Kuro5hin.org: technology and culture, from the trenches
create account | help/FAQ | contact | links | search | IRC | site news
[ Everything | Diaries | Technology | Science | Culture | Politics | Media | News | Internet | Op-Ed | Fiction | Meta | MLP ]
We need your support: buy an ad | premium membership

[P]
US Troops Kill Reuters Reporter

By McBain in News
Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:39:33 AM EST
Tags: Politics (all tags)
Politics

Reuters cameraman Mazen Dana was shot and killed by US troops in Iraq on the afternoon of August 17 (MSNBC, NY Times, Washington Post, Reporters Sans Frontiers). The incident took place on the outskirts of Baghdad, outside the Abou Ghraib prison. Many journalists were gathered there after the US military had announced that prisoners had been killed and injured by mortar fire.


Dana's driver, Munzer Abbas, claimed that Dana had been deliberately shot. "There were many journalists around. They knew we were journalists," said Abbas. "This was not an accident."

A sound technician working with Dana, Nael al-Shyoukhi, reported that no gunshots were heard before US forces opened fire. "I don't understand why they start shooting at us," he said. The US soldiers had seen them and knew they were journalists, al-Shyoukhi claimed, as they had previously asked the US soldiers guarding the prison for permission to film.

"We were all there, for at least half an hour," Stephan Breitner of France 2 television told the Associated Press. "They knew we were journalists. After they shot Mazen, they aimed their guns at us. I don't think it was an accident. They are very tense. They are crazy."

Dana's camera was retrieved after his death. The video in the camera shows two US tanks bearing towards him. Six shots are heard in total; after the first shot the camera tilts and drops to the ground.

The US military called Dana's death "a terrible tragedy" and has promised a probe into the incident. "It is under investigation," Colonel Guy Shields said at a briefing, "and we will do everything in our power to make sure things like this do not happen again...If changes need to be made, they will be made." The official explanation for the incident is that soldiers mistook Dana's camera for an RPG launcher. Under the current rules of engagement in Iraq, Shields said, troops do not fire warning shots.

The shooting comes as US forces have been involved in a number of gun fights that have led to the deaths of soldiers and civilians. At least 58 US soldiers have been killed since US President George W. Bush declared the war over on May 1. The head of the Iraq Governing Council has called for US soldiers to be more careful. There have been many claims that US troops "shoot first and ask questions later" and reports that the relationship between the US military and journalists is worsening as confiscations of equipment and arrests of journalists increase.

Mazen Dana was a 43-year-old Palestinian and had spent much of his professional life covering the conflict between Palestine and Israel in his hometown of Hebron. During this period he was shot and beaten several times by Israeli Defence Force troops and Jewish settlers. In 2001 he was awarded an International Press Freedom Award for his work in Hebron. Dana was also a father of four and was hoping to return home soon to see his family. Al-Shyoukki said "It was [Dana's] last day in Baghdad. He was supposed to go to Amman [in Jordan], meet with his wife and children for a wedding of his nephew in Amman."

This incident has caused widespread outrage and raised demands for a full inquiry. In a letter to Donald Rumsfeld, Reporters Without Borders said it was "appalled and shocked" by the incident. RWB secretary-general Robert Ménard complained that the US military has made major errors in Iraq, "but none has been the subject of an investigation worthy of the name." Menard continued, "In isolated cases, we have seen soldiers being hostile to news media personnel. Such behaviour is unacceptable and must be punished. It is essential that clear instructions and calls for caution are given to soldiers in the field so that the freedom of movement and work of journalists is respected in Iraq." The Committee to Protect Journalists has called for "a full investigation into the shooting and a public accounting of the circumstances." The International Federation of Journalists are also demanding an investigation. The incident is "more tragic evidence of what appears to be casual disregard of journalists' safety by military commanders," said Aidan White, IFJ secretary general. "Despite the best efforts of journalists to identify themselves and to seek permission from military units to do their work they are still being fired upon."

Reuters Chief Executive Tom Glocer demanded an inquiry. "Coming so soon after the death of Taras Protsyuk, also killed by a US tank, this latest death is hard to bear. That's why I am personally calling upon the highest levels of the U.S. government for a full and comprehensive investigation into this terrible tragedy."

Dana is the 11th journalist to die in Iraq since March 20 and the second Reuters journalist to be killed by US troops. Dana's Ukrainian colleague, Taras Protsyuk, was killed by an American tank on April 8 as he filmed the US advance into Baghdad's center from the Palestine Hotel. Last week, the Pentagon released a report into the shelling of the Palestine Hotel. Menard is unconvinced by the report, saying that it "shamelessly exonerates the US army." It has also been described by the International Federation of Journalists as a cynical whitewash. The report, whose results have not been fully released to the press, states that the US troops were justified to fire a 120mm tank round into the hotel because they were under fire from the building.

Sponsors

Voxel dot net
o Managed Hosting
o VoxCAST Content Delivery
o Raw Infrastructure

Login

Poll
How should the US military respond to this incident?
o There's nothing they can do that can avoid accidents like these 10%
o A thorough investigation whose findings are fully released to the press 28%
o Train soldiers to be less trigger happy 18%
o Try to replace the US military presence with trained Iraqi police 13%
o Hasten the transition to democracy and eventual withdrawal of US forces 28%

Votes: 146
Results | Other Polls

Related Links
o MSNBC
o NY Times
o Washington Post
o Reporters Sans Frontiers
o gun fights
o claims
o reports
o awarded
o Reporters Without Borders
o Committee to Protect Journalists
o Internatio nal Federation of Journalists
o demanding
o unconvince d
o cynical whitewash
o states
o Also by McBain


Display: Sort:
US Troops Kill Reuters Reporter | 379 comments (356 topical, 23 editorial, 0 hidden)
+1 FP :::peniz:::Q (2.41 / 24) (#1)
by peniz Q on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:57:27 AM EST

Sad, but true. USian soldiers just aren't trained as well as other troops in the world. The French would probably be better suited to a mission of peacekeeping in Iraq. They aren't nearly as trigger happy as the out of control USian soldiers.

Dangerous content.

stoopid (2.75 / 4) (#65)
by Chep on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:29:52 AM EST

The French have nothing to do in Iraq right now.

--

Our Constitution ... is called a democracy because power is in the hands not of a minority but of the greatest number.
Thucydide II, 37


[ Parent ]

as much as that's an troll... (4.20 / 5) (#77)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:43:47 AM EST

It does have an element of truth to it... US troops are absolute crap at peacekeeping... they know it too... which is why they'd like as many other countries as possible to help out...

Note how few incidents there are involving British troops... or the danes... both experienced peacekeeping forces.

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

The British (4.00 / 5) (#90)
by wij on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:48:10 PM EST

Note how few incidents there are involving British troops...

That reminds me of this quote attributed to a Sheikh in Basra, and addressed to a British soldier: "You should be more like the Americans and kill more Ba'athists."

"I am an intellectual of great merit, yet I am not adequately compensated for this by capitalism; this is the reason for my opposition to it."
[ Parent ]

hmm.. (5.00 / 1) (#99)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:20:24 PM EST

I wouldn't consider some Sheikh in Basra to be very good at peacekeeping either. One thing's for sure, the British are keeping Basra (one of the biggest battlegrounds during the war) a heck of a lot more calm that most areas under American control; however, that's really not enough to base my judgment on.

Having served in the Canadian army (who are excellent peacekeepers) for a more than a few years, I can tell you that the brits are much better trained than the americans in general. Their troops are older, more independent and less "gun-ho". All of these make for more positive outcomes in a peacekeeping environment.

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

no incidents involvint brits? you must be joking (2.66 / 3) (#110)
by fritz the cat on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:26:57 PM EST

the British are keeping Basra (one of the biggest battlegrounds during the war) a heck of a lot more calm that most areas under American control

really? you must have forgotten this  

DOING NOTHING FUCKING SOMETHING
[ Parent ]

Your reply is misleading (5.00 / 5) (#125)
by Toshio on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:14:44 PM EST

You title for reply was: "no incidents involving brits? you must be jocking". Since you have put an exact quote in the reply itself ("... the British are keeping Basra (...) a heck of a lot more calm than most areas under American control") it is you, who must be jocking when trying to reply on the comment. You're essentialy denying what wasn't neither said nor implied. Even the link you have provided in your reply confirms this, as direct quote from the article explains: "One soldier was struck in the head, another in the nose and a third was carried off on a stretcher. The British military confirmed that seven soldiers had been taken to hospital with "big bruises and some cuts". Four Iraqis, including a child, were injured by plastic bullets."

While I completely agree that these were violent and potenitaly deadly riots, it also shows that UK soldiers managed to regain the control and preserve the lifes of all those involved. While physical injuries were sustained, they were nowhere near the rank of now almost daily incidents in USA controlled areas where fatailites are common on both sides. In the grand scheme of things it is impotant to win the hearts and minds of the people you are trying to pacify. At this moment in time (and I want to stress it: this moment in time) UK soldiers showed much more tacticity and openess for the compromise and well being of all the people. Even as they are seen as colonial rules of the area (just as they once already were), they are still prepared to go out among the people, expose themselves, and in general accept that they are intruders in foreign land, that must seek cooperation from locals. While the riots show that this doesn't always work out, the collateral damage of these riots can mostly be considerd minor when compared to the toll of USA soldiers are enduring.

---


--- To boldly invent more hot water ---
[ Parent ]
While you ignore (1.00 / 2) (#160)
by sinexoverx on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:15:22 PM EST

While you ignore the complete difference between Baghdad and Basra. There is a reason the Brits were given the south while the US took Baghdad. The Brits were less equipped and had less backing from their home country. They were given the easier task, not because Brits are not good soldiers but because the US were more able to take Baghdad. It was a matter of equipment and men. And the fact that the Shi'a who are the majority in the south hated Saddam more than about anything on the face of the planet.

Most of the people in the South of Iraq are Shi'a. Most of the people in Baghdad were Sunni. The Baathist ruling party were mainly Sunni and persecuted the southern Shi'a and northern Kurds. The reason the Shi'a are more (not completely) friendly is that they have more of a stake in seeing Saddam and his Baathist friends completely gone.

It isn't a mystery as to why the US soldiers in Baghdad are attacked more often that the Brits. Basra is a more friendly city. It isn't a complete truth but a good estimate of the situation. The Shi'a have suffered in the past. From the UN sactions and from Saddam. Saddam oppressed them economically, spiritually and personally. The Shi'a of the south don't love the Coalition, but they see it as an means to an end. And don't forget the legacy of Britain in the area. Even with that they treat the Brits better than the Baghdaddies treat the US. The past plays a factor and not a positive one. Still, the Shi'a are more reasonable toward "occupation" than Baathist Sunnis. (read shianews.com)



[ Parent ]
I'll try to counter this (5.00 / 1) (#197)
by Toshio on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 05:52:03 AM EST

The Brits were less equipped and had less backing from their home country. They were given the easier task, not because Brits are not good soldiers but because the US were more able to take Baghdad. It was a matter of equipment and men.

This might very well be the explanation for deployment plans, but I don't think it can fully explain the reasons why UK soldiers consistently generate less conflicts and when they occur, they mange to resolve them in less violent manner. Death is irrevocable fact, cuts and bruses can be painful, but they are something that can be mended to a level.

Most of the people in the South of Iraq are Shi'a. Most of the people in Baghdad were Sunni. ... Shi'a are more (not completely) friendly is that they have more of a stake in seeing Saddam and his Baathist friends completely gone. ... Saddam oppressed them economically, spiritually and personally.

I will hang on that "not completely" part and just add that Shia might have a good stake at removing Saddam from power (maybe even not much more than Sunni), however the presence of Iran backing and painful memory of who supplied the weapons, chemicals, and international backing during the times when Saddam was considered a friendly dictator. Things like that can be pretty volatile, therefore I presume that this was one of the more important reasons to deploy UK soldiers here (they were less vocal about support of Saddam in the eighties), but not in the way you have explained it. The truth could be sought in the middle, as both arguments are valid, but I would still give mine (surprise, surprise) a little more weight.

In the end it is unfortunate that anybody has to loose his life, but I would not go as far as to call Shia more reasonable. There is not much reason in the war, and this is violent and uncalled-for occupation. Reason hardly applies here and must be actively sought for. As far as the troop deployments through the history show, there were no hearts and minds victories for USA army after the war on the Koren peninsula. The sad and sometimes simply stupid USA armed forces doctrine left behind itself so many unwanted and unwarranted leftovers all over the planet that there are always enough resons to hate USA as a whole, and USA citizens as a group.

---


--- To boldly invent more hot water ---
[ Parent ]
yours cannot not be denied not to be not confusing (none / 0) (#203)
by fritz the cat on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 07:08:27 AM EST

> You're essentialy denying what wasn't neither said
> nor implied.
gosh all these negatives... i am lost. what are you saying?

> UK soldiers managed to regain the control and...
i never denied the ability of uk soldiers to regain military control.
my point is: there were riots in the british zone of iraq, riots involving hudreds of people, some reports quoting as many as 2000:
The crowd, with some women in headscarves firing off Kalashnikovs in the air, grew to more than 2,000 and shouted in anger over the gasoline shortage in the city,...

obviously the locals didn't notice any of the 'tact[icity?] and openess for the compromise and well being of all the people' on the part of the brits

DOING NOTHING FUCKING SOMETHING
[ Parent ]

I agree with assesment (none / 0) (#305)
by Toshio on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 10:19:19 AM EST

gosh all these negatives... i am lost. what are you saying?

Bane of somebody who is not a native English speaker and in addition natively speaks a language where two negations still make a negation. Simetimes I even consfuse myself...

i never denied the ability of uk soldiers to regain military control. my point is: there were riots in the british zone of iraq, riots involving hudreds of people, some reports quoting as many as 2000:

The point I was trying to make is that there are almost no fatalities in such riots in UK occupied territories. Rubber bullets, and tear gas can only seldomely be fatal, and by resorting to them, the UK commanders took a huge risk that is probably paying off. Death sometimes produces martyr, rubber bullets mostly just hurt. I did not want to claim there are no riots in UK occupied areas, I was trying to claim that the riots are in general better handled many times with greater risks to UK soldiers. In this part, and this part only, I see UK soliders as much better trained, and much better prepared for the task they were given. It is quite possible that they were given an easier task the USA soldiers, but this I think doesn't mean they can do as they please. It is often that they seem to take their task more responsibly than USA soldiers. They (UK soldiers) might not be top-notch, best equiped, and largest army on the planet, but they sure are best trained to handle situation they are now in. USA solidiers seem to lack this crucial skill.

obviously the locals didn't notice any of the 'tact[icity?] and openess for the compromise and well being of all the people' on the part of the brits

These are my opinions:

  • Do brits have to contain and handle huge riots? Yes.
  • Do brits extinguish them by (sorry to put it bluntly) by killing couple of unarmed civillans? No.
  • Are brits taking great personal risks in doing so? Yes.
  • Are brits doing sound and sane thing? Yes.
  • Are USians have to contain and handle huge riots? Yes.
  • Do USians extuingush them by (sorry to put it bluntly) by killing couple of unarmed civilians? Yes.
  • Do USians taking great personal risks in doing so? Not as much as Brits do.
  • Are USians doing the sound and sane thing? No.

If or when you reply to this, please do not drag armed assaults on US forces into this story. US soldiers get them simply as a result of occupying the nervecenter of the country. If you want to inhibit the ability to control the country you attack at the nerve centres. Baghdad is an important one, Basra is not an important one. I do not wish to mix these military attacks with civillian riots that are caused by the people who want basic services such as water, crime prevention, and water.

---


--- To boldly invent more hot water ---
[ Parent ]
fair enough (none / 0) (#315)
by fritz the cat on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 02:52:26 PM EST


DOING NOTHING FUCKING SOMETHING
[ Parent ]

BZZZZZZZZZZZTT!!!! BZZZT! BZZZT! WRONG!!!! (3.00 / 4) (#316)
by lordDogma on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 03:09:51 PM EST

Do USians extuingush them by (sorry to put it bluntly) by killing couple of unarmed civilians? Yes.

No! "USian" soldiers do not kill unarmed protestors unless the troops are fired upon first.

There is nothing wrong with this policy. What are the US troops to do? Stand there and bite the bullets? Fire rubber bullets and water cannons in return?

Even in the United States, people only have the right to assembly PEACEFULLY, as stated in the Bill of Rights. If the protestors start whipping out AK-47s and shooting at the police then the police have the right to respond with equal force.

Here is a recommendation. I would have thought this would be common sense but I guess it takes a genious like me to understand after all: If innocent civilians don't want to get shot during a protest then I strongly suggest that as soon as the AK-47 wielding madmen show up to the protest then it is time to go home or at least find a different place to congregate!

-- Lord Dogma

[ Parent ]

OK, I'll try again (3.66 / 3) (#321)
by Toshio on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 04:18:00 PM EST

No! "USian" soldiers do not kill unarmed protestors unless the troops are fired upon first.

There is nothing wrong with this policy. What are the US troops to do? Stand there and bite the bullets? Fire rubber bullets and water cannons in return?

USA soldiers do kill unarmed protestors. Period. They even kill innocent people approaching checkpoints in manner that is interpreted as threatening. I never claimed (and I do not intend to do so) they kill them without preceiving the threat from them (they are not murderers walking around wild west, they are highly trained offensive force), but when you use bullets, deaths do happen. When you use bullets on rioting crowd, the chances of hitting the ones that are shooting are next to zero. Unfortunately most bullets that are fired at the crowd still hit the flesh. As far as the rubber bullets and water cannons go, yes, using them would mean risking more fatalities among the USA soldiers. As unpopular as it might sound, UK soldiers occupying northern ireland made only one such mistake and were rewarded with many years of hate for the bloody sunday they have produced. The risk of more casualities is something USA forces commanders aren't willing to accept, but UK forces commanders often are. Down the line, I think USA policy will prove to be worse than UK policy of handling the situation.

Even in the United States, people only have the right to assembly PEACEFULLY, as stated in the Bill of Rights.

Do not quote any piece of paper that has no meaning or value outside continental USA and Hawaii. Even there it means less and less, so better find something more universal. I would suggest (gasp) you to read United Nations Declaration of Universal Human Rights. While implementation might vary from country to country, the spirit should be upheld at all costs and at all times. If you think that bill of rights (it doesn't even deserve the capitalization any more) is worth anything more than paper that it is written on, please do go to Guantanamo Bay USNF base and check for the official accusations for people held there. Do not waive that bill around Iraq. Iraq is under occupation. Occupation powers have responsibilities under the international agreements governing the conduct of the warring parties. USA & UK are not conducing in accordance with those agreements. Things in Iraq stand on their own, so please don't pull around any justice charade that might work in some country that is not currently in the state of occupation from foreign power.

If the protestors start whipping out AK-47s and shooting at the police then the police have the right to respond with equal force.

I don't think it even matters who has the right to do what. I think all that matters is to achieve long-term stability & peace. I also think that the current way of conduct of USA forces in Iraq do not lead into this direction. You could also say that USA forces are intruders, occupators, and criminals on the soil where they have no right to be. Even with this alone, you can justify attacks that are happening now. USA forces are being asked to leave. They are refusing. Everything else is fair game. Even shooting the protestors is fair game, but the long term viability of such measures happens to be highly questionable. Somalia proved that USA simply doesn't train its soldiers to handle half military, and half police tasks in populated urban areas. UK soldiers happened to receive such training in Northern Ireland where they were occupying power.

Here is a recommendation. I would have thought this would be common sense but I guess it takes a genious like me to understand after all: If innocent civilians don't want to get shot during a protest then I strongly suggest that as soon as the AK-47 wielding madmen show up to the protest then it is time to go home or at least find a different place to congregate!

You haven't participated in many demonstrations before in your life, have you? Did you ever see the crowd of 1000 people trying to run away from the scene? I assure you that even one shot will provoke response from soldiers, which will probably result in multiple fatalities exclusively among the innocent. The day you see 1000 persons turn around and move away as one person all while caught in the crossfire is the day you will see the robots being granted full citizenship. It is the responsibility of the soldiers to bring the riots to conclusion while minimizing even the possibility of fatalities among surrounding innocents

It makes me wonder how you would feel if the police chasing the armed and dangerous criminal around the subway shot some 10 or 20 persons around you. I don't think the police commissioner would retain his position much longer than 6 o'clock news. How come that such behavior is tolerated and accepted in Iraq, when it occurs that couple of guerillas uses the crowd to irritate and provoke response from the occupying force. If USA wants to repeat the Palestine story in Iraq, then this I think is certainly the way to go. Next thing I will probably see is taking the families of those accused of guerilla warfare and stuffing them into some kind of detention while destroying their homes. I hope not, but I'm afraid it might come even to that.

Just the little thing about the word "USians": I don't really know the origin of the expression, nor do I know if it has some unpleasant connotations in addition to the base meaning. It just seemed appropriate to use USians in the same context as one can use Brits, just a contraction of some longer expression. Since you have put it in the quotes at the beginning of the reply, it has occurred to me that I might have unknowingly offended someone by using the word in the wrong context.


--- To boldly invent more hot water ---
[ Parent ]
neither joking... (5.00 / 2) (#130)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:19:13 PM EST

no incidents involvint brits?

...nor saying such things as those you are attributing to me...

care to point out where I made such a claim?

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

British incidents (3.00 / 4) (#165)
by lordDogma on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:56:28 PM EST

Yeah no shit. Thats because the brits are mainly in Basra and Um Qasr (south) where the Shia Muslims are. Virtually all of the violence against the US has occured in the Sunni Triangle.

When US Marines were waiting to leave Iraq most of them were south of Baghdad. There were virtually no incidents against Marines.

The US Army is getting the brunt of the attacks because they are the ones in the Sunni Triangle.

-- LD

[ Parent ]

there's a reason for that (3.40 / 5) (#100)
by Wah on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:26:06 PM EST

It does have an element of truth to it... US troops are absolute crap at peacekeeping... they know it too... which is why they'd like as many other countries as possible to help out...

we don't do peacekeeping.  At least, not anymore.

"I will tell our friends and allies, we care for you, we will strengthen our alliances. But if there needs to be troops on the ground to keep warring parties apart in your neighborhood, you get to be the peacekeepers. America will be the peacemakers." -guess who
Which works great and all, until you piss off pretty much all your allies being a the weaponzied version of a 'peacemaker'.
--
Fail to Obey?
[ Parent ]
actually... (4.40 / 5) (#101)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:34:05 PM EST

we don't do peacekeeping.  At least, not anymore

You never did. :-)

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

They're trained soldiers, not policemen. (4.83 / 6) (#112)
by Demiurge on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:50:33 PM EST

And that's the problem. The US Army is exceedingly good at its job, which is to kill people and blow stuff up. They are far worse at governing and administration

[ Parent ]
and the Brits are? (3.75 / 4) (#128)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:15:49 PM EST

No army that is active in UN peacekeeping is one coprised of policemen... it's presiecly because the US does not send it's troops to peacekeep (no, Bosnia does not count - that was a NATO action) that they are exeedingly bad at it... practice makes perfect, after all.

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]
The Problem. (5.00 / 4) (#171)
by Kadin2048 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:11:55 AM EST

The problem is that the US military is too good at it's real job to do peacekeeping. Peacekeeping and actually fighting a war are two very different activities, and a person--and, by extension, a force--which is good at one will probably be fatally bad at the other.

If you're fighting a war, you don't train your soldiers to think very hard. You train until all hesitation is gone, because pausing for even a fraction of a second will mean your life and the lives of those around you in combat.
If you're peacekeeping, you do the opposite. You would train like police officers, to avoid the use of force, to always make sure that the target is clear, that the threat is imminent, etc., before firing.

If you train for war, and have to keep the peace, you'll probably end up killing a lot of people by accident. People who drive too fast around roadblocks, trigger-happy wedding partiers, journalists pointing cameras around, tend to get shot.

If you train for peacekeeping and have to fight a war, you'll probably get killed. At some point you'll hesitate just a fraction of a second too long, and that refugee you didn't want to light up will turn to be a guy wearing a whole load of Semtex and a few pounds of ball bearings.

The U.S. military trains for war.

The soldier who shot Mazen Dana probably would have been a candidate for a citation, had he actually been in combat and had the threat been real. He saw someone step out of a car 50 meters away and point what he believed was an RPG at his tank. The soldier shot him.

Of course, it wasn't 'real' combat, it was peacekeeping; instead of saving the lives of himself and his crew, the soldier killed a journalist, created an international incident, and probably foreshortened his military career.

Both sides of the incident are easily and sadly understandable: Dana, who probably didn't even realize he was doing anything threatening; the soldier or in the tank, who thought he was about to get RPGed and acted accordingly.

There's not an easy solution, although I doubt that'll stop the finger-pointing. My personal belief is that the regular military shouldn't be used for peacekeeping, period. If this is the sort of situation we're going to be getting ourselves into in the future (and from past precedent in Bosnia and Somalia, it looks like we will) we need to train units specifically for this purpose. In my mind, there should be a whole division, trained for the purpose of "peacekeeping"--a task which used to be called "occupation." Lots of engineering battalions, MPs, PSYOP and Civil Affairs people. Once the bulk of the fighting is over, swap the regular force in with the specialists.

If you want policemen, you need to train and send policemen. There's nothing to be gained in faulting a soldier for acting as he should've in the face of a reasonable and immediate threat.

[ Parent ]

experience tells (4.00 / 1) (#185)
by Maserati on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:49:12 AM EST

Does anyone know if the soldier who killed the reporter had ever had an RPG fired at him ? I'm quite sure he knew someone who had been, quite probably he knew an American who was killed by an RPG. I might well have taken the shot too. "Oh shit !" and "I'm sorry", and even (or especially) "we're sorry" falls short when a man is needlessly killed. It's a safe bet that a, oh, French soldier (with presumably better peacekeeping training) wouldn't have fired. And it's another safe bet that he wouldn't be as likely to have an RPG fired at him... The same holds equally true for soldiers from Cameroon, Brazil, Spain... We do need peacekeepers in there. And painting our helmets blue won't do it. Sadly, I sincerely doubt that the UN can muster enough blue helmets to do the job.

--

For the wise a hint, for the fool a stick.
[ Parent ]

Dana was one tough MF (3.05 / 19) (#2)
by jvcoleman on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:58:17 AM EST

The saddest thing of all is that he had survived numerous attacks, including two outright attempts on his life by Israeli forces and militant settlers during his coverage of the third intifada. BBC featured this in a recent report that was aired on PBS and a few networks recently. It's entirely possible that the shooting was what Perle and his buddies like to call a fortunate accident.

+1 FP

Third Intifada? (4.00 / 7) (#63)
by OldCoder on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:15:09 AM EST

Did I miss one? I thought we were still in intifada number 2.

--
By reading this signature, you have agreed.
Copyright © 2003 OldCoder
[ Parent ]
Aren't we due another Israel/Arab war? (3.75 / 4) (#73)
by RyoCokey on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:22:08 AM EST

Or are the Arab countries waiting until they have nukes this time?



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
they're know they'd lose, badly (4.50 / 2) (#102)
by Delirium on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:34:42 PM EST

An Arab-Israeli war at this time would be the most lopsided one ever, making the previous Israeli routs seem evenly-matched by comparison. Israel has one of the most modern and best-trained armed forces in the world, while Syria and Lebanon have a handful of aging Soviet tanks and a poorly-trained military. Egypt is a bit better off, but not by enough to keep it from being soundly defeated (and it has a peace treaty with Israel anyway, which if broken would cause it to forfeit its $3b yearly aid from the US, so that's unlikely to happen).

[ Parent ]
They'd get to test the Arrow II (5.00 / 1) (#131)
by RyoCokey on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:23:37 PM EST

Which is ready for action but hasn't seen real combat duty yet. Worth noting, though I can't find the link, is that only a year or two ago, Egypt offered to go to war with Israel if the Arab league would foot the $400 billion bill. I wouldn't count them out of any future conflict just yet.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
Arab nukes (5.00 / 3) (#121)
by wiredog on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:03:24 PM EST

Something that quite a few people lose sleep over. The Israelis, and arabs, would be in a launch on warning status, with no warning available. Excellent recipie for an accidental nuclear war.

Wilford Brimley scares my chickens.
Phil the Canuck

[ Parent ]
Apparently Waiting is Not the Plan (4.66 / 3) (#126)
by OldCoder on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:40:38 PM EST

The latest Islamic Jihad bus bombing in Israel has killed 20 Orthodox Jews. See also the New York Times version of the bombing.

And somebody (want to guess who?) blew up the UN in Baghdad. The NYT version is here.

The possible injection of nuclear weapons into a battle with suicide bombers has got the attention of many world leaders. It is a major issue. Perhaps we should be grateful they are not waiting...

On the other hand, this may not be the war itself, just the tumult that leads to war.

--
By reading this signature, you have agreed.
Copyright © 2003 OldCoder
[ Parent ]

Bah (5.00 / 1) (#168)
by andamac on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:28:41 PM EST

I find it depressing that when I got to the "Bush: Contempt for the Innocent" headline in that CNN article that I thought they were going to talk about Bush being contemptuous regarding some of the Bad Things happening to Good People in Iraq.

That shouldn't even be an option.

[ Parent ]

dirt hippie (3.00 / 6) (#85)
by turmeric on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:24:09 PM EST

go back to starbucks

[ Parent ]
Point of contention: (4.66 / 6) (#97)
by Mohammed Niyal Sayeed on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:04:11 PM EST

Your phrase, "including two outright attempts on his life by Israeli forces", is inaccurate. He was caught in crossfile in these cases. If the Israeli Defense Forces had made an outright attempt on his life, he wouldn't be alive right now.


--
"You need to get your own point, then we can have an elaborate dance fight." - jmzero

[ Parent ]
An important story... (3.55 / 9) (#3)
by GavalinB on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:02:50 AM EST

Although it is somewhat stale on the breaking news front, it at least has the merit of advancing the story by discussing reaction to what occurred (even if it is rather biased against the U.S.).

U.S. soldiers are dying in equal or greater numbers than journalists since the war ended - and they're not, as a rule, being shot by fellow soldiers.

The article is worth a +1 for discussion, though.
---
The Future is Prologue: Join Our Sagas Today!
They're also not being shot by journalists (3.87 / 8) (#17)
by Edit Queue on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:02:05 AM EST

I'm trying to figure out your second paragraph. I can't seem to think of the last war or military action where as many journalists as soldiers died.

I'll ponder this a while.

"Oh man, I'm so lame. -- Rusty
[ Parent ]

I think we'd have to... (4.33 / 6) (#21)
by GavalinB on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:10:13 AM EST

Look at places like Bosnia, Cambodia or Beirut to find places that could be equally lethal to soldiers and journalists.

Iraq is dangerous because it's still effectively a "wild west" situation, with no great authority and no real control.

Of course, it should be noted that journalists who go into such situations do so knowing full well the dangers they face. It's unfortunate - it's terrible - that this happens, but it's not like they were hauled off to Iraq against their will or told they wouldn't face this kind of problem.

It's the ultimate price they pay in pursuit of a Pulitzer.
---
The Future is Prologue: Join Our Sagas Today!
[ Parent ]
like the soldiers, then (3.00 / 5) (#47)
by vivelame on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:56:24 AM EST

Who fully knew what to exepect when they enrolled? So why is anyone crying fool when another US soldier bites the dust? Shouldn't we say, then, "they knew what to expect when they came to Iraq in pursuit of a Purple Heart"?

--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
No one's saying we shouldn't mourn (4.25 / 4) (#50)
by curien on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:30:13 AM EST

But to a certain extent, yes, we do acknowledge that the journalists and soldiers are over there voluntarily. People mourn when a soldier dies, but unless the circumstances are quite unusual, there's no outrage and no cries for an investigation. Your all-or-nothing attitude (or, really, miscategorization of those with whom you disagree) expressed above is quite naive and very counterproductive.

--
John Ashcroft hates me for my freedom.
[ Parent ]
We should mourn both... (3.00 / 1) (#111)
by GavalinB on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:33:22 PM EST

But there's a significant difference between the soldier who is under orders to go off to war and kill or be killed - they SHOULD understand that choice when they enlist - and the journalist who *asks* to go into a war zone in which he has no stake except to tell people what happened.

With soldiers, on both sides of the fighting, you have to shoot the other guy before he shoots you. That's how they're trained. And in Baghdad, where the soldiers' body count continues to rise and the jitters must be maximized, it is (although unfortunate) quite understandable that some people - journalists and other civilians alike - are going to be accidentally killed.

If any other nation's troops did this - or if peacekeeping in Iraq was being done entirely through the United Nations - I suspect there would still be deaths due to fog of war/lawlessness/confusion.

I didn't like this war. I don't like that we're there in the first place. And I don't think our soldiers have orders to shoot-to-kill journalists.

Lawyers, maybe. Not journalists.
---
The Future is Prologue: Join Our Sagas Today!
[ Parent ]
You weaken your case (3.81 / 43) (#5)
by jjayson on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:18:38 AM EST

By having entirely disingenuous comments, you really will just turn some people off and put them on the defensive immediately.

The picturtes of the RPG and camera is a good example. That is not the view the men had when they shot at him. The picture of the RPG is from the side where it has far more distinctive characteristics that from the front, also the pictures are from 5 feet away. How does the camera and RPG look from a couple hundred yards, both straight on, when being partially obscured and blended by the surrounding environment? Your implication that that all those little details don't matter just seems to make me think you have no desire to really know what happened and would be far more happy to see some US soldiers swining from the gallows as soon as possible.

Another good example is the Palestinian Hotel. I thought that the blame for that was never assigned (and the US recanted the initial admittment of guilt), and that there is good reason to believe the US didn't do it (unless they have some of those magic Israeli bullets and shells that travel in flat circles like the ones that killed Mohammed Al-Dura). Simply asserting it as fact just brings makes me even more critical of your rest of your piece.

If I know can point out these two incidents, how many am I not aware about that you are getting away with? Your credibility it terribly shot.

Please don't try to pass this crap off as "news." You clearly have an agendy. Why don't you just say it upfront, make a real op-ed, and submit that? You will be able to level accusations directly, instead of this passive agressive BS, and it will probably be more informative since you will not have to hide behind some fascade of impartiality.

Sure, this works for K5 because more people here would carry signs saying "We Support Our Troops When They Shoot Their Officers," and they probably cheer at deaths like these, using an innocent life to further their ideological hatred.

(Yeah, I'll get modded into the ground for this comment, but I am used to it.)

--
This space for rent.

Hmmm (2.85 / 7) (#7)
by McBain on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:25:18 AM EST

I might remove the camera vs RPG bit.

As for the palestinian hotel thing, there are lots of witnesses to the fact that the US was indeed responsible. You need to check your facts, unless you want to damage your credibility.

---
Sorry. I can't seem to find that sig.
[ Parent ]

My credibiltiy (2.75 / 12) (#8)
by jjayson on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:28:19 AM EST

I'm not the one claiming that US shells fly in flat arcs or that they made such little damage. If a tank were to shoot at the hotel it would have made a new exit, not removed some plaster.

People hate the US. They will lie. People may not have even been biased, but eyes are deceiving. Sorry, I think the laws of physics trump lying bastards.
--
This space for rent.
[ Parent ]

Your credibility is shot to pieces (4.25 / 12) (#9)
by McBain on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:36:52 AM EST

I'm afraid. Even the US report states that US troops fired a tank shell into the hotel. If the laws of physics contradicted this, why would the Pentagon not use that argument?

People hate the US. They will lie.

People love the US too. They will also lie. Your point?

---
Sorry. I can't seem to find that sig.
[ Parent ]

Ah, so they did. (3.55 / 9) (#13)
by jjayson on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:32:03 AM EST

I was wrong. It still doesn't change the fact that your original (and even your new) coverage was, and is, terrible.

--
This space for rent.
[ Parent ]
seems like (4.50 / 4) (#45)
by vivelame on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:46:05 AM EST

you'll have to work on your physics 101, you're a little weak in this area.

--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
probably (4.00 / 3) (#81)
by jjayson on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:11:33 PM EST

I've never had a single physics class, not even in high school.
--
This space for rent.
[ Parent ]
Not really! (4.50 / 6) (#129)
by DDS3 on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:18:09 PM EST

His argument is actually a very good one, however, he seems to of forgotten that tanks can fire multiple types of shells.  Since they were going into a city, chances are very high that they were using a discarding sabot round rather than a high explosive (HE) round.  The reason being, they were probably expecting some tanks to roll from cover.  A discarding sabot uses pure kenetic energy to force its way through armor.  As such, chances are that it would of done about what you saw at the hotel.  Had it been a HE round, chances are, you would of seen a large section of the floor gutted.

...that's just my semi-educated guess...take it or leave it...


[ Parent ]

Correction? (4.40 / 5) (#178)
by DDS3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:02:23 AM EST

...on second thought...

It was probably a HEAP round...a round that's used against lightly armoured targets...such as APC's, bunkers, etc.  It uses a shape charge.  After finding some old pictures of the damage, this would probably be a better match.

At any rate, I still stand behind the original logic.

Sorry for replying to my self.


[ Parent ]

In your opinion (5.00 / 4) (#49)
by sholden on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:28:41 AM EST

Why would anyone believe someone who bends the laws of physics in order to assist their argument. Or if we assume ignorance over malice doesn't know simple high school physics but uses them to support their argument.

Is there a history of the article author just making stuff up to support their views?

After all you just did with more than one "fact", so why would I believe you over them?

--
The world's dullest web page


[ Parent ]
As someone who has served (4.38 / 21) (#10)
by creo on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:01:39 AM EST

I find that the reports that I am hearing from Iraq regarding the behaviour of US troops are showing that the troops are lacking in discipline and control.

Reporter deaths, such as this one, can be expected under battle conditions. However - and I stress that I am only going on the same incomplete reports that everyone else is - it appears that in this case it was known that there were journalists in the area. I am also led to believe that there was no combat ongoing at the time.

This makes the whole self defence scenario dodgy at the minimum. Sure, soldiers need to be able to defend themselves when required. However when you are an occupying force you need to apply discretion, especially if you are in the middle of a hearts and minds campaign. Unfortunately whilst the US forces have shown that they have what it takes to win set piece battles, they have repeatedly shown throughout history that they do not have the moral fibre required to maintain an army of occupation in a hostile land.

Why this is, I am not too sure. However, it is behaviour that has pretty much manifested itself throughout the petty wars that the US has got involved in since Vietnam. Maybe it is the US soldiers gung-ho attitude - the kill 'em all and let god sort it out thing. Not having served in the US forces I cannot say. But when was the last time you heard the Brits killed a journalist, or alied troops, or Iraqi cicilians (in the same quantities that the US seems to go through them)...

Cheers
Creo

[ Parent ]

What the fuck is your point? (2.06 / 15) (#12)
by jjayson on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:28:53 AM EST

Yeah, the journalist shouldn't have been shot. Did I say any different?

I did point out two places where the author had abandonded his integrity though.

Seeing you are not currently in the field, why should we give a fuck about what you say anyway? There are other vets who will say these events are unavoidable, yet we should listen to some apologetic crap from you? You of all people should know that the information you are getting is probably quite removed from what actually happened.
--
This space for rent.
[ Parent ]

I was trying to engage in polite discourse (4.57 / 14) (#16)
by creo on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:00:23 AM EST

Something that you do not seem to understand, so I will descend to your level.

US troops seem to be ill disciplined fucking cowboys who have NO FUCKING IDEA of how to peacefully occupy a country. They CONTINUALLY FUCK UP turning what should be a simple exercise into a FUCKING POLITICAL NIGHTMARE.

Now was that so hard to understand? Most other countries soldiers do not seem to have troubles with these concepts. I think the current state of the US military is an embarrasment to the glorious history of the WWI, WWII and Korean US vets, and the current occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan is an insult to the memory of everything that the US did with the Marshall PLan and McArthurs work in Japan after WWII. The US military is still haunted by the complete fuck up that was Vietnam.

I was never a grunt, and I never served in a combat zone. However, military discipline is the backbone of an Army, otherwise it is just another rabble. My point is simply that the US does not seem to be maintaining displine in the field, and is thus making the job of occupation that much harder. Until they resolve this issue they will continue to fuck up and increase the very resistance they are trying to suppress, as well as destroying any chance of the good publicity that Bush and his cohorts crave ( newsflash - killing the media, whether by accident, design or ill discipline, is bad for PR).

As to your personal attack, I don't care. Things do happen - they just seem to happen in the US zone a lot more. I will say one thing - these vets you have talked to, I suppose they served in the US military...

Cheers
Creo.

[ Parent ]

Like I said. (2.41 / 12) (#19)
by jjayson on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:07:51 AM EST

What is your point? I agree. They are fucking up.

What seems to be your problem in understanding that concept?

I was never a grunt, and I never served in a combat zone.
Okay. You presented yourself as if you have combat experience. So, I can ignore then since you too are talking out of your ass and have no clue how difficult it is for these boys. All the talk of "discpline" are pointless if you don't know the conditions and how difficult that may be.

None of your uninformed bitching and whining do anything positive. At best, people ignore you. At worst, you get them to go demonstrate against our troops. Go ahead and pat yourself on the back for that feat.
--
This space for rent.
[ Parent ]

My last post on this (4.66 / 6) (#26)
by creo on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:34:36 AM EST

Okay. You presented yourself as if you have combat experience. So, I can ignore then since you too are talking out of your ass and have no clue how difficult it is for these boys. All the talk of "discpline" are pointless if you don't know the conditions and how difficult that may be.

Firstly I apologise if I mislead you in this - I was merely pointing out that I have experience in the military machine, I did not intend it to be taken as I had combat experience. However discipline is discipline - if the incident had occurred in a firefight, or the tank had been attacked 2 minutes prior and the guys were on an op, then yes, it fits the shit happens category. However nearly all reports of the incident I have read indicate that none of this was the case. This indicates a breakdown of field discipline, and is usually indicative of issues at the line level. Note that nearly all reported incidents of "friendly fire" and shooting of civilians involve the US forces.

None of your uninformed bitching and whining do anything positive. At best, people ignore you. At worst, you get them to go demonstrate against our troops. Go ahead and pat yourself on the back for that feat.

I agree - it's an intellectual wank fest - no? However, contrary to your opinion that anyone who bags the US militarys actions are anti US, or anti-military is just wrong. If it had of been the Brits I would have been on their case as well. The coalition is attempting to take the moral high ground. With that high ground comes responsibility. With that responsibility comes control - something that seems to be lacking.

Now I must work - it's been an interesting discussion.

Cheers
Creo

[ Parent ]

You're right. (4.66 / 6) (#37)
by Vesperto on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:17:56 AM EST

how difficult it is for these boys. - They oughta send men out there, not kids with guns. What's the average age of the kids in the Delta Force again?

If you disagree post, don't moderate. Alimaniere forf
[
Parent ]
Not so much to discuss (3.37 / 8) (#57)
by Viliam Bur on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 09:22:19 AM EST

They just DON'T FUCKING CARE about lives of non-USians. That's all.

Of course, there are more polite ways to say that, for example They don't care about what international community thinks about morality of their actions, but the essence is the same.

[ Parent ]

Not quite complete (4.00 / 2) (#320)
by Your Mom on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 04:06:58 PM EST

They just DON'T FUCKING CARE about lives of non-USians.

Perhaps it is just that they care more about their own lives. Like has already been addressed, US troops are trained in a "kill or be killed" mentality - and after a few months in Iraq, I think that I would be a little jumpy too.

Can you blame them?

--
"As far as I'm concerned, Osama bin Laden can eat a dick." -trhurler
[ Parent ]
Compared to? (4.20 / 5) (#61)
by RyoCokey on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 09:57:57 AM EST

It's hard to say the force as a whole is screwing up. The only real comparison would be the British in Basra, who got a town with people much more interested in cooperating. Even there, there have been problems.

I don't see this latest incident as a symptom of a deep-running problem. If anyone knows whether it is or not, it's probably the people higher up in the chain of command.

So far, no rebellions have been incited, and much of the Iraqi populous remains cooperative. So long as this remains the case, they aren't in very serious trouble.

Also, it appears this event has just been eclipsed by the bombing of a UN building.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
the point is (none / 0) (#29)
by auraslip on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:23:15 AM EST

that maybe this article is correct in being used to fuel our ideological hatred.
___-___
[ Parent ]
ummm... (3.55 / 9) (#31)
by slashcart on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:46:13 AM EST

I find that the reports that I am hearing from Iraq regarding the behaviour of US troops are showing that the troops are lacking in discipline and control.

Hearsay.

Unfortunately whilst the US forces have shown that they have what it takes to win set piece battles, they have repeatedly shown throughout history that they do not have the moral fibre required to maintain an army of occupation in a hostile land.

They've shown this throughout history? Stretching back millenia, I'm sure. This is peculiar, since the US was heavily isolationist until the early 20th century and had never once attempted to maintain an army of occupation before then. Since then, the only prolonged occupation by U.S. forces has been the Phillipines. Is that what you meant by "repeatedly shown throughout history?"

Additionally, the successful occupation of a hostile territory doesn't exactly require "moral fiber."

Why this is, I am not too sure. However, it is behaviour that has pretty much manifested itself throughout the petty wars that the US has got involved in since Vietnam. Maybe it is the US soldiers gung-ho attitude - the kill 'em all and let god sort it out thing.

I believe the quote "kill 'em all let god sort it out" is from a movie. Is that where you gathered this stereotype? Is that one of your "sources" of "reports?"

However, it is behaviour that has pretty much manifested itself throughout the petty wars that the US has got involved in since Vietnam.

How would you know this? Were you present? Perhaps you watched movies about the other wars as well? You have reports of this behavior occuring in (say) Panama or Liberia? I'd love to hear them.

But when was the last time you heard the Brits killed a journalist, or alied troops, or Iraqi cicilians (in the same quantities that the US seems to go through them)...

The U.S. maintains several times more troops in the Iraqi region than the U.K. and a corresponding increase in the number of incidents would be expected.

...I'm always saddened to see that silly inflammatory nationalism thrives as much elsewhere as in the U.S. U.S. troops have a "gung ho" attitude, and they may be able to win "set piece" battles, but they lack the "moral fiber" to occupy. In America, people with a similar mindset to yours might retort that the U.K. and France have both shown themselves embarrassingly incapable either of winning set piece battles, or of maintaining occupations. It's common among the American jingoist crowd to remark that the French are masters of surrender and the British don't have a serious military force. I'm not of that opinion. I'd imagine that British and U.S. troops are approximately equally well-trained. Of course that never stops the chest-thumping on either side. Sometimes the rhetoric reminds me of cheering for a football team.

[ Parent ]

Good response (4.87 / 8) (#38)
by creo on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:20:29 AM EST

I had last posted on this, but what the hey - it's my lunch break.

I find that the reports that I am hearing from Iraq regarding the behaviour of US troops are showing that the troops are lacking in discipline and control. Hearsay.

Correct - it is hearsay. But is not all reports hearsay? Is not all history, unless you were actually there hearsay. Recently I read a rather excellent book on the life of Adolf Hitler by Toland. Given that he had never met Hitler or sat in on his staff meetings I suppose I should just dismiss his book as hearsay as well?

They've shown this throughout history? Stretching back millenia, I'm sure. This is peculiar, since the US was heavily isolationist until the early 20th century and had never once attempted to maintain an army of occupation before then. Since then, the only prolonged occupation by U.S. forces has been the Phillipines. Is that what you meant by "repeatedly shown throughout history?"

Actually, yes. I made the assumption that most educated people know that the US did not become heavily involved in external affairs (i.e. outside the Americas) until the 20th century.

Additionally, the successful occupation of a hostile territory doesn't exactly require "moral fiber."

Correct. But if you are taking the moral high ground - i.e. kicking out a murderous dictator and restoring peace and democracy - then it does require control of your troops so they don't get trigger happy and kill the very medium of reports from that country. This also applies to the people that they are there to "liberate". The occupation of Russia by Nazi Germany obviously did not require the finesse that say the occupation of Japan by the US post WWII or Iraq by the coalition does.

I believe the quote "kill 'em all let god sort it out" is from a movie. Is that where you gathered this stereotype? Is that one of your "sources" of "reports?"

No - direct interaction with US military forces (from my service days - admitedly a LONG time ago) plus also reports from friends who are still in the service. However the quote is from a film, and its use was probably a little inflammatory :-).

The U.S. maintains several times more troops in the Iraqi region than the U.K. and a corresponding increase in the number of incidents would be expected.

Correct - I have taken this into account - I do not have the time to do the research, but pretty much every account involving journalists and nearly all invovling civilians involves the US. As I mentioned in another post, if it was Brits I would still have concerns about control, but it never seems to be anybut the US troops. I am willing to acknowledge this could be a function of the way things are reported, but you have to admit that nearly all reports involve the US forces.

...I'm always saddened to see that silly inflammatory nationalism thrives as much elsewhere as in the U.S. U.S. troops have a "gung ho" attitude, and they may be able to win "set piece" battles, but they lack the "moral fiber" to occupy. In America, people with a similar mindset to yours might retort that the U.K. and France have both shown themselves embarrassingly incapable either of winning set piece battles, or of maintaining occupations. It's common among the American jingoist crowd to remark that the French are masters of surrender and the British don't have a serious military force.

My comments were not based on nationalism - I dont give a shit whether or not the troops were US, Brits, Aussies, whatever. The number of cases involving these troops and their actions indicates that there is a field discipline issue. That is my point. Why do you assume I am anti US?

As for my comments regards set piece battles in my study of 20th century military history I have not seen much to change my view of the US military. In most engagements that the US has participated in they have generally won by having superior firepower, supply and command and control. This applies to their efforts in WWI, WWII and to a lesser extent Korea. Vietnam was a different kettle of fish. No great enemy to oppose, opposition at home, opposition from the people they were trying to save. In the set battles of Tet in '68, Khe San and Hue the US did well. Note that a lot of these battles while tactical successes were considered operational and/or strategic failures. I believe that if the US had of been able to bring to bear its full military potential against the NVA and been allowed to fight properly instead of being hamstrung by poloticians they would have won - although China might have spoilt the party and who knows where that would have lead...

I will stress again I am NOT anti US per se. However, the US has made a decision to attempt to stake the moral high ground with Iraq. As a part of that moral high ground comes responsibility, and it is this area that US troops are failing. Killing people in order to save them should not be an option, and in allowing it to happen the US undermines its entire message.

Cheers
Creo

[ Parent ]

hmm (4.20 / 5) (#51)
by slashcart on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:49:29 AM EST

Correct - it is hearsay. But is not all reports hearsay? Is not all history, unless you were actually there hearsay.

History is based on the informed consensus of professional historians, who survey the primary sources and piece together a probable account. Or at least so goes the theory. Anyway history is quite different from hearing extremely isolated reports from friends or kuro5hin.org.

Since then, the only prolonged occupation by U.S. forces has been the Phillipines. Is that what you meant by "repeatedly shown throughout history?"

Actually, yes. I made the assumption that most educated people know that the US did not become heavily involved in external affairs (i.e. outside the Americas) until the 20th century.

If your sole example is the Phillipines occupation, as you admit, then it seems unwarranted to claim that this phenomenon has been "repeatedly shown throughout history."

Correct - I have taken this into account - I do not have the time to do the research, but pretty much every account involving journalists and nearly all invovling civilians involves the US. As I mentioned in another post, if it was Brits I would still have concerns about control, but it never seems to be anybut the US troops.

It's true that the reports of civilian deaths are almost entirely from American-patrolled territories. However the American forces are patrolling the "Sunni Triangle," Saddam's homeland, where support for the former regime is very high and attacks on troops are quite regular. The British forces, on the other hand, are patrolling the area surrounding Basra, where the former regime is despised and the population is much friendlier to the allied invasion. This could account for differences in "friction" with the local population. Bear in mind that U.S. forces patrol the Kurdish region as well, where the population is approximately as friendly as in Basra, and there haven't been reports of casualties from there.

Of course it's impossible for me to know if the situation would be the same if the Americans' and British roles were reversed. Perhaps the British would be better able to control the situation. But there are too many confounding variables to conclude that U.S. troops are more "trigger happy" than those from other countries.

My comments were not based on nationalism - I dont give a shit whether or not the troops were US, Brits, Aussies, whatever. The number of cases involving these troops and their actions indicates that there is a field discipline issue. That is my point. Why do you assume I am anti US?

The language you used indicated to me an anti-US sentiment. You said that U.S. soldiers are "gung ho" and want to "kill em all and let God sort em out" and lack the moral fiber to sustain occupation, etc. It's possible I was misinterpreting you. Perhaps I was reacting too quickly because I've been confronted with anti-US sentiment too frequently in the recent past. Given the current international situation, tensions are running much higher than usual, so I regrettably often find myself in the middle of conversations that boil down to sentiments like "Europe rules! USA sucks!" or "USA rules! France sucks!" and so on.

In most engagements that the US has participated in they have generally won by having superior firepower, supply and command and control.

The average non-special-forces U.S. soldier is 19 years old. I can't imagine they've received enormously more training than the soldiers from any other country. I'd guess that the human "raw material" for making soldiers is approximately the same everywhere. The only advantages the U.S. could have would be in firepower, supply, and command and control, areas where enormous expenditure on advanced weaponry and officers corps would have influence.

However, the US has made a decision to attempt to stake the moral high ground with Iraq. As a part of that moral high ground comes responsibility, and it is this area that US troops are failing.

I agree that its essential for U.S. forces to do whatever possible to preserve innocent lives.

Unfortunately, I don't think the U.S. leadership seriously cares that much whether or not the international community sees its behavior as ethical. If they cared about the opinions of the world then the war would never have been fought in the first place. Colin Powell was the only reason the U.S. even asked the U.N. for approval; Wolfowitz and Cheney didn't think the U.S. should even solicit anyone's opinion before attacking.

With regard to "taking the moral high ground," I wonder if the U.S. leadership seriously expects the international community to believe this line that the war was fought principally for moral reasons.

[ Parent ]

Kill 'em all let god sort 'em out (4.00 / 3) (#58)
by Gully Foyle on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 09:24:10 AM EST

Is a little older than movies, the quote is widely attributed to Pope Innocent III during a siege in the 13th century. He was misquoting a bible verse I believe.

This isn't even slightly relevant, but I thought it was interesting.

If you weren't picked on in school you were doing something wrong - kableh
[ Parent ]

Actually, no (4.62 / 8) (#74)
by jandev on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:23:20 AM EST

Since it was determined that all this is an intelectual wankfest anyway:

't Wasn't Innocent III. It was the guy (a Cistercienzer monk) he put in charge of the Albigensian Crusade in 1209. His name escapes me, but what basically happened was that the Crusaders (mostly northern French) where about to sack the southern French city of Béziers, a city with a Catholic majority but a sizable Cathar (heretic) minority. One of his military commanders asked him what to do with the civilians in the city, whereupon the monk indicated he couldn't be bothered to have the Cathars separated from the Catholics, and told them to 'Kill them all. God will know his own'.

So there.

JdV!!

"ENGINEERS" IS NOT POSSESSIVE. IT'S A PLURAL. YOU DO NOT MOTHERFUCKING MARK A PLURAL WITH A COCKSUCKING APOSTROPHE. APOSTROPHES ARE FOR MARKING POSSESSIVES IN THIS CASE. IF YOU WEREN'T A TOTAL MORON, YOU WOULD BE SAYING SOMETHING LIKE "THE CIVIL ENGINEER'S SMALL PENIS". SEE THAT APOSTROPHE? IT'S A HAPPY APOSTROPHE. IT'S NOT BEING ABUSED BY SOME GODDAMN SHIT-FOR-BRAINS IDIOT WITH NO EDUCATION. - Nimey
[ Parent ]

Historical Point (5.00 / 5) (#113)
by a humble lich on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:51:22 PM EST

This is peculiar, since the US was heavily isolationist until the early 20th century and had never once attempted to maintain an army of occupation before then. Since then, the only prolonged occupation by U.S. forces has been the Phillipines. Is that what you meant by "repeatedly shown throughout history?"
I'm not sure if I can agree with this. You can call the US isolationist in the 19th century only if you ignore the entire manifest desity thing. Before the 20th century the US invaded or occupied:
  • The Barbary Coast
  • Canada in 1812
  • northern Mexico in the Mexican American War
  • More Indian lands than I recall
  • Hawaii
  • the American South (I'd say that counted as an occupation, although it is arguable).
  • Mexico City (in 1865, right after the civil war)
  • Cuba and the Phillipines (the Spanish-American war was sill in the 19th Century)


[ Parent ]
Yeah, let's throw the book at him (4.66 / 6) (#60)
by RyoCokey on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 09:54:13 AM EST

Barring additional evidence we haven't heard, I think the tank gunner should be courtmartialed. He'll get his day to explain it to a military tribunal.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
Whoah... (3.50 / 8) (#35)
by Vesperto on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:13:04 AM EST

and that there is good reason to believe the US didn't do it - reality check: it happened. Wake up.

If you disagree post, don't moderate. Alimaniere forf
[
Parent ]
-1, slashdot reference [n/t] (3.00 / 2) (#39)
by martingale on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:21:33 AM EST



[ Parent ]
Whoa, turn off the FNC (3.62 / 8) (#89)
by Wah on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:38:40 PM EST

Another good example is the Palestinian Hotel. I thought that the blame for that was never assigned (and the US recanted the initial admittment of guilt), and that there is good reason to believe the US didn't do it (unless they have some of those magic Israeli bullets and shells that travel in flat circles like the ones that killed Mohammed Al-Dura).
WASHINGTON, Aug. 13, 2003 - U.S. troops fighting their way into Baghdad April 8 were justified when they fired a tank round at a local hotel, an incident that killed two television cameramen, a recently concluded U.S. Central Command investigation determined.

The tank crew, attached to the U.S. 3rd Infantry Division, was told that enemy combatants in the battle area near the Tigris River were directing rocket- propelled grenades and other heavy fires against the advancing Americans, according to an Aug. 12 CENTCOM news release.

A rather strong source on that one.

--

What was that 'good reason to believe the US didn't do it'?  Just curious.
--
Fail to Obey?
[ Parent ]

he doesn't like reality (3.00 / 3) (#95)
by asad on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:00:56 PM EST

and prefers to make stuff up as he goes along so long as he presents in somewhat of a coherant fashion.

[ Parent ]
Yes (3.66 / 3) (#127)
by jjayson on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:50:51 PM EST

Please see this comment:
http://www.kuro5hin.org/comments/2003/8/19/14111/3435/13#13

I was wrong. I didn't follow the investigation.
--
This space for rent.
[ Parent ]

Thank you (2.00 / 1) (#134)
by Wah on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:57:30 PM EST

I saw it after my reply.  It happens.

here's another one you might have missed.  It's not inflammatory, but goes along with a story you did a while back.  Totally off topic, but there ya go.
--
Fail to Obey?
[ Parent ]

and ? (2.33 / 6) (#94)
by asad on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:59:48 PM EST

"(Yeah, I'll get modded into the ground for this comment, but I am used to it.)"

Probably cause you like to pass crap on as intellectual discussions.

[ Parent ]

+1 fp (2.08 / 25) (#22)
by circletimessquare on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 04:10:56 AM EST

like the americans are so evil!

why are americans such evil evil people?

they like to shoot everyone for no reason!!!

i don't understand why us people are so evil?!

please respond, very confused


The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

it's the riaa (5.00 / 1) (#33)
by martingale on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:58:27 AM EST

THEY'VE TAKEN OVER US PEOPLE'S BRAINS.

THEY'RE BEAMING KILL COMMANDS THROUGH DVDS AND RAP SONGS.

THE POOR POLITICIANS HAVE FOUGHT A VALIANT FIGHT, BUT FASCIST US CONGLOMERATES ARE USING THE POWER OF SHAREHOLDERING TO IMPOSE THEIR WILLPOWER ON SMALL PRESIDENTS EVERYWHERE.

HOPE THIS HELPS. HAND.

[ Parent ]

Not so far fetched (4.50 / 6) (#34)
by salsaman on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:06:35 AM EST

After all, they are sending Hilary Rosen in to help rewrite Iraqi copyright law.

[ Parent ]
that is.. (4.75 / 4) (#54)
by infinitera on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:11:26 AM EST

The fucking saddest thing I've read all week.

[ Parent ]
YHBT YHL HAND (2.00 / 4) (#56)
by circletimessquare on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:56:12 AM EST

did you really think my post was real?

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]
Did you think his was? (nt) (5.00 / 1) (#210)
by djotto on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:20:21 AM EST



[ Parent ]
you confuse evilness with plain stupidity. [nt] (3.50 / 2) (#52)
by reklaw on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:57:25 AM EST


-
[ Parent ]
YHBT YHL HAND (3.00 / 6) (#55)
by circletimessquare on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:55:52 AM EST

did you honestly think i was serious?

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]
circle, please... (2.66 / 3) (#75)
by jandev on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:34:28 AM EST

We *know* you're a troll.

What's the world coming to.

JdV!!

"ENGINEERS" IS NOT POSSESSIVE. IT'S A PLURAL. YOU DO NOT MOTHERFUCKING MARK A PLURAL WITH A COCKSUCKING APOSTROPHE. APOSTROPHES ARE FOR MARKING POSSESSIVES IN THIS CASE. IF YOU WEREN'T A TOTAL MORON, YOU WOULD BE SAYING SOMETHING LIKE "THE CIVIL ENGINEER'S SMALL PENIS". SEE THAT APOSTROPHE? IT'S A HAPPY APOSTROPHE. IT'S NOT BEING ABUSED BY SOME GODDAMN SHIT-FOR-BRAINS IDIOT WITH NO EDUCATION. - Nimey
[ Parent ]

yeah but (3.66 / 3) (#79)
by circletimessquare on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:57:04 AM EST

when i craft an incredibly stupid troll, and people fall for it, i am entitled to be exasperated i think

unless the lesson for me is that people are trolled all the time, regardless of how weak the troll attempt

sarcasm is dead

long live the boorish pointless unyeilding seriousness of the dimwitted

being a troll is just a cry for help for more wit in the world

it is sorely lacking in the political headbanging here ;-(


The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]

Cyrano? (none / 0) (#143)
by LilDebbie on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:47:07 PM EST

A pretty wit, which like we lack.

Of course, CTS, you fall into an entirely different trap, one where you are bound to the idiots you deride because you keep coming back for more. It is quite simple really. We are all but bitchy princesses trying to get our fair recognition. Why do you think I have a feminine name (oh yeah, snack cakes)?

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

[ Parent ]
i don't want to know why you have a feminine name (none / 0) (#229)
by circletimessquare on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:09:51 AM EST

and the fact that you are asking me is scaring the shit out of me ;-P

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]
Hmm... (5.00 / 1) (#246)
by LilDebbie on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:41:34 PM EST

I wonder if fluffy grue will give me her account. /me ponders hideously...

Wait! No! I'm all man! Yeah, all man...all men...AAH! DEAR LORD IN HEAVEN WHAT IS HAPPENING TO ME?

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

[ Parent ]
Um... (none / 0) (#372)
by epepke on Mon Aug 25, 2003 at 07:30:53 PM EST

Why do you think I have a feminine name (oh yeah, snack cakes)?

You're inferior to Nabisco?


The truth may be out there, but lies are inside your head.--Terry Pratchett


[ Parent ]
of course (5.00 / 1) (#132)
by reklaw on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:39:46 PM EST

you weren't being serious. You were being sarcastic in such a way as to say "you all think Americans are evil, you idiots!"

My reply was, well, only half-joking, I suppose. The point your sarcasm was making was that the Americans shot the cameraman not because they're evil, but because they needed to. The truth of the matter is that the soldiers are simply under-trained and dim-witted.
-
[ Parent ]

those dimwits die (5.00 / 1) (#230)
by circletimessquare on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:11:22 AM EST

so you can kvetch on kuro5hin

think about it


The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]

eh (5.00 / 1) (#286)
by reklaw on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 07:09:21 PM EST

I live in England, matey. US soldiers don't really die for anything that effects me.
-
[ Parent ]
yeah, such as wwii (nt) (3.00 / 2) (#299)
by circletimessquare on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 02:08:04 AM EST



The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]
in that case, (5.00 / 1) (#301)
by reklaw on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:31:29 AM EST

it was those dimwits' grandfathers dying, not them.
-
[ Parent ]
hey dude (1.00 / 1) (#314)
by circletimessquare on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 02:24:53 PM EST

keep it up, you've successfully brought your perceived intellectual level to that of a 10 year old lol ;-P

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]
uh (5.00 / 1) (#324)
by reklaw on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 05:09:35 PM EST

that of a 10 year old lol ;-P

OK... (backs off slowly)

I'll leave anyone reading to ponder who the ten year old is. Finished responding to you here.
-
[ Parent ]

translation of your post (1.00 / 1) (#326)
by circletimessquare on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 05:51:43 PM EST

"No, I'm not! But you are!"

"No, I'm not! But you are!"

"No, I'm not! But you are!"

congratulations, now we're in kindergarten

what next from you? googoo talk? shall i be your wetnurse? lol ;-P

The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]

The best thing about this comment... (5.00 / 4) (#114)
by Demiurge on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:51:58 PM EST

is that both people who realize it for the parody troll it is, and the idiots whom it's parodying, are both voting it up

[ Parent ]
as some one pointed out (2.11 / 9) (#30)
by auraslip on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:25:45 AM EST

americans have a very hard time occupying a country peacefully.

It's because white people rock!
___-___

What makes you think the soldier was white? (nt) (3.33 / 3) (#62)
by OldCoder on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:13:13 AM EST



--
By reading this signature, you have agreed.
Copyright © 2003 OldCoder
[ Parent ]
easy (4.33 / 3) (#158)
by scatbubba on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 09:39:24 PM EST

Ask any liberal. Soldiers are mostly minorities who are forced to fight the white man's wars, until the soldiers do something bad, then they are white men fighting brown men. Don't you pay attention?

[ Parent ]
still (none / 0) (#189)
by auraslip on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:18:55 AM EST

white by proxy.

also...If your going to call me on sterotyping, don't be a hypocrite and sterotype "liberals"
___-___
[ Parent ]

may be he had a blackout ? (nt) (5.00 / 1) (#338)
by mami on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 09:19:13 PM EST



[ Parent ]
I believe it was the chinese who said (4.17 / 23) (#36)
by monkeymind on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:15:10 AM EST

You can conquer from horseback but you have to dismount to govern.

Taking the country was always going to be the easy part...

The bad news stories have only just begun.

I believe in Karma. That means I can do bad things to people and assume the deserve it.

Would someone please (3.90 / 11) (#44)
by Kasreyn on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:42:36 AM EST

post links to pics of:

The type of camera he carried, and

an RPG launcher

?

It would be nice to see for myself the exact level of silliness of this "we thought it was an RPG launcher" excuse.


-Kasreyn


"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
Here you go. (4.63 / 11) (#68)
by Zerotime on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:43:43 AM EST

http://friends.portalofevil.com/sp.php?si=30&fi=000025478&ti=1000574151& amp;pi=1000574243

Read the discussion, too.

[ Parent ]

I saw it on the news (3.60 / 5) (#69)
by GRiNGO on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:52:59 AM EST

Channel4 news showed video footage of the incident yesterday, from the camera of the man who was shot. You were able to see footage of the floor and the camera being raised towards a tank then you heard shots and the camera was dropped.

It then showed footage from another camera of a journalist retreiving the dead mans camera. To me, it had a striking similarity to... a camera, and nothing else.

--
"I send you to Baghdad a long time. Nobody find you. Do they care, buddy?" - Three Kings


[ Parent ]

They actually said it looked like a... (3.00 / 4) (#120)
by DDS3 on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:01:49 PM EST

rocket launcher...

Which it does!

Remember, there are many different types of rocket launches, many of which are far more leathal than RPG's.  Oddly enough, they look like that camera, only with a much longer bore.  If you're facing it, it becomes very difficult to determine it's length.  Especially if you feel you have only seconds to react.

This is an accident, plain and simple.

[ Parent ]

Accident, no. (3.42 / 7) (#195)
by GRiNGO on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 05:20:12 AM EST

It wasnt an "accident". You dont accidentally raise a rifle, take aim and kill a man. The gun didnt acidentally go off, and coincidentally shoot the camera man.

The camera man was shot dead, intentionally.

Murder? No. I doubt it. I mean if I were that soldier, if any of you were, you'd probably do the same thing... you'd be on edge, scared... if you felt threatened you'd probably shoot at whatever moved too.

However I do believe its still a crime, because America has no business in Iraq in the first place.

--
"I send you to Baghdad a long time. Nobody find you. Do they care, buddy?" - Three Kings


[ Parent ]

Common sense check? Anyone? (3.40 / 5) (#221)
by DDS3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:14:43 AM EST

Saying it was an accident and assuming that means the soldier did not mean to shoot the person is, well, not using much of your brain mass.

Simple fact is, they did the right thing.  They had previously come under fire and they did not know they were journalist.  They had just been shot at and then they turn the corner to see someone on one knee, with an object on their shoulder, which looks very much like a rocket launcher of some type.  Blam!  The threat was taken care of.  Clearly they meant to shoot him.  Clearly they thought it was a rocket launcher.  Clearly they were mistaken.  Clearly it was an accident.

It's a crime?  Get real.  It's called a mistake.

Police, when they are shot at, are often taken off duty for the day, sometimes a week.  This allows them to put things back into perspective.  Soldiers don't get this chance.  As such, their survival instinct kicks in.  He saw what he believed a very real threat.  He shot it.  The fact that the reporter standing next to him wasn't hit or even shot at reflects just how disiplined they were.

While sad and tragic, I tip my hat to all those guys doing their job and doing it well.  You make it sound like these guys woke up one morning and said, "man, I sure hope I invade Iraq".  Most of those guys don't want to be there any more than you want them to be there.  Nonetheless, they have honor and are doing their duty.

[ Parent ]

Knock knock is there anyone home? (2.60 / 5) (#225)
by GRiNGO on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:38:06 AM EST

Are you a fucking moron?

RTFP. I said I didnt blame the dude and that I, and probably most everyone on here, would have done the same thing.

Just because it's a mistake doesnt mean its a crime? You get real. To shoot someone dead is a crime, the magnitude of which is determined by the circumstances.

In this case, as was clear from my post, I put little responsibility for the death of the journalist on the individual soldier (since as Ive said I would have done the same thing) and more on the American government for sending its soldiers there in the first place.

Oh, and when you disagree.. post, dont moderate. Handing out 1's to a well written comment that makes a valid point just because you disagree with it is silly.

--
"I send you to Baghdad a long time. Nobody find you. Do they care, buddy?" - Three Kings


[ Parent ]

The video is online (4.20 / 5) (#70)
by GRiNGO on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:00:43 AM EST

http://www.channel4.com/news/c4n.ram

Move forward to 20 minutes into the clip.

This will probably only work until later tonight when it will be updated with the latest program.

--
"I send you to Baghdad a long time. Nobody find you. Do they care, buddy?" - Three Kings


[ Parent ]

wrong point of view (5.00 / 1) (#218)
by porkchop_d_clown on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:00:51 AM EST

The important factor here isn't what the cameraman saw, it's what the gunner saw.


--
You can't raise my prices. You can't build more power plants. You can't build more power lines. Why are my lights out!?!


[ Parent ]
That's not as silly as it sounds... (4.28 / 7) (#76)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:38:46 AM EST

Although I offer no excuse for the icompetence of the troops... (no M1 has every been documented totally destroyed by an RPG - disabled, yes, not destroyed - ergo... he had more time to asses the threat than he assumed.)

One must remember what is actually happening... A high stung kid (19-22) sitting in a giant piece of steel privy to absolutly zero perhipheral vision, smell, or sound (essential to evaluating the situation) deciding whether or not a target poses a threat...

The last thing this kid thought about was the last US troop who got killed... he fucked up... we all do it. He'll be sorted out, and his military career isn't lasting past his next contract.

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

Yeah. So simple to tell. (5.00 / 3) (#124)
by tzanger on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:14:05 PM EST

Perhaps from 5M away and a side view like the link posted, but head-on and from several hundred yards away, they look an awful lot the same to me.



[ Parent ]
Factors to take into account (3.71 / 7) (#176)
by lordDogma on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:51:17 AM EST

There is a lot of things that you have to take into account.

1. The news reported that it was a tank that engaged Mazen. Perhaps, but the news is notorious for getting military jargon wrong. They often call lightly armored Bradleys by the word "tank", which is inaccurate. An RPG can easily penetrate a Bradley depending on where it hits. Was it really an M1 or perhaps a Bradley?

2. Not to mention the "tank" was with a convoy, which probably included lighter vehicles. Who's to say that the RPG is actually being aimed at the tank and not a HUMVEE?

3. According to the news reports the engagement took place at a range of approx. 50 meters, which is more than half the length of a (American) football field. It also was head on, making it more difficult to distinguish a camera from shoulder fired rocket.

4. To those who say the tank should have gotten closer for a better look before engaging, here is a little fact for you: the RPG "has a maximum effective range of 300 meters against moving point targets and 500 meters against stationary point targets." The tank was at 50 meters!

5. The armchair generals and news agencies like to say "it was broad daylight on a clear day." Well guess what? It was probably also very hot and perhaps a little dusty (tanks do kick up dust you know). The soldier who shot Mazen might have been wearing goggles, which us soldiers are known to be equipped with. Perhaps after riding around on the "tank" the goggles became a little dirty or fogged up with some sweat. When you have to identify someone in a matter of seconds, this could contribute 10% or so to an erronious judgement. And that 10% could mean life or death.

Botton line: It was an accident. I know you hate America and would like nothing better than to send Americans to the Hague, but try not to let your irrationality prevent you from seeing the obvious truth or at least using common sense to deduce the most likely version of what really happened.

-- LD

[ Parent ]

Comparison (3.85 / 7) (#319)
by The Turd Report on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 04:03:55 PM EST

Look here. Seems simple? Imagine doing that at 50m, in the heat, and stress of being in a militarized zone.

[ Parent ]
Thank you! (3.00 / 4) (#323)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 05:05:24 PM EST

The series of images is an excellent idea!  Thanks!  Hopefully others will understand that it's not an issue that is as cut-n-dry or as black-n-white as so many seem to think.

[ Parent ]
It's always good to (none / 0) (#366)
by mami on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 03:29:25 PM EST

go through the exact amount and level of silliness by yourself, in order to understand the amount and level of silliness you accuse others for. Looking at pictures, hiding behind your keyboard, doesn't do the job.

Can you imagine that an Iraqi misunderstands an offer of a bottle of drinking water that was handed to him by an American soldier, because an American soldier "misunderstood" the hand-sign by a local Iraqi, whose guestures clearly seem to indicate that he is thirsty and begs to drink water out of a bottle?

Misunderstood it so much as to not foresee that the the Iraqi would thank him for his offer of a water bottle with a knife-attack in the American soldier's back?

No? You can't imagine that? See, I told you so ... you never experienced such level of silliness.

I just wonder who is the silly one?

[ Parent ]

Idiotic journalist waltzes into crossfire (2.17 / 34) (#46)
by Hide The Hamster on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:51:28 AM EST

Film at eleven.


Free spirits are a liability.

August 8, 2004: "it certainly is" and I had engaged in a homosexual tryst.

there was (4.46 / 13) (#48)
by vivelame on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:58:30 AM EST

no crossfire, there was no shooting prior to his gunning down. "Journalist walk, get shot by trigger-happy US soldiers, news at 11."

--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
im gonna have a gun battle on your front lawn (3.18 / 11) (#86)
by turmeric on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:24:37 PM EST

dont come out you stupid putz

[ Parent ]
What's up with these soldiers? (2.73 / 23) (#59)
by x10 on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 09:24:22 AM EST

Soldier 1: Goddamn it, what is that journalist dude holding? I've got a bad feeling about this.

Soldier 2: Um, maybe it's a camera?

Shut the hell up, it might be a rocket propelled grenade launcher.

Why would a journalist carry a RPG launcher?

Um....er....to improve their ratings? Geraldo did it, didn't he?

But wouldn't it be kinda hard to tape a news report with an RPG launcher?

WATCH OUT, he's aiming the RPG launcher at US. FIRE!

BANG

WATCH OUT, that old lady's got a sniper rifle aimed at our position. FIRE!

Dude that's a walking stick.

---YOUR ZEROES ONLY MAKE ME STRONGER---

He's coming straight for us! [nt] (3.83 / 6) (#66)
by 5pectre on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:36:26 AM EST



"Let us kill the English, their concept of individual rights might undermine the power of our beloved tyrants!!" - Lisa Simpson [ -1.50 / -7.74]

[ Parent ]
Thin out his numbers! <nt> (5.00 / 2) (#211)
by Russell Dovey on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:23:44 AM EST


"Blessed are the cracked, for they let in the light." - Spike Milligan
[ Parent ]

Spoken like a true armchair commando. (n/t) (3.00 / 4) (#217)
by Pyrion on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:57:09 AM EST

n/t
--
"There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." - Bertrand Russell
[ Parent ]
Who cares? (1.55 / 20) (#67)
by Spencer Perceval on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:41:40 AM EST

Not anyone who knows anything about anything.


All the animals come out at night - whores, skunk pussies, buggers, queens, fairies, dopers, junkies, sick, venal. Someday a real rain will come and wash all this scum off the streets.
explain to me (3.22 / 9) (#78)
by modmans2ndcoming on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:49:38 AM EST

this is half OT.

why do people in Iraq Blame the US and the UN for problems caused by local terror groups like no water, no power, and truck bombs going off destroying lives?

I can see how some who support Saddam would blame the US (though it is those types as well as forgin terrorists that are causeing the trouble). but why when a crime is commited does the blame lay with the US and UN?

is it becasue the Iraqi people have for so long depended on the state for everything from security to day to day living so there for if the government can not stop this (no matter the methods, like Saddam's secret police etc) then the act of the crime is the fault of the government?

did Russians go through such culture shock when crime rose in their country after the fall of the totalitarian state?

why do you blame them (3.62 / 8) (#84)
by turmeric on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:23:35 PM EST

have you ever been invaded?

[ Parent ]
there is no popular support for this (3.00 / 3) (#91)
by modmans2ndcoming on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:50:52 PM EST

in Iraq, it is a small group of Baathists and a larger group of forgin terrorists from Siria and Iran(no nessisaraly from those countries but they entered via their borders).

[ Parent ]
and the boogie man got my lunch (5.00 / 2) (#93)
by asad on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:55:43 PM EST

it's always easier to blame someone else when you mess up.  As this article says not all attacks are by the "terrorists".

[ Parent ]
yeah...some are by Baathists (3.60 / 5) (#109)
by modmans2ndcoming on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:14:03 PM EST

so?

[ Parent ]
so (5.00 / 1) (#237)
by turmeric on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:20:06 AM EST

if you kill them their families will then be against the US and if you kill their families then THEIR families will be against the US and pretty soon nobody is going to be for the US. duh.

[ Parent ]
who said we kill them? (none / 0) (#340)
by modmans2ndcoming on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 10:48:38 PM EST

we arrest them and they die if they put up a fight.

so...let me get this straight...

a rule of law is bad for a governing body and society as a whole because it does nothing but stew hate and violence against the governing body and society?

[ Parent ]

rule of law is enforced by a civilian police force (5.00 / 1) (#343)
by turmeric on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 01:57:47 AM EST

not by a foreign military organization.

[ Parent ]
when there is an occupying force (4.00 / 1) (#347)
by modmans2ndcoming on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 10:10:21 AM EST

by the Geneva Convention, the occupying force is the enforcers of rule of law until such time as civilian authorities are capable of taking over the task.

in smaller towns, that has already happened, however, in places where their is remaining threats of attack that only the military has the presence to deal with, the military stays in as law enforcement, though, as you have seen over the past week, the Bagdad police are doing operations on their own.

[ Parent ]

yeah so we should have stayed under britain (5.00 / 1) (#355)
by turmeric on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 07:11:42 PM EST

after all they were only an occupying military force doing police work.

[ Parent ]
you moron (3.00 / 1) (#359)
by modmans2ndcoming on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 11:24:15 PM EST

we were a british colony.

that means, the brits sent ships of people over to this land to farm it and make cities. we were part of the British empire.

your analogy is not even in the same universe as the Iraq situation.

[ Parent ]

yeah we are getting them to do all our work for us (none / 0) (#364)
by turmeric on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 12:39:59 PM EST

of course we have shpiped a few hundred thousand people there. . . .

but anyways, to someone who has been invaded, well, i dont think you can trust the invader to dictate how they 'truly feel'. invasion is invasion. how would you feel if canada invaded us?

[ Parent ]

there is no popular support for kicking out brits (4.50 / 2) (#236)
by turmeric on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:19:24 AM EST

oh wait yes there is

[ Parent ]
Easy (4.00 / 9) (#107)
by hex11a on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:00:36 PM EST

Before they were invaded, for a lot of people there was water and power, and truck bombs were not going off. They were invaded and given the idea that things for them were going to get visibly better, and so far, for a lot of people (not the ones being tortured, but others) it has got a lot worse. I'm not saying that Saddam was good, but for a lot of people under his reign, the only noticable difference now is that power, water etc stopped working after he went. If you tell people "Things will get better" and then they don't, or even get worse, they're bound to be pissed off and blame the people who told them that they would effect a change.

Hex

[ Parent ]

Fog of war (4.39 / 33) (#80)
by Gregoyle on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:00:22 PM EST

Have you ever tried to decide if someone was an enemy in the blistering hot sun with sweat in your eyes and heat waves in the air all around you and the person? In an environment where people dressed in civilian clothes suddenly pull out automatic rifles and anti tank weapons in unpredictable but constant ambushes?

These guys do. Every day. I am a soldier in the US Army and I say that it is not easy, in fact it is very difficult. I don't know the whole situation, but any soldier who had a mental capacity higher than a jelly doughnut (forget stereotypes, these guys are like you and me. well, definitely me ;-)) wouldn't even think of shooting a journalist on purpose. Do you understand the repercussions for such an act? Minimum military prison for life. This isn't the nice and fun federal prison where you have rights. No, you're still considered a soldier in the military prison. You make little rocks out of big ones and fill sand bags. All day. For the rest of your life. That's if they don't put you to death. The UCMJ still has the death penalty for most major offenses.

However, ask any infantryman a question which to civilians seems a major dilemma: If you saw a 4 year old girl coming at you with a grenade at 50 meters, what would you do? All infantrymen will unhesitantly say: drop her and dive for cover. If you don't do it you and your friends and buddies just got dead.

This seems like a terrible accident, but you've got to understand that if you are a journalist in a war zone (and don't tell me Iraq isn't still a war zone) where guerrilla fighters dressed just like you are ambushing convoys on a daily basis, you are at risk to get shot accidentally for pointing a seemingly innocuous object at a soldier.
-------

He's more machine now than man, twisted and evil.

dont go walking down dark alleys (3.46 / 15) (#83)
by turmeric on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:22:54 PM EST

and dont go invading countries that hate you

[ Parent ]
and they make mistakes (3.90 / 10) (#92)
by asad on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:53:10 PM EST

Probably because the US army isn't trained at all to make decisions like this, in a civilian area.  Did the soldier shoot the journalist on purpose ? I doubt it, did he bother to take a good look, probably not.  You talk about the reprecussions of such an act when so far there has been no reprecussions at all.  So while in theory I'd agree with you my personal feeling is that at most the soldiers responsible will get sent home nothing more.
What if you saw a 4 year old girl with with something in her hand ?  As someone else pointed out that's kind of a hard decision to make from 40 feet away.
Must suck to be a 4 year old girl around you.

[ Parent ]
soldiers are human (3.63 / 11) (#103)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:37:43 PM EST

I think that kid living with the fact that he mowed down a civvy in cold blood (along with his contract not being resigned) is punishment enough.

He wasn't gunning for reporters, he made a mistake.

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

hard to believe it was an accident (3.00 / 6) (#106)
by fritz the cat on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:00:02 PM EST

none of us was actually there so we can't really know what was going on

but it's hard to believe a palestinian in the middle east gets killed by accident - expecially if you bear in mind journalist were attacked by the us military during the war

DOING NOTHING FUCKING SOMETHING
[ Parent ]

wha? (5.00 / 2) (#135)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:05:44 PM EST

come on now...

The US military is not some bunch of big bad terror robots... they're a bunch of fucking kids, most of them younger than the average K5 user.

They make mistakes, sometimes a lot of them, sometimes the same ones over again, but come on... this is not a mass conspiracy to kill arab reporters.

Get you head out of you ass, please.

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

yes. (3.66 / 6) (#166)
by mlc on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:10:49 PM EST

You wrote:
The US military is... a bunch of fucking kids... they make mistakes, sometimes a lot of them...
And that's exactly the problem. You're trivializing the murder of a journalist by calling it a "mistake" made by "kids."

When I make a mistake, maybe something mildly bad happens. Hopefully I can fix the mistake, maybe apologize and/or feel guilty for a while, and then move on. When a soldier ("kid" or not) with a gun makes a "mistake," someone dies. That's a pretty serious for a "mistake." And I'll be surprised if there are any actual repercussions for the US military or the individual soldier(s) who shot the journalist.

If the inevitable result of giving people large guns and putting them in unfamiliar situations is that they will "make mistakes, sometimes a lot of them" and shoot innocent people, then perhaps we should not be in the business of giving people large guns and putting them in unfamiliar situations.

--
So the Berne Convention is the ultimate arbiter of truth and morality. Is this like Catholicism? -- Eight Star
[ Parent ]

And if there was world peace.. (3.50 / 2) (#186)
by geekmug on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:50:01 AM EST

..we wouldn't need any guns pointing at anyone. The fact of the matter is that someone has to be pointing the gun around to make the world a better place for me to mooch my natural resources from and cheap labor. And the hell if I would enlist, and I doubt you would either.. so before you criticize the people that do enlist, think about that. You depend on these people you are calling 'tards to shoot people.
You're trivializing the murder of a journalist by calling it a "mistake" made by "kids."
You are trivializing the situation.

-- Why reinvent the square wheel?
[ Parent ]
it all boils down to your own prejudices (2.66 / 3) (#207)
by fritz the cat on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 07:39:16 AM EST

it amazes me how everyone seems to know exactly what happened there - "it wasn't premeditated it'was just silly kids" - "us military DO NOT kill journalists" (the capitals showing the author of the comment desperatly wants to believe it)
you weren't there  - how would you know?

all the comments show is what one's general attitude to the us military is.

if you are a "patriot", or if you are just happy to believe blindly what tv tells you, then you'll find endless excuses for the killing ('it was a kid', 'the camera looks like a rocket launcher', 'it was hot', 'the soldier was upset 'coz the new york jets just lost a match', 'the military DO NOT do these things' ....)

if, on the other hand, you think the us military is a thoroughly evil organizations controlled by fascists for the benefit of large multinational corporations (or something along those lines), then you'll find all sort of facts to prove it was premeditated: journalists were attacked a few times during the war, the pentagon threatened to kill independent reporters in iraq, the journalist was a well known palestinian and the us military use israeli intelligence, etc...

i think we cannot establish the facts because we weren't there.
the only way forward would be an independent inquiry into the matter

DOING NOTHING FUCKING SOMETHING
[ Parent ]

It WAS an accident. (2.42 / 7) (#181)
by lordDogma on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:21:46 AM EST

As far as the Palestinian Hotel thing - yes it was an accident. Remember the soldiers are in unfamiliar territory. They had never been to Baghdad before. Even if they had maps and been shown pictures of various buildings in Baghdad it would still be easy to get disoriented as to where you are in relation to a particular building that you've never seen on the ground before.

The tank crew probably had no idea they were looking at the Palestine hotel. They were being shot at by snipers from somewhere. They looked around and saw someone on a balcony looking at them with binoculars. A spotter for a sniper perhaps? So they send a HEAT round up his ass. And tragically it turns out to be a reporter. And tragically it turns out to be the Palestine hotel that they shot at from across the river.

I understand the anger. I don't understand why all of these idiots have to spin this into a lush conspiracy theory. The idea that US soldiers would knowingly shoot at Journalists on purpose, like its some wild f*cking Hollywood movie is an irresponsible and unjustified accusation.

I think it makes journalists feel more important when they make up these conspiracy theories. It makes them feel militarily significant when they delude themselves into the grandiose thinking that the US would spend our precious ammo trying to kill them in revenge for one reason or another.

-- LD

[ Parent ]

yeah, blame the victims (3.00 / 4) (#204)
by Viliam Bur on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 07:13:10 AM EST

I think it makes journalists feel more important when they make up these conspiracy theories. It makes them feel militarily significant when they delude themselves into the grandiose thinking that the US would spend our precious ammo trying to kill them in revenge for one reason or another

What a f*cked up world! So many people who desire to be killed by Americans... and so few ammo. And most of those guys look like terrorists from 30 meters.

Maybe everything was only an accident, and those guys from 9/11 also only wanted to fly above twins to take a nice look at the city, but... well, airplanes are more difficult to ride than camels, so they made a mistake. And of course Americans made up some conspiracy theories to make them feel more important.

[ Parent ]

Taking a good look (3.85 / 7) (#118)
by wiredog on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:56:08 PM EST

takes time. Time you don't have if someone's pointing an anti-tank missile at you. And the optics on those missile launchers do look rather like TV cameras. For many of the missiles, they are TV cameras.

Wilford Brimley scares my chickens.
Phil the Canuck

[ Parent ]
Why not? (2.16 / 18) (#98)
by SvnLyrBrto on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:18:46 PM EST

> wouldn't even think of shooting a journalist on purpose.

You people already stated months ago, and quite openly, your intention to murder inconvinent reporters. Why should I, or anyone else, believe that this reporter's murder, or those in the Palestine hotel, were anything other than the threats issued to Kate Adie being put into motion?

Hell, forget reporters and civilians in Iraq, even. Your bloodthirsty lot has shown itself all too anxious to shoot down innocent civilians right here in the united states. So why should anybody believe that your intentions are rosy anywhere else?

Make your protests of "justice" in the military when it *IS* a fact that EVERY soldier who fired on this, or any other reporter, or ANY civilian, *IS* doing thirty to life in pound-me-in-the-ass federal prison.

Until then, kindly fuck off and die.

cya,
john

Imagine all the people...
[ Parent ]

I don't think that's the case. (5.00 / 1) (#322)
by Your Mom on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 04:31:23 PM EST

Targeting reporters, and warning them that if they transmit from a war zone they may be taken under fire are two completely different things.

It helps to read just a little bit more than the sensationalist headlines.

--
"As far as I'm concerned, Osama bin Laden can eat a dick." -trhurler
[ Parent ]
look (2.47 / 21) (#82)
by turmeric on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:22:27 PM EST

saddam hussein gased his own people.

also they already killed a bunch of reporters in the reporter hotel a few months ago. i guess its a slow news day.

'today, us troops killed reporter', thats like saying 'today, a dog chased a cat'

Kind of a lacklustre performance, eh? (5.00 / 3) (#139)
by LilDebbie on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:25:35 PM EST

I expect better of you, turmy.

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

[ Parent ]
how about you perform? (5.00 / 6) (#167)
by turmeric on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 11:10:49 PM EST

i never saw you write a goddamn funny word! lets see some of your shit? im tired of propping up k5 on my laurels!

[ Parent ]
touche (5.00 / 2) (#245)
by LilDebbie on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:39:21 PM EST

I'm afraid my trolls (most of them, anyhow) are too close to the truth for me to really make great mirth. I apologize for berating you. Know that you are still the greatest troll to dwell on k5, making you the best troll on the internet.

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

[ Parent ]
Common Sense (3.78 / 14) (#88)
by wij on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 12:35:56 PM EST

Don't run around with a shoulder-mounted camera, that could be confused for an RPG, in a warzone. Get something smaller, that can't be confused for a weapon.

Sure, you could be an idiot, and comment about how a camera and an RPG don't look anything alike, based on pictures taken from 5 feet away; but the soldier and this guy weren't 5 feet apart. Additionally, the soldier and the cameraman were facing each other, making it even more difficult to differentiate the camera from an RPG.

"I am an intellectual of great merit, yet I am not adequately compensated for this by capitalism; this is the reason for my opposition to it."

Read the article (3.40 / 10) (#104)
by hex11a on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:53:14 PM EST

They had been there for a while. The balance is on the soldier to check that it is a weapon, not the camera man to show it isn't. Wouldn't it be convenient for soldiers though if the press were scared to videotape what they were doing?

Hex

[ Parent ]

LOL! (3.91 / 12) (#115)
by DDS3 on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:52:25 PM EST

You've obviously never been a soldier or know anyone that is.  How many more US soldiers do you want to have killed?  It's this exact logic that got so many killed, early on.  This is why the rules were changed.

It's a war zone.  Only an idiot thinks they are going to be safe there.  Even after coming to terms with the fact that you can get killed any second, you're greatly increasing the chance anytime you have an object which is shoulder mounted (AA-missile, RPG, camera).  Police shoot people because they have an object which looked like a gun.  You think soldiers, which get shot at day to day, are going to take a second chance with something that looks like an RPG?  Keep in mind, police encounters generally happen at much shorter ranges, with much less stress, and generally are not being shot at all the time.

Accidents happen.  Period.  That doesn't make it better.  That doesn't bring him back to life, but it's a fact.  If you honestly think that US soldiers are running around trying to kill journalists, you're crazy.

Next time you think you have such a great idea, ask your self something.  Would you be willing to run up to someone that you think has an RPG?  A machine gun?  Grenades?  Police wouldn't.  Anyone sane wouldn't.

You're on crack!


[ Parent ]

I'm on crack? (3.66 / 9) (#145)
by hex11a on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:53:13 PM EST

War zone? No shots had been fired around there for a while. You can't just shoot someone because you think they have an RPG you have to be sure. They are now PEACE KEEPERS. I didn't accuse them of wanting to kill journalists, but accidents should NOT happen like that. They are performing the role of the police now - how many more policemen do you want killed if you say they can't shoot anyone they think might have a gun that turns out to be a wallet, golf club or anything else? Sure it was an accident, but saying "well, accidents will happen, they shouldn't have been there" is saying that the journalists shouldn't watch what the army do. The soldier should be court martialled.

I'm not a soldier, for the precise reason that I wouldn't be willing to risk my life in a position like this. They chose to be soldiers, and it's part of the job. Not a nice job, but when a policeman shoots you for holding a threatening wallet, I think you'll understand.

Hex

[ Parent ]

OT (3.40 / 5) (#164)
by hex11a on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:33:28 PM EST

DDS3 you're new here so I'll presume you don't know, but it is considered bad form to rate something that's in reply to one of your comments, especially to rate it low - some people get offended by it. I don't really care, but just a word to the wise, lest you should inadvertently annoy someone else.

Hex

[ Parent ]

For the record (3.00 / 4) (#313)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 01:23:29 PM EST

I'm not new here.  I rated your statements according to the quality and accuracy of it's content.

Needless to say, most of your content is more or less worthless.


[ Parent ]

OK you're not new (2.33 / 3) (#330)
by hex11a on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 06:20:06 PM EST

Sorry, I thought you were. Generally, however, rating comments isn't done by people actually arguing. I guess you're trolling? If so, well done - you got me.

Hex

[ Parent ]

LOL! Again! (3.66 / 3) (#333)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:23:48 PM EST

You mean the person that actually seems to know the facts and has a fair understanding of what's going on is trolling!  Brillant deduction!  Wow!  I'm floored!

Wonderful....I bow to how well you troll...very rarely am I ever suckered in.

You got me...are one of the best I've ever seen at playing dumb and ignorant.  And the part about calling me a troll.  Even better.  Bravo!  The really funny part is, seems there's no lack of people here that are willing to buy into your BS.  LOL!  Bravo!  Bravo!  King of trolls!  I solute you!

[ Parent ]

You've done it all (2.00 / 4) (#335)
by Bjorniac on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:50:36 PM EST

right down to name calling and low rating anyone who has the audacity to disagree in this debate. This site seems to have some great stuff going on, and you seem eager to kill it. Enough of you. I'll use my first ever K5 comment to say FOAD troll.
Freedom for RMG! Join the Jihad...
[ Parent ]
I'll bite... (5.00 / 1) (#337)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 09:02:07 PM EST

Actually, check my profile....I have no problem rating a good argument, even if I disagree.  You'll find my ratings go back a fair bit.  On the other hand, I'm not using an alias accounts to troll and post garbage like you are hex11.  All of which, you could of checked prior to "planting" the BS article about me being new.  Total garbage...but an excellent troll!

Look at the good stuff.  They are atleast agreeing on a set of basic facts.  Facts which time and time again, you've ignored and then used your alias acounts to continue to hide.  How sad.  Even comments which only an idiot would disagree with, you've blindly hunted and modded me down.  What a troll Hex.  You're sad.  It's obvious you have some serious issues you need to work out.  Coming to a forum such as this isn't going to help build your ego up.  Who do you think you're fooling?  I can assue you, sadly, you're only fooling your self and a couple of lessor minds which seem to buy into your garbage.

Check my profile.  In the past, I've even politely agreed to disagree with people because they atleast knew and understood what the facts are.  You, on the other hand, are simply the king of trolls.  Grow up and actually try to contribute something to the forums here.  If you are actually trying, which I doubt, then plain and simple, you shouldn't post.  You're clearly not equiped in any fashion.  Look how childish you are.  You ignore facts, troll, and complain that you've been caught being the child you are.

The only reason you're even posting with this account is because I busted you using this account as only of your trolling devices.  Until now, this account wasn't even used for posted...only trolling.  You're a sad, tiny little person.


[ Parent ]

Begone (1.00 / 1) (#352)
by Bjorniac on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 02:54:16 PM EST

Me and hex11a are definitely different - I've never even met him (her?). But if you think different, do so.
Freedom for RMG! Join the Jihad...
[ Parent ]
Yes, crack pipe... (2.57 / 7) (#175)
by DDS3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:48:19 AM EST

     No shots had been fired around there for a while

You clearly are not on current events.  I have a friend, that I consider a brother, over there right now.  He flies escort, among other duties, because our soldiers are shot at almost every day, if not every day.  It is a very dangerous place right now!

Since you don't seem to know the most basic state of the country, it's safe to ignore the rest of your post.

And just FYI, it is a warzone!  Fact!

     I didn't accuse them of wanting to kill journalists, but accidents should NOT happen like that.

Should not! Agreed!  Until we can replace all human soldiers with perfect robots, it really doesn't matter if it should or should not.  Simple fact remains, as I've said already, it did and will continue to happen.  It even happens with our own soldiers.  That doesn't justify it.  It's just part of being human.

     They are performing the role of the police now

They are police AND SOLDIER and representative and so on and so on.  Simple fact remains, they did the right thing!  What would of happened if they had not shot and it had been an RPG?  Shame on him and anyone that would of been near a target.  They did EXACTLY as they have been trained to do.  They did EXACTLY as they have been TOLD to do.

     Sure it was an accident, but saying "well, accidents will happen, they shouldn't have been there" is saying that the journalists shouldn't watch what the army do.

That's not what I said.  If you run around with a toy gun at a bank while it's being robbed, and you get shot, don't get too upset.  As more details have become available on this, it's all too clear that the inital report was completley biased.  The soldiers did the right thing.  They did exactly as they were supposed to do.  While sad, that type of response saves many more lives than it costs.

     The soldier should be court martialled.

I see you found your crack pipe again.  That's one of the dumbest things I can remember reading here in a very long time.  It was an accident and soldier had very good reason to fire.  Court martial someone that did their duty?  Court martial someone that followed their training?  Court martial someone that followed orders as set down by the President?  LOL.  Take another puff...

    They chose to be soldiers, and it's part of the job.

You're right!  They did choose this life.  You're right, it is their job to engage targets which appear to have RPG's.  They have strict orders to shoot first and ask questions later because far too many soldiers were dying from doing exactly what you're asking.  Contrary to your very odd position, it is NOT their duty, nor their job to go brainlessly be killed.  Clearly you'd feel better about this if 10 US soldiers had died from a RPG attack rather than it being a simple, yet harsh, mistake.

You do understand that the soldiers that shot him did not even know that they were journalists?  Sad by true.  You do understand that they were part of a convoy which has just previously come under fire?  Wow!  Facts are such a wonderful thing.

While it is very sad that mistakes like this happen, as long as humans have to pull triggers, mistakes will continue to happen.  People like you that say, "court martial", simply make me want to puke.  You make sick from disgust.


[ Parent ]

I see (3.16 / 6) (#238)
by hex11a on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:26:43 AM EST

I'm the one on crack when I think it's terrible that an innocent and clearly marked journalist gets killed in a non-combat area, in what you call a "war zone" despite your president, the biggest proponent of the war, saying it isn't? People who say "xxx - FACT!" just state this because they have no conclusive evidence to back their claim. And saying "you're on crack!" isn't exactly a convincing debate. = You also claim "they did the right thing" - I think you're delusional - killing a non threatening journalist is the right thing?

Do you know what a "court martial" is? It's a trial. Do you think that there should be an investigation, or can people just get killed without one?

The journalist wasn't holding a "toy gun" or a toy rocket launcher. He was a clearly identified journalist carrying a clearly identified camera, and got shot by a soldier in a clearly well defended tank.

And to the soldiers. Yes, it is their job to ask questions, and protect the lives of citizens. If this means that 10 or so soldiers die instead of a group of 17 weaponless civilians, then that's what happens I'm afraid. If you don't want this, don't sign up for the job. They're not drafted you know - they knew the risks when they signed up, probably a lot better than any journalists there, and certainly better than any civilians who didn't have the choice of being there. I'm glad you feel sick. That's how I felt when I found that soldiers had been shoting innocent civilians - yes it's a mistake, but this should not happen with professional soldiers. Death is a risk a soldier must face when he joins up. For that reason and many others I chose not to. Think how many iraqi civilians didn't join up but ended up in a war zone. Did they volunteer to have their lives threatened for carrying cameras?

The soldiers were under fire before. Big deal. If a policeman is shot at at 3pm, he can't just shoot the next person he sees who looks threatening. He's trained to do his job. If the soldiers haven't been trained for this and can't do this, they should not be there.

Hex

[ Parent ]

...puff....puff.... (3.40 / 5) (#273)
by DDS3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:14:54 PM EST

You need to learn how to read and understand.  The president never declared the end of war.  It simply stated it was the end of major conflict.  The area is very much a war zone.

The rest of your ignorance can be easily ignored as it's very much uninformed.  I highly recommend you not only learn about the subjects that you post about, but that you learn how to be reasonable.

I have an idea...let's kill and court martial every US soldier over there just so you can feel better about your ignorant self.

What a joke you are...

...taking another puff I see....

LOL...I can't help but laugh at your ignorance...it's so very, very sad....

...yet again I'm left disgusted by you...you really need to learn more about the world before you comment further.  For us to even debate, I'd have to educate you.  I don't feel like writing a book teaching you somthing that you should of already bothered to learn before you even posted here.  I can't help but read your posts and want to cry.  They are so very ignorant and sad.

puke

You need to learn more about human behavior and even the most basic elements of soldiering.  Any and all of your comments seem to assume that there is such a thing a perfect humans.  As such, again, we're left ignoring your ignorance.  Funny how you seem willing to judge things which you more or less offered you knew you were not equiped to handle.  How very sad.

[ Parent ]

Probably feeding the troll... (3.33 / 6) (#291)
by jandev on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:41:47 PM EST

...But anyway.

Let me get this straight:
hex11a tries to get a point across. He may not be Mark Twain, but it seems coherent English to me, he didn't insult anybody, refrained from scathology, and seemed to be on topic.

You rated him "1".

Given your reply, I guess you don't agree with him. Fair enough, but that's what we do here: I say something, you reply. Not "I say something, then you go and go around my back telling other people I'm a deranged Tourette sufferer", which IMHO that 1 rating was.

You top it all up with a reply that's nothing more than a contentless ad hominem attack that sadly didn't refrain from scathology.

Sad. But I guess IHBT.

JdV!!

"ENGINEERS" IS NOT POSSESSIVE. IT'S A PLURAL. YOU DO NOT MOTHERFUCKING MARK A PLURAL WITH A COCKSUCKING APOSTROPHE. APOSTROPHES ARE FOR MARKING POSSESSIVES IN THIS CASE. IF YOU WEREN'T A TOTAL MORON, YOU WOULD BE SAYING SOMETHING LIKE "THE CIVIL ENGINEER'S SMALL PENIS". SEE THAT APOSTROPHE? IT'S A HAPPY APOSTROPHE. IT'S NOT BEING ABUSED BY SOME GODDAMN SHIT-FOR-BRAINS IDIOT WITH NO EDUCATION. - Nimey
[ Parent ]

I rated based on quality of content (3.00 / 4) (#311)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 01:12:33 PM EST

His content was sadly misinformed and adding nothing to the debate.  Even the most basic of facts he had wrong.  Anything which was being pointed out to him to set him straight, was promptly ignored.

In short, he's either totally ignorant or a troll.  In either case, he was rated accordingly.  In either case, he should of known enough not to comment further.  I have little tolerance for people that things like "court martial" yet obviously don't even have a grasp of the most basic facts.  He was rated accordingly.

BTW, it's "scatology", that I assume you're talking about...the study of scat?

[ Parent ]

Yeah, he got me good too (2.33 / 3) (#331)
by hex11a on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 06:27:36 PM EST

And followed it up by accusing me of trolling - a quality act. It's sad really, it seemed to start as a good debate, yet it seems to have descended into name calling etc, and I'm afraid I might have followed. Ah well - IHBT too

Hex

[ Parent ]

duh (3.57 / 7) (#156)
by Fred_A on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:42:18 PM EST

How many more US soldiers do you want to have killed?
This is the excuse I see everywhere. Which implies that it's better to just shoot at any imaginary menace, killing tens of innocents minding their own business than to risk having a US soldier fired upon.

It's a war zone.
Except it's not. Doubleyou said it himself.

Fred in Paris
[ Parent ]

Like I said... (2.83 / 6) (#162)
by DDS3 on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:25:56 PM EST

   Except it's not. Doubleyou said it himself.

Except, that doesn't change the reality.  You do understand how that there are politics and then there is the real world.  Go back to your pipe.  It is a warzone; militarized zone if you really want to be anal.  People shoot at our soldiers on a regular basis.  Seen the news recently?  There are a lot of scum bags running around over there.  Simple fact is, you don't even seem to have a grasp of reality.

    This is the excuse I see everywhere.  Which implies that it's better to just shoot at any imaginary menace...

Hardly imaginary.  You do realize that people have grenades, machine guns, and rocket launchers?  You do understand that there are active enemy forces running around the country?  You do understand that convoys are still being fired on?  You do understand that soldiers are still being fired at on a daily basis?  Imaginary?  You're on crack!  That is not to say, this was not a mistake!  Clearly it was!  Until you've bothered to place your self into their shoes, you come off sounding like a rambling...


[ Parent ]

Threats (3.60 / 5) (#243)
by Fred_A on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:48:57 AM EST

Hardly imaginary. You do realize that people have grenades, maHardly imaginary. You do realize that people have grenades, machine guns, and rocket launchers? chine guns, and rocket launchers?
So ? Maybe they could shoot at the people w/ the machine guns then ?

A camera *is* an imaginary menace. And it's not the first time this thing has happened either.

The fact that there are some people who actively oppose the presence of the US troops there doesn't give said troops a licence to kill whoever they please.

The usual doctrine for that kind of peacekeeping in a hostile zone mission is not to fire unless fired upon. But of course it's better to kill a few hundred extra innocents than to risk those so precious US citizens. Bah

Fred in Paris
[ Parent ]

your question (4.00 / 8) (#163)
by martingale on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:31:40 PM EST

You've obviously never been a soldier or know anyone that is. How many more US soldiers do you want to have killed? It's this exact logic that got so many killed, early on. This is why the rules were changed.
As many as it takes for the US to leave ASAP. It's patently obvious that life for Iraqis is on hold until the US leaves, at which point either a civil war will start, or a strong religious body will unite the country under harsh, but welcome rule.

With its humanitarian priorities firmly set on oil, the US is not stopping the current reprisals between members of the population with a grudge against each other. In fact, it seems that this is being encouraged, especially through such tactics as paying people for hunting each other down as former Hussein loyalists. Once the US leaves, the new reprisals will be levied in Iraq against all the US collaborators, no longer because of past offenses under Saddam's rule, but because of present offenses under George's rule.

Perhaps you think that by staying five or more years in Iraq, the country will calm down and the US can leave without an eruption? That seems more ridiculous every day. More likely, there will be a new fight and you can be sure that those oil contracts will be repudiated again, as Bush has just done (executive order 13303).

If Americans want to do something good, they shoud fire the prez and purge the upper echelons of the current administration, who will otherwise perpetuate these idiotic policies unless the next president is exceptionally strong.

[ Parent ]

how many? (2.83 / 6) (#205)
by Viliam Bur on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 07:19:42 AM EST

How many more US soldiers do you want to have killed?

How many more civilians / reporters / etc in Iraq do you want to have killed by US soldiers?



[ Parent ]
None! (3.40 / 5) (#223)
by DDS3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:22:04 AM EST

But it's much, much, much easier for civilians to not put themselves into danger or harms way than it is for a soldier.


[ Parent ]
Bullshit (2.85 / 7) (#240)
by hex11a on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:29:39 AM EST

They live there. They didn't chose to be there. How many knew that they were sharing a hotel building with someone with a gun when it was shelled? How many could have avoided that with what they knew? You clearly have never lived in an occupied territory or known anyone who did, or you wouldn't talk such rot.

Hex

[ Parent ]

More junk (3.00 / 4) (#310)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 12:57:11 PM EST

   They live there. They didn't chose to be there.

Which has absolutely zero to do with anything...it's not like we're talking about a Nazi occupation here.  We're talking US troops.  That means, aside from serious mistakes, civilians are not going to be hurt or killed.

Look at the issues which have caused civilians to die.  Hmm....flooring their car at a baracade.  Honking and speeding up to a truck load of soldiers with your brights on.  There have been a number of other cases where the civilians clearly placed themselves into harms way.  Not only that, but they were begging to be killed by pulling inanely stupid stunts.  Sad, but true.  People that go about their daily activities are more than likely not going to be killed, injured, or even fired at.  In other words, it's very easy for civilians to stay safe.  On the other and, people are actively seeking out US soldiers to kill them.

We're not talking about needing serious brain power to figure out, by far, who is at a higher risk of being killed.  Throw in the fact that there are bounties for each US soldier killed, that's makes it even more obvious.

You really do understand very little about the facts, humans, soldiering, or the current state of things.  Talk about unqualified to even comment...but that sure won't stop you.

[ Parent ]

Unqualified to comment? (3.00 / 4) (#327)
by hex11a on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 05:57:13 PM EST

Gee thanks, didn't realise that K5 had become a fascist state. The fact is, too many serious mistakes are happening. Let's look at civilians dying: Civilians protesting the occupation, civilians happening to be in the same building as someone shooting at US troops. It was easy for civilians not to die in Nazi germany, they just had to go along with party rule. Obviously by being jewish, they just weren't using the brain power to avoid being killed! Wake up and smell the coffee here, innocent people are dying by the day for doing nothing wrong. I don't care that there are bounties on US soldiers - they can quit, they didn't have to sign up in the first place! The civilians chose none of this.

Hex

[ Parent ]

Modding self up...cool! Excellent Troll you are! (5.00 / 1) (#339)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 09:40:11 PM EST

I love how you're using all of your alias accounts to mod your self up and mod me down.  What a child you are.  So afraid that people will learn the truth.  If you factor out your mods from your accounts, it's funny how most people agree, or at least respect my postings.  Odd how the same can't be said about yours without you having to manipulate it.  LOL...how sad...lol...

Last post to you, Mr. King of the Trolls!

[ Parent ]

Some people (2.00 / 3) (#341)
by DogBear on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 12:13:55 AM EST

Yes, some people just can't stand to have comments that they disagree with rated as popular.

[ Parent ]
You're one to talk...(n/t) (1.00 / 1) (#353)
by baron samedi on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 03:00:28 PM EST


"Hands that help are better by far than lips that pray."- Robert G. Ingersoll
[ Parent ]
LOL (none / 0) (#348)
by hex11a on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 12:50:42 PM EST

I haven't the time, nor the inclination.

Hex

[ Parent ]

Wait... (1.00 / 1) (#349)
by hex11a on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 01:03:23 PM EST

This is coming from DDS3 who seems remarkably similar to lorddogma and DogBear, by the looks of things. Suddenly all becomes clear.

Hex

[ Parent ]

lord Dogma here (3.00 / 1) (#356)
by lordDogma on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 09:07:23 PM EST

I can assure you that I'm not DSS or DogBear.

-- LD

[ Parent ]

Ridiculous (4.28 / 7) (#117)
by Demiurge on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:54:30 PM EST

If the US wanted the media out of Iraq, they would detain and deport and reporters that were found in Iraq, not let them all in and occasionally shoot one.

And no, it's not the soldier's job to triple check a perceived threat, it's the soldier's job to eliminate it. This raises questions about the ability of the military to act as peacekeepers and administrators on a large scale, the idea that the journalist was intentionally murdered is horseshit.

[ Parent ]
Scaring the Media (3.80 / 5) (#136)
by Krazor on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:06:31 PM EST

I would like to say for the record that i think this death was accidental but your statement doesn't work out...
"If the US wanted the media out of Iraq, they would detain and deport and reporters that were found in Iraq, not let them all in and occasionally shoot one."

Detain and Deport = Very Obvious, folks back home get suspicious, no positive news coverage from the likes of Fox.

Shoot one occasionally = Not Obvious, allows positive news reporting, while scaring the not so pro-USA reporters into keeping a lid on too many bad stories, allows folks back home to feel they are getting 'Fair and Balanced' view of war as they can actually 'see' what's going on.

Now, if I was a corrupt/evil/whatever General I would choose the second option. However, I'm not and neither are the people in the US military for the most part. So while I think the second option is most useful i think the idea of anyone from a democracy using it is is complete balderdash.

[ Parent ]
Problem (5.00 / 2) (#200)
by Wafiq Hamza on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:35:20 AM EST

How do you tell the difference between a Fox reporter and a reported for the BBC?

[ Parent ]
2 Ways (5.00 / 1) (#277)
by Krazor on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:39:57 PM EST

During the conflict I would give the offer for TV crews to be 'embedded' with my troops, therefore guarranteeing that pro-me news coverage is kept handy and on the correct side of the rifles. Anyone not wanting to be 'embedded' oviously isn't on my side.

After the conflict I would request that media reporters come and register with my troops so they can be a) protected and b)shown things worthy of news. Those who registered would get to follow the troops around, those who didn't would probably be those not giving positive news coverage anyway, and so the occasional one will be shot.

[ Parent ]
Sorry (3.66 / 6) (#146)
by hex11a on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:04:58 PM EST

I guess I was unclear, a couple of you have said that I think the journalist was intentionally killed. I don't. But I think the "What do you expect?" attitude is terrible. The soldiers have taken the country, and their job is now to keep the peacem under the eyes of the international community. If they can't keep the peace now that war is over, perhaps they shouldn't have invaded and destabilised the country in the first place.

Hex

[ Parent ]

I'm not convinced we can expect that (3.80 / 5) (#161)
by baron samedi on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:25:49 PM EST

from the US forces. They're in this horrible limbo right now. It should be peacekeeping, but it isn't. This could have been a just war, but it wasn't. The folks back home can't be bothered to care about them anymore, and they are getting tired, some of them have gotten badly sick, and they have to contend with an occupied populace who are becoming very disappointed with this new government they have and also don't have at the same time.

Of course this cameraman wasn't killed on purpose. I think to suggest otherwise is pretty lame. However, the soldiers are in the unenviable position of having to face an unknown number of assailants who all speak the language and know the lay of the land, among other things. This makes soldiers paranoid. Combine that with lack of sleep, shitty food, the heat, and the fact that some of them weren't trained for this, and yeah, people are going to get shot.

I'm afraid we're just going to have to suck it up and deal.
"Hands that help are better by far than lips that pray."- Robert G. Ingersoll
[ Parent ]

Re: (2.77 / 9) (#122)
by BeesTea on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:04:19 PM EST

"The balance is on the soldier to check that it is a weapon, not the camera man to show it isn't."

Interesting, you should probably contact the Red Cross and Red Cresent organizations. They seem to be under the impression they need to clearly mark their vehicles and such as non-combatants. Just imagine the money they'll save !

I can go ahead and contact the toy gun companies for you. They'll be pleased to know that they can start making replicas again.  Now that the police will be making sure they're real before they open fire. Or did this profound logic only apply to congressionaly aproved "war zones" ?

Go sell crazy somewhere else, we're all stocked up here.

[ Parent ]

Ridiculous (3.88 / 9) (#144)
by hex11a on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:50:39 PM EST

Red Cross mark vehicles during war. No war is currently on, the army are now policing the area. Do I have to mark myself as a non-weapon holder? Also, the journalists had already indicated that they were journalists to soldiers present. Go figure...

[ Parent ]
Re: Ridiculous (2.57 / 7) (#151)
by BeesTea on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:51:22 PM EST

Ahh, my bad, I wasn't sure if it needed to be New Improved Congressional brand war or if plain ol' shoot to kill generic brand was good enough.  I'll inform the troops that they can put their guns away.  You tell the Iraqi's doing the ambushing.

[ Parent ]
Bzzzt! Wrong! (3.37 / 8) (#184)
by lordDogma on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:45:31 AM EST

Also, the journalists had already indicated that they were journalists to soldiers present. Go figure...

Yes they indicated it to a few soldiers previously, but the convoy that shot at them had just arrived on scene. The troops in the convoy had no idea who they were. Next thing they know some guy is pointing what appears to be a shoulder fired rocket at them.

The author of this article left out a lot of details on purpose. He purposely tried to make it look like the soldiers who shot Mazen had been standing around him for half an hour. All of the news stories I read clearly indicated that a the convoy that killed Mazen had just arrived and Mazen got out of his car to film them.

I found it rather perplexing that the author went out of his way to make this story sound as if the engagement was done by soldiers who were already on scene.

-- LD

[ Parent ]

Do soldiers have radios? (2.50 / 6) (#239)
by hex11a on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:28:01 AM EST

Do they talk to one another? Good grief, modern technology is wonderful.

Hex

[ Parent ]

Radios (3.28 / 7) (#244)
by lordDogma on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:27:05 PM EST

Hex, You just proved beyond a reasonable doubt that you've never been in a military conflict before and have no concept of what its like, except from what you've learned from Hollywood.

Now put down that RAMBO DVD. That's NOT what war is like!

-- LD

[ Parent ]

Is that a no? -nt (2.50 / 6) (#248)
by hex11a on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:51:50 PM EST



[ Parent ]
in effect... yes... (4.80 / 5) (#250)
by Run4YourLives on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:13:11 PM EST

Here, let me educate a little, instead of just being condesending a la the parent comment....

Think about how large an army is. Think about all those radios... now think about how messy it would be to have 100+ radios on the same channel...

If unit A is operating in an area, and they're on channel 4550, no one else is besides their parent unit (A+). Each unit on the battle field has a minimum of two frequencies... on to talk to their parent, the other to talk to the sub-units.

If unit A wishes to pass information on to Unit B, or most likely, some unnamed unit that's following them, since odds are they probably have no clue whos following them, if anyone at all, they simply inform A+.

If things are working right unit A+ deems said information important enough to pass on to all their other child units (I wouldn't personally deem reporters on the side of the road important enough under normal circumstances... they may be under other orders though).

Now, what happens if unit B belongs to parent B+... which in turn is related to unit A+ only through their parent unit, AA. Like hell radio traffic about 4-5 reporters is going to travel all over the place like that... radio is not for chit-chat, because if somebody Actually needs it, say, to call for a medivac for the journalist they just shot, they'll never get through the constant bickering about other journalists standing by other roads...

Now, keep in mind I've only mentioned 4 units, using upwards of 2 frequencies each to communicate with each other... now do you see why the parent poster dismissed you?

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

Thanks for giving reasons (2.60 / 5) (#272)
by hex11a on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:13:25 PM EST

Truth is, I was trying to be annoying there - frankly I'm insulted by the utter crap being expressed that only people who've been in combat can possibly have the right to express their opinion. I understand that there are accusations of people being armchair generals, but I think the attitude of shoot first, ask questions later has no place in a peacekeeping operation.

Now personally, I would have thought with the wonders of modern technology etc that each unit moving into an area would be given information gathered by units already there to make sure they recognise each other etc, an action coordinated by central command. Said unit already in position could then transmit information including the fact that civilians are present, and the current situation is not hostile. That way from a central command which is in contact with all units you can coordinate groups in such a way that civilians don't get shot - look at it from the other point of view: Does a journalist have to identify himself to each set of soldiers that appear, or should it be sufficient to identify yourself to one and let them pass the message on?

Hex

[ Parent ]

Couple of points... (5.00 / 4) (#278)
by Run4YourLives on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:42:33 PM EST

but I think the attitude of shoot first, ask questions later has no place in a peacekeeping operation.

Couldn't agree with you more. Feel free to read some of my other comments in this article for my opinions on that.

On the same point however armchair generals who express opinions like "A camera looks nothing like an RPG!!!" or "The US did this on purpose!" are just as riduculously annoying.

As to your second point... technology isn't really the answer, especially in peacekeeping situations. The US has systems (although, very new, and hardly widespread) that allow for the complete battlefield awareness that you are looking for... problem is, the whole is only as good as the sum of it's parts.

A few issues to consider:

  1. Central Command - It has been demonstrated many times in history that armies are more effective when Command and Control (C&C) is distributed. There are many reasons for this, not the least of which being speed. Rapidly changing situations call for rapid reaction... It's simply too slow to have a Commander micro-manange several battlefeilds at once, even in the age of information.
  2. Information Overload - A lot of the newer systems in testing are discovering that the soldier is being given too much information... not too little. Sometimes, soldiers are so overwhelmed with information (besides the overwhelming nature of the battlefield itself) that it hinders the completion of their task.
  3. Too much technology - The US is espescially bad for relying too much on all their little gadgets. Instead of sweeping an area with thermal viewers, soldiers should learn to recognize "soft signals"... Are kids around? Are people acting normal? Is it "too quiet"? Do they feel like they're being "watched"? These are all things considered essential in other armies, but they are too often neglected by the US.


It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]
No videos! (3.33 / 9) (#155)
by Fred_A on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:38:43 PM EST

The soldiers certainly don't want anybody videotaping what they are doing since they threatened to fire at the other reporters who were there if they didn't immediately stop their cameras.

Normally I'd believe the problem to be that the US soldiers are trigger happy as they usually are. In this case however where the presence of journalists had been clearly established with that unit just an hour before, when the shot were fired from a tank, which has optics through which you could have read the serial number of the camera. It seems to me that either the guy responsible for the firing is mental and therefore a menace and should be shipped home or it was a voluntary act.

Fred in Paris
[ Parent ]

Introducing the new AK-47 shaped camera (3.50 / 4) (#191)
by wij on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:39:53 AM EST

The balance is on the soldier to check that it is a weapon, not the camera man to show it isn't.

In that case, I have a truckload of AK-47 shaped video cameras that I would like to sell to journalists in Iraq.

"I am an intellectual of great merit, yet I am not adequately compensated for this by capitalism; this is the reason for my opposition to it."
[ Parent ]

Don't be obtuse (3.00 / 4) (#241)
by hex11a on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:31:53 AM EST

OK, an object made deliberately to look like a weapon is different, but a camera? I don't think that journalists deliberately want to look like they're holding rocket launchers.

Hex

[ Parent ]

ridiculous (3.00 / 4) (#290)
by wij on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:36:08 PM EST

OK, an object made deliberately to look like a weapon is different, but a camera?

You said it yourself, "The balance is on the soldier to check that it is a weapon, not the camera man to show it isn't." Why would it matter if the camera was deliberately made to resemble a weapon or just happens to look like one?

The fact that you quibbled with my comment shows that you don't even really stand by what you said, or, at least, you have a primitive understanding as to how ridiculous it was. The cameraman who got shot is not completely blameless for his own death.

"I am an intellectual of great merit, yet I am not adequately compensated for this by capitalism; this is the reason for my opposition to it."
[ Parent ]

It does (3.00 / 4) (#307)
by hex11a on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 11:57:28 AM EST

It shows that you're a nitpicking fool who doesn't understand the basis of the argument, if you don't know the difference between something made to deliberately mislead someone and something that just happens to resemble something else if seen from the right angle etc. Two glances and you can tell a camera from an RPG. It's a case of taking a reasonable amount of time to assess the situation, which I think the soldier did not do. If something is an imitation AK-47 or whatever and looks to all intents and purposes like one when given more than just an "oh shit, it's coming for us" glance then you have a case. The balance is on the soldier then, if you want me to word things so precisely than even your limited understanding can interpret is, to make a reasonable assessment of the situation. And I don't think that mistaking a TV camera for an RPG is a reasonable assessment, before you take that line.

Hex

[ Parent ]

This was not an accident... (4.21 / 23) (#96)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:01:29 PM EST

Let's get a few things straight...
  1. I am completely against US involvment in this war.
  2. George Bush is an idiot.
  3. US soldiers DO NOT go around purposely killing journalists.
Dana's driver, Munzer Abbas, claimed that Dana had been deliberately shot. "There were many journalists around. They knew we were journalists," said Abbas. "This was not an accident."

Two things... this was an extremely stupid thing for Mr. Abbas to say, as it is absolutely ridiclous and unfounded. He has, however, just witnessed his friend being killed, and is understandably upset.

The jounalist who reported it, as well as the author of this story are being quite irresponsible IMO.

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown

Meta-ish comment (4.40 / 10) (#105)
by nusuth on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 01:54:17 PM EST

This is why I get so upset when people say Iraq bussiness is done with and should not be discussed anymore or just "-1 Iraq". It is not done yet, country is still occupied and there are still a lot of political decisions to make, support or protest.

Prop-agenda: controlling what we think about (none / 0) (#371)
by atreyu42 on Sun Aug 24, 2003 at 08:10:36 PM EST

From Brian Eno's article:

It isn't just propaganda any more, it's 'prop-agenda '. It's not so much the control of what we think, but the control of what we think about.


[ Parent ]
Doesn't sound like much. . . (2.33 / 6) (#108)
by Fantastic Lad on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:12:29 PM EST

more than a story about stress in the ranks.

Serving as military, or working as a journalist in Iraq is a hard, stressful job. The heat alone is enough to make you crazy. --Here's a link to the first two emails in a series entitled, "Dispatch from Iraq" by a journalist doing a tour of the latest victim of US policy. It gives a fairly detailed and honest-seeming impression of how things are over there. People sound stressed, and frankly, I wouldn't even be surprised if the soldier, reeking of frustration and misery did shoot the journalist on purpose.

Either way, it was a very sad thing. Although, this doesn't appear to me to be in quite the same category as the state-programmed killings being perpetrated by the Israeli military upon the Palestinian civilian population, the Palestinian media, international aid workers, and frankly, any of the, now countless, people who have been unfortunate enough to be standing between the tan dirt of the 'promised land' and the gun barrels of the Jewish-supremacist military. THAT is evidence of a much more advanced mind-programming job, whereas The US soldiers, for the most part as far as I can tell, are much less directed in their efforts.

The US soldiers are just hapless pawns in Iraq who don't really have any belief that what they are doing is right. --Though I suspect many are encumbered with some level of racism directed against the Arabic people, (views which are probably becoming increasinly cemented on deep gut/fear levels because of the ever-mounting threat to life and limb US soldiers face today in Iraq). --Like Vietnam, it's mind-numbingly hot, it's terrifying, dangerous and senseless, and the US soldiers mostly just want to go home. (That's what you get for being dumb enough to sign up with the military in the first place. Dumb, dumb, dumb!)

--Though, there is certainly going to emerge a core of hardened psychos in the US ranks who enjoy the murder. An SS for a new age. But I suspect that the real hatred and murder of the Semites by US forces is rather a creeping monster which is building from frustration, and which can be whirled into flame by any new 'terrorist' activities in America. --The drudging, ineffectual efforts of the US military in the Middle East will continue to wear on people's patience, sucking us all deeper into an ever more intractable mess, that eventually the 'final solution' will arise from more from frustration than anything else. "Oh fuck it! It's such a fucking mess! Argh! Just wipe the whole thing out, ferfucksake! God I just want to go home! I HATE this place! I HATE these people!"

I notice that the noises from the conservative peanut gallery are becoming fewer as time progresses. Good for you! It takes real guts to admit when you've been had. People can't solve anything if they continually give power to their abusers by lying to themselves; trying to convince themselves that the obvious is not.

-FL

with a little help from a friend ??? (3.33 / 3) (#149)
by bars on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:41:00 PM EST

i just cant ignore it...
maybe you can help me with it (or get helped?) ?

first...you describe the Zionists as sons of the devil itself.
then ...you "suspect" ,or ... informe...about the elimination of the Semites (by th US).
the "legitimation" is.....homesick ????. (very not solid!).

now, the last paragraph is the most comfusing one, i can't be sure, wether it's real meaning is that it is going to be hell hard to you to recognize that "you've been bad" ? (by being implanted yourself and implant such "programming" ideas in other peoples minds), or that it is me who missed the meaning of the last sentence? (what is there to be solved and what is the lie?).

my guess is that both option are correct.
:)

who do we serve?
how come?

i really do wan't your honest coment to this.

with respect.

Bars.

(Bars is about to be an expert in the field of ...spiritual bars (depending on the avaluation of the mirculos TAO, ofcourse).

-----
Just ignore missspellings, thanks.
:)  
 

[ Parent ]

Answers. . . (2.66 / 3) (#190)
by Fantastic Lad on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:23:01 AM EST

first...you describe the Zionists as sons of the devil itself. then ...you "suspect" ,or ... informe...about the elimination of the Semites (by th US). the "legitimation" is.....homesick ????. (very not solid!).

Well, you have to keep in mind that the directives for all military actions come from above, while those who actually pull the triggers are generally in their early twenties. Kids, really. The kids just do as they're told, and yes, they are all homesick and miserable, and uninformed, and yes, many of them probably even still believe that their cause is good. --I certainly knew zip when I was that age, and I was ten times more aware of things than most of the kids I was at school with. It's very, very easy to program kids with mis-directed ideals which are designed to serve the Masters of the Universe.

Now the same goes for the Zionist activities; (young kids pulling the triggers, I mean). It's just that those kids have been programmed with a different and more violent flavor of propaganda. --They have been taught from birth that they are God's Chosen, that they are better than the rest of the world's population, and that on the scale of things, the Arab people rate just above 'Dog'.

But the programming itself comes down from on high.

Now as for my last paragraph. . .

I was making reference to the propaganda itself; the lies told by the government and the media which are making everybody go out and kill everybody else. The lie of 9-11 (Which was certainly NOT what the media claimed; it was a deliberate attack invented within the Pentagon itself. This is not theory anymore. It's where All the evidence points. All of it.) So in that case, when say that conservatives are slowly realizing that have been, 'Duped', I meant specifically that people are realizing that Bush lied to people, (Terrorists hiding in Iraq, WMDs, Iraqi liberation), all in order to get them into a bad war which will certainly not be, as he claimed, over in a few weeks.

It's also important to keep in mind that the illusion of different countries striving against one another is just that. An illusion. At the highest levels, there is only one 'government' directing the whole show, from China to the U.S. The overarching goal is to destroy certain ethnic groups, to carve down the world population to a few million, and (as the elite believe), to survive the coming catastrophes; comet, ice age, alien take-over and the reality shift.

-FL

[ Parent ]

this is clear....but.. (none / 0) (#231)
by bars on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:11:58 AM EST

....i was tring to point at some hidden "scheme" that is "radiating" from your post(s),at least every time it comes to the subject of the middle east.

to say that actions are inspierd unconsciously frome above, is one thing. but when you describe the actions of the Zionists or others....you are actually ACCUSING them.
to my ears it sounds more like dripping gasoline into the fire. (the fire that you are out against).

the reason and the action must be seperated very carfully in order to pass on a clear message, wich might open some eyes ,and channel a good and healing vibration. (if this is one's goal, ofcourse).

falling into the "rabbit hole" is eazy....
and , dogmatic "thinking" is a very fast spreading desease, isn't it?

Bars.

[ Parent ]

What?!?! (3.40 / 5) (#187)
by lordDogma on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:55:12 AM EST

The US soldiers are just hapless pawns in Iraq who don't really have any belief that what they are doing is right

I suspect many are encumbered with some level of racism directed against the Arabic people

there is certainly going to emerge a core of hardened psychos in the US ranks who enjoy the murder. An SS for a new age

As someone who served took part in OIF, I have to tell you that I almost spit my coffee out when I read this. Man, you have NO clue about the US military. None whatsoever. This has to be one of the dumbest things I've ever read.

-- LD

[ Parent ]

Fair enough. . . (2.25 / 4) (#188)
by Fantastic Lad on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:00:38 AM EST

I'm not in the military, and I was writing from a sleepy head that morning, so I was perhaps focusing overmuch on one perspective which I know DOES exist within the US forces.

I'm sure there are others.

It'd be appreciated if you could share some of what you have seen. Thanks.

-FL

[ Parent ]

I can tell you (5.00 / 2) (#224)
by RyoCokey on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:34:54 AM EST

...that if you read Fantastic Lad's back comments (Click on his user ID) that he's more than just a little delusional.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
Combat zones are dangerous, big surprise? (4.33 / 12) (#119)
by CENGEL3 on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 02:59:51 PM EST

Look, a combat zone is a dangerous place to be no matter who you are (soldier, civialian, reporter, etc). Unintentional casualties are alot more common then most people would suppose.

It's not entirely uncommon for soldiers to come under fire from thier own troops because of mistaken identity.

I highly doubt that many of you people who have expressed shock and disbelief that such accidental shootings are possible have ever even been on a battlefield let alone come under hostile fire and had to make such a life and death decision in conditions similar to the ones the soldiers in Iraq have to every day (for the record neither have I). However, I am ABSOLUTELY certain that such decisions are far less simple then most of you assume them to be.

Coalition soldiers in Iraq are called upon to make hundreds, even thousands of such decisions every day. By and large they make the right decisions. It is inevitable that mistakes such as this will happen occasionly.

Take an objective historical look at other conflicts and I think you will find there is nothing unique about the incidents that have occured in Iraq. It is NOT historicaly uncommon for reporters, civilians and freindly troops to come under freindly fire in combat zones.

For those that seem to point out that such incidents seem to occur much more frequently with U.S. troops then other coalition forces... you are partialy correct. However, bear in mind a couple of things. Firstly, the U.K. troops are deployed mostly around Basra and Southern Iraq where the civilian populace is more supportive of the mission. Secondly the U.S. deployment is much larger (and therefore less select) then the U.K. or Australian deployment. Ignoring even the differences in incidents due to the raw size of the deployments the U.S. is still likely to have a higher precentage of incidents adjusted for proportion. This is becauase the U.K. and Australia with a low level of troop deployment can afford to deploy only select, highly trained forces. The U.S. does not have that same luxuary.
Not all troops recieve the same level of training or train for the same types of missions. If the U.K. was forced to start deplying Home Guard units (do you guys still have those) rather then Royal Marine Commandos, I think you'd start to see the number of incidents involving U.K. troops start to skyrocket.

Part of what another poster wrote is also quite true (IMO) ... the U.S. troops (especialy the Army) largely aren't trained for occupation duties, they are trained to win battles using decisive firepower doctrine. Historicaly the U.S. hasn't had alot of occupation type missions (Vietnam, Phillipines, Central America). Prior to the 20th century the U.S. didn't even have many troop deployments on forgien soil, let alone hostile ones. Compare this to the U.K. for example with it's colonial emprie.

After Vietnam the primary mission of the U.S. Army was to defend Western Europe against Soviet attack. This mission was what all the armies training and doctrine were geared for. The mission, defending (presumably) freindly territory against a large conventional agressor is far different then the type of missions it has been getting assigned in the last decade or so.
Is it any wonder that thier performance in missions like the occupation of Iraq has run into some problems? Compare that to the U.K. for instance with it's long history in the occupation of Northern Ireland. This doesn't mean that the U.S. forces lack discipline, it just means their training hasn't been designed to meet the same goal.

The fact of the matter is that the U.S. millitary is STILL adjusting from it's cold war role to it's new role in the world. Those kind of transitions (for an organization of that size and nature) take alot longer to make then most people would assume.

partially agree... (4.71 / 7) (#133)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 05:50:24 PM EST

Although I agree somewhat with your comment, I think you're being a little too easy on US troops. :-)

Having served in the Canadian Army and worked with Forces from the UK (Army, Marines), US (Army Air Force and Marines), Denmark, Poland and Germany, I feel qualified to comment on the differences between such armies at the single soldier to company level.

With the exeption of the Polish, the US Army (IMO) by far displays the lowest level of soldering skills at the Private to Sgt./Warrant Officer Level. Of course this varies from unit to unit - with specialized units such as the 82nd, or Force Recon (Marines) - being noticably better. Yes, I did find a higher quality of soldier in conscripted  Danish units than in most US units I've seen.

Americans shine at higher levels, conducting large operations, combined operations, large scale logistic operations... things that will help you take over a country (or win a war on your own).

However, by and large, smaller operating units in American forces are dependent on their parent organization for command and control, and run for their technology when the shit hits the fan.

Unfortunatley for them, peacekeeping, or situations  similar to the "new face of war" (eg. Vietnam, Somalia, Bosnia, etc) rely heavily on those Corporals and Privates that are all too often too young, inexperienced and ill trained in American forces.

Quite simply: the Average Canadian, German or British Corporal is 23-26, 50% of the time has post secondary education, has one to two six month UN tours (5+ years in the army) and been in at least one confrontational situation.

The Average American Corporal is 18-20, 25% of the time has not graduated high school, has little to no overseas experience and ususally has less than 3 years of service.

Apples and Oranges really. It's always easy for a soldier to shoot his way out of a situation, espcially when he's got more firepower around his waist than the whole village he's in combined, but that isn't always desireable in the long run. Having troops that are educated and mature enough to understand this will get you a long way.

If one looks at the British in Bruma, and then the US in Vietnam, you can easily see how the styles differ.


It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

All well and good (5.00 / 1) (#137)
by LilDebbie on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:14:49 PM EST

Except then we won't have an army anymore. Simply put, there aren't enough soldiers of the calibre you describe to go around. Maybe we should start paying NCOs a buttload more?

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

[ Parent ]
no... (5.00 / 2) (#138)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:18:45 PM EST

You should be holding on to the ones that already come through your door... not sending most home after a few years and a college degree. :-)

A smaller army wouldn't support your economy as well though...

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

How long since you trained with U.S troops? (4.50 / 2) (#141)
by Francis on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:41:06 PM EST

I think your generalizations about the differences between junior enlisted members of the U.S. Army and comparable members of other nation's armies may hold merit, but I'm curious to know how long it has been since you interacted with American military forces. I am in the (U.S.) military, and it is worth pointing out that it has become increasingly common to find persons at the E-3 to E-5 level with a post-secondary degree. Entrance into the U.S. military has become increasingly competitive in the last 10 years, thanks in large part to Clintonian cutbacks. The recent enlistment surge brought about by 9/11 and knee-jerk budget increases may reverse this trend to some extent.

It is certainly a mistake to point people to Vietnam for an example of the "style" of the U.S. military, or for a flavor of the education and maturity of U.S. enlisted troops. Comparing the U.S. Army of today with the Vietnam era-U.S. Army is like comparing apples and oranges every bit as much as the comparison between U.S. troops and troops of other Western nations.

For instance, you state that 25% of U.S. junior enlisted do not have a high school diploma, which may have been true in 1974, but a diploma (or G.E.D.) is required for enlistment into every branch of the U.S. military today, and some do not even accept G.E.D.'s.

Again, I do not reject your generalizations outright, but I do think you are painting them with a bit too broad a brush, and perhaps are drawing them from outdated data...
_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Insults are the first and last arguments of fools. -- Unknown
[ Parent ]

1997 (none / 0) (#147)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:12:37 PM EST

which is getting to be farther and farther away all the time! :-)

It is certainly a mistake to point people to Vietnam for an example of the "style" of the U.S. military

I don't think so, since I was comparing it to the Brits in Burma at around the same period. Obviously, the US has progressed from there, which was quite evident in the first gulf war, but not in the areas I was stressing. I was using this example to highlight something the US still has difficulty with: winning the "hearts and minds". Sad considering it's a US concept.

Perhaps a better example would be to compare the actions of theses same two armies, as well as the Canadian Army in the former Yugoslav republic. However, because of the "lower" intensity of the situation... I didn't think it would be acurate enough...

You educated me on the GED qualification, however. This was certainly not the case when I inquired with a recruiter when I was 17 and still in High School...thanks for correcting me. I would ask though whether this is a qualification "written in stone" or simply a "nice to have" as is usually the case. Good on the US if it is indeed a requirement.


It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]

Diploma or equivalency is a must... (5.00 / 1) (#152)
by Francis on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:52:26 PM EST

Winning the heart and minds. Or as some have said: "winning the peace." I'm not really sure what this is? U.S. soldiers are still being killed, nearly daily. I would not ask of them the level of discretion that many here seem to be asking. These troops are facing an enemy who uses the camoflauge of civilians to fight his battles; they cannot afford the luxury of wooing these civilians too intently. I think there are many reasons why other nations tend to have fewer incidents as occupying forces, and one of them may well be that they are better at it than the United States (as you have asserted). Another may be that no other nation faces the level of resentment that the U.S. does (the reasons for that resentment would be a whole other discussion). I just don't think your comparison of the armies of the U.S. and U.K. 30 years ago is relevant to the situation.

I would ask though whether this is a qualification "written in stone" or simply a "nice to have" as is usually the case. Good on the US if it is indeed a requirement.

A relative of mine was recently turned away by the Marines because he only had a GED and did not have an actual diploma, and the USMC is rightly regarded as being the easiest service in which to enlist. The U.S. Coast Guard, on the other hand, which is rightly regarded as being the most difficult service in which to enlist, will accept a non-graduate as long as they can provide a GED (owing to the fact that the Coast Guard's new homeland security role has it growing faster than it can manage without somehow opening the enlistment turnstiles).

The long and the short is that it is not in stone for the entire DOD or DOHS, and each service has their own guidlines for enlistment, but at a minimum for every branch you must provide proof of GED to enlist. And it is not simply a matter of preference; as you probably remember from dealing with recruiters in high school, if they can draw you in they will do it. They do not pay heed to preferences...they will suck you in if they can.


_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Insults are the first and last arguments of fools. -- Unknown
[ Parent ]

Not a Surprise (4.20 / 5) (#153)
by CENGEL3 on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:29:41 PM EST

Your comments don't come as a huge surprise to me and confirm some things I have heard and suspected.

However as astute as I think your observations are they don't address the underlying reasons for those conditions.

Again we come back to force levels as at least a partial explanation.

Even at todays drasticly reduced force levels the U.S. has a larger per capita participation in the armed forces then all of the other nations you mentioned. Here are some numbers you might find interesting.

Number in Armed Forces Per 1000 Population.

U.S. = 4.87
Denmark = 4.1 (even with Conscription)
U.K = 3.55
Germany = 2.65
Australia = 2.61
Canada = 1.85

Obviously a country can afford to be alot more selective about it's armed forces if it fields only 1.85 people per 1000 as opposed to 4.87

This was even more pronounced during the Cold War years. U.S. forces have undergone a dramatic reduction in numbers since the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Again this (in part) reflected the main mission of the U.S. millitary during those years. We needed all those warm bodies to try to defend Western Europe against a possible Soviet attack. Frankly a small, highly proffesional army simply wasn't going to be enough to cut it in that mission. As it was, even with the much higher force levels of the U.S. Armed Forces during that period we still had to rely on the Doctine of Flexible Response in order to counter the sheer size of the Soviet Army.

During the intervening years the millitary has been trying to transition to a smaller, more mobile, more highly trained force...something which is better suited to deal with the sort of missions it gets assigned today. However, I think that is still very much a work in progress.

The bottom line is, in order to afford the numbers, we don't pay our enlisted personnel very well. People with good qualifications can do far, far better in the private sector....so much so that it's not even a comparison. That makes it very difficult to attract....and more importantly RETAIN qualified enlisted personnel.

Now we could and (IMO) SHOULD pay our enlisted personnel alot better. This would allow the millitary alot better chance of retaining qualified enlisted personnel. However, that would require spending a larger percentage of our GNP on the armed forces. Unfortunately liberal politicians in the U.S. have been fighting tooth and nail for decades (successfully) to REDUCE the precentage of our GNP that is spent on the armed forces. To this day liberals go into hystryonics every time an increase in defence spending is proposed.

The bottom line is that you can't have an all volunteer army that is highly trained and highly skilled (and thus less likely to make the kind of mistakes we are talking about) if you don't spend the money on your personnel.

Yet the same people who clamor the loudest to cut the defence budget are also the first people to point fingers at the millitary when mistakes like this happen.

Despite everything I've said here.... I still think the U.S. forces in Iraq are doing a fairly good job with the situation they have to operate in. Most of the finger pointers here REALLY have no conception of how difficult a job the soldiers in Iraq have or just how easy it is to make mistakes of the kind that happaned under the conditions that they have to operate in.

 

[ Parent ]

Your numbers belie obvious (4.50 / 2) (#253)
by sacrelicious on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:30:43 PM EST

However as astute as I think your observations are they don't address the underlying reasons for those conditions.
...
Number in Armed Forces Per 1000 Population.

U.S. = 4.87
Denmark = 4.1 (even with Conscription)
U.K = 3.55
Germany = 2.65
Australia = 2.61
Canada = 1.85

...
The bottom line is, in order to afford the numbers, we don't pay our enlisted personnel very well. People with good qualifications can do far, far better in the private sector....so much so that it's not even a comparison. That makes it very difficult to attract....and more importantly RETAIN qualified enlisted personnel.
and finally ...
...Unfortunately liberal politicians in the U.S. have been fighting tooth and nail for decades (successfully) to REDUCE the precentage of our GNP that is spent on the armed forces.

Gee have you ever thought that you can both pay soldiers more and spend less on the military? How about cancelling boondoggle programs like missle defense? How about not decreasing danger pay... especially since those wonderful troops just "won a war"? Lets not forget Boeing's corporate bailout.

Furthermore, with the proper foreign policy, the US shouldn't even need that high of a % of armed forces per capita. Why do we have that? Do we need to police the world?

[ Parent ]

Do more with less (4.00 / 2) (#268)
by CENGEL3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:28:50 PM EST

My boss tells me that all the time. He really expects it can happen too. He expects we can spend $0 on the IT budget and still have 0 network downtime. He expects we can buy no replacement parts, extend no warranties and still keep every single machine we have operational too.

You know what, those liberals who think we can cut the millitaries budget and expect the millitary to do it's job even better then before are just about as in touch with reality as my boss is.


[ Parent ]

you missed his point (3.50 / 2) (#270)
by Wah on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:03:36 PM EST

You know what, those liberals who think we can cut the millitaries budget and expect the millitary to do it's job even better then before are just about as in touch with reality as my boss is.

This is like your boss buying a $50,000 quad Xeon machine from his buddy at dell to serve email to 20 people, and then giving you your aforementioned $0, 0 downtime directive.  It's not that tough to see how 'cutting the budget' in this sense might allow you to do your job better.

It seems to be more of a tendency to industrialize the military.  If you can put all of the intelligence and power into the systems the personnel use, then you don't have to spend as much on the personnel.  Or have as many personnel.  This is Rumsfeld's 'vision' for the armed forces.

This works well when you want to destroy, as it is not that hard to press a button, or shoot anything that moves.  This doesn't work so great when you have to create.  Since then there is the assumption that soliders on the ground should have an understanding of a foreign culture and work with it's people to rebuild.   Teaching people how to do that is not easy, teaching soldiers how to do is not only not easy, it's counter-productive.

It's really a matter of where you make the investment.  Our investment goes towards military capital rather than military personnel, and we're watching the results.  It's a hell of an investment, at over a billion dollars a day, and some think it could be better spent.
--
Fail to Obey?
[ Parent ]

No I didn't (3.50 / 2) (#308)
by CENGEL3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 12:20:41 PM EST

I'm willing to believe that there certainly are some programs out there that are expensive boondoggles that need to be scraped. Some money could be saved that way, but I don't think nearly as much as you assume. It also isn't nearly as simple determining which programs are boondoggles and which aren't.

But the liberals don't care about any of that. They just want to "cut, cut, cut" regardless. They pretend there are going to be no consequences from making those cuts and then when there are will they accept the consequences for them? No, they'll just point fingers at the millitary and blame the poor schleps who couldn't "do more with less".

A perfect example of this is the M1 Abrams tank. It was a fairly expensive weapons system to develop and deploy. Liberals fought tooth and nail to try to scrap it. Thier position was the millitary didn't need a "new expensive toy". They said the millitary could make do with the M60 just fine. They called it "corporate welfare" as well.  Do you have any idea how many lives having the M1 available for Gulf War's I & II saved?

The bottom line is that a good quality millitary is expensive.... there's no way around it. But that is something that liberals don't want to face upto.

Sure we could have a much smaller (less expensive) but high quality millitary like some if the European countries do.....but that means loosing alot of the capabilities we have now.

That's not a budget discussion though. It's a much more basic philosophical discussion about what role America should play in world politics.
It's fine to have that discussion, but it's not fine to avoid it and backdoor your way into forcing the issue (without ever addressing it) by budget cuts.

Decide on the role you want to fulfill first. Realize the FULL implications of what that role means (i.e. surrendering global millitary dominance to China, not being able to deal with rogue states as effectively, not being able to support multiple peackeeping operations simultaneously, etc) and THEN talk about what resources are neccesary to sustain that role.

[ Parent ]

o.k. (4.00 / 1) (#344)
by Wah on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 02:48:23 AM EST

I'm willing to believe that there certainly are some programs out there that are expensive boondoggles that need to be scraped. Some money could be saved that way, but I don't think nearly as much as you assume.

How many zeroes do you think are significant in this converation?  Is it millions?  Billions?  Tens of Billions?  Trillions?

3 years at our current rate, nearly $1,500,000,000,000.  That's so frickin' huge.  Maybe it's time the Germans and Japanese defended themselves.  The Saudies seem to have a good amount of money too.  How much did we offer Turkey?  Israel?  Egypt?

But the liberals don't care about any of that.

Stop right there, pardner.  This is a Texas Liberal you're talking too, and my roommate has guns in the next room and I know how to use them.

So be careful with your epithets, I'm getting sick of this one.

They pretend there are going to be no consequences from making those cuts and then when there are will they accept the consequences for them?

When they are working in New York, perhaps?   Sometimes fat can be quite destructive to an organism.  It's needs to be worked and trimmed off.

Do you have any idea how many lives having the M1 available for Gulf War's I & II saved?

And how many lives could have been saved with the money that was spent?  I know that is a difficult question, but did this 'corporate welfare' work?  

Was the M1 the decisive armament in the battle?  Is Civ 3 a farly accurate portrayal?  

The bottom line is that a good quality millitary is expensive.... there's no way around it. But that is something that liberals don't want to face upto.

Again with the libelers, sheesh.  A good quality military is expensive.  So is a good quality, uh, peacekeeping squad.  The kind we need right about now.  How much of the M1, or the Bradley Fighting Vehicle (I think there was even a liberal movie about this one) money could be used to train the kind of police squed we need for 'police action'.  Not killers, but restorers of order.

Which is more effective at saving lives, if that's the task at hand?  When did conservatives get so compassionate and use that as an argument?

Frankly, I just don't think it is necessary to spend as much at the next 19 nations on the planet for military when there are many more internal needs of the country.  Including a smaller government/corporate payroll.

And we've got frickin' nukes, and subs, and we aren't afraid to use them.  

Then, we use commando squads to go after the terrorists.  Squads of five and six, just like them, armed with satellite phones, infrared, and all that shit.

Just like in Spiders.
--
kewpie
[ Parent ]

Nice catchphrases where are the answers? (none / 0) (#350)
by CENGEL3 on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 01:39:14 PM EST

Let's deal with some specifics rather then throwing out nice catchphrases without any real solutions.

I gave you a very specific example (The M1 Abrams tank) of how liberal attempts to cut defence programs would have cost real lives had they been succesfull.

My statement: "Do you have any idea how many lives having the M1 available for Gulf War's I & II saved?"

Your reply: "And how many lives could have been saved with the money that was spent?  I know that is a difficult question, but did this 'corporate welfare' work?  

Was the M1 the decisive armament in the battle?  Is Civ 3 a farly accurate portrayal?"

I find the fact that you are trying to draw your information about modern warfare from Civ 3 rather telling. It's a very typical (yes I'm going to use that label you hate again) liberal response to make sweeping decisions about something which you don't have any real knowledge of. How bout you actualy try to educate yourself about the M1 before you venture an opinion as to whether the money spent on the M1 could have been spent better elsewhere?  There are some very good historical accounts of the various weapon systems used in Gulf War I and what thier effect on the battlefield was.

Although this period is NOT an area of expertiese for me, even I know enough to tell you this...
The T72 (which is the tank the better Iraqi units were equiped with, i.e. the Republican Guard) was the Soviet tank specificly designed to kill the M60 (the tank your liberal buddies would have had our guys ride to battle in).

Now how bout you tell me what "better way" you would have spent that money on to prevent an AT round from penetrating the armor of our tanks and igniting thier fuel & ammo (which is what kills tank crews). Why don't you give me your answer for that?

You Said: "money could be used to train the kind of police squed we need for 'police action'.  Not killers, but restorers of order."

Yes, but exactly what good are "police squads" if the enemy is still in control of the battlefield? You have to WIN the battle BEFORE you can go around restoring order. You seem to be forgetting the very important fact that you have to GET THROUGH Step A before you can get to Step B.

You Said "And we've got frickin' nukes, and subs, and we aren't afraid to use them."

That's your answer? The first shots fired and you start dropping Nukes? Sheesh!.... and people call me a hawk! I've got a novel idea, how about we actualy have some options besides total nuclear devastation? What would you have said to the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi's that had nothing to do with Saddam's decision to invade Kuwait when you had us start firing off ICBM's in response?

You said: "Then, we use commando squads to go after the terrorists.  Squads of five and six, just like them, armed with satellite phones, infrared, and all that shit."

My freind, you've been watching WAY too many Hollywood movies or playing too many video games if you think things actualy work like this.

In case you forget, the Soviets had Divisions worth of troops including tons of Spetznaz commando squads in Afghanistan, it didn't do squat for them.

We (and the Brits and the Aussies) have lots of commandos running around Iraq right now.

Yes, Special Operations Units have some VERY important roles to play. They can be very effective at doing certain specific tasks. But they are NOT a panacea...and CERTAINLY NOT a substitute for having conventional forces. They also happen to operate alot more effectively in freindly controled areas.

Again, you need both.

[ Parent ]

answers take information (3.00 / 1) (#375)
by Wah on Wed Aug 27, 2003 at 12:06:01 PM EST

Let's deal with some specifics rather then throwing out nice catchphrases without any real solutions.

Thanks for the compliment.  I'd love to get some great answers here, we'll see if we can get any closer.

I find the fact that you are trying to draw your information about modern warfare from Civ 3 rather telling. It's a very typical (yes I'm going to use that label you hate again) liberal response to make sweeping decisions about something which you don't have any real knowledge of.
There are many other sources that I draw information from.  However, that particular simulation would seem to provides some sense of the military capabilities successive generations of military hardware.  Perhaps when they (or if they have) add the M1 to America's Army, we can see a more accurate simulation.  My question for you was whether or not it provides a general undersrtanding of the advantages of such technology, i.e. one M1 can take out about 7 or so T72s in a given standard time period.   It was not a sweeping declaration but a question about the accuracy of a simulation.  The two are quite different.
How bout you actualy try to educate yourself about the M1 before you venture an opinion as to whether the money spent on the M1 could have been spent better elsewhere?
How about directly addressing such questions instead of shooting depleted uranium rounds at strawmen?  Also, you've picked one boondoogle on which to focus and are attempting to use the success of that to generalize for the entire $1,500,000,000,000 that I mentioned before.
Now how bout you tell me what "better way" you would have spent that money on to prevent an AT round from penetrating the armor of our tanks and igniting thier fuel & ammo (which is what kills tank crews). Why don't you give me your answer for that?
Not invading Iraq?  Using the A-10, Apache, and various other armaments effectively against a dilapidated military?  

Also, since you are rather keen on the effectiveness of such systems, tell me how many lives they saved.  And how much was spent on each of those lives.  Because both of these have to addressed before we can reach any sort of answer to this question.

You seem to be forgetting the very important fact that you have to GET THROUGH Step A before you can get to Step B.
Well, it seems Step A is the only one being addressed by our current military priorities.  I am not forgetting that fact, merely noticing that if you want to get to C, both A and B are necessary. Focusing all of one's attention on A, leaves C a pipe dreeam.
That's your answer? The first shots fired and you start dropping Nukes? Sheesh!.... and people call me a hawk.
I thought we were talking about national defense?  The deterrent of a nuclear arsenal that can strike anywhere, undetected is rather large against states that would attack us.  It is not so effective against the world-wide guerilla war we are currently fighting.
My freind, you've been watching WAY too many Hollywood movies or playing too many video games if you think things actualy work like this.

In case you forget, the Soviets had Divisions worth of troops including tons of Spetznaz commando squads in Afghanistan, it didn't do squat for them.

Well again, we are addressing two different things.  The context of my comment was in fighting the larger war on terror.  The context you are talking about is an army capable of invading and occupying a country, which is something that modern military/guerilla training, of which I believe the CIA is quite good at, has been rather effective at building responses too.
Yes, Special Operations Units have some VERY important roles to play. They can be very effective at doing certain specific tasks. But they are NOT a panacea...and CERTAINLY NOT a substitute for having conventional forces.
I was not arguing that they were, my comment was for fighting that 'new kind of enemy' we keep hearing about.  The effectiveness of stuff like the MOAB and other precision armaments make old-school conventional warfare against a super-power sheer folly.  

So to get back shortly to the M1, yea, it is fairly necessary if you want to run blitzkreig style invasions, and was designed as such.  How many more of those are we going to need?  And are we spending money the most efficient way to preserves innocent life, if in fact that is the final metric we are exploring.

There is also the more important question of whether or not it is useful to have a military budget that exceeds the combined budget of the rest of the industrialized world.  Regardless of how many really cool guns come out of it.
--
kewpie
[ Parent ]

What's the reason for having a military force? (5.00 / 1) (#368)
by kcbrown on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 06:21:12 PM EST

The bottom line is that a good quality millitary is expensive.... there's no way around it. But that is something that liberals don't want to face upto.

Sure we could have a much smaller (less expensive) but high quality millitary like some if the European countries do.....but that means loosing alot of the capabilities we have now.

The question is, which capabilities would we be losing? The ability to invade, conquer, and occupy other countries (e.g., Iraq)? Yeah, it would be a real shame to lose abilities like that, wouldn't it?

The military has been horribly abused over the past century (if not longer). It has been sent countless times to many different places to perform "police actions" and to achieve other political objectives.

But there's only one legitimate reason to have a military force: to keep outsiders from violating the rights of your citizens or the rights of those with whom you have a mutual protection treaty. To use a military force for anything else is to misuse it.

IMO, there haven't been many times when the U.S. military has been used legitimately, compared with the times it was used illegitimately, given the above definitions. Certainly not enough times to justify the size and expense of the U.S. military as it is today. In the cases where a large, expensive military was really needed, the military grew in size and strength at the time of need (e.g., WW2).

Yeah, I'm sure we'll hear arguments that the military's purpose in life is to be a political tool. I don't buy those arguments.

[ Parent ]

arithmetics is against you (death risk) (2.33 / 3) (#196)
by VasyaPoup on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 05:37:26 AM EST

I highly doubt that many of you people who have expressed shock and disbelief that such accidental shootings are possible have ever even been on a battlefield let alone come under hostile fire and had to make such a life and death decision in conditions similar to the ones the soldiers in Iraq have to every day

Exuse me, but arithmetics is against you: 58 soldiers dead per 150000 total troops per 110 days = 3.5e-6 daily risk of death = 1.3e-3 yearly risk of death, which is equivalent to a lifetime of 780 years. I'd say it's a very moderate risk, unless you are going to live more than 300 years (and stay all this time in the battlefield).

So, I wasn't in the battlefield either, but I take "life and death decisions every day" as a pure rhetoric. Especially in comparison with WWII where dayly risks on certain operations were of the order of unity.

[ Parent ]

I kind of suspect... (5.00 / 1) (#228)
by geesquared on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:09:32 AM EST

that the last thing on a soldier's mind when he has to make a decision of pulling the trigger or not is the statistical chances of him getting killed.

You're also ignoring the number of soldiers who are wounded, and the ones who come under actual fire and whose lives are in mortal danger. What percentage of the US forces have had those experiences? I don't know. DO you? Do you expect a soldier to wait until his statistical chances of actually being killed are above some threshhold? No. These guys are jumpy because they have been shot at, or their buddy in another unit got sent home in a body bag, or they've been hearing gunshots all day.

That's true of any armed forces, anytime, anywhere. They react to percieved threats. The guys in the tanks were freshly ariving on the scene of a conflict, so they didn't have a clear idea of the situation. How are they going to do the math if they have no clear idea what is going on? Ignorance kills.

It's easy to toss around statistics all safe and cosy in front of your PC. It all amounts to shit in the real world. Can you honestly say you've never been afraid of something, even though all of the statistics in the world argue against anything bad happening? Will you go running out into a bad thunderstorm waving a metal pole, because statistics say you are unlikely to get struck by lightning? No, because you see a threat, if even a remote one.

For the record, I was against the invasion of Iraq, and I feel Bush's motives are completely wrapped up in greed and vengence. I also believe that this occupation is a bad idea, not because we have a pack of bloodthirsty trigger-happy troops on the ground, but because we are being seen by a large portion of the population as an occupying force, which they are growing to resent. Events like this will just make matters worse. But there's no need to demonize here.


[ Parent ]

so why not ask for the UN? (3.00 / 2) (#252)
by chimera on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:23:49 PM EST

given the basis that I still despise this whole operation (including it's 'evidential' logic) from the start and don't really see any downsides to american troops being killed , the situation is as it is and no one (especially the civilians) benefit from keeping it status quo - I say, ask the UN to step in with Peacekeeping Troops.

The UN members has a lot of troops toned in warzones of different kinds and cultures, and should therefore quite evidently the first choice of policiary cum militari operations such as this has turned into. There are precedents. It would make it easier on the US troops, bring experienced peacemongers into the area and lessen the diplomatic problems. And most importantly, it would get more relatively more calm as the security net gets tighter focus can be turned to building infrastructure. Fewer civilians will die. So why not?

There has been quite a lot of not-that-subtle hints from the diplomatic ensembles (particularly the Free Frenchmen) that (insert-country-here) troops and support facilities may be sent to Iraq, if such a request was put forward to the UN to handle.

But alas, of course no such request has been put before the UN to consider, and none shall ever be put forward either. Because of one thing and one thing only - this War-Occupation-By-Choice is about the allegedly brass balls of a texas idiot and his court, and not about Iraq or the Iraqis.

So watch people die, occupation soldiers, UN staff, civilians, guerrillas, even the off Hussein family member. Men women and children are all alike in the dead. Learn to like it - there will be more.

[ Parent ]

forgot something important (none / 0) (#254)
by chimera on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:39:52 PM EST

first, the last thing is supposed to say 'odd' and not 'off'. But I think you figure that out..

second (and this is my beef), I may have a very vague memory - but I have the most stringent feeling that the basis of the argumentation for this shitpiece act of NCA Bush was that Iraq was violating UN resolutions and demands. Atleast I believed I heard that mentioned atleast once, before this shit turned into faked rescue missions and by-the-Dubya-doll. And the WMDs.

so one word: UN. And UN.

[ Parent ]

Which troops? (5.00 / 2) (#259)
by CENGEL3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:00:55 PM EST

Where is the U.N. going to get the 150,000 troops needed to occupy the country from?

Some of the Western European nations that donate troops to the U.N. have excellent quality troops trained and experienced for peacekeeping missions. But they don't have them in anywhere near the quantity that we are talking about.

The rest of the nations that contribute troops (like the Nigerians going into Liberia) don't usualy even begin to approach the troop quality of U.S. forces, let alone the Brit's.

The absolute worst thing you can do in this sort of situation is to have multiple independent commands involved in the mission... talk about a recipe for casualties due to confusion.

While the U.S. probably wouldn't go for U.N. assistance due to political reasons....even if they were willing I don't think the U.N. has the capability for it.


[ Parent ]

commanders (2.00 / 1) (#271)
by chimera on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:11:19 PM EST

who said anything about multiple independent command? perhaps I didn't spell it out, but the meaning of my comment was - in order to succeed with the operation the US occupation are to yield the military ruling of Iraq to the UN. That's right, to SUCK IT UP. Chances are high that the military commander would be american after all. As far as civilian ruling goes the 'Governing Council' has been pretty much approved by the UN body as an agreeable expedition ministary (sp?) so that isn't much of a problem (yet).

as for troop numbers I'm gonna fess up that I can't verify my claimage on that it would work with high quality. I am however gonna comment that it wouldn't be a problem if the US had a force specifically designated for UN peacekeeping operations (which it doesn't, evidentiary by the parent of this thread) and if US wasn't such bitches about running soldiers under a non-US commander.

also as can be seen from this report (http://www.un.org/Depts/dpko/dpko/contributors/June2003Summary.pdf) the numbers of official UN peacekeeping troops varies a lot during the period of 1994-2003 (max 76.000, current 39.000, currently 89 contributing nations). There are some notable absentees from the current "Coalition" forces, for example Germany, France , Russia, China and Canada - all of which has substantial forces and UN peacekeeping experience. Add another 100.000 regular US troops and 30.000 British (under UN command) to the current figures and you get a pretty nifty-sized peacekeeping force.

Of course not all peacekeepers are equally good in terms of training and equipment, but in terms of experience with complex geo-political conflicts UN is the best option as it has a working structure for nationbuilding support both from a military and civilian viewpoint. The latter is especially important to remember now since US obviously can't deal with the shit it put itself into even militarily. It wanted war for the wrong reasons, with little support and dirt cheap. And the Iraqis pay for it every day.

Who really gives a shit though. A journalist gets more obituaries than two thousand Muhammeds. It is indeeed a strange time.

But hey, look. Arnold!

[ Parent ]

Missing the point (5.00 / 2) (#309)
by CENGEL3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 12:41:46 PM EST

The main comment of this thread is that U.S. troops on the individual soldier level aren't particulary well trained at peacekeeping missions.
Sticking a blue helmet on thier head isn't going to change that.

Believe it or not the U.S. is pretty good (from what I've heard) at the higher level operational planning and command and control duties. That is something which the U.N. (and multinational forces in general) are NOT as good at... at least from a purely millitary perspective.  

The only thing that putting the mission under U.N. command from an operational standpoint would be to degrade (as opposed to improve) Command, Control and High level planning....and severely complicate troop coordination.

It certainly might do something from an "image" viewpoint, but that is not what we are talking about here... we are talking about trying to prevent fuckups (like shooting reporters) from happenig. Complicating the command structure isn't going to help that.

Now I'll concede that the Canadian forces and probably the French are much better trained at Peacekeeping missions. I would probably include the Germans in that too but doesn't thier Constitution prevent the deployment of German combat troops outside of German soil?
However, if you believe that Russian and Chinese troops have better individual soldiering skills or are somehow going to be more "restrained" toward the local populace (cough, cough... Tibet, Chechnya) then I have a bridge I'd like to sell you.


[ Parent ]

Germans (none / 0) (#332)
by baron samedi on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:11:26 PM EST

There are Germans in Afghanistan, and they were also deployed in Kosovo, so if there was such a law in Germany, it would appear that they have chosen to ignore it.

UN participation might be ideal, because then we could get Malaysian and Pakistani troops in there, having Muslim troops might go a long way to ease tensions.

By the way, I'm not sure what you're talking about regarding disparate command structures with regard to UN operations. There is usually a unified command structure, with each nation's troops taking orders from a central location. In the case of Iraq, I would imagine that a US officer would be in ultimate command.
"Hands that help are better by far than lips that pray."- Robert G. Ingersoll
[ Parent ]

I'm talking about this (4.00 / 1) (#351)
by CENGEL3 on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 01:54:56 PM EST

Not every single PFC in the force gets his orders directly from central command. He gets his orders from a subordinate command who get their orders from another subordinate command, etc on up the chain until it gets to central command.

Now alot of times those subordinate commands need to be able to coordinate with each other directly. If those subordinate commands come from different nations millitaries things start to get real complicated. There are enough clusterfucks in coordination when you are dealing with a single nations force....having multiple nations (unless they have ALOT of experience working together) increases the potential for screwups exponentionaly.

By the time Centrel Command gets it all sorted out it is usualy to late to do anything but send body bags

[ Parent ]

Should have been posted as an op-ed (4.05 / 17) (#123)
by Demiurge on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 03:07:07 PM EST

The idea that this reporter was intentionally murdered is conspiracy theory hogwash. The paranoid fantasy that he was murdered to intimidate other reporters just doesn't pan out. If the US military didn't want what it was doing in Iraq reported, it wouldn't allow journalists to enter the country, and it would detain those that made it in. Obviously, it isn't.

If this was intentional murder on the act of an individual soldier, the army has no reason to cover it up, even if you assume the worst about the institution. Showing that the event was the work of a single deranged individual would deflect criticism away from military policy in Iraq as a whole.

Is it possible that some mistake was made? Sure. Could this raise questions about the ability of the American army to act as administrators and peacekeepers over a long-term on a large scale? Absolutely. Does the incident suggest that evil, imperialist Amerikkkans like killing uppity Ay-rab reporters? The idea is, bluntly, tinfoil horseshit.

agree 100% (5.00 / 3) (#140)
by muyuubyou on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 06:33:42 PM EST

I wonder why should we need to discuss this in the front page of kuro5hin. There's nothing much to discuss about this fact.

It was a tragic accident. Who doubts that? So what are we discussing here?

I mean, bashing american can be fun for a while especially when you're american (and the current government isn't the one you voted for) but it ends up getting pretty boring... "what's with those guys? can't they tell the difference between an RPG and a camera?" and bullshit like that.

What is the american government supposed to do now?. The war is over. I was against, but it's past already. Should they withdraw the troops? I think that would be crazy.

See now what happened to the UN repr. in Iraq and who can do anything about it. Hmmm...


----------
It is when I struggle to be brief that I become obscure - Horace, Epistles
[ Parent ]

News is ok for me (5.00 / 2) (#148)
by levesque on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:29:04 PM EST

Does the incident suggest that evil, imperialist Amerikkkans like killing uppity Ay-rab reporters?

I really don't see that as the main focus of the story or even it's undercurrent, rather I find the text points to the unresolved nature of many incidents and the lack of coherent and timely information concerning them coming from US representatives.

[ Parent ]

Ever see an RPG?(nt) (2.66 / 3) (#150)
by mikelist on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 07:42:56 PM EST



[ Parent ]
ever been in a war zone? (3.75 / 4) (#157)
by Run4YourLives on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:48:47 PM EST

Everything starts to look like an RPG after a while...

It's slightly Japanese, but without all of that fanatical devotion to the workplace. - CheeseburgerBrown
[ Parent ]
No, but similar... (5.00 / 1) (#180)
by Kadin2048 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:11:11 AM EST

I've never seen an RPG-7 outside of a museum, but I have handled and seen fired an M136 AT4. It was fired at an old tank about 125m away from where I was. Made quite a bang--I definitely wouldn't want to have been in the tank.

Most impressive anti-armor weapon I've seen, though, was a Mk19 firing HEDPs.

[ Parent ]

Yes (3.50 / 4) (#280)
by Demiurge on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:59:20 PM EST

And I've seen video cameras, and from quite a few meters away in a tense situation I probably would have trouble distinguishing between the two.

[ Parent ]
I would like to point out.... (3.00 / 4) (#312)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 01:19:31 PM EST

that they actually stated, "...it looked like he had a rocket launcher...".  It's the press which coined, "and RPG".  IMO, they did that because that's the only rocket launcher which the mass populace really knows much about.  The simple fact is, there are many types of rocket launches, many of which look VERY much like a camera on someone's shoulder.  Add to that the heat (137' within the last couple of weeks), the sand (throw some sand into your eyes), serious stress (people were just shooting at you and have been for days, weeks and months), throw in 50m+ range, distortion from the heat, and you learn to react and commit your self quickly.  

Seconds matter and can cost you the lives of everyone near you, including your self.

[ Parent ]

Well where do I editorialize in it? nt (1.00 / 2) (#174)
by McBain on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:42:42 AM EST


---
Sorry. I can't seem to find that sig.
[ Parent ]

Don't play dumb (5.00 / 3) (#279)
by Demiurge on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:55:11 PM EST

How about where you repeat claims that he was murdered, or call previous investigations a 'cynical whitewash'.

[ Parent ]
Interesting, seems some don't want... (3.66 / 3) (#334)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:27:13 PM EST

...people to know the truth...

...that they actually stated, "...it looked like he had a rocket launcher...".  It's the press which coined, "a RPG".  IMO, they did that because that's the only rocket launcher which the mass populace really knows much about.  The simple fact is, there are many types of rocket launches, many of which look VERY much like a camera on someone's shoulder.  Add to that the heat (137' within the last couple of weeks), the sand (throw some sand into your eyes), serious stress (people were just shooting at you and have been for days, weeks and months), throw in 50m+ range, distortion from the heat, and you learn to react and commit your self quickly.  

Seconds matter and can cost you the lives of everyone near you, including your self.


[ Parent ]

Wonder why... (5.00 / 1) (#336)
by DDS3 on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:56:50 PM EST

Bjorniac and RandaBob don't want people to debate based on facts.  I'm not sure what they could possibly be objecting to in my statement above, but they sure are scared as all heck that someone might learn some facts.  Trolls perhaps?  Since one of the above accounts only seems to get used to rate people, I'm wondering if it's actually an alias account that someone uses to manipulate and hide the truth.  How very sad that people would go out of their way to hide facts.  I can only pity them.

[ Parent ]
Freestyle (WILDERNESS CHALLENGE) (3.54 / 11) (#154)
by Mike Green Challenge on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 08:31:29 PM EST

This cool ass reporter gone and showed up dead
US Army tank comes over and pumps him full of lead
straight to the head
man the news is so bad these days I wanna just go to bed
I can't believe GWB would disclaim
the armies actions
when they come out and maim
a member of a news organization with whom they disagree
that makes me wanna whip out my bong, and smoke a tree
or maybe even three
come on we all know sadaam hussein has VD
hidin out up in his tree
or maybe a cave
Bush makes it sound like the US Army is brave
but truth is, they just wanna make Iraq our new slave
just like the Africans in eighteen-hunnit
those foul words of our pres just makes me wanna get blunted
I know all you fools sit at your computer pumping your meat
but you gotta know that inaction here just means defeat
you all need to rise up like mike green
and take on George Bush, that guy ain't the queen
You just look at porn sites with girls who are bi-curious
I'm not the first to believe those claims are spurious
This is MC 7 7 0 singing out, word up bitches, US gov has much clout.

--
Aspies for Ron Paul
word. <nt> (5.00 / 1) (#219)
by Russell Dovey on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:05:21 AM EST


"Blessed are the cracked, for they let in the light." - Spike Milligan
[ Parent ]

I Can't Imagine: Someone Getting Shot in a warzone (2.93 / 29) (#159)
by thelizman on Tue Aug 19, 2003 at 10:04:12 PM EST

Dana's driver, Munzer Abbas, claimed that Dana had been deliberately shot. "There were many journalists around. They knew we were journalists," said Abbas. "This was not an accident."
No, it wasn't an accident. It was a very good job of quick thinking on the part of a US soldier, and a very stupid mistake by a veteran journalist who should know better.
A sound technician working with Dana, Nael al-Shyoukhi, reported that no gunshots were heard before US forces opened fire. "I don't understand why they start shooting at us," he said. The US soldiers had seen them and knew they were journalists, al-Shyoukhi claimed, as they had previously asked the US soldiers guarding the prison for permission to film.
Yet, it's not uncommon for terrorists, insurgents, and militants to use the cover of a crowd from which to launch attacks. Any trained soldier that has been boots-dirty in a third world country knows this. It's been well documented in Somalia, Liberia, the West Bank, and even as far back as the Viet Nam war. So when a photojournalist, dressed in a shawl reminiscent of middle eastern garb, drops to his knee and points a shoulder-mounted video camera at a tank, he has just turned himself into an RPG wielding anti-armor infantryman as far as any soldier who has spent weeks dodging RPG's is concerned.
The shooting comes as US forces have been involved in a number of gun fights that have led to the deaths of soldiers and civilians. At least 58 US soldiers have been killed since US President George W. Bush declared the war over on May 1.
George Bush Did not declare the "war" to be over. His words were that 'major military operations have ended'.

For the record, MAJOR PORTIONS OF THIS ARTICLE were blatently plagiarized from the New York Times article. So, let's all take the time out to thank the author of this piece of shit article, and the 150 morons who voted it up, ratcheting the integrity of K5 down one more notch for no better reason than mind-numbed anti-Americanism.
--

"Our language is sufficiently clumsy enough to allow us to believe foolish things." - George Orwell
Provide evidence for your accusation, please (3.10 / 10) (#172)
by McBain on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:28:04 AM EST

For the record, MAJOR PORTIONS OF THIS ARTICLE were blatently plagiarized from the New York Times article. So, let's all take the time out to thank the author of this piece of shit article, and the 150 morons who voted it up, ratcheting the integrity of K5 down one more notch for no better reason than mind-numbed anti-Americanism.

What are you waiting for? Show me, and everyone else, these "MAJOR PORTIONS". If you are going to make serious accusations, back them up.

Of course I used information and quotes from the New York Times article, along with the Washington Post article, MSNBC article and a few warblogs, but there is no plagiarism. I have directly copied a couple of quotes but that is because I have no transcripts of my own to work from.

thelizman, this is pathetic. This article, and the facts, do not support your politics so you make baseless, fictional claims about plagiarism. All I can say is that people who fling shit usually end up dirty.

And if I plagiarised it why would I link to it in the intro?

---
Sorry. I can't seem to find that sig.
[ Parent ]

Plagiarism (3.85 / 7) (#226)
by thelizman on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:49:37 AM EST

Allow me to introduce you to the concept of plagiarism: It is not simply the wholesale and verbatim copying of words. Take this little ditty for instance:
NY Times: The videotape in his camera, retrieved after his death, showed two American tanks heading toward him, The A.P. reported. Six shots could be heard; the camera seemed to tilt and drop to the ground after the first shot.
Your Article: Dana's camera was retrieved after his death. The video in the camera shows two US tanks bearing towards him. Six shots are heard in total; after the first shot the camera tilts and drops to the ground.
Note that this passage was not in quotes and that the previous quoted passage was closed. Although you altered some of the wording, enough was left intact to make it clear that you copied it from the original.

There are other glaring examples, but I don't think it's necessary to drag them all out. It only takes one instance of plagiarism to demonstrate your intellectual dishonesty.

This article, and the facts, do not support your politics so you make baseless, fictional claims about plagiarism.
The claim is quite real, as you see above. More importantly, you sectioned this piece of shit article in "News - Politics". Clearly, you intend to make this story a political one, not a factual one. Moreover, you don't present facts, you present opinions, in quotes, from people at the scene. For instance, the one "fact" you provide in the blatently plagiarized section from the New York Times where you claim tanks were "bearing towards him". In fact, the tanks were following a road that ran tangent to the reporters position, and were never pointed "towards" him. But it sure makes the article inciteful if you can make it sound like the tanks were trying to run the reporter down.
And if I plagiarised it why would I link to it in the intro?
That's a very good question, and I have two competing theories:
  1. You're a dumbass who doesn't know what plagiarism is.
  2. You were banking on the intellectual lazyness of the 150 voters who actually sent this piece of shit to the front page.
Irregardless of either, this article is plain shit. You traded any semblence of insightful analysis or factual representation for political flavor and a wordcount that would make it overqualified for an MLP.
--

"Our language is sufficiently clumsy enough to allow us to believe foolish things." - George Orwell
[ Parent ]
mwahahaha (3.00 / 2) (#260)
by vivelame on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:03:32 PM EST

YOU PLAGIARISED ME, lazy bastard.

I used the words allow, me, to, introduce, you, to, the, concept, of, plagiarism and many others in your post way before you were even born.

You hence loose any credibility.

Oh, btw, where are all those WoMD?


--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
Prior Art (5.00 / 2) (#266)
by thelizman on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:22:26 PM EST

I used the words allow, me, to, introduce, you, to, the, concept, of, plagiarism and many others in your post way before you were even born.
I'm quite sure that I can demonstrate prior art, notably Gilbert and Sullivan, both of whom predate your birth in their death.
Oh, btw, where are all those WoMD?
As if the mountains of evidence weren't enough, you'll learn more around mid to late September.
--

"Our language is sufficiently clumsy enough to allow us to believe foolish things." - George Orwell
[ Parent ]
Blinkers (4.00 / 1) (#360)
by Ragica on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 07:36:57 AM EST

I have noticed a marked difference in "tone" between the "commie lefties" and those who use terms like "lefties" (if not "commies"), on K5 in general. Its interesting. Well, i guess it just simply and sadly confirms the stereotypes of "loudmouth idiots on the right". Ah well.

Tis a shame that everything has to be an extreme. For example, your evidence of "plagiarism" is vastly more likely just to be a sloppy job at paraphrasing. But perhaps this is what you were graping to describe when you started flinging around the term "dumbass". Perhaps a thesaurus, or just stopping to calm down and think about other possibilities a little, might help next time.

I find your links above especially amusing for one who is being so ridiculously pedantic. The first one is supposed to show a mountain of evidence for Weapons of Mass Destruction? I especially enjoyed this quote from that page which i think sums up the strength of those snippets (the following paragraph in its entirty is quoted):

Woolsey, who could not be reached for comment yesterday, later told a The New Yorker Magazine: "At Salman Pak, we know there were Islamic terrorists training in groups of four or five with short knives. I mean, hello!"

Hello, indeed. Five inch knives! Well, of course, box cutters are weapons of mass destruction these days... so i guess you're right.

As to the second. It's really astonishing how many vapid substanceless statements some people will blindly swallow. Never mind the outright lies and confirmed misinformation which has come out of these cited offices, politicians, and appointed spin-sters.

Ah well. Nothing much changes.

[ Parent ]

Units of Measure (none / 0) (#361)
by Ragica on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 07:40:54 AM EST

ha ha. I just realised i'd accidentally inserted the word "inch" before the "five" above. It's late, I don't know how that slipped in. No doubt I shall be accused of some foul leftie commie weakness by it.

But to pre-empt such childish observances, allow me to suggest I was perhaps merely innocently thinking about your penis size or some such thing, as I wrote about knives.

Ho hum.

[ Parent ]

The Importance of Being Sequenced (none / 0) (#362)
by Ragica on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 07:43:17 AM EST

Woah! I just now noticed that I made the mistake of saying i'd put "inch" before "five" when it was the other way around. It is indeed getting late. And i can't even think of anything salacious to add.

Sigh.

[ Parent ]

Just Take Your Ritlin... (none / 0) (#363)
by thelizman on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 11:45:10 AM EST

...and put the thesaurus down before you hurt yourself...
--

"Our language is sufficiently clumsy enough to allow us to believe foolish things." - George Orwell
[ Parent ]
My last post on the subject (1.00 / 2) (#289)
by McBain on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:27:03 PM EST

Obviously you are, to use your own words, "a dumbass who doesn't know what plagiarism is".

Here is a good definition. An important part: It is important to recognize that plagiarism is theft, not of ideas, which are in a sense the property of everyone, but of the credit for originating ideas.

Because I have linked to the NY Times article in the intro I have given credit where it is due. If it is such a huge deal, in future I will be more obvious with my attributions. Either way, this isn't plagiarism. And I don't see how 1 paragraph is "MAJOR PORTIONS".

In fact, the tanks were following a road that ran tangent to the reporters position, and were never pointed "towards" him.

So you want to go against both the NY times article and the Washington Post article? So much for your "intellectual honesty".


NY Times: The videotape in his camera, retrieved after his death, showed two American tanks heading toward him, The A.P. reported. Six shots could be heard; the camera seemed to tilt and drop to the ground after the first shot.

Washington Post: Dana filmed a few seconds of footage, which shows a tank heading toward them with two soldiers visible. Another tank was behind it. The footage captured the crack of at least five shots in quick succession. The camera appeared to lurch forward, then fell to the ground.


I suppose you're going to claim that the Washington Post is plagiarising the NY times now, right?

Irregardless of either, this article is plain shit. You traded any semblence of insightful analysis or factual representation for political flavor and a wordcount that would make it overqualified for an MLP.

That is your opinion and you are entitled to it. But, instead of spending your time complaining, why don't you write up a better article?

---
Sorry. I can't seem to find that sig.
[ Parent ]

Equivocation - The Classic Dodge (3.66 / 3) (#293)
by thelizman on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:14:21 PM EST

There is a tremendous difference between the near verbatim copying of the NY Times article, and the similarities between the Washington Post and NY Times covering. Their similarities are not syntactical.

Regardless, this is only one example. As I said, you have plagiarized, and like all bankrupt leftists you'd rather shore up your foundation of lies with more lies rather than admit to your intellectual dishonesty.

Perhaps you'd like to now quibble over what the "meaning of 'is' is"?
--

"Our language is sufficiently clumsy enough to allow us to believe foolish things." - George Orwell
[ Parent ]
Heavily Biased. (3.65 / 23) (#169)
by lordDogma on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:07:12 AM EST

This story is extremely biased. The author picked pieces out of several different news articles to give the side that he wants all K5'rs to hear. He conveniently left out all of the stuff that supports the US claim that it was an accident.

"We were all there, for at least half an hour... They knew we were journalists. After they shot Mazen, they aimed their guns at us. I don't think it was an accident. They are very tense. They are crazy."

No "they" did not know that Mazen was a journalist! If the soldier knew he was shooting at journalists, then why did he only kill one of them? Why not all of them? Why did the US troops render medical aid afterward? Why did they medivac the journalist in an effort to save his life?

Unfortunately I can't find the @#^&! link now, but another journalist on the scene said that the US soldiers who shot Mazen "yelled at us to get back but once they realized we were journalists, they softened". In other words the tank crew did not know they were jounalists until closer inspection.

The author of this story left out the part that said that the convoy had just pulled up and shot at them from about 50 meters away. The convoy was just arriving at the scene and had no idea who they were, unlike the soldiers that the journalists had already interacted with. Notice the (un)judicious use of the word "they" when refering to US soldiers. I mean, who the f*ck is "they"? In other words, the quoted source and author are trying to claim that just because a few soldiers on the scene were aware of the journalists' presence then that somehow means the entire US Army knew about them.

This is piss poor communication on the Journalists' part. They should not assume that just because they tell 18-year-old Private Doe who they are, that it means an arriving convoy of troops from a different unit also knows who they are.

If you are going to point something at armed soldiers in the middle of a war zone you damn well better make sure they know who you are and what you are pointing at them first. Otherwise you are taking a huge risk and putting fellow jounalists around you at risk which is inexcusable. You are also putting US soldiers in needless jeopardy, because as a result of this our soldiers might hesitate next time when it really IS a shoulder fired missile. Mazen has been a godamned war correspondent for what - 10 years and he doesn't know this?!?! That shows an absolute lack of sound judgement and a total disregard for safety on Mazen's part. Its too bad he's dead, but if he were alive, he should be ashamed of himself.

This is also a perfect example of why the US should never agree to let the international criminal court try our troops for war crimes. The filthy lying US-haters would be constantly trying to villify our troops for mistakes, all the while defending brutal dictators and ruthless terrorists.

For the story author: Are you trying to paint US troops as incompetent killers because you are an irrational US-hater or do you have some other motive, because finding out the truth sure isn't your goal. Your bias is blatantly obvious as I and others have pointed out.

-- LD

OK (3.42 / 7) (#179)
by McBain on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:10:34 AM EST

The author picked pieces out of several different news articles to give the side that he wants all K5'rs to hear. He conveniently left out all of the stuff that supports the US claim that it was an accident.

So what stuff did you want me to put in to the story? I've provided 2 sides: the US military's account and the journalist's account, in addition to background about Mazen Dana and the international reaction to the incident.

The filthy lying US-haters would be constantly trying to villify our troops for mistakes, all the while defending brutal dictators and ruthless terrorists.

I hope you realize how hilarious that sounds.

---
Sorry. I can't seem to find that sig.
[ Parent ]

Article (MLP) (5.00 / 3) (#183)
by Kadin2048 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:29:30 AM EST

I think the article you were talking about, which had both the "he softened" quote and the specific mention of 50 meters, was the Associated Press report. I'm sure there are numerous places to get it, but here's one link.

The article also mentions that, according to his driver, "Dana got out of the car when he saw the tanks approaching," the significance of which I'll leave up for debate.

But don't take my word for it, read the link--it's a far sight better than the K5 article.

[ Parent ]

oh (2.33 / 3) (#281)
by chimera on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 05:04:22 PM EST

"This is also a perfect example of why the US should never agree to let the international criminal court "
If you say so. But may I ask why US has attacked a sovereign nation without being previously attacked by this nation? Let me hear it, once more.

[ Parent ]
Here is why (3.28 / 7) (#297)
by lordDogma on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 01:08:01 AM EST

But may I ask why US has attacked a sovereign nation without being previously attacked by this nation? Let me hear it, once more.

[Banging head into wall] We believed Iraq had a WMD program and the possibility of them clandestinely giving those weapons to terrorists was too much of a risk to ignore.

What would give us such a crazy idea?

FACTS:

1. Iraq had a WMD program in the past.

2. Saddam used chemical weapons against Iranian towns and against Iraqi citizens. (This shows that he is casual about using WMD against civilians.)

3. His police state slaughtered tens of thousands of his own citizens. (This shows that he does not value human life and has the will to indiscriminately kill on a massive scale.)

3. He was within 6 months of having a nuclear weapon at the end of Gulf War I. (This shows that Iraq had the know-how to build nukes. All they had to do was get the materials.)

4. He gave $25,000 rewards to families of palestinian suicide bombers. (While this alone does not show that he is willing to sponsor terrorist attacks against the US, it does show that he believes suicide bombing against civilians is a valid use of force.)

5. Iraqi agents met at least eight times with Al-Qaida operatives during the 1990s. (While this doesn't prove any ties were developed, this doesn't help Iraq's image at all. Check this out: Even if Saddam and Al Qaida were at odds, Saddam could give some WMD to them. Iraq could deny any subsequent terrorist attacks, and the terrorists would have very powerful weapons to play with. Win win situation for both even if they despised each other. Classic "The enemy of my enemy is my friend" deal. I'm not saying this is a proven case, I'm just saying we have rightful reason to be suspicious.)

6. As part of the 1991 Gulf War surrender treaty, Iraq agreed to eliminate its WMD program within a few months. Yet...

7. Iraq gave weapons inspectors the run-around for seven years 1991 - 1998. Here are a few books for you to get up to speed. They are all written by highly credible sources:
- Richard Butler wrote a book "The Greatest Threat: Iraq, Weapons of Mass Destruction and the Growing Crisis" published in May 2001. He was the former chairman of UNSCOM.
- Scott Ritter wrote a book "Endgame: Solving the Iraq Problem -- Once and for All" documenting countless tales of how the inspectors were duped, assaulted and even shot at in Saddam's attempt to cover up his deceit from 1991-1998. Mr. Ritter was the Chief Weapons Inspector until he resigned in 1998.
- Khidhir Hamza (former head of Iraq's nuclear program) defected in 1994 and wrote a book in 1998 "Saddam's Bombmaker" detailing how he built Saddam's original nuclear program and how he did not think Saddam would ever give up the program, but would instead continue to secretly develop it.

Any single one of the items I outlined above would not show cause to invade. But taken together, along with other evidence talked about in the press, along with the fact that the US was still enforcing crippling UN sanction against Iraq after 12 years, you have to admit they make a strong argument that Saddam might have the motive and will to sponsor a WMD attack against the US.

As far as Iraq's sovereignty, I think it is funny that Saddam and his cronies cry about sovereignty when they invaded Kuwait in 1990 and tried to annex it. Given that the 1990 invasion was the root of this whole episode, I don't see any reason why people should be giving any credence to Iraq's whining about national sovereignty.

-- Lord Dogma

[ Parent ]

the last mohicans in pink rabbit socks (5.00 / 1) (#345)
by chimera on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 03:27:25 AM EST

if such is the case, I have two questions:
  1. , if Iraq was in such blatant violation, why was it not the UN itself that said "fuck it, lets roll"? Where is the UN-mandated military force that acts by order of the Security Council, in reply to "the blatant armistice violations"?
  2. , why did not US pre-emptively attack the Soviet Union? Stalin quite obviously killed a lot of his own population over little else than joy, they annected Afghanistan, spent billions of dollars on (factual) WMDs and sold them to whomever. And the Soviet Union (much like USA itself) blatantly supported any terrorist faction in Latin America and elswehere in the name of, say, communism. So why not, there is ... (whatdotheysay??)... casus belly plentificus.
 

[ Parent ]
iraq (1.00 / 1) (#358)
by lordDogma on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 09:41:28 PM EST

"if Iraq was in such blatant violation, why was it not the UN itself blah blah..."

Why do you think the US keeps talking about the UN becoming irrelevant? The UN is all words and no action. You see it all the time:

"We condemn the invasion of..."
"We condemn the bombing of..."
"We condemn the torture of..."
"We condemn the treatment of..."
"This injustice MUST STOP!"
"That injustice MUST STOP!"

Ok, wondeful. But what good does condemnation do without some kind of economic or military action? For example, if it wasn't for the US gathering up a coalition in 1990 and driving the Iraqis out, Kuwait would still be part of Iraq right now. Without that military action, to this day, Iraq would still be in Kuwait and countries like France and Germany would be mouthing off on TV about how horrible Iraq was (which would be completely ignored by Saddam of course) all the while providing no ships to enforce any sanctions, and all the while doing great business with the dictator under the table. Its totally hypocritical.

Look, I'm NOT saying we SHOULD use economic or military force to make countries comply with this UN law or that UN law. All I'm saying is that the UN is worthless if all it can do is talk. Why the f*ck bother with it? We should just get rid of it if that's the way we feel.

"why did not US pre-emptively attack the Soviet Union? Stalin quite obviously blah blah blah"

Come one dude. Don't make me argue about stupid shit. This just goes off the deep end of stupidity. I mean, really this sounds like something a highschool student wrote.

-- LD

[ Parent ]

But why is the UN irrelevant? (5.00 / 1) (#373)
by Richey on Mon Aug 25, 2003 at 07:56:26 PM EST

Why do you think the US keeps talking about the UN becoming irrelevant? The UN is all words and no action.

The UN has no means of taking action because its members shy away from giving it any real power, the US most of all. The US government has no wish to give any real democratic power to other nations but instead always seeks to maximise its own power. I'll leave whether this is a good thing to another argument, but it is hypocritical of the US to try to use the UN to seek backing of its actions and then, when it fails, claim its actions are justified under the UNs agreements despite this.

Besides, words alone are reasonably powerful.

[ Parent ]

blatant armistice treaty violations? n/t (5.00 / 2) (#318)
by ceejayoz on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 03:34:24 PM EST



[ Parent ]
Well I think you all are missing the bigr picture. (2.40 / 10) (#170)
by Mr Hogan on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:07:22 AM EST

First of all this reporter is an Arab and all Arabs look alike or at least are friends - Hussein and bin Laden for example - "that's why we're there" repeat constantly all the king's men - so I can understand how this can happen over and then tomorrow once again but Jesus are you people nuts it doesn't matter if this one Arab died accidentally - hundreds of thousands we've killed accidentally - for twenty years we've dropped our bombs and starved the people turned their toil and suffering into anti-Hitler shekels - why are you wringing your hands now - because it's a personal tragedy? Yes tragedy excuses everything and all the rest - is why the cunning liberalists call it 'tragedy' instead of 'murder' everything is words to them.

Problem is every man woman child died in Iraq is a personal tragedy - if only journalists wrote it up that way in the news that stands for your imaginations or lack thereof - but the thing you don't seem to understand is this: individual people do not matter. Jesus stop and think - if they mattered there'd be no war - ever - no one would support invasion not the Boeing factory workers Haliburton suits or David Letterman nor the soldiers and the bombardiers done killed thousands "accidentally" the victims in the way of freedom weather falling from the iron birds of paradise blotting out the sun.

The reason this reporter died is there are soldiers in Iraq killing people disagree with ideas held by American politicians - verbal ghosts inside the mind giant conspiracies of letters - and that's the only reason that matters. That is the basis of civilization.

--
Life is food and rape, then tilt.

Yeah sure (2.66 / 3) (#194)
by salsaman on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:57:25 AM EST

all Arabs look alike or at least are friends...

Yeah, just like all them niggers. You gotta shoot first and ask questions later, right ?

[ Parent ]

Perhaps you were being sarcastic and I missed it (1.00 / 1) (#216)
by salsaman on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:51:23 AM EST

In which case I apologise.

[ Parent ]
Also: (1.00 / 1) (#222)
by Mr Hogan on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:17:45 AM EST

Their leaders import playboy bunnies - my God man our women folk - to decorate their private discos.

--
Life is food and rape, then tilt.
[ Parent ]

Just so kafir just exactly so. (1.00 / 1) (#220)
by Mr Hogan on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:09:13 AM EST

Even the children have an inborn aversion to the physiognomy of terror which we intensify - as proper we should - by constant references in our newspapers and conversations to their craven acts of tribal culture bloodthirsty God and their hooked noses. Not only do they look different have flat feet and arms are longer but also they speak differently than we do and their thoughts feelings and actions are a contradiction and threat to our morality. Instead of honest farmers and factory workers and soldiers like our fathers and brothers they swindle with oil build palaces and live off the sweat of others. Their towels are tattered they are ill kempt. They killed Christ who was a war hero.

--
Life is food and rape, then tilt.
[ Parent ]

What do RPGs and cameras look like from the front? (4.07 / 13) (#173)
by Neolith on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:35:14 AM EST

This is the question I've seen posed several times today.  All of the comparative links I've seen so far show the RPGs from the side, and the camera from the front.  Even then I thought they were similar enough to easily understand the confusion.

Then I found this site.  Imagine that from 20 meters away and then judge the situation.

Yeah, but it's slightly misleading (3.62 / 8) (#177)
by McBain on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 12:53:44 AM EST

One of the comments on the blog:
Very convincing graphic, but for the fact that not one of the missiles shown is being prepared to fire from the shoulder.

RPGs are very prominent.

But the point is that they were given permission to film by the soldiers; the soldiers knew them and expected them to be using a camera. If they were going to be at risk of being attacked by US soldiers then they should have informed them before giving them permission to film.

---
Sorry. I can't seem to find that sig.
[ Parent ]

From 30 meters away? (3.83 / 6) (#182)
by Neolith on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:24:18 AM EST

You think you could tell the difference between any of those images and or an RPG and or a tv camera from 30 meters away?  Well, I guess I can allow you that confidence.  However, it seems suspect to assume that the reports might be uninformed of the dangers of filming a live fire exercise.  

[ Parent ]
there was no live fire exercise.(nt) (5.00 / 2) (#193)
by vivelame on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:21:54 AM EST



--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
I'm pretty sure the dead guys would disagree. (5.00 / 1) (#249)
by Neolith on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:52:50 PM EST

You know, with mortars landing around, tanks using live ammo and everything.

[ Parent ]
since (2.00 / 1) (#258)
by vivelame on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:57:34 PM EST

you can read this, you obviously have mastered the useful skill of "clicking on a link". Maybe you should have bothered to click on the, say, Washington Post link, and then actually read it, and you'd have realised that the mortar shells were falling, yes, but the day before. And the only live ammo firing was when the tank crew decided to maw down a journalist.

--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
What is your definition of live fire? (4.00 / 4) (#262)
by Neolith on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:20:13 PM EST

Are you contending that the journalist thought that the tanks and guns around him were loaded with blanks or dummy rounds, and thus were not dangerous?  

[ Parent ]
what is you definition (3.00 / 2) (#300)
by vivelame on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 02:56:49 AM EST

of fire? are you contending that he should have had supernatural powers, read the future, and see that the soldiers would shoot him down?

--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
War zone reporting (3.00 / 2) (#325)
by Neolith on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 05:14:45 PM EST

Yeah, pretty much, I think he saw that as a possibility, and willingly went in with his camera anyway.  But I'm assuming he was a bright guy.  Maybe he did go into a war zone thinking there was no possibility he'd be killed or injured.

Since I'm assuming the guy wasn't an idiot, I'm taking your last comment as a complete concession that 1) the guy knew he was in the middle of loaded guns and active weapons systems and took his chances, and 2) the outrage over his death being 'deliberate' and that it in no way could have been a mistake is the worst sort of joke.

Thank you.

[ Parent ]

One Shot (none / 0) (#378)
by Fat Tony on Wed Aug 27, 2003 at 12:34:06 PM EST

Every RPG I've seen pictures of is pretty long.  They were 30m away, and managed to hit him in the first shot.  At 30m, if they could see well enough to hit him with their first shot, they could probably see him well enough to see what he was carrying.  

Those pictures are also very skewed.  Those are all American anti-tank weapons.  The RPGs used by the Iraqi forces look more like long tubes with Grenades on the end.

[ Parent ]

Difference between TOW and RPG (2.30 / 10) (#201)
by Wulfius on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:44:18 AM EST

The link posted is neocon propaganda.

No Iraquis use ANY of those missile systems.
Those are NOT RPGs all of those look like TOW
anti-tank systems.

The RPG that the Iraqis use is much smaller and cheap as mud.

Compare, decide.

http://www.g2mil.com/RPG.htm

---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

In other words (4.66 / 3) (#215)
by porkchop_d_clown on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:50:34 AM EST

Since RPGs are smaller, wouldn't they look even more like cameras? Or do you have a link to show that they look very different?


--
You can't raise my prices. You can't build more power plants. You can't build more power lines. Why are my lights out!?!


[ Parent ]
Since youre to lazy to look it up. (1.50 / 2) (#235)
by Wulfius on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:05:17 AM EST

http://www.taftschool.org/about/arts/studioarts/video/videoimgs/camera.jpg

vs.

http://conspiracyx0.tripod.com/weapons/terrorists3.jpg

-


---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

He is no lazy he is a nazy :) (NT) (1.00 / 1) (#242)
by RoOoBo on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 11:40:38 AM EST



[ Parent ]
Insulted by someone who can't spell (5.00 / 3) (#303)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:52:36 AM EST

"Nazi" correctly. I love it.

Actually, I think the mental image of a Nazi clown is even funnier....


--
You can't raise my prices. You can't build more power plants. You can't build more power lines. Why are my lights out!?!


[ Parent ]
Too lazy to look up broken links? (3.75 / 4) (#302)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 07:51:34 AM EST

Too lazy to format HTML correctly?

--
You can't raise my prices. You can't build more power plants. You can't build more power lines. Why are my lights out!?!


[ Parent ]
Those links aren't broken (none / 0) (#374)
by Richey on Mon Aug 25, 2003 at 08:06:57 PM EST



[ Parent ]
Excellent link. (4.66 / 3) (#214)
by porkchop_d_clown on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:49:35 AM EST

Thanks.


--
You can't raise my prices. You can't build more power plants. You can't build more power lines. Why are my lights out!?!


[ Parent ]
Where is the outcry (2.13 / 22) (#192)
by sellison on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:41:41 AM EST

from the world for all the good, decent, American soldiers being killed every day in Iraq?!!

The world gets all upset about a journalist or two, who is in a place he shouldn't be, pointing what could be a weapon at these much maligned soldiers, of course he is acting foolish. This was no 'warcrime' it was a suicide event, probably calculated to do as much or more than strapping a bomb to himself and blowing up a UN building would have done!

Meanwhile, the poor soldiers who are their at the sincere bidding of the silent majority of Iraqis, are being threatened daily by minions of the evil one pointing metal objects at them. Certainly some mistakes are going to be made!

But the ones at fault are the arabs and others who continue to resist the Americans, for money and for their errant superstitious belief in their lying 'prophet', and it is this that responsible jounalist should be covering, rather than swarming all over the beleugered US troops seeking to film something that could be spun into a warcrime, and probably pushing some of their own forward at the wrong time to make it happen!

We should, the world should, be understanding and sympathetic for what these poor, honest, decent American boys are going through, and the local 'journalists' should start screaming about the real crimes being commited by the islamicists, mercenaries, and terrorists rather than trying to find fault with the poor American boys trying to do the job the good Iraqi people are begging them to do!


"No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered as patriots. This is one nation under God."- George H.W. Bush

oh my god (2.75 / 8) (#198)
by tsk1979 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:06:44 AM EST

You are too much First of all the soldiers are there in a foreign country. They have invaded another country. What do you expect. Lollipops?

As for journalists, no law gives army the right to attack civilians and journos.

[ Parent ]

Please... (2.66 / 3) (#265)
by tyroneking on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:21:33 PM EST

... don't forget that the soldiers or not, they are young men and women who have much right to life as anyone, journalists and civilians included.
You may not agree that they should be in Iraq, but they are trying to police and maintain security for the general population.
I can't imagine that you would go around killing people for no good reason - so why do you think American soliders would do the same?

[ Parent ]
They "invaded" like Patton (2.00 / 4) (#287)
by sellison on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:29:40 PM EST

"invaded" France.

Yes most of the locals are happy for their deserved and long awaited salvation from tyranny. Yes most of the locals are giving lollipops or anything else the soldiers want.

Yes some remnant of the evil former overlords remain and are trying their best to cause trouble.

Maybe this journalist was in league with them, or perhaps he was just stupid. A camera looks alot like a rocket launcher, make sure you talk personally to anyone you point it at before you point it, don't just talk to some guy in a US Army uniform and assume that all the rest of the Americans get the message.

We have awesome technology, but the telepathic transmitters are still too expensive for common field use.


"No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered as patriots. This is one nation under God."- George H.W. Bush
[ Parent ]

risk (3.83 / 6) (#199)
by VasyaPoup on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:27:37 AM EST

Here's how I see the point of this article: The death risk of a civilian in Iraq is around 5000/2.2e7=2.2e-4 (per this war), of a US soldier is 58/1.5e5=3.9e-4, of a journalist is around 11/2000=5.5e-3. Numbers may vary. Of these groups the last two, soldiers and journalists are, so to say, on the edge of a conlict. Still their death risks are of the order of magnitude different. That's what seen unfair by many people. That's where it seems that US troops ensure their security at the expence of much higher risks for journalists and those civilians who are nearby. It's a soldier's work to fight and die, not a bystander's. At least that's how it's been declared.

Some points (4.50 / 4) (#212)
by CENGEL3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:27:18 AM EST

Firstly your numbers are off. For Iraqi civilians you claim 5000 which I assume means you are counting civilian deaths which occured both during the initial invasion and during the current occupation stage of the operation.... or are you contending that 5000 Iraqi civilians have been killed by U.S. fire during the peacekeeping stage? If so I'd like to see where you get those numbers.

Next you claim 58 deaths for U.S. soldiers, which is only the count of U.S. casualties during the occupation stage and does NOT include the U.S. soldiers killed during the initial invasion. If you use the same timeframe for soldiers as you used for civilians then the correct number as far as I can tell would be 267 (or 175 counting only those classified as "combat" deaths).

Not sure what time frame the 11 reporters were killed so I can't comment on that.

The other thing to bear in mind is that reporters tend to congregate where the fighting is....so they actualy tend to be exposed to more fighting then a typical soldiers (although they are not the intentional targets of that fighting).

Another thing to remember is that the level of risk a soldier is exposed to will vary greatly depending upon his assignment. A rear area logistics clerk, for example, usualy faces far less risk then a frontline combat infantryman.

[ Parent ]

exact numbers are good :) (none / 0) (#257)
by VasyaPoup on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:46:59 PM EST

I agree with most of the corrections. Though, I have to point out that you can use expectation values for a "civilian" or a "soldier", and these are in no means less "exact" than expectation values for a specific groups of civilians or soldiers. The last became more relevant, though, if you are one of these guys and trying to estimate risk for yourself most accurately I wasn't much interested with iraqi war much for the exact reason that those numbers are so low. If we ignore the fact that violence tends to spread, we can deal with tenths of such "wars" and live unperturbed. This is quite diffenent from, WWII where, e.g. soviet soldier going to the war at its beginning had only around 5% chances of getting back. Yes, journalists are a specific type of civilians which work closely with the military. I assume they are experienced and don't do any wrong moves, still they die at a pretty high rate. So, what can we say? The same as the article assumes: US soldiers are too much nervois and care too much about their own security. That's not what they're paid for...I think. There's a dozen of jobs that assume deaths risks much higher, and people still do it. There's a lot of hobbies that do and people still do it.

[ Parent ]
Do a historical comparison (5.00 / 1) (#261)
by CENGEL3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:20:12 PM EST

Do a historical comparison with other conflicts.
I don't think you'll find that the risk of death for reporters in this conflict is really much higher then other conflicts of a similar nature.
It might just be getting more press.

I really dispute your contention that the U.S. soldiers are too nervous and care too much about thier own security. They may not be as experienced at these operations as some other troops who have performed more peacekeeping missions and that might cause them to make a few more mistakes.

But I think if you look at it objectively, you'll find that the risk for reporters in this operation is about on par with the risk for reporters in similiar conflicts involving different nations troops.

Being a reporter in a war zone is an inherently dangerous bussiness, even if everyone is doing thier job perfectly.  

[ Parent ]

More civilians have died than that (2.00 / 2) (#256)
by proles on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:46:50 PM EST

I suggest iraqbodycount.net for these sorts of things.  And don't forget a number of Iraqi soldiers have died too (hard to count but estimates are ~10,000), and last I checked they were still human beings.
If there is hope, it lies in the proles.
[ Parent ]
iraqbodycount.net? heh... (2.66 / 3) (#317)
by ceejayoz on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 03:23:11 PM EST

IraqBodyCount.net's methodology has been criticized over and over again, but people still quote it as proof. If the Iraqi information minister said "300 deaths" and a news agency says "Unable to confirm any casualties", IraqBodyCount counts that as a 300 - in both the maximum and the minimum categories. It has also been shown that they've double-counted some incidents, and counted militia and resistance fighters as "civilians". Whoops! Using IraqBodyCount's statistical methods, the US Army is currently at about -500,000 troops. http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/002/554awdqo.asp

[ Parent ]
First off (3.50 / 2) (#328)
by proles on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 06:09:46 PM EST

A cursory examination reveals that this "Weekly Standard" website seems to be a tad partisan. That in and of itself is not reason to dismiss any of your points, just an observation.

It also opens with this typical and flawed attack on anti-war folks:

IT'S ALMOST AS IF some people want Iraqi civilians to die. So eager are they to score political points that you can almost see them licking their chops as they desperately seek out any reports--however sketchy--of Iraqi casualties. For their political agenda, the only good Iraqi is a dead Iraqi.

No. That's nothing but a blatantly fallacious attack. The anti-war crowd are not "licking their chops" to count Iraqi casualties (or casualties of any sorts). Yes, it's true that casualties will help the political cause of those who are against the war, but that doesn't mean that an anti-war person wants people to die. In fact, most anti-war people throughout history are usually anti-war because they don't want people to die.

This reminds me of a particular part of "Thin Ice" where the anti-war (well technically anti-winnebago, but it is satire) person is criticized when one of the boy scouts (representing the troops) is injured. He shouts back "I didn't want them to go over there in the first place!". The anti-war crowd is *not* savoring the deaths of anybody here, and to make that accusation reveals ignorance and/or bias.

Now if I look at their methodology, nowhere do they list "The Iraqi Information Minister" as a source. In fact, they seem to have a nice balanced list of sources. Yes, it's possible that al Jazeera is biased and is listing more deaths than happened. It's also possible that CNN is biased and is ignoring deaths. That's the thing with media: any source can be criticized as potentially biased. That's why I advocate using many sources, and it looks like Iraqbodycount uses many sources.

The article you linked to appears more and more biased as it continues. It goes off about a few apparently grandiose predictions that occurred before the war, with some predicting upwards of 500,000 civilian casualties. First off, it should be noted that it looks like at least some of these predictions assumed the use of the much vaunted "weapons of mass destruction" by one side or another, and as such are not quite as outrageous as they are made to appear. But that aside, so what if a few people made some crazy predictions? That has nothing to do with the situation, and guess what?

The "left" is *not* so coherent and cohesive and cannot (or at least should not) be held responsible as a single entity for the transgressions of a few extremists. Rightist pundits like Rush Limbaugh seem to find such guilt-by-assocation a necessary ingredient of their rhetoric, however. Granted, there are leftist pundits who pull the exact same sort of crap, but that's really exactly the point. There are morons, extremists, and so forth on both "sides", but neither side can be entirely characterized or dismissed because of them. And it should be noted that in this specific case, the predictions of 500,000 and such were not made by Iraqbodycount and do not reflect on them in the least.

The site you linked to goes on to talk about how the Pentagon is simply trying to be careful and not report false things, like the Iraqi Information Minister does. Well guess what: the whole reason the Iraqbodycount started was because the Pentagon decided not to report or care about civilian casualties *at all*. "We don't do body counts" - General Tommy Franks.

And it appears that the little critique you linked to offers no actual substantive refutation of any of the Iraqbodycount stances, but rather offers a number of hypothetical "what-ifs". Well yes, the Iraqbodycount could certainly be off. The fog of war is difficult to overcome a lot of the time. But at least they're trying to count, something the US military can't even be bothered to do.

So in summary, let's see what this little article did to try and argue with Iraqbodycount (and why it was wrong to do so):

  • Tried to characterize the Iraqbodycount as savoring the deaths for political purpose (actual situation: Iraqbodycount is counting because the military/pro-war crowd isn't even bothering to and they feel somebody has to)
  • Tried to associate Iraqbodycount with "nuts" who made ridiculous predictions of casualties before the war started (actual situation: guilt by assocation is horribly fallacious, from the "Christ Killers" meme to modern day politics)
  • Argued that Iraqbodycount used "biased sources" (actual situation: Iraqbodycount dares to use a few non-western sources, and yes they're biased, but so are the western sources, and the theory is that multiple sources with different biases might just balance out)
  • Pointed to the Iraqi Information Minister, another attempt at guilt-by-assocation (actual situation: they failed to show any actual concrete time where Iraqbodycount used information from the Iraqi Information Minister, they just went off about a number of hypotheticals)
  • And like the last bullet, they used many hypotheticals. Well guess what, yes it's certainly possible that Iraqbodycount is inaccurate for any number of reasons. But this little site fails to offer any concrete evidence of a specific example of inaccuracy, which makes me a tad skeptical.

So, yeah. Thanks for the link, but it left me relatively unconvinced I'm afraid.


If there is hope, it lies in the proles.
[ Parent ]
PS (4.33 / 3) (#329)
by proles on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 06:15:52 PM EST

"Using IraqBodyCount's statistical methods, the US Army is currently at about -500,000 troops."

Even the article, as slanted as it is, doesn't make that actual allegation.  Do you have any facts whatsoever to support that or are you just making shit up in the hope of convincing people who are too lazy to actually think for themselves?
If there is hope, it lies in the proles.
[ Parent ]

Facists. (2.80 / 20) (#202)
by Wulfius on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:50:14 AM EST

No, not the solders, they are merely pawns in the mad fantasy of the Corporate State previously known as the USA.

I can not belive the wide eyed apolegetics from some of the neo-con K5 mob.

The soldier is an invader on a foreign land (You know, why our grandfathers fought the bad Nazis).
He is there AGAINST the will of the world.
They kill.
And as if taking ANY life is not morally corupt, they kill innocents.

There is a reason why the US does not want to sign the international war crimes court treaty and that is that as evidenced above they continualy committ them to satisfy the greed of the few.

And the most tragic thing of all is the hordes of unthinking fools that follow.

This is how the death camps happened.
Because it was easier to follow than to object.

---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!

Reality Check (3.75 / 4) (#213)
by Pyrion on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:45:24 AM EST

World opinion doesn't decide where individual sovereign nations send their troops. Whether or not the soldiers are there "against the will of the world" is irrelevant.
--
"There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." - Bertrand Russell
[ Parent ]
Uh huh. (3.33 / 3) (#234)
by Wulfius on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:58:40 AM EST

Only in the US-Vs-Them mentality of the current US Administration.

At some stage you need friends.

---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

Predictable (2.75 / 4) (#284)
by localusr on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:30:33 PM EST

Thinking like this led to 9/11. Congratulations, you are predictable, though.

[ Parent ]
Neo-con (4.00 / 3) (#251)
by Neolith on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:16:26 PM EST

While I'm glad that there is a new handly label to throw around in stead of USian, using it for damn near everything you disagree with brands you the unthinking fool.

Anyway, Iraq would be so much better off if coalition forces had never invaded in the first place, or maybe if they just took off right now.  I'm sure the average Iraqi would support that decision.  The policy of containment and economic pressure was loved everyone in the country. Then again, I guess they don't.  There is lots of ammunition in that link you can use in your anti-neo-con worldview, but you can't ignore the overwhelming conclusion -- they are glad the US came, and they want them to stay.  Remember that you're working against that preference.

[ Parent ]

IWC (3.25 / 4) (#269)
by Casioitan on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:35:36 PM EST

"There is a reason why the US does not want to sign the international war crimes court treaty and that is that as evidenced above they continualy committthem to satisfy the greed of the few."

Umm ... what dream world do you live in? A world where you are suceptable to other nation's laws whilst living in your own nation? A world were trails are conducted with no jury, just appointed judges selected from a poll of judges who are not even from the same hemisphere from you?

The IWC is the most ridiculous concept to ever be constructed by the UN, and, specifically, the French.

IWC will never be accepted by the US. Never.

[ Parent ]

And justice for blah blah blah (5.00 / 1) (#365)
by grzebo on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 03:06:14 PM EST

A world where you are suceptable to other nation's laws whilst living in your own nation?

Like, uhmmm, Iraqi citizen getting his country invaded, because its laws were different from those in the US?

A world were trails are conducted with no jury, just appointed judges selected from a poll of judges who are not even from the same hemisphere from you?

Yes, certainly. Not all courts work the way the USian ones do - the jury is not the best solution to everything. And the thing you described is called "Guantanamo Military Tribunal", not ICC.


"My God, shouts man to Himself,
have mercy on me, enlighten me"...
[ Parent ]

Police Action? (3.66 / 9) (#206)
by hughk on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 07:33:24 AM EST

The war in Iraq is officially over. Nowe have what has been known as a police action. One of the key points of a police action is not to assume that everyone that you see that isn't in your force is an enemy.

One of the key points of a police action is that lethal response should be a last resort. Normally, response should be scaled in accordance with the threat. It means that you have to take a few extra hits, but so do the civillians that you want to be on your side. It is difficult to be a good policeman, particularly if you are a trained soldier. However, it is possible, look at Northern Ireland.

What are tanks doing now on the streets of Baghdad? If forces need protection, then an APC or armoured car is more than adequate. Policy, Rules of Engagement and training need to be ammended to take the current situation into account.

Well (3.66 / 6) (#209)
by CENGEL3 on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:03:02 AM EST

Korea was officialy a "Police Action" too. That label tends to get used as more of a political term then an actual description of the mission.

Iraq is very different from Northern Ireland. With the number of RPG's still flying around the only thing that riding around in an APC instead of a tank, while more "politicaly correct", will achieve is to get more people (on both sides) killed. No one wants to make the same mistake that was made in Somalia

[ Parent ]

The reason for tanks... (4.00 / 3) (#247)
by trimethyl on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 01:38:36 PM EST

What are tanks doing now on the streets of Baghdad? If forces need protection, then an APC or armoured car is more than adequate.

Actually, they're not. During the war, the Iraqis were able to destroy dozens of US armored vehicles with RPG's. The armor on an APC will not protect you from an RPG - it is designed to withstand small arms fire, nothing more. (Though tanks are more heavily armored, they too can be taken out with RPG's if hit where their armor is thin.)



[ Parent ]
You're correct about the APCs (5.00 / 3) (#276)
by RyoCokey on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:35:21 PM EST

The Bradly really doesn't have enough armor to deal with RPGs. However, I believe the M1A2 variant is actually invulnerable to most RPGs, even in the less armored areas. Those lost during the war (as far as I can tell) were either hit by friendly fire or by some Russian Coronet anti-tank missiles (Not standard RPGs) which weren't seen but in one location.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
I realize you're making a point (3.00 / 1) (#255)
by proles on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 02:44:48 PM EST

And that is that the war is *not* over and that the administration is being hypocritical to claim it is but to then go and endorse further deployment and military action and use of force.

That said, the vaunted "Average American" will either not get your point or not care about it (or more likely still, not ever even be exposed to it, e.g. most Americans simply don't expose themselves to media beyond Fox and CNN, and neither of those sources ask these sorts of questions).

What needs to be done to make things change is the "Average American" needs to be shown that what's going on around the world *does* affect them.  It's very natural for people to not care about stuff until it bites them in the ass.  People opt for the path of least resistance, and I'm not counting myself as somehow smarter or better in that regards.  But for actual political change to come about in this country it needs to be shown that this stuff *does* matter and we need to do something about it.

Really, spreading the word through grassroots is remarkably effective.  If you have any friends who you know are good people but aren't all that politically informed, maybe bring up an issue or two.  Be respectful, avoid preaching, and give them the facts and let them reach their own conclusions.

1992 was won because "it's the economy, stupid".  Well in 2004 I'd say it's *still* the economy, and if that point is driven home then there is still hope.
If there is hope, it lies in the proles.
[ Parent ]

Nothing wrong with tanks. (none / 0) (#267)
by Casioitan on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:26:36 PM EST

.. Ok ... the basis of your argument is that police actions do not need tanks?? By whose standards? Is there a guidbook somewhere that says "police actions means no tanks?"

Imagine 60 police officers get killed in NY by a group of people looking to resist X government policy, or intimidate X people, topple X government, etc etc ... do you think that the National Guard, or even more regular Army Units, wouldn't be deployed to NY? And what if that NY group has a copious amount of RPGs and mine-like devices at their disposal? Devices which they were using to kill policemen. Imagine those thugs are killing policemen in YOUR neighborhood. Intimidating YOU with weapons to join their cause. I think a big M1 Abram would/should make you feel pretty damn safe.

The point is, the situation in Iraq justifies tanks. RPGs will go through any armored vehicle, even a Bradely .. even if the Bradley has it's extra armor strapped on. If your argument is that tanks in the streets of Baghdad are driving people to try to kill americans ... I think that is debatable. I think if the average Iraq wanted the US out of Iraq, we would be gone after they killed quite a few of us. Which would not be hard, as shown by the previously mentioned RPG-wielding guys.

[ Parent ]

Police Action (1.00 / 1) (#367)
by I Robot on Sat Aug 23, 2003 at 05:30:43 PM EST

A) The war is NOT over. Try to pay attention.
B) This is NOT a 'police action'.
C) With a half second or so (total) in which to respond, how much time should a soldier give before we can declare that he only used force as a last resort?
D) The Iraqi attackers dress like civilians. Even if they DO fire first, some dipwad is going to report their death as a civilian casualty. And some other lame-brain is going to dutifully post a long-butt windbag article on Kuro5shin and another on /. about how evil the American soldiers are.
E) The dickhead Iraqi's are firing RPG's. A personell carrier or armored car is NOT enough.
F) Every coalition soldier also left family behind. Except for those whose entire families were slaughtered, so did every Kurd gassed to death in his hometown village. So did the olympic athletes tortured, maimed and killed because they didn't come home with friggin' gold medals. Wake TFU. This is how the game of war, terrorism and domestic brutality is played. If you don't like it, get another game. I know I have.
G) Personally, you're an idiot. But that probably runs so deep that it goes without mentioning.

[ Parent ]
Great ad idea for a Sony Handicam: (4.80 / 5) (#208)
by squidinkcalligraphy on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 07:59:23 AM EST

Never be mistaken for a rocket launcher again!
An identity card is better that no identity at all
Imagine this. (3.95 / 20) (#227)
by unstable on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 09:56:31 AM EST

Your a soldier in a convoy.

you are pulling up on a "controlled" area of a contry that your forces are currently "engaged in". its hot.  you are sweating, and you dont want to be here anymore.   the stress is high everywere and you dont know who is freind or foe anymore.

you see a crowd of what looks to be civilians in front of your allies.

now you start thinking.  is one of them a enemy soldier that is dressed like a civilian? is there a radio controlled bomb or a suicide bomber in one of the cars.

you scan the faces that are watching you intently and you see movement.  someone drops to his knees and props something on his shoulder.

what do you do..too late...  if that was an RPG he would have fired on you or your friends... most defninetly killing people, maybe you.

this is a high stress situation.  we have soldiers that are deployed in a country that has a population that hates them and loves them.  but you cant tell who is who.

you have enemies that dont care who they kill, who will gladly kill 20 civilians and die themselves just to kill one soldier.

most importently, you have scared soldiers.

the fact that a reported has been killed is a tragedy. its sad that anyone has to die. but to call that soldier that reacted trying to save his life a murderer is even more of a tragedy.  call the US whatever you want..  but to say that that reported was shot on purpose is just cowardace.  I want you to go in front of that soldier yourself and say to him "murderer"  just you and him.  no crowd.. no cameras.. just you and him.

I think you will find it a bit harder then posting on a web site.

he has to live with his actions for the rest of his life.  he has to come to terms with the fact that he pulled the trigger and now an inocent is dead.

what would you do if you were faced with a life or death situation and chose wrong. what would you do when you read in the paper that you are a monster, that you have no concience, that you are the "bad guy".  could you stand up to it?

think about it.  think about what it would be like.

people die in warzones. but if anyone is to blame its us.  every human on the earth.  until we change people will be killed in stupid situations like this. do you have a solution to this? lets here it.



Reverend Unstable
all praise the almighty Bob
and be filled with slack

Imagine... (none / 0) (#377)
by Fat Tony on Wed Aug 27, 2003 at 12:21:44 PM EST

He has every right in the world to appear in any form of media he desires and defend his actions. The situation looks very poorly for him, but if he so desires, he can try to justify his position to those accusing him of (having no conscience|killing innocent reporters).

[ Parent ]
Remember? The Pentagon said they'd kill reporters. (2.92 / 14) (#232)
by manhattanite on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:13:57 AM EST

http://www.gulufuture.com/news/kate_adie030310.htm

So the unelected leaders of this war tell us they will kill reporters and now a bunch of apologists pretend this latest incident is an accident.

Just like the NYPD foot soldier told me about the Gov favoring pro-war rallies, "It's more than departmental", It's POLICY from the highest office.

Wow, this one's really drawn out the nuts (3.75 / 8) (#274)
by RyoCokey on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:20:56 PM EST

First of all, the site you cite is completely nuts. Those who doubt should be tempted to look at the main page. Secondarily, the Pentagon said nothing of the sort. It said that such devices could be mistaken for Iraqi radar sites, and would be fired upon.

When the nice doctor says you need to take the pills regularly, you should listen to him.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
Tiger gave me a 1 on that one! (5.00 / 5) (#288)
by RyoCokey on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 08:39:47 PM EST

Awesome. That just makes my day. From the man who believes Operation Barbarosa was faked.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
Don't believe his link then... (2.75 / 4) (#294)
by SvnLyrBrto on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 12:04:34 AM EST

Do some research yourself.

First off, find out who Kate Adie is. Hint: She's not some fox-"news"-style infotainment crank. She's a VERY well-respected and award winning war correspondant for the BBC. (The first link from that google search should be her BBC biography.)

Second, google for "kate adie iraq". Here: I'll make it easy for you.

cya,
john

Imagine all the people...
[ Parent ]

You've encountered an urban legend (5.00 / 6) (#306)
by RyoCokey on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 11:00:50 AM EST

First of all, Ms. Adie is not a BBC reporter, even though she is claimed as one in the articles. Secondly, her remarks are the only source for this accusation, and don't name the supposed person making this remark! So we have one uncredited remark instead of the actual release, which was that it would be impossible to tell us devices from hostile communications that the Army made several times, and took measures to prevent.

You should know better than to get your news from the number 1 urban legend generator on the web.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
Kate Adie (none / 1) (#379)
by czolgosz on Sat Aug 30, 2003 at 02:47:25 PM EST

First of all, Ms. Adie is not a BBC reporter, even though she is claimed as one in the articles.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/correspondents/newsid_2625000/2625875.stm

Well, yes she is. Or are you going to claim that bbc.co.uk isn't really a BBC website? Or that she doesn't exist? Or that a free-lance reporter is not a reporter?

Adie's a real journalist, not one of the lying, scripted shills you find on Fox. If she makes an uncorroborated assertion, I'm inclined to take it seriously. Officials often make "off the record" remarks which they later deny (the lobby system in the UK is a long-standing example of this)-- in this instance I think she called them on it.

I don't believe that the Pentagon is deliberately targeting reporters in Iraq. I do think that they've made efforts to increase the sense of risk for non-embedded journalists through ambiguous warnings that could also be interpreted as threats. A basic psywar technique: "We won't protect you, and be aware that our rules of engagement will treat you as a target if you do certain things that are part of your job." Any inhibiting effect would, of course, be entirely coincidental.

And remember that Mazen had covered the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for a long time. Therefore, the assertions by other posters that he was some kind of idiot who just walked into the line of fire are not plausible. Still, I think it's more probably the result of bad judgement by the shooter rather than any standing order to shoot journos. Anti-journalist bias is possible; an explicit shoot-to-kill policy far less likely.


Why should I let the toad work squat on my life? --Larkin
[ Parent ]
Holy Crap (3.53 / 13) (#233)
by darkseer on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:23:21 AM EST

Your in a WAR zone. People get SHOT in war zones. I read somewhere thats part of the definition of warzone. The kicker is INNOCENTS DIE in war zones no matter what their occupation. If you are so ignorant as to believe that there is no risk in going to a WAR zone darwin will have his way with you.

There are a bunch of tense soldiers with guns and you don't think there is going to be an accidental shooting? See darwin comment. The guy could have been dressed in tydye and holding a peace sign and there is STILL a risk he will be shot. OMFG gimme a break.    

it's not the first time (4.66 / 3) (#263)
by burntfriedman on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:21:27 PM EST

I remember that an Al Jazeera camera man was rpg'ed(or somethng to that effect) on his hotel balcony when the U.S. entered Bagdad. The hoopla was displayed then as now...although that particular camera man didn't try to address the battle group (and get ignored)

I'll be generous (2.00 / 9) (#264)
by jd on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 03:21:32 PM EST

...and assume it's a meaningless coincidence that the journalists who have been killed, attacked or arrested were all either Arabic or embedded with Arabs.

(The ITN reporter killed by US forces, early in the war, was embedded in an Iraqi column.)

I'll also take it that it's a meaningless coincidence that there have been many more journalist deaths since the media has taken a more skeptical approach to the whole war effort.

Oh, and I'll also assume that it's a meaningless coincidence that no US soldier has ever been disciplined in the entire "war on terror" for "friendly fire" incidents EXCEPT against other US troops. If they're Canadian, British, UN, Red Cross, etc, then it's simply chalked up as one of those things. If it's a US serviceman that's killed, then the attacker gets busted so low they say "sir" to the West Nile Virus.

Yes, innocents get killed in war. So do combatants. If this were the first such incident, we could probably all feel that it was just a meaningless tragedy in an increasingly meaningless war.

But it's not. Tapes are being confiscated by US forces. Journalists are getting beaten up by US forces. Aid Workers with whopping big red crosses on the top of the building are getting bombed by US forces. Twice, in Afghanistan, -after- the US had admitted that it WAS a Red Cross building.

Refugee columns get straffed. Food packages for refugees are packaged identically to cluster bombs. In two seperate wars. AFTER admitting that it could lead to "accidents". Which, indeed, have happened.

I'm willing to be generous, though, and accept that, in the all-new military dictatorship in Iraq, people will get killed. Especially people with cameras or with training in letting others know what's happening.

I will be generous and accept it as a part of the reality of the situation. But I'll never forgive those who have betrayed the US flag or the US oath in the name of following orders. For it is treachery of the highest order. When the troops came back from Vietnam, they were spat at and condemned. Why? Because their acts were treason. The orders they obeyed, which included torture, dumping prisoners out of helicopters, using chemical weapons, etc - were so reprehensible and vile, so unquestionably in violation of the precepts of freedom, life and liberty - the three pillars on which the US stands or falls - that it was impossible to see those troops as anything but traitors whose satanic evil had despoiled any possibility of good happening in that region.

The truth is, the troops in Afghanistan and Iraq are no less evil, no less satanic, no less traitors. They have betrayed the notion of life and liberty for all, and whosoever betrays one master can betray another. Never forget that.

I'll be even more generous (4.55 / 9) (#275)
by RyoCokey on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 04:21:57 PM EST

...and pretend that you have a credible source for even one of those outrageous claims.



farmers don't break into our houses at night, steal our DVDs and piss on the floor. No
[
Parent ]
Denial, it's not just a sake bar in SoHo (2.11 / 9) (#282)
by manhattanite on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 05:17:19 PM EST

Sorry I can't cite FOX News for ya.

Has the Pentagon Become "Murder Inc.?" This Week's Bloody Evidence Says YES!
by Cheryl Seal

What do Reuter's photographer Mazen Dana and UN advisor Vieriea de Mello (who was due to become a UN Human rights Commissioner, armed with a thick dossier on the US's activities in Iraq) have in common? Both were seen as threats to the Pentagon. Both are Dead.

This week, Reuter's photographer Mazen Dana was blown away at close range by an American soldier. The official US story is that soliders believed Dana's camera was a rocket launcher, but this claim has failed to hold up. It turns out that the US military in the area had GIVEN Dana permission to film the Abu-Gharib prison in Baghdad, knew he was there, and knew why. The Reuters' crew was reportedly seen by soldiers in the area in a group, shortly before the shooting - yet no one fired on Dana then.. In addition, Dana was wearing his press badge in plain view when he approached the prison, and his car also was clearly marked as a press vehicle. Dana's brother is sure the attack was an assassination. "The U.S. troops killed my brother in cold blood," Nazmi Dana told IslamOnline.net in exclusive statements. "The U.S. occupation troops shot dead my brother on purpose, although he was wearing his press badge, which was also emblazoned on the car he was driving," he said. He also recalled that his brother had obtained a prior permit from the U.S. occupation authorities in Iraq to film in the site. On Sunday, August 17 , U.S. troops shot dead the award-winning Reuters cameraman while he was filming near the U.S.-run Abu Gharib prison in Baghdad. His last pictures show a U.S. tank driving toward him outside the prison walls, several shots ring out from the tank and the camera falls to the ground. Mazen told me by phone few days before his death that he discovered a mass grave dug by U.S. troops to conceal the bodies of their fellow comrades killed in Iraqi resistance attacks. He also told me that he found U.S. troops covered in plastic bags in remote desert areas and he filmed them for a TV program. We are pretty sure that the American forces had killed Mazen knowingly to prevent him from airing his finding." (Islam.online)

Pentagon Warned of Likely Attack on UN-like Target Over a Week Ago But Did Nothing

Now, days after Dana's death, we are asked to believe that the attack on the UN that claimed the life of senior UN advisor Sergio Vieria de Mello was not a targeted assassination. Yet the cement truck carrying the bomb aimed at and struck the section of building directly below de Mello's office. De Mello was preparing, within the month, to leave Iraq and assume his position as new head of the UN Human Rights Commission. De Mello most assuredly was going to that new post well-armed with documentation of rights abuses perpetrated by US troops in Iraq since the start of the war and through the occupation. He has made it plain from day one that his top concern was insure that Iraqis were treated fairly. Now, conveniently for the Pentagon, de Mello is dead and his offices and files destroyed. While the US is of course blaming the attack on Iraqi "rebels" (the vague term used for all attackers under all circumstances), the Iraqi Islamic National Resistance Movement, released a statement condemning the attack and saying no Iraqis would have attacked the United Nations.

UN chief Kofi Annan, usually almost too conciliatory toward the US, has come right out and said he holds the US responsible for the bombing. There is ample evidence that the US wants the UN out of Iraq. Last week, the "New York Times" reported that Bush no longer wants the UN to have a major role in the occupation and instead wants to enlist the help of other (more readily controllable?) countries to help the US in its bloody struggle. The "Times" report said the US government had very specifically refused to grant the UN any authority over security in Iraq. How convenient for the bombers, eh? In addition, Donald Rumsfeld has stated that he thinks the UN and its concern with human rights standards would be a hindrance to the Pentagon's efforts to control Iraq (as in using despotic, brutal tactics that rob citizens of their rights).
See http://www.mg.co.za/Content/l3.asp?ao=19345

Fortunately, the ranks of honest, patriotic FBI and CIA agents are stronger than the handful of Bush-operative rogues who aid and abet the Pentagon in its criminal activities. FBI agents on the scene of the tragedy are already reporting that the US had been warned of such an attack at least a week ago - but did nothing to stop it. More suspicious still, while the US mainstream media is describing the perpetrator as a desperate suicide bomber from a rebel group, the FBI says the bomb was highly sophisticated -something that might be created by a CIA-trained expert.

On a local, late afternoon edition NBC news on 8/19, a representative from the UN stated angrily that the Pentagon had done nothing to protect the UN building or its employees. Of course, by the time the evening news shows came up, the story of the UN attack had been "doctored" beyond recognition, with totally false statements claiming there was a heavy presence of US troops around the building, BEFORE the attack. This is a bald-faced, direct lie. I myself wonder how the NBC/CBS/FOX "newspeople" can look their wives, kids or friends in the eye - much less their own reflections in the morning. While their braver and better counterparts like Dana are being murdered, they are content to cower in their airconditioned studios, well paid puppets, feeding the public a steady poisonous diet of lies
http://news.independent.co.uk/world/middle_east/story.jsp?story=435503

Wow. (3.50 / 8) (#283)
by lordDogma on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:29:45 PM EST

The depths to which the conspiracy theorists will go to stretch the truth is amazing. They even stretch their own lies in some cases.

Did you forget to take your pills this morning?

-- LD

[ Parent ]

Pentagon Warned ofAttack on UN-like Target (3.83 / 6) (#292)
by wij on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 10:57:04 PM EST

Pentagon Warned of Likely Attack on UN-like Target Over a Week Ago But Did Nothing

From what I've heard, the Pentagon did warn of attacks on soft targets after the Jordanian embassy bombing, but the UN refused the extra protection that was offered to it by the US.

"I am an intellectual of great merit, yet I am not adequately compensated for this by capitalism; this is the reason for my opposition to it."
[ Parent ]

UN-like target. (5.00 / 2) (#304)
by unstable on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 08:49:34 AM EST

I love how this is stated.  a UN-like target.  gives the reader the feeling that they were warned that the attact would be targeting something specific... like the UN.  when in fact they were warned of an attack on a "soft target" which is anything not directly related to military operations...  it could have been a police station, another embasy, water supplies, etc etc etc... basically anything.

BUT!  the statement is still true.
Gotta love the english language for making facts as maliable as lead wire.



Reverend Unstable
all praise the almighty Bob
and be filled with slack

[ Parent ]

So your theory is ... (4.71 / 7) (#285)
by godix on Wed Aug 20, 2003 at 06:52:53 PM EST

... that the US Army is trying to kill reporters but has only managed to succeed twice in the entire war? You believe that after literally tons of explosives and thousands of bullets being used we have racked up only two kills against our targets? I know people around here hate the US and the US military, but give us some credit please. If we wanted reporters dead there'd be a hell of a lot more than two by now. America isn't *THAT* incompetent.

I personally think the real tragedy out of all of this is that Geraldo was sent home so there's no chance of him being #3. That thought depresses me for some reason.

"Fuck... may be appropriate in certain venues... (Florida Elections Commission, speed eating contests, public defender offices) and may be inappropriate in

US Army's terrorism (3.00 / 1) (#370)
by atreyu42 on Sun Aug 24, 2003 at 05:16:02 PM EST

So your theory is ... ... that the US Army is trying to kill reporters but has only managed to succeed twice in the entire war?

My theory is that US Army tried to kill reporters twice, to terrorize the other reporters while making it look like accidents.



[ Parent ]
Correction (5.00 / 1) (#376)
by Fat Tony on Wed Aug 27, 2003 at 12:12:32 PM EST

It wasn't 2 times. There have been 11 reporters killed according to the article. Two of them were from Reuters.

[ Parent ]
Not the military's fault and a new service idea. (4.09 / 11) (#295)
by StrifeZ on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 12:10:54 AM EST

Hows "shit happens"?

or how about

If you're in a warzone prepare to get shot

There is something that many people on K5 don't seem to understand or know about because they either do not know anything of substance about the military besides working under the false assumption that we fight like its 1969. The esteemed members of the military on this site do understand it.

The Military is not a police force (MPs excluded of course). They are not the smiling draftees of WWII and Vietnam. They are simply put, the world's best trained killing machines, each an individual cog making the gears run in the most awesome force the world has ever seen. The US spends $400 billion a year, more than the next 20 nations combined, to pay these finely tuned killing machines, keep the humvees oiled, painted and full of gas, and to finance new ways of killing our enemies. Cute little 19 year old PFC Jessica Lynch, her job being a mechanic, was institutionally, just as much a killing machine as a member of Army Special Forces, some of which have gone on record saying they've killed individually 600+ of the enemy.

Basically what I am describing is a machine that exists to make the enemy experience new types and levels of pain while securing victory as quickly and as painlessly as possible. Playing security guard is not part of the equation. The US soldiers guarding Location X have 2 missions: secure this Location according to operational parameters and make sure everyone in their unit is ok physically, mentalling and doing their jobs. Protecting journalists or not being trigger happy in chaotic situations is not part of the equation.

This is a very tragic situation, but it is not the fault of the military because their job is, simply, to kill and complete their missions. I know people on this sight will claim otherwise, but take it from a newly enrolled member of Airforce ROTC, bullshitting knowledge, especially about the military, gets you no where, because at the end of the day, what you says happens simply doesnt.

My personal opinion is that the US military needs to reorganize. It needs to create a 5th branch of service (aside from Airforce, Army, Navy and Marines). Consider the missions of the various forces: the airforce controls the air, the navy the sea, the army siezes and holds territory with sheer power and size, and the Marines are the 24/7 first strike force. What is missing for the military of the 21st century?

A pure Peace Keeping service.

I envision a service of 500,000 American peace keepers, a number likley easily recruitable due to the military's current popularity. This force would exist for the sole purpose of acting as peace keepers in nation's the US takes control of. They would not fight in the war. They would be primarily like infantry and some specially designed urban pacificiation heavy armor and Robots/UAVs. After a war like Iraq, after the situation is stabilized so there are no more enemy tanks driving around or the like, the Peacekeepers would be phased in, the Army and marines phased out, and within 120 days of the end of major combat operations, you'd have a few hundred thousand US controlled peace keepers running the show. Some army units would stay behind of course, to provide the added muscle when needed, say an entire division, but instead of the current situation in Iraq, where army engineers are acting as security guards, soldiers trained in the art of urban pacification, guarding, local customs and languages, so on and so forth, would be in control.

As an incentive, the US could try this: turn 1/3rd of this peace keeper's force into an American version of the french foreign legion. Allow any foreign national, having passed rigorous background, mental and physical exams sign up for a 5 year tour of duty, after which they automatically recieve their citizenship. The foreign trainee would of course have to learn everything normal citizen-applicants have to learn and take the same test, but instead of waiting for 7+ years, you can do it in 5 and get a fat military pension as well. Americans would never tolerate or want foreigners fighting our wars. That just heretical. Americans fight for Americans and American values everything else is irrelevant. However, allowing 125,000 foreign nationals to enlist and serve under American officers would act as a great way of promoting the American way to people in more disadvantaged situations. Imagine, say in the occupation of Iraq, if we had this force, all those Iraqi exiles could provide an Iraqi face on peace keeping until the police could take over.

I think its an operation worth investing in, and US commander wouldn't have to deal with NATO's embarassing logistics. The US military hates working with any other military besides the UK. Why? The US military is a light year ahead of the #2 in pure logistics. Its like asking an olympic sprinter to slow down to keep pace with some 2nd grade gym class kids.

The rest of the world has a very embarassing military problem.


KITTENS@(_%&@%@_($&@(_$&^@$()&@%@+(&%
[somewhat OT] non-citizens in military (none / 0) (#354)
by strlen on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 06:34:16 PM EST

Actually, that's already possible. You can serve in the military if you're not a citizen -- just can't do any "cool" jobs, as you won't get a security clearance. This way you can get your citizenship in 3 years (at least if you're doing it through the navy).

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
[ Parent ]
Sort of, but this is a bit different. (4.00 / 1) (#357)
by StrifeZ on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 09:07:36 PM EST

I know you dont have to be a citizen, but you do have to have immigrated to the US (the exact term escapes me at the moment). During the Iraq War, Bush granted two soldiers their citizen ship after dying in action.

Im describing something like this. The year is 2010. The US is about to go to war against beligerent Middle Eastern Country X (aw heck, lets just say Syria). Ok. Syria. Hamid, a 20 year old in New Iraq doesnt want Syria to go through the problems Iraq did for its first year and a half, wants to make a difference, see the world and maybe visit the US. Iraq, still rebuilding, is neutral in the war, but Hamid still wants to help democracy flourish in the middle east and expand his own opprotunities. He goes into the US Embassy in Baghdad, gets the appropriate papers, an interview and begins a rigorous 5 week certification process so that it is certified he is legit (i.e. not a terrorist infiltrator) and believes in truth, justice and the american way, etc. etc. After Hamid is cleared, he goes through the same processess enlisted soldiers do and becomes an enlisted peacekeeper. The US military bases him in Iraq at a barracks, gives him money and the promise of citizenship with minimal hoop jumping. His commander is an American citizen.

Its similar to what is currently in place with teh exception of the aims of the peace keeping force and how Hamid can join. It would be closer to the French Foreign legion than what is currently in place in the US.

The US is, by definition a military nation. Whereas in other countries, joining the military is lookd down upon, in the US it is the highest personal act of honor one can do. The US spends mroe on defense per year than the next 20 nations combined and its economy is essentially a permanent war economy. Americans themselves, generally speaking, love to fight for Truth and Justice and have no qualms to use our military might for both our own personal ends and our mission. Check the BBC's country information about the US. Saddly, the US, until recently has lost its inner soldier, due mostly to the Vietnam Generation. Their children, the 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 year olds, the "9/11 Generation" are flocking to the military. I think this peace keeping force would be great because it would provide serious military service to those who are a bit skittish to join because they don't want to be part of the first assault inside a tank or because they dont believe in fighting war , but do believe in spreading democracy and providing the american example to people in poorer conditions.

I think its a worthy goal, and it would give our "fighting forces" a much deserved rest after pummelling the enemy. As any good soldier knows, a good night of sleep is important before a battle ;).


KITTENS@(_%&@%@_($&@(_$&^@$()&@%@+(&%
[ Parent ]
Problems (4.78 / 14) (#296)
by Stickerboy on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 01:04:59 AM EST

So it seems that any point I'd make has been made elsewhere, so I'll get to the meat of what really bothers me about this article.

It was written in an intelligent fashion displaying a lot of evidence and forethought.  However, it was also written in a biased and prejudgemental fashion that smacks of the same accusations that liberals are raising against the Bush administration: that McBain started with a foregone conclusion and picked and chose his facts that happened to support and agree with it.

Problem #1: Complete lack of perspective.  There's plenty written in this article about the accusers and the victim, but little about the soldier, the tank crew, and the unit that they belonged to.  Who was "they"?  Who specifically did the reporters announce their presence to?  Did they arrange beforehand their presence with commanding officers of the American military unit in charge of the prison security?  Did they ask for a security escort to prevent any misidentification?  Were the soldiers arriving with the tank crew part of the same unit as the soldiers that the reporters announced their presence to?  If so, was there a communication breakdown?  If not, was there an expectation for the chain of command to relay to the information on the reporters to the new unit within the timeframe allowed?  What did the soldier who fired the shots have to say about his actions?  What about the soldiers in the immediate vicinity of the shooter (i.e., the rest of the tank crew)?

Problem #2: Written from someone with little knowledge, either learned firsthand or secondhand, of the matter at hand.  And this is a big peeve of mine, as more and more articles on K5 seem to be "hey, I've thrown together a whole bunch of links that agree with my views, so come read my article!"  In the rush to judgement before all the facts are known, holes in the article big enough to drive a 747 through are left.  So let me get this straight.  A man in civilian clothing drops to his knees (an ideal firing position) and raises a bulky metal object, aiming it at a tank.  Now, to evaluate this situation from the soldier's context, is there prior experience to warrant immediate suspicion of clear and present danger?  Have soldiers in Iraq come under fire quickly and unexpectedly from gunmen wearing civilian clothing, hiding within crowds of civilians and wielding shoulder-fired weapons?  Many times before.

So, given the situation, the soldier now has approximately half of a second to make a life-or-death decision, a half of a second it would take for a gunman to draw a bead with an RPG and fire.  Now, a talking head is quoted by McBain as claiming soldiers "shoot first and ask questions later", but in this situation, what kind of questions can the soldier ask?  Half of a second is a shitty timeframe to give anyone, much less a tired, jittery soldier enduring constant threats to his life and those of his friends, to conduct a thorough investigation into whether or not this unknown guy 50 meters in front of him in a firing position is a real threat or not.

Hell, in the timeframe between a gunman producing a hidden weapon and aiming and firing that weapon, you'd have to have pretty good situational awareness and response times in order to kill that gunman before he fires.  No doubt that pressure was weighing heavily upon the soldier as well.

And then there was the idiot here who claimed it was stupid that soldiers would put their well-being before those of the people around them.  Let me enlighten you on the exact goal prioritization of a professional soldier of the US military, as drilled into him through months of training.

Priority #1: Accomplish the mission assigned to you.
Priority #2: Force protection.  Protect your life and those serving with you.
Priority #3: Protect noncombatants and civilians as much as possible.

Why priority #2 before #3?  For two reasons.  The first is that if you don't protect the lives of you and your buddies, more casualties mean a greater probability of failure in the mission and in future missions assigned to your unit.  The second reason is that combat unit cohesion and effectiveness is centered around a very simple concept: soldiers fight for their buddies.  In study after study, soldiers who fight well do so not because of orders or ideals or glory but because they don't want to let down their brothers-in-arms who depend on them to do their job.  A corollary of this line of reasoning is that those same soldiers will necessarily prioritize the lives of those soldiers serving with him or her above those who are unknown to that soldier.  The soldier who shot the journalist did not do so because he wanted to kill journalists; he did so because in the half of a second he was given he judged that his own life and the lives of his buddies were threatened by the kneeling man taking aim.

But hey, what do I know?  McBain obviously is in possession of evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the soldier is guilty of homicide with no extenuating circumstances.  Or at least, that's the gist of what was implied by his article.

Finally! (2.80 / 5) (#298)
by lordDogma on Thu Aug 21, 2003 at 01:42:55 AM EST

Who was "they"? Who specifically did the reporters announce their presence to? Did they arrange beforehand their presence with commanding officers of the American military unit in charge of the prison security? Did they ask for a security escort to prevent any misidentification? Were the soldiers arriving with the tank crew part of the same unit as the soldiers that the reporters announced their presence to? If so, was there a communication breakdown? If not, was there an expectation for the chain of command to relay to the information on the reporters to the new unit within the timeframe allowed? What did the soldier who fired the shots have to say about his actions? What about the soldiers in the immediate vicinity of the shooter (i.e., the rest of the tank crew)?

Thank god we have someone who can reason on K5. This is exactly what I've been trying to get at with all of my posts.

Unfortunately too many K5'rs including McBain get their concept of armed conflict and operational coordination from Hollywood movies and Lord of the Rings Books.

Why do I have the sneaking suspicion that stickerboy has actually been in the military and knows what it is like?

-- Lord Dogma

[ Parent ]

For all the pretty words... (2.00 / 3) (#342)
by Wulfius on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 12:48:08 AM EST

...its called a "War Crime".

No ammount of twisting will make up for it.
Fact is, he shot an unarmed civilian.

---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

for all the pretty words, 2 (1.25 / 4) (#346)
by chimera on Fri Aug 22, 2003 at 03:43:45 AM EST

are you, perchance, a soldier in this armed force in Iraq. Are you there?

If not, don't post. According to your own (implied) moral conviction on bias and objectivity as stated in Problem #2 you then don't know jack about shit about the details of what Really Happened so why are you even out defending the soldier by putting up a nice little cause-and-effect type of reasoning? It is just as unfactual and biased as saying "it was the Three Lone Gunmen", but not as clear in the open as the latter is for critique.

For most things K5'rs don't know hens from Elvis. So why is K5?

[ Parent ]

Later info? (4.00 / 1) (#369)
by teqjack on Sun Aug 24, 2003 at 03:13:08 PM EST

The cameraman and driver were indeed at the prison, and should not have come under fire there. And weren't. They had left the area, saw a column of tanks approaching, stopped and without establishing communication pointed what certainly appeared to be a weapon at the column. A tragic error, but certainly not a targeting of jopurnalists.

Tank IR mistakes camera for gunfire? (none / 0) (#380)
by panZ on Wed Sep 10, 2003 at 08:49:09 PM EST

I realize its too late to contribute much to this discussion but I just got back to the US/Computer and have been catching up on stories. I read this one to see if tanks were involved and according to your comment they were. I have a theory that I'm hoping you masses can support or discard.

A lot of the times I hear about camera men getting shot, tanks are involved. I'm wondering if this is because most tanks drive around using the infra-red cameras to view the night and outside world. Press video cameras, while running, emit an IR beam that pulses on and off in order to auto focus the camera. I imagine its possible that this IR pulse pointed at a line of tanks could catch the attention of someone watching their scope, as a machine gun firing in fully automatic mode. I mean, if you saw a quick pulse of light flashing and pointed in your direction after taking gunfire that at first glance looked similar, wouldn't your gut reaction be to take the offender out? This is just a theory though, I imagine our military intelligence people would have figured something like this out by now and communicated it to the field but I've seen too many coincidences. Thoughts?
"Some days are good days to die and some days are good days for breakfast."
[ Parent ]

US Troops Kill Reuters Reporter | 379 comments (356 topical, 23 editorial, 0 hidden)
Display: Sort:

kuro5hin.org

[XML]
All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. The Rest 2000 - Present Kuro5hin.org Inc.
See our legalese page for copyright policies. Please also read our Privacy Policy.
Kuro5hin.org is powered by Free Software, including Apache, Perl, and Linux, The Scoop Engine that runs this site is freely available, under the terms of the GPL.
Need some help? Email help@kuro5hin.org.
My heart's the long stairs.

Powered by Scoop create account | help/FAQ | mission | links | search | IRC | YOU choose the stories!