About Disgracefully lenient sentence for Haditha murderer Page 2
|January 25th, 2012||#11|
| || |
What Iīm saying is that civilians expect that soldiers behave rationally in all circumstances. You've never been so high on adrenaline that you are completely out of touch with your feelings. Believe me mate it is a daunting experience.
You know the phrase "crime of passion" a state of mind where you are temporarily insane. This condition can easily be induced under extreme conditions such as combat. If you for a long time have been in condition red you will eventually not respond rationally.
This is not an apology for what happened. But I have an understanding of why such things happen in combat. Those of us who have crossed the line know why such things happen. You must be a little less colored before you point fingers, it's not your normal everyday life out there.
There is no conspiracy but all of us who are or have been in the military have at some level been over the edge. Itīs easy to walk the line back home in cozy little UK. In a warzone the line is blurry.
|January 26th, 2012||#12|
| || |
The argument that civilians expect that soldiers behave rationally in all circumstances is not true nor is it relevant because what civilians expect is that everyone no matter what role they play in society will be subject to the same laws and punishments so while on the battlefield the line may be blurry in a court of law it isn't or at least shouldn't be.
We are more often treacherous through weakness than through calculation. ~Francois De La Rochefoucauld
Last edited by MontyB; January 26th, 2012 at 02:14..
|January 26th, 2012||#13|
| || |
|January 26th, 2012||#14|
| || |
mitigating yes, acquitting no.
Are you telling me that killing 24 unarmed civilians and attempting to cover it up is only worth a reduction in rank and 3 months pay?
In fact I even struggle to accept that this was a stress related incident given the elaborate cover up story used, basically if they were clear headed enough to enact an "acceptable" cover story they were clear headed enough not to pull the trigger.
|January 26th, 2012||#15|
| || |
|January 26th, 2012||#16|
| || |
What concerns me is not so much the event itself, but how others with military connections first try to ignore it, then try to minimise its significance through mitigating circumstances. There is no honour in this. I would have hoped, at a minimum, they would come clean, admitted this was a serious breach of law, justice was not served, and it risks severe reprisals. The attitude above is appalling and completely at odds with 90% of views even in right wing newspapers.
I doubt if this event is isolated either.
I'm all in favour of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. Frank Lloyd Wright
Last edited by perseus; January 26th, 2012 at 09:46..
|January 26th, 2012||#18|
| || |
I don't think anyone here is trying to minimize anything. This seems like a black and white issue for you when the rest of us who have been in combat know that there is no such thing. Remember, we don't have uniformed enemies in this fight. They could be anyone, kids throwing grenades into Humvees, women killing soldiers with sniper rifles, these things happen. When you go to a place for a year or more, are in a constant state of vigilence, take casualties, know that the local population is complicit to some extent...it makes a perfect storm for something like this to happen. I'm not condoning this action, I think every single leader in their chain of command up to the Battalion level should have been tried for this. This is a leadership issue. There is no way that this would have happened had the leadership been in touch with these guys.
This incident is the exception not the rule. This instance was an extraordinary circumstance among countless others who HAVE behaved and served honorably. I know guys who have done 4, 5, and 6 combat tours (at a year a piece or more) and continue to serve and commit themselves in the most honorable of ways. This is the rule...not the exception. So please don't assume there is this big conspiracy to let soldiers get over for war crimes, there isn't, we're just trying to say we can understand how these things can happen.
Last edited by brinktk; January 26th, 2012 at 13:10..
|January 26th, 2012||#19|
| || |
So eventhough I too have understanding at the constant threat, the blurring of civilian versus civilian clad combatant etc., courts should not. They are for passing judgement based on facts. And all of a sudden 3 months, demoted to private and loss of pay don't seem that much. If I would accidentally kill 24 civilians, may punishment would be a lot worse (specially in the US). And we are all equal according to the law.... at least I hope so.
A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject.
Sir Winston Churchill
|January 26th, 2012||#20|
| || |
The current laws of war regarding civilian protection resulted from a process of treaty development that included nineteenth-century agreements to safeguard the sick and wounded, which were gradually extended in the twentieth century to prisoners of war and then to civilians caught in conflict. A cardinal rule of the existing framework insists that civilians may not be deliberately targeted, unless they participate directly in hostilities. The laws stipulate that military forces must direct their operations toward combatants and military objectives only and must conduct themselves in a manner that allows their adversaries to distinguish them from civilians by wearing uniforms, for example, or carrying arms openly. The drafters of the Geneva Conventions carefully delineated combatants and civilians to assist militaries in distinguishing between them. In addition, the conventions state that when in doubt, military forces should assume the targets are civilians and that some number of combatants among a civilian population does not render that civilian population a legitimate target.
This legal structure unfairly favors insurgents on the modern battlefield. Many of today's wars are fought in dense urban environments, largely between uniformed state militaries and guerrillas in civilian clothing. The problem is not that the rules inadequately protect civilians but that they provide too much protection for nonstate armed groups in this new type of war, on the mistaken assumption that civilians are always innocent bystanders.
Many civilians in modern wars are agents and not just bystanders, they aid and abet insurgents by storing their weapons, producing their propaganda, providing them with food and shelter, and even agreeing to act as civilian shields. It is no surprise that states such as the U.S. would expand the circle of "legitimate targets" to include civilians who assist insurgents, because it is otherwise difficult to see how they could successfully wage war at all.
Today we justify and sanitize civilian casualties by invoking the concept of "collateral damage" -- a military term used to describe regrettable but unintended, and therefore lawful, casualties of war. The notion that civilian deaths are permissible if unintended, has allowed militaries to whitewash the destructiveness of their operations. In other words, the existing laws of war, which prohibit intentional civilian targeting but permit "accidental" civilian deaths, are part of the problem. So, do the laws of war, then, need to be adapted to the current era, and if so, how?