Saturday, January 06, 2007

The Haditha Horror Deepens

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The Washington Post has obtained a report from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service on the Marine-instigated massacre of over two dozen unarmed civilians in Haditha, Iraq. But the report describes another mass murder that took place shortly before the assassinations of 24 innocents, mostly women and children. The WaPo account is absolutely horrifying:

U.S. Marines gunned down five unarmed Iraqis who stumbled onto the scene of a 2005 roadside bombing in Haditha, Iraq, according to eyewitness accounts that are part of a lengthy investigative report obtained by The Washington Post.

Staff Sgt. Frank D. Wuterich, the squad's leader, shot the men one by one after Marines ordered them out of a white taxi in the moments following the explosion, which killed one Marine and injured two others, witnesses told investigators. Another Marine fired rounds into their bodies as they lay on the ground.

The taxi's five occupants exited the vehicle and according to U.S. and Iraqi witnesses, were shot by Wuterich as they stood, unarmed, next to the vehicle approximately ten feet in front of him," said a report by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service on the incident that runs thousands of pages.

One of the witnesses, Sgt. Asad Amer Mashoot, a 26-year-old Iraqi soldier who was in the Marine convoy, told investigators he watched in horror as the four students and the taxi driver fell. "They didn't even try to run away," he said. "We were afraid from Marines and we saw them behaving like crazy. They were yelling and screaming."

The shootings were the first in a series of violent reactions by Marines on the morning of Nov. 19, 2005 that left 24 civilians -- many of them women and children -- dead, in what some human rights groups and Iraqis have called a massacre by U.S. troops.

In what some human rights groups and Iraqis have called a massacre? What would the editors of the Washington Post call it?

1 comment:

Chief said...

This is a gross lack of leadership at the very top of the U.S. command structure, the White House. POTUS has given all the appropriate signals that "anything" is O.K.

This is the result.