to conclude with:

are right!

Posted by: scott at June 22, 2006 2:19 AM
Comment #160386

Stephen:

Okay, I understand. Your comments had nothing at all to do with my comments. Your comments were based on your generalization of what other people are saying, as opposed to what I was saying. Then, in the future, you should direct your comments to WB in general, as opposed to me.

Very nice dodge on the Murtha question. You will make a good politician if you run. Of course there is no good time for bad information to be told. The question was, and still is, “Do you agree with Murtha coming out with his accusations before the investigation is complete?”

Its far different for you and I—two nobodies—to speculate on what has happened. For the record, I have yet to speculate on it—I’ve simply refrained from doing so in the interest of waiting until the investigation is complete. But for a high ranking well known politician like Murtha to do so, that’s far different. I’m sure you can see the difference, cant you.

I;ll await your answer to my question. Please answer it this time.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 22, 2006 8:00 AM
Comment #160442

JBOD, you mean your completely ignoring the jist of his comments that this isn’t an isolated incident, that the troops are deployed in a fashion to flush out the enemy, run to the next hot hole, while the previous unguarded hole fills back in, and that this is mismanagement to the nth degree, and that he was repeating inside military sources, don’t you Joe?

But who’s cares what anyone really means, let’s argue the meaning of 16 words some more.

Posted by: gergle at June 22, 2006 11:51 AM
Comment #160552

gergle:

Why is it that just when you should be admitting defeat in a debate, you try to change the issue?

The issue is whether Murtha, in his elected position in the House and in his unofficial media position as military pundit, should go on record before an investigation is complete and say our Marines murdered people and then covered it up.

The debate about tactics and strategies is an entirely different one….but one that you seem to feel you must run to for some reason. It can be discussed til the cows come home, but it has no bearing on Murtha’s claim that our Marines are murderers. Tactics can be debated without Marines being called murderers, and tactics do not make Marines do what Murtha has accused them of doing.

So either stick to the point, or start an entirely different thread that discusses your new issue.

Posted by: jeobagodonuts at June 22, 2006 4:12 PM
Comment #160792

So I am curious, if it turns out this Murtha guy is right, and maybe he knows something that we do not…which is likely seeing as how he is still very well connected and respected among high ranking military personnel…will the people who are calling him a traitor turn around and call him a hero? After all, it takes guts to stand up to the system and try to change it for the better.

What if all he is trying to do is protect the reputation of our marines. I think if given a choice, most marines would choose to NOT be labelled as murderous mosters in the places where they are already putting themselves in danger from enemies they cannot tell apart from the innocents.

On the same token, if he ends up being a lying tool of the left, I’ll admit as much and we get the same result…vindication for our marines.

Also, if the “new and improved” Rules of Engagement are to blame, I hope nobody thinks that is ok. If anyone can advocate inhuman acts like this, especially where they didn’t attack us first, is just sick. And where should the buck stop? hmmmm.

Posted by: Kevin23 at June 22, 2006 11:11 PM
Comment #160852

Kevin:

I can speak only for myself on this. I think you’ve positioned the issue very incorrectly, and as such, unfairly.

I’ve not called Murtha a traitor in any way. Nor have I focused at all on the accuracy or the inaccuracy of his statements. My focus has been on the TIMING of his statements. Even if the Marines in Haditha are found to be guilty, I will hold to the belief that Murtha should not have predetermined their guilt in a public forum before the investigation was complete.

The investigation was under way, as even Murtha admits. He said that TIME magazine uncovered the story and prompted the investigation; therefore his comments were not the impetus for the investigation.

I hope that our Marines did nothing illegal. I recognize that in wartime, there can be mistakes, and sometimes these mistakes have horrifying consequences. That something is a mistake does not undo the act, but it does change the intent. In this circumstance, Murtha has already charged the Marines with the intent to murder and the intent to cover up.

Please understand that the issue in this thread has been Murtha’s timing and prejudgement. The investigation may prove the Marines guilty, but history will prove Murtha to have been wrong to prejudge them.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at June 23, 2006 4:09 AM
Comment #160874

JBOD,

I am sticking to the point. It is you and SE who continue to focus on a few sentences that Jack Murtha made in reference to what military insiders had told him, which were included in a military report. I have akcnowledged that his phrasing was unfortunate.

You continue to pretend this was the thrust of his comments. It wasn’t and you know it. This is a typical Sean Hannity technique of argument. It’s very showy, but lacks substance. If you choose to make this a valid argument, then you must admit that Bush described the War on Terror as a Crusade. Therefore he must believe we are on a Crusade. It’s a stupid argument, but cling to it if you must.

Posted by: gergle at June 23, 2006 9:31 AM
Comment #160883

gergle:

You are 100% wrong. Murtha made his statements on ABC’s “This Week” with George Stephanopolous. The topic was Haditha. The ONLY topic was Haditha. They talked about nothing other than Haditha.

Stephanopolous asked 11 questions. Each question was related to the Haditha incident. Murtha answered each question as it related to the Haditha incident.

I’ve already provided you with a full transcript of the interview. I see no evidence that you’ve read it, from your incorrect comments. You suggest that Murtha was discussing other topics, or broader topics. He wasn’t. Read the transcript before you respond, so that you know what Murtha said.

Posted by: jeobagodonuts at June 23, 2006 10:00 AM
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