News Four U.S. soldiers charged with rape and murder

Math Is Hard

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http://www.cnn.com/2006/LAW/10/18/soldiers.court/index.html
FORT CAMPBELL, Kentucky (CNN) -- Four U.S. soldiers accused of raping and killing a 14-year-old girl and slaying her sister and their parents will face courts-martial on murder charges, military officials say.

The commander of the 101st Airborne Division has referred murder charges against the soldiers for the alleged crimes that occurred in Mahmoudiya, south of Baghdad, in March. Two of the soldiers could face the death penalty if convicted.

According to a written statement, Maj. Gen. Thomas Turner made the decision after reviewing a report of the investigation and receiving recommendations from the investigating officer, the appointing authority who directed the investigation and his staff judge advocate.

One of the soldiers, 23-year-old Army Spec. James P. Barker, told an Army criminal investigator that after the killings he poured kerosene on the girl's bullet-ridden body, according to testimony in August at a military hearing. The girl's father, mother and five-year-old sister were also killed, according to military officials.

Barker said in an interview that he held the girl down while she was raped by another soldier, Sgt. Paul Cortez, 23, according to Special Agent Benjamin Bierce of the Army's Criminal Investigation Division.

Barker said he then attempted to rape the girl himself, before she was shot to death by former Pfc. Steven D. Green, Bierce said. Green is no longer in the military and faces charges in civilian court.
What kind of nutballs are we (the U.S.) sending over to "protect" and "help" these people as "friends of their new democracy"? Do I get any say in the punishment? Because I have some ideas. This really makes me angry. :mad:
 
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"We're looking for high school graduates with no more than one felony on their record," one recruiter said.

The Army has even looked behind prison bars for fill-in recruits -- in one reported case, they went to a "youth prison" in Ogden, Utah. Although Steven Price had asked to see a recruiter while still incarcerated, he was "barely 17 when he enlisted last January" and his divorced parents say "recruiters used false promises and forged documents to enlist him."
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2006/10/01/ING42LCIGK1.DTL
 

EL

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These things happen in war all the time, and shouldn't come as a surprise.
 

selfAdjoint

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EL said:
These things happen in war all the time, and shouldn't come as a surprise.

Absolutely true. Raping women and murdering civilians is something done in all armies in all wars. You can't attribute it to some special flaw in the US, or the present generation, or anything.

What is special about the US, and the current generation is that these criminals are being brought before the bar of justice.
 

Gokul43201

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Math Is Hard said:
What kind of nutballs are we (the U.S.) sending over to "protect" and "help" these people as "friends of their new democracy"?
Any kind we can get! You think it's easy meeting recruitment quotas?

A decade after the Pentagon declared a zero-tolerance policy for racist hate groups, recruiting shortfalls caused by the war in Iraq have allowed "large numbers of neo-Nazis and skinhead extremists" to infiltrate the military, according to a watchdog organization.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks racist and right-wing militia groups, estimated that the numbers could run into the thousands, citing interviews with Defense Department investigators and reports and postings on racist Web sites and magazines.
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The groups are being abetted, the report said, by pressure on recruiters, particularly for the Army, to meet quotas that are more difficult to reach because of the growing unpopularity of the war in Iraq.

The report quotes Scott Barfield, a Defense Department investigator, saying, "Recruiters are knowingly allowing neo-Nazis and white supremacists to join the armed forces, and commanders don't remove them from the military even after we positively identify them as extremists or gang members."

Mr. Barfield said Army recruiters struggled last year to meet goals. "They don't want to make a big deal again about neo-Nazis in the military," he said, "because then parents who are already worried about their kids signing up and dying in Iraq are going to be even more reluctant about their kids enlisting if they feel they'll be exposed to gangs and white supremacists."
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/07/washington/07recruit.html?ex=1309924800&en=1be0e7d4e2aac8d3&ei=5090&partner=rssuserlan
 

arildno

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Gokul43201 said:
Any kind we can get! You think it's easy meeting recruitment quotas?
Yes it would be, if there hadn't been an enlistment requirement to believe that all Iraqis are dangerous terrorists who need to be kept in check by all means.
Most sane soldiers with some moral qualms are not allowed participate.

That is, the usual selection preference of dumb soldiers is in force in the US (as in just about any other conflict throughout history).
 

EL

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selfAdjoint said:
What is special about the US, and the current generation is that these criminals are being brought before the bar of justice.
No it's not special for the US. For example we have swedish soldiers convicted for war crimes in Bosnia.
But maybe you ment that what is special is that US is now bringing their own soldiers to court, just as we have been doing here in Europe for a while?
 
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devil-fire

what bugs me about this is that there are tons of alleged crimes like this, you can find them to some degree everywhere you look and the coalition (not just the us) officals will always say 'no one in this army is commiting any war crimes' and every now and then these things still pop up. theres no question that these officals' remarks are inaccurate, the question is to what degree are they inaccurate.
 
EL said:
These things happen in war all the time, and shouldn't come as a surprise.
So you would do the same? Seems to me cultural background and the individual are the main determining factors.
I do see that this has roots in our (primate) history of violence and that genocides actually have the same pattern - kill the men, rape the women.
 
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EL

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0TheSwerve0 said:
So you would do the same? Seems to me cultural background and the individual are the main determining factors.
I do see that this has roots in our (primate) history of violence and that genocides actually have the same pattern - kill the men, rape the women.
No, of course I wouldn't do the same. What I ment is that when you start a war, things like this will always happen. There are no "clean" wars, even though some pro-war people naively seems to think so.
 
EL said:
What I ment is that when you start a war, things like this will always happen.
If you let them continue as "normal" actions, then yes they will.
 

EL

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0TheSwerve0 said:
If you let them continue as "normal" actions, then yes they will.
You make it sound like I'm defending war crimes, and I don't see where you got that from?

"Clean" wars are an utopia. The only way to get rid of war crimes is to not go to war.
 
I see what you're saying. True we shouldn't be surprised given past evidence, but that doesn't mean that people won't be outraged by it. It sounded like an excuse someone might give to not do anything about it and hence let it continue as an acceptable loss.
 

EL

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0TheSwerve0 said:
I see what you're saying. True we shouldn't be surprised given past evidence, but that doesn't mean that people won't be outraged by it. It sounded like an excuse someone might give to not do anything about it and hence let it continue as an acceptable loss.
That the war criminals should be punished is obvious. It's great that US finally seems to go in that direction. What would be even better is if US stopped starting unnecessary wars. Indirect it's the warlords who are responsible for all those crimes.
 

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This war crime was in the news again
A second US soldier's plea of guilty to the gang rape of a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and the killing of her and her family has been accepted by a judge.

Sgt Paul Cortez admitted four murders, rape and conspiracy to rape. His plea means he will avoid the death penalty
In court, Cortez admitted the plan was hatched as they played cards and that the girl had been targeted because there was only one male in her house, making it an easy target.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6384781.stm
 
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radou

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verty

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I think it's obvious that the psychology/sociology of the soldiers is wrong. They are either nutjobs or the nature of the situation turns ordinary people into monsters. We shouldn't say "oh well, it happens", we should do something about it. I have a suspicion that private forces would better withstand such behaviour.

In that recent friendly fire video, we hear one of the pilots say "Go get him!". If that is evident of the mentality of the soldiers, you know something is seriously wrong higher up.
 
In that recent friendly fire video, we hear one of the pilots say "Go get him!". If that is evident of the mentality of the soldiers, you know something is seriously wrong higher up.
What is wrong with that mentality? The pilot obviously thought he was shooting at an enemy convoy.
 

radou

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