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Iraq Veterans Lament Abuses By Some Fellow Troops

War always creates an environment where a few soldiers bring disgrace to their uniform by their participation in abuses of civilians or other crimes that hurt the reputation of the force they are fighting for. THE NATION magazine has interviewed 50 Iraq War veterans who lament the actions of some of their fellow troops who have participated in actions that are such a disgrace to their uniform. Some of these acts have no doubt been inspired by frustration with the war, lack of proper training, and a lack of a clear military objective where danger may lurk behind every corner in this hostile land.

Some of the cases of civilian abuse involve rape and murder, while other events involve other abuse of civilians. While it is only a minority of troops who commit such illegal acts during a war, it only happens to make the situation worse as the civilians lose trust with the American troops who should act as a protection against the sectarian militias, criminals and the terrorists; the main causes of violence against civilians in Iraq.

As violence from all sides seems to only grow from the continued U.S. occupation in Iraq, the civilians of this land feel that they have no real choice to turn and offer support to no one, and only hope to exist in their homeland until a peace finally comes. Meanwhile the number of refugees from Iraq may top 2 million as the violence only continues and worsens.

The Bush Doctrine in Iraq may have gotten rid of Saddam Hussein back in 2003, but only a pattern of death and violence has replaced this dictator, which is hardly any improvement.

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Comments (2)

Steve Crickmore:

Good post Paul..There does seem to be a large pattern of abuse and violence and unfortunately it's acceptance by many of our soldiers and officers. I found this testimony recently, rather shocking in the court martial of coporal Trent Davis Camp Pendleton who yesterday was found guilty of conspiring to murder but only received a bad conduct discharge and demotion to the rank of private.

From some of supportive testimony at his trial:

CAMP PENDLETON -- A Marine corporal, testifying Saturday at the murder trial of a buddy, said that Marines in his unit began routinely beating Iraqis after being ordered by officers to "crank up the violence level."....

(After an apparently completely innocent man, a retired disabled policeman was dragged from his house and murdered point blank).."I don't see it as an execution, sir," he told the judge. "I see it as killing the enemy."

He added that Marines, in effect, consider all Iraqi men as part of the insurgency. "Because of the way they live, the clans, they're all in it together," he said....

Lopezromo said a procedure called "dead-checking" was routine. If Marines entered a house where a man was wounded, instead of checking to see whether he needed medical aid, they shot him to make sure he was dead, he testified.

"If somebody is worth shooting once, they're worth shooting twice," he said.


Have you seen Kurtz's article in the WaPo, today? Many people are doubting the realitiy of Scott Thomas, the Stephen Glass of Baghdad.


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Publisher: Kevin Aylward

Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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