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wikileaks' post of a video showing the murder of a journalist in iraq

Discussion in 'Serious' started by barndoor101, 5 Apr 2010.

  1. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    If you want to think of it that way, then the majority of our armed forces are psychopaths with access to just about every modern weapon you care you imagine, not just gunships.
     
  2. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    I'm glad you are starting to see the picture.
     
  3. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    Of all the British forces I've met, they've all seemed sane - Even the Squaddies.

    I would agree that you have to be a little.. Special to want to join the military.
     
  4. cjmUK

    cjmUK Old git.

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    No, the minority are psychopaths with big weapons.

    The majority are ordinary blokes (and ladies) who agonise over their whole experience. You'll find that these are the guys who ask for confirmation of a threat, or recommend that they let the 'insurgents' go because there are too many civilians around...

    Or in some cases, will follow orders or take the lead from the colleagues, and gun down random civilians because they look a bit foreign - But at least these guys have the courtesy to suffer long-term mental health issues accordingly.

    Yes, we want battle-hardened soldiers who are decisive and effective. But we also require them to exercise caution and discretion, and demonstrate both humility and humanity.

    Difficult? Yes. But it is what makes us the Good Guys (tm) and them the Bad Guys.
     
  5. Bufo802

    Bufo802 Minimodder

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    Of course this was a huge error, but no one seems to have said that the apaches were there because ground forces had been under contact by small arms and rpg fire, and it was also thought a van was involved with that. A camera was mistaken for an rpg, perhaps carelessly but you can't tell unless you know the exact situation at the time. This led to the assumption through mistakes and coincidences of the pilots thinking these were the people involved in the attack on friendly forces.

    The later part with the van is harder to understand but I do not know exactly what the US ROE say about helping insurgent (for that is what they were thought to be at the time) casualties and possibly removing weapons.

    Also one of the ways soldiers deal with what happens in a war zone is making jokes about everything, on the surface this can look to most people wrong but it is what happens. Also everyone looking at the footage now knows that is cameras and civilians, they were moving near a small arms contact and there were not known to be journalist (people with cameras) in the area so a wrong assumption was made.

    This does highlight problems with US procedures at the time (it was quite a while back and has been dealt with by a military court I think) which seem to be looking more for a reason not to shoot rather than a reason to shoot, and I don't know whether that has been addressed but I hope it has.

    On another forum I saw this website mentioned: http://blog.ajmartinez.com/2010/04/05/wikileaks-collateral-murder/ which might be biased the other way but is a more informed point of view than most people can give.
     
  6. wst

    wst Minimodder

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    Yes, if I was going to shoot, idk, the troops, maybe? Yeah, your point is entirely invalid. The only people that a local guy is gonna shoot would be one of the American troops. So, yeah... walking around with an AK is a ****ing stupid idea.
     
  7. Ph4ZeD

    Ph4ZeD What's a Dremel?

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    Its probably worth pointing out to the ignorant that Iraq has a tradition of gun ownership, like the US. Its perfectly legal to own weapons.
     
  8. thehippoz

    thehippoz What's a Dremel?

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    have to say nexxo.. saying they are all psychos is kind of over the top- it's like anything

    my cousin was over there for a couple of years in the marines.. he was a ground grunt and I know growing up with him.. he's far from a psycho- country boy yeah.. but he's just like anyone- lost his only parent and now has a couple of kids after getting out.. he was put in the convoy that shuffled the government staff around from place to place as needed- we didn't even know this until he got out cause he didn't want family to worry about him.. cool guy, well I love all my cousins really

    but have to agree with you on shooting the crowd.. I wouldn't have been able to pull that trigger on those people under those conditions.. what the gunner saw as a rpg was actually a camera- you would hope as a gunner he'd be able to confirm what he's seeing before going cop braindead

    also the demeanor of the group was relaxed.. militants wouldn't walk around in the open like that (I wouldn't think) knowing what there's eyes in the sky.. just a bunch of fails there that hopefully get addressed
     
  9. barndoor101

    barndoor101 Bring back the demote thread!

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    ah so i guess its impossible for a normal rational iraqi to carry a gun for self defence? one who can see the senseless devastation that terrorists are causing and wants to protect his family?

    i just described parts of america, except swap 'terrorists' for 'other gun-toting idiots'
     
  10. mars-bar-man

    mars-bar-man Side bewb.

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    Sorry, I thought you said something entirely stupid then..oh wait, you did.

    Don't be such a cock, if I were living in a war torn country, with firefights breaking out daily, I would carry some sort of firearm, even if to only give myslef a sense of security.

    In regards to the video, the gunner was wrong to shoot them. But are the screens used by gunner as clear as we think? I don't know, I've never used one. But they could be only marginally better than the YouTube video.
     
  11. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    Given that it's perfectly possible to see probable weapons even in the quality of footage we saw on youtube, and that some of us downloaded in non-shitty Youtube resolution, and yet the text with ammo counts, backdraft warnings etc are not perfectly clear, I'd imagine their feeds are better.

    Also, in the longer version there is talk of live RPG ammunition found at one site - If I'm understanding the callsigns right, it's where the Apache engaged.

    Granted, the guy with the camera shooting down the street was not an RPG weilding insurgent, but if there was like RPG ammo there?

    They had a call to make, and they made it. Was it the right one from the view of us, the public without our years of experience and without the training they went through?

    Probably not.
     
  12. Rotcrack

    Rotcrack Food Maestro.

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    At one point the gunner asked the pilot, I believe, for what sounded like confirmation that what they were doing was morally correct. Quote:"They asked for it"
     
  13. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    I don't think it is. In a 2005 TIME-ABC poll, 57% of the 1711 people interviewed saw restoration of security as a priority. 30% felt unsafe in their own neighbourhood. 70% thought that things would improve over the next few years.

    In 2007 that percentage went down to 29%. About 70% of Iraqis believed security had deteriorated in the area covered by the US military "surge". 32% felt unsafe in their neighbourhood and 17% considered this to be their biggest problem in their daily lives.

    A 2008 report asking the views of Iraqi women found that 88.8% expressed a great concern that they or someone living in their households would become a victim of violence. 71.2% of respondents said they do not feel protected by U.S./U.K. soldiers and 65.3% of respondents said that, overall, the presence of U.S./U.K. security forces in Iraq was making security in the country worse. 67.9% of respondents stated that their ability to walk down the street as they please has gotten worse since the U.S. invasion.

    Since 2003, kidnappings for ransom or political causes has been steadily on the rise, including that of children and women. The most common cause of death for civilians in 2003-2008 was execution after being kidnapped. In 2005 alone the bodies of 50 kidnapping victims were found in the Tigris River.

    As recently as this March (2010) there were at least seven bombings of residential areas of the Iraqi capital, both Shiite and Sunni which killed 35 people and wounded more than 140.

    Still think that ordinary Iraqi have no reason to carry a gun for self-defence?

    I think it is very interesting how several people can empathise the pilot's point of view, but nobody can muster any insight into that of the average Iraqi. Them and Us, right?

    Agreed, I was being somewhat facetious. But the army trains people to have a killing mindset. In their personal lives most soldiers are just ordinary people. Put in uniform, tooled up and dropped in a combat situation, altogether different dynamics kick in. Most can switch back and forth reasonably well and maintain some perspective. Some cannot and go apeshit --whether on the battlefield or back on civvy street where their habits are suddenly not appreciated.

    cjmUK points out that a good soldier stays in contact with his/her human self. Theirs is not an easy job, but neither is that of fire fighters (two just got killed in the line of duty, remember?), police, paramedics or other people who deal with harrowing crap and personal danger every day. The cannot point to a bad hair day or the traumas of their job to excuse killing someone by mistake. Or is it one rule for us, a different one for the foreign devils?

    That's like arguing it is OK for the police to shoot you because they found ammo in the street you happened to walk down. :rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: 7 Apr 2010
  14. Bufo802

    Bufo802 Minimodder

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    Of course you shouldn't have separate rules for different people, but this video has been taken way past news by many people and is now just jihadist propaganda which will only help make the fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq longer and bloodier.

    Of course what happened needs to be sorted out but a lot has changed in 3 years (news commanders with different priorities etc.) and I'd say this leak will cause more deaths through revenge attacks than people it saves from similar incidents.
     
  15. wst

    wst Minimodder

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    Way to ad hominem there.

    If I was living in a war torn country, I'd stay inside and wait for the fight to stop. I wouldn't go outside with a gun. Because there are no unit markings. Everyone looks like a 'normal guy'. It's not like the dickfaces who are fighting the Americans have a sign saying 'I'm gonna shoot you'. Everyone with a gun is a potential threat. So I'll say it again. Walking around outside with an AK while a firefight is on, is ****ing stupid. Because you're gonna get shot, you're a threat.
     
  16. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    Haven't they used that reason before?

    No, joking aside. It was specifically mentioned as being under a body - Like I say, I could be misinterpreting call signs - Which suggests it was being carried. Then there's the fact that there was small arms fire to the east, which the ground troops were involved in. The video goes on a little longer while the track other men with AK47's, and they look roughly similar to what I highlighted earlier in the thread - Chances of an RPG round and other small arms being that close to a fire fight do not bode well for the potential innocence of the people walking around carrying them. Given that what looks like the same van was tracked to the very same street as the van that was seen at the firefight just east of the position, too.

    I also notice that there are no other people, civilians or otherwise, walking around in the same area.

    Personally, I would like to say I wouldn't have wanted to pull the trigger, but I can see why they did.

    The collateral damage was unfortunate, but could not be easily calculated for. There was nothing to say anyone US friendly would be in that place at that time, close to a firefight involving small arms and RPGs. Given what they knew at the time, there was - To the pilots and the people monitoring the activity and issuing the go-aheads for engagement - no good reason not to engage.

    As for those of you suggesting that non-combatants should not have to file everything they intend to do, and everywhere they mean to go, outside the green zone? It's as good as an active ****ing warzone. If you can't see the logic behind telling the side you're staying with where you're going to be, you really are insane.
     
  17. brave758

    brave758 Minimodder

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    Trust me everyone in Iraq has a gun more than likely a AK they fire them at weddings, birthdays etc etc. It is not uncommon. Thats why i said they did have AK's and Maybe a RPG but there was no signs of aggression from the supplied footage.

    For me this is a tough one, I do know how these guys feel, maybe not quite how these guys think! And from the supplied footage I see no reason to engage, i would of just kept up surveillance till the ground forces arrived they would have done their checks etc....

    Thats why i ask do we have the full picture. If they had come under RPG fire before and were looking for assailants', I could see why they would have acted as they did?

    But that is my own point of view, again i do not know the US rules of engagement. But under UK and for peace keeping, based on the footage supplied ya bad news.
     
  18. thehippoz

    thehippoz What's a Dremel?

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    thanks bufo that was a good read.. @nexxo I don't think our soldiers really care too much.. they have to be hard headed

    my step dad was in the first gulf war.. he was a sargeant of his platoon though- and he suffered post tramatic stress.. but his platoon did some really crazy things like cleaning out foxholes and he saw a lot of guys get bulldozed alive in those trenches they dug to stop the tanks- now if anyone went psycho it was probably him

    can't really blame him.. my mom left him after he slammed her leg in a door one day after getting drunk.. these guys are doing things most people wouldn't- gotta give them some slack

    it's command covering up the mistakes that's sad
     
  19. stonedsurd

    stonedsurd Is a cackling Yuletide Belgian

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    This, I feel, is the most pertinent question one could ask after watching the video. Not some pathetic rationalization about RoEs, combat stress, and other nonsense.

    And the answer to this question is a resounding NO.

    Oh, and for whoever it was that said soldiers are supposed to be (essentially) remorseless killing machines, I call epic BS. I'm from a military family and still have plenty of friends and family in the Valley (Kashmir) and the jungles (Maoist insurgency) who are under threat of gunfire, bombs or kidnapping every day and I have never seen or heard of something so horrendous. Not a 30mm autocannon being used on civilians, journalists and CHILDREN.

    Sure, every military has a few guys that snap, or a few trigger happy eff-tards but please, that should not become the norm, nor should anyone try to rationalize it with an aim to condone.
     
  20. wst

    wst Minimodder

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    While soldiers are still in the area, hearts and minds will not be won. The local... warlords, or whatever the guys running the joint are called.... they are just running an awesomely influential propaganda machine and there is just no way that the foreign invaders are going to beat that. It just won't work.
     

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