December 22, 2006

"They did everything they were trained to do[: murder]"

From the AP:

Eight Marines were charged Thursday in the killings of 24 Iraqi civilians last year during a bloody, door-to-door sweep in the town of Haditha that came after one of their comrades was killed by a roadside bomb.

In the biggest U.S. criminal case involving civilian deaths to come out of the Iraq war, four of the Marines — all enlisted men — were charged with unpremeditated murder.


The most serious charges were brought against Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich, a 26-year-old squad leader accused of murdering 12 civilians and ordering the murders of six more inside a house cleared by his squad. He was accused of telling his men to "shoot first and ask questions later," according to court papers released by his attorney.


Defense attorneys have disputed that, saying their clients were doing as they had been taught: responding to a perceived threat with legitimate force.

"There's no question that innocent people died that day, but Staff Sergeant Wuterich believes, and I believe, they did everything they were trained to do," said Wuterich's lawyer, Neal Puckett.

click here for all of it

As these Marines' attorney said, they were doing what they were taught. The Marines have been taught to shoot every single target they can find in the vacinity of an attack, no questions asked. That doesn't sound like spreading democracy to me. What are we doing over there?

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