Thursday, November 16, 2006

Soldier Charged with Rape and Murder in Iraq Pleads Guilty

The soldier, Spc. James P. Barker, will be spared the death penalty in return for the guilty plea and testifying against the three other soldiers charged along with Barker:

One of four U.S. soldiers accused of raping and killing a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and killing her family, pleaded guilty Wednesday in a Kentucky military court.

Spc. James P. Barker also agreed to testify against the others charged, a plea deal that helps him avoid the death penalty, his attorney David Sheldon said.

The military judge presiding over the case, Lt. Col. Richard Anderson, asked Barker why he participated in the attack in Mahmoudiya, a village about 20 miles south of Baghdad.

The crime was among the worst in a series of alleged attacks and abuses by military personnel on Iraqi civilians.

"I hated Iraqis, your honor," Barker said in court. "They can smile at you, then shoot you in your face without even thinking about it."

Yes, that's what happens when you invade and occupy another people's country uninvited and with hostile intent.

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