Understanding War: What Happened in Haditha

Discussion in 'Politics' started by carpro, Jun 26, 2006.

  1. carpro

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    Oct 14, 2004
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    Hell And Haditha - Understanding War

    What Happened in Haditha?

    Which brings us to the remote town of Haditha, in Iraq’s notorious Al Anbar Province. There on November 19, 2005, a handful of U.S. Marines allegedly killed some two-dozen Iraqi civilians, some said to be women and children.

    Though the facts are not yet known, the killings are alleged to be the result of an emotionally charged retaliation for the ambush killing of Marine Lance Corporal Miguel Terrazas, who was driving a Humvee on patrol when the vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device (IED).

    According to preliminary reports, after Terrazas was killed, his fellow Marines raided two or three houses suspected of harboring insurgents. There was shooting, and people died.

    Today, it seems most anyone on either side of the political fence — whether supportive of our efforts in Iraq or not—would agree that someone is probably going to be charged. Whether or not they will be convicted, and of what, is another matter entirely.

    Now, I’m not excusing what may — with “may” being the optimum word here — prove to be a shameful day in the history of our Marine Corps. But it benefits no one if we do not attempt to understand the men involved and the dynamics of the system, and how it all could have temporarily broken down, if it did. Nor is there any justifiable reason to publicly convict the Marines — as we have seen in the rhetoric of Congressman John Murtha (D., Penn) — before those Marines have had their day in court.

    Murtha contends the Marines killed civilians in "cold blood." But based on my understanding of killing in "cold blood" — which is "deliberate" and with "a complete lack of emotion" — that would have been impossible under the circumstances. And any former Marine like Murtha should know better.


    "(A Marine) lives on the razor’s edge of fury and retribution, along with disgust for what he sees, i.e., how the enemy treats their own people," Col. Ripley says. "He is gripped with emotion when he sees children, many the same ages as his own brothers and sisters, and especially when he sees the mothers trying to protect them from the line of fire. He will put himself in great danger, exposing himself to that same fire just in an attempt to remove non-combatants from this danger."

    He adds, "a Marine is disgusted when he sees how the enemy treat their own people by putting them in situations where they will assuredly become casualties, for the obvious reason that they can blame it on the Americans."

    So it would be unfair and foolish to pass judgment on these Marines, without first finding what exactly happened at Haditha.

    For the best definition of "combat" I've seen:

    #1 carpro, Jun 26, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 26, 2006

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