March 19, 2013

"It was black humor. It was in poor taste. We're not saying it was OK, but it was not desecration."

Said the lawyer for one of the Marine snipers who urinated on dead Taliban fighters in Afghanistan.

69 comments:

Michael K said...

British soldiers in prior Afghan wars buried the dead under sides of bacon.

AprilApple said...

The taliban do horrible things to women and children.
Piss away.

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Piece of shit scum deserved it. It's obscene and outrageous that these soldiers are facing discipline for this.

It's okay for President Foodstamps to blow up a wedding party with a drone but this is out of bounds?

Kill'em all and let Allah sort'em out.

James Pawlak said...

Me, I would have used one of those chemicals as very greatly speed up the decomposition of critters, as noted in the novel "The Trial Of Adolf Hitler".

Bob said...

Desecration is what the other side does to our bodies. But we're in polite company so we can't possibly show you those horrors.

If I was their defense lawyer I would introduce the autopsy reports and photos of what was done to British or American dead.

President-Mom-Jeans said...

I note that these assholes who were urinated on are the same ones responsible for for the shooting of that poor Pakistani girl in the thread above.

The Drill SGT said...

poor judgement on the part of Marines with cameras. Warriors have desecrated the corpses of their enemies for 20,000 years. It is part of war. Get over it.

Youngblood said...

I'm kind of conflicted here.

As a combat vet (Iraq War), I completely get that humor gets pitch-fucking-black real fast and people do things that are in terrible taste. And I'm fine with that.

At the same time, I would hope that Marines would be more disciplined and more professional than to film themselves pissing on enemy corpses and upload the video onto YouTube.

What happens in the combat zone should stay in the combat zone.

Sigivald said...

One can only desecrate the sacred.

Is an enemy corpse holy, as far as a soldier is concerned?

Maybe, if the enemy in question fought honorably and bravely before death.

Which is pretty unlikely to apply here.

Is an enemy corpse holy, as far as the rest of the population is concerned?

Doesn't seem like it.

(Now, it does seem unprofessional, and if it's actually against the UCMJ, well, laws is laws, so try and punish them.

But "desecrating"? No.)

The Drill SGT said...

"No better friend no worse enemy"
- General James Mattis (forced to retired by Obama)

getting pissed on and buried with bacon is the downside of F'ing with US troops...

Shouting Thomas said...

You might want to read the story of the British retreat from Afghanistan in 1842.

I don't think things have changed much.

Chef Mojo said...

Piss on their corpses and stuff the mouths with bacon, for all I care. Preferably after crucifying the barbaric sonsabitches.

These Marines are being railroaded to satisfy the anti-military blood lust of the left.

Enough is enough, though. Let's just get the hell out of that hellhole. Let it fucking rot.

The next time trouble comes from there, just send the buffs over and let loose. Carpet bomb them, but don't set a foot back in that country ever again. No aid, either. I have ceased giving a damn anymore about the whole AfPak region. Let it burn.

The Drill SGT said...

Youngblood said...
At the same time, I would hope that Marines would be more disciplined and more professional than to film themselves pissing on enemy corpses and upload the video onto YouTube.


I assume you were Army, as I was rather than USMC, so I'm going to change the topic slightly. Ever since Iwo Jima, it has been said that every Marine carries a flag in his ruck and the TO&E of every USMC Rifle squad has a combat photographer in it.

My point is, trying to separate Marines from cameras is a hopeless cause...

The Drill SGT said...

ST, more to the point, there is Kipling:

When you're wounded and left on Afghanistan's plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An' go to your Gawd like a soldier.
Go, go, go like a soldier,
Go, go, go like a soldier,
Go, go, go like a soldier,
So-oldier ~of~ the Queen!


Fighting Afghans has never been a Geneva Convention War. I saw a picture of three female troops in the back of a Medevac bird at B5 today. A Captain Nurse and 2 aero-medics. They were armed. Apparently if the bird goes down, they want to have the ability to go down fighting (and for all I know, avoiding being a prisoner)

Inga said...

I agree that the Marines showed poor judgment in filming this incident. It caused repercussions to the other troops in the area. I do understand that the enemy did not deserve any less, as they most probably do the same, or worse to the corpses of our troops they get a hold of.

Inga said...

Drill SGT. Females and males carry weapons everywhere they go even when on base at Leatherneck.

Synova said...

If they'd kept ears (or other body parts) as souvenirs I might try to find some outrage.

Why was this an international incident again? People have no sense of proportion.

The Drill SGT said...

Inga, the point was not a gender one, but a GC issue. Up till Iraq, our medical staff didn't carry weapons at all, just red crosss brassards. Except for Green Beret medical types who were shooters first, and didn't portray a red cross.

Obviously, the locals are not big believers in the GC

edutcher said...

Bad discipline, good warfare.

Show the bastards what we think of them.

Shouting Thomas said...

You might want to read the story of the British retreat from Afghanistan in 1842.

I don't think things have changed much.


Yes, they have.

In that war, one British general thought it an aspersion on his command ability that he was expected to use a map and a compass to navigate.

That analogy is ridiculous and has been for a long time.

rhhardin said...

This kind of thing wouldn't happen if we had women in combat.

Joe said...

Anyone else notice the irony; strictly speaking, the rules of engagement for Marines in Afghanistan require them to be shot before shooting back. Yet, the rules of engagement for President Obama anywhere in the world is simply claiming that someone is a terrorist.

This war needs to end. Now.

Oso Negro said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Oso Negro said...

rhhardin said "this kind of thing wouldn't happen if we had women in combat."

Reality says "look at this image from Abu Ghraib"

http://cdn.wwtdd.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/lynndie-england-abu-ghraib-1-450x329.jpg

edutcher said...

Joe said...

Anyone else notice the irony; strictly speaking, the rules of engagement for Marines in Afghanistan require them to be shot before shooting back. Yet, the rules of engagement for President Obama anywhere in the world is simply claiming that someone is a terrorist.

This war needs to end. Now.


No, we need a real President, not a small c communist and community organizer.

tim maguire said...

If this is tried before a jury, I think "they had it coming" will play better than "Come on! It was a joke! Doesn't anyone have a sense of humor anymore?"

Inga said...

edbutcher is quite brave sitting in his nursing home room safely, waiting for "The Blond" to come and change his Depends, while encouraging sending Americans into a country in which the people they have tried to help, turn their guns on them.

Heard of the Green on Blue attacks? It's past time to leave that country, Joe is right.

jr565 said...

It was desecration, but I'm ok,it's it. However, are the army rules ok with it?

Jaske said...

Once upon a time, war like society members lost idea of self.

The end.

jr565 said...

Inga wrote:
edbutcher is quite brave sitting in his nursing home room safely, waiting for "The Blond" to come and change his Depends, while encouraging sending Americans into a country in which the people they have tried to help, turn their guns on them.


Now now Inga. Remember it was Obama and the dems who said that Iraq was a diversion from the REAL war on terror, I plying that they would fight that real war. Ad it was Obama who escalated that war. And you voted for him.

So don't go off talking about encouraging people to go off to fight wars where people turned their guns on us. Fighting the REAL war on terror means sending people,off to a country to fight a war against people who don't want us there.

Inga said...

Jr. I see you disagree with Rand Paul.

pj (lowercase) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
A guy in Illinois said...

we send them off to war. Subject young men to terrible times, make them fight, sweat, see their friends injured or killed. And once they kill their enemy a few piss on them.

We need a trial for this? a slap on the wrist, a NCO administering a little platoon justice? maybe.

Chef Mojo said...

No, ed butcher. We need to get the fuck out of that country. It has nothing to do with the president's politics and everything to do with the fact that the populace is batshit crazy, and has been since before the time of Alexander/Iskander.

There is absolutely no conceivable reason to remain in Afghanistan. Please try to convince me otherwise. You will - as have all previous invaders and occupiers - fail.

If you're going to go to war with them, however, discard the rules, and fight them on their terms, with complete brutality and without mercy. At that point, however, you have a genocidal war. Which, in terms of these freaks, I might not have too much of an issue with.

Let it burn.

Shouting Thomas said...

Chef Mojo is, unfortunately, right.

Get out now while the going is good.

The last few thousand U.S. troops remaining will be slaughtered like the British in 1842 if we don't get the hell out... now.

Forget the fucking politics.

Youngblood said...

"I assume you were Army..."

You assumed correctly!

"My point is, trying to separate Marines from cameras is a hopeless cause..."

Oh, that's funny, whether you intended it that way or not.

Chip S. said...

Desecration? On the contrary, it was an attempt to bless those noble, fallen warriors in a situation where blood was precious.

Henry said...

The military gave them scopes and bullets.

The military gave them water.

David said...

We hire young men to go fight because they are strong, brazen, tough and reckless. Then after an episode of killing we expect them to act like diplomats.

Seems to me the lawyer has it exactly right.

edutcher said...

Chef Mojo said...

No, ed butcher. We need to get the fuck out of that country. It has nothing to do with the president's politics and everything to do with the fact that the populace is batshit crazy, and has been since before the time of Alexander/Iskander.

It has everything to do with Choom's malign neglect and mismanagement.

There is absolutely no conceivable reason to remain in Afghanistan. Please try to convince me otherwise. You will - as have all previous invaders and occupiers - fail.

We didn't invade and we don't occupy. We have never attempted to interfere with the people running their own country; in fact, we gave the people back their country.

So failure is only in your mind.

Shouting Thomas said...

Chef Mojo is, unfortunately, right.

Get out now while the going is good.

The last few thousand U.S. troops remaining will be slaughtered like the British in 1842 if we don't get the hell out... now.


No, he's just a blowhard who threw away his right to complain by staying home on Election Day.

And invoking 1842 is absolute nonsense. You might as well invoke Braddock's Defeat.

Let it go.

jr565 said...

Edutcher wrote:
No, ed butcher. We need to get the fuck out of that country. It has nothing to do with the president's politics and everything to do with the fact that the populace is batshit crazy, and has been since before the time of Alexander/Iskander.

but they can be less crazy then when we went in. If at the end of the day the Taliban is thoroughly routed and not in charge of the country its better. (Unless of course, that which replaces it is even more insane). We have to weigh whether that stability is worth more American lives.

jr565 said...

Inga wrote:

Jr. I see you disagree with Rand Paul.

I think I was more disagreeing with your attack on Edutcher than Rands assessment on the War in Afghanistan.

But it wouldn't be the first time I disagreed with Rand Paul either.

Inga said...

Well, Jr. You and edbutcher may be the only two conservatives here on Althouse that disagree with Rand Paul, as far as Afghanistan goes.

edutcher said...

For those interested in some real history, may I suggest this offering by someone whose credentials are beyond question.

PS Mojo's talk about a genocidal war is nonsense, but he is right about putting the right people there.

When Dubya ran the show, it was a spec ops war and that's what it should be.

Commandante Zero, however, thought he knew more than everybody else and rewrote everything to suit his own ideas and those of that strategic genius, Pelosi Galore, who told us A-stan was the Real War On Terror.

Chef Mojo said...

No, he's just a blowhard who threw away his right to complain by staying home on Election Day.

Fuck you, asshole. You know nothing of how I vote, but I do vote, and I'm active in politics in my nabe. Fuck you sideways with a baseball bat. I expect a scumbag like you to make these assumptions. Still; shove it and spin. It'll put something resembling a smile on your face. You strike me as a bottom kinda guy, so just go with the flow.

We didn't invade and we don't occupy. We have never attempted to interfere with the people running their own country; in fact, we gave the people back their country.

Are you on crack?! Never mind. Obviously, you are. Ed, you just out-moroned Ritmo with that statement.

It has everything to do with Choom's malign neglect and mismanagement.

Really? How so? What did Choom do different than Bush? Seriously, man. Your perspective is so fucked up that you couldn't analyze this intelligently with a gun held to your head. Your cluelessness as regards to AfPak - and most things, for that matter - is that of a whipped cur hoping that the beatings will stop if it just toes the line and behaves.

We went into AfPak and did what we needed to do YEARS ago, you silly idiot. There's no reason to be there now, and there's not a fucking thing you could write to present an argument otherwise, and you know it.

Go ahead. I dare you, you pathetic tool. Go ahead and justify the continuing bleeding of American lives and treasure in Afghanistan. Really. Show some fucking balls, Ed. Give us your best argument. C'mon. We're waiting.

Bath us with your wisdom.

Jeff Teal said...

I wonder whats going to happen when the court martial sends back a not guilty verdict?Of course I also wonder if any officers hace the moral courage to ignore command influence on this one.I am not going to say what I would have done but my LT quit participating in E and E exercises after my creative interpretations of the GC.My ancestors are Amerinds.

Maguro said...

One of the great things about drones is that they don't urinate.

Youngblood said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chef Mojo said...

Or anybody for that matter. Tell me why we should be in Afghanistan.

Ed, you invoke VDH, but dismiss the lessons of three British Afghan wars.

Dumbass.

Jeff Teal said...

But letting someone take picture brings my Drill's favorite joke having to do with a company of Marines and an IQ of 200.

Youngblood said...

"We hire young men to go fight because they are strong, brazen, tough and reckless. Then after an episode of killing we expect them to act like diplomats."

As I said upthread, I'm sort of conflicted on this.

However, to play devil's advocate, where does this sort of thinking end? In the Pacific during World War II, American military personnel boiled the flesh off of Japanese heads and took the skulls as trophies. (There's a particularly famous photo from Life with a Navy guy's girlfriend writing a thank you note for the skull he sent her.) In Vietnam, the taking of trophy skulls and ears wasn't unheard of.

Where does the line get drawn? What kind of behavior is acceptable after an 'episode of killing'?

(Edited for grammar.)

John said...

Punishment for being stupid can be severe. And it should be if similar issues are to be avoided. The strictest punishment needs to be reserved for the SOB who captured the video and distributed it.

Back in the day we had rogue head hunters and collectors of varied body parts - they make these newer offenses seem insignificant.

And yes, please someone explain why we are fighting in Afghanistan. Is it the tons of heroin that are routinely seized? Or the rare earth elements so abundant in the ground? This was Obama's righteous war. What is the true objective? Is it to reap the profits of illegal drug trade or the profits expected from mining 20-30 years from now?

cubanbob said...

The lesson to be learned is to get back to basics; butcher and bolt. It's a fools errand to try to civilize the uncivilized.

Youngblood said...

And, to riff on the subject, Sophocles' Antigone and Homer's Iliad both carry warnings against poor treatment of war dead. (I haven't read Antigone in a while, but I seem to recall every city rising up against Thebes and Creon because of his treatment of the dead.)

Is how we treat the dead, even enemy dead, a marker of our humanity? The degree to which we are civilized?

edutcher said...

Chef Mojo said...

Bath us with your wisdom.

The word is bathe.

Or anybody for that matter. Tell me why we should be in Afghanistan.

Because we don't want them turning it back into a safe haven for Moslem crazies, not to mention the fact we're right next door to the Dinner Jacket?

Ed, you invoke VDH, but dismiss the lessons of three British Afghan wars.

No, you ignore them.

Dumbass.

At least I know my history.

I'm also not an hysteric.

Another Diamond clone.

edutcher said...

PS Every time we've listened to the Lefties and their soulmates the "libertarians", we've always regretted it.

This is the third time.

We cut and ran from 'Nam and spent the next decade fighting off Soviet adventures.

Willie wanted to turn Somalia into a showpiece for how tough he was and got his head handed to him, so he ran and bin Laden was encouraged, 9/11 was the result.

History.

wyo sis said...

It's war. War is not nice. Winning is the only choice that makes sense. If we don't want to fight to win we should go home.

Chef Mojo said...

The word is bathe.

Ah, yes. The last refuge for the clueless; pointing out typos. Well played, Ed. Well played.

Because we don't want them turning it back into a safe haven for Moslem crazies, not to mention the fact we're right next door to the Dinner Jacket?

Turning it back? Oh, man. That's priceless. Give me some evidence, please, that we ever succeeded in turning it forward. Never mind. You can't. Or else we wouldn't be putting perfectly good Marines on trial for pissing on the corpses of those forward looking Afghans.

And next door to Iran? So? So was Iraq. If you're referring to Codevilla's postulations of a two front war to isolate Iran, then the fuck-ups started way before Obama, you moron.

No, you ignore them.

At least I know my history.


Knowing history and learning from it are two different things. Unfortunately for you, you are ignorant of both aspects.

Sucks to be you.

Revealingly, you haven't yet supported an argument to stay in AfPak, beyond some half-assed attempt to justify it in terms having to do with your misapprehension that the United States is somehow a positive influence on a ragtag collection of tribes that you laughingly believe have been improved by our presence in their midst. This delusion on your part is furthered by thinking that our staying in AfPak is somehow going to influence Iran to behave itself.

Is that the best you can do, Ed? C'mon. Take some time. Go over your talking points and get organized. At least try to support the unsupportable with a modicum of imagination.

Big Mike said...

After all, it's not like the "Greatest Generation" ever did anything like this to dead German or Japanese soldiers.

Did they?

coda said...

I feel so sorry for you people. You must be so miserable inside. Wow.

coda said...

I feel so sorry for you people. You must be so miserable inside. Wow.

jr565 said...

Inga wrote;
Well, Jr. You and edbutcher may be the only two conservatives here on Althouse that disagree with Rand Paul, as far as Afghanistan goes.

A lot of the conservatives on the board are actually libertarians. I find myself at odds with true libertarians as much as most liberals, since at their core, when it comes to foreign policy at any rate, they are liberal. Sometimes even more so than liberals.

Robert Cook said...

"Piece of shit scum deserved it. It's obscene and outrageous that these soldiers are facing discipline for this."

Really? You think it's fine for our soldiers--whom we self-flatteringly venerate as the shining heroes of the greatest, most virtuous nation that ever existed--to piss on the bodies of those they've killed? Would you be as sanguine about the bodies of American soldiers being pissed on by those who killed them?

As John McCain said in his finest moment--regarding torture, but more broadly applicable--"It's not about who they are; it's about who we are."

"It's okay for President Foodstamps to blow up a wedding party with a drone but this is out of bounds?"

Absolutely not; Obama is a mass murderer and war criminal who deserves as much as Bush, Cheney, et al., to be prosecuted for his crimes.

Tibore said...

"... We're not saying it was OK, but it was not desecration."

No offense, Mr. Womack, but unfortunately it was desecration. Especially given Sgt. Deptola's statements.

At the same time, hyperventilators who want to incorrectly raise this instance of bad judgement by that unit's members into something indicative of Marines behavior in general had better recalibrate their thinking. This was 1. A release of anger at an enemy who's done things a thousand times worse and 2. By testimony appears to not have been a highly disciplined unit to begin with, not when their leadership elements are being charged with dereliction of duty and failure to supervise. That is most definitely not indicative of the average Marine unit in Afghanistan, nor of any of the other services deployed units, just about all else of which has demonstrated exceptionally high discipline and laudable behavior in the face of a most ugly and immoral enemy.

Yes, they faced terrible events. That is evident in Deptola's statement. While that can never be an excuse, since the US expects its service members to rise above that, it is an explanation.

Let justice take its course. At the same time, lets remind ourselves that this is not the norm by any stretch. Regardless of what the denigrators out there want to say about servicemen and the US in general.

AllenS said...

Tibore said...
lets remind ourselves that this is not the norm by any stretch.

With all due respects, have you served in the Armed Forces? May I ask which branch? Did you have an MOS, and what was it?

Mitchell the Bat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mitchell the Bat said...

I'm going to go out on a limb, here, and take a wild guess that the military higher-ups sometimes send some mixed signals, you know, just every once in a great while.

I'm just guessing, here, mind you.

After all, my experience with such things is limited to a sixth grade teacher who announced to the class that we were allowed to chew gum in his class unless you got caught.

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Cooktard, you miserable piece of leftist scum:

When Obama is getting court martialed then you can lecture me on how rank and file soldiers act on the battlefield.

I think its perfectly appropriate treatment of these stoneage shitheads.

I hope your Stalin fetishist ass gets pissed on when you have shook loose the mortal coil to join all your commie heros in hell.

pj (lowercase) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Youngblood said...

"Yes, it's stupid to venerate the corpses of people you've killed if you did not venerate them when they were alive."

So it's cool for Somali fighters to drag US military personnel through the streets? It's fine for insurgents to lynch the charred remains of US contractors from bridge supports? After all, these people did not venerate those Americans when they were alive.

How about boiling the flesh off of skulls? Or taking ears as trophies?

Like I asked, where is the line drawn?

And you're missing the part of Antigone that I was thinking of. Cities rise up armed not just because of the unburied corpse of Polyneices, but because this seems to be, in the context of the play, a pattern:

"And every city stirs / Itself in arms against thee, owning those / Whose limbs the dogs have buried, or fierce wolves, / Or winged birds have brought the accursed taint / To city’s altar-hearth."

The problem isn't just Creon's treatment of a single corpse. (And even if it is, it goes against your point. Creon most definitely did not venerate Polyneices, so it should be fine for him to leave the corpse unburied, right? Well, no, it's not. At least according to Sophocles.)

I don't buy the choice that you offer between either not fighting a war or accepting defiled corpses. Defiled corpses may be an inevitability during war, but I'd suggest that we should aspire to better. In the end, our military should be more disciplined and professional than Somali thugs.