Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
November 10, 2005

shake 'n' bake

We did know of war crimes in Fallujah, but there were only rudimentary reports from sources of unknown quality the MSM would not pickup on.

But now the U.S. armed forces describe themself how they did use white phosphorous as direct effect ammunition against people in Fallujah.

 

Steven D in a DKos diary finds this in the March edition of Field Artillery Magazine (PDF)

Indirect Fires in the Battle of Fallujah

b. White Phosphorous. WP proved to be an effective and versatile munition. We used it for screening missions at two breeches and, later in the fight, as a potent psychological weapon against the insurgents in trench lines and spider holes when we could not get effects on them with HE. We fired “shake and bake” missions at the insurgents, using WP to flush them out and HE to take them out.
...
We used improved WP for screening missions when HC smoke would have been more effective and saved our WP for lethal missions.

Another report on mortar fire from an embedded reporter of the North County Times says

"Fire!" Bogert yelled, as Millikin dropped it.

The boom kicked dust around the pit as they ran through the drill again and again, sending a mixture of burning white phosphorus and high explosives they call "shake 'n' bake" into a cluster of buildings where insurgents have been spotted all week.

According to the Army Battle Book ST 100-3, 5-11. FIELD ARTILLERY AMMUNITION such usage is against U.S. and international law.

(4) Burster Type White phosphorus (WP M110A2) rounds burn with intense heat and emit dense white smoke. They may be used as the initial rounds in the smokescreen to rapidly create smoke or against material targets, such as Class V sites or logistic sites. It is against the law of land warfare to employ WP against personnel targets.

The use of such ammunition in this way is outlawed chemical warfare:

Under this [Chemical Weapons] Convention, any toxic chemical, regardless of its origin, is considered as a chemical weapon unless it is used for purposes that are not prohibited (an important legal definition, known as the General Purpose Criterion).

Chemical weapons are classified as weapons of mass destruction by the United Nations, and their production and stockpiling was outlawed by the Chemical Weapons Convention of 1993.

That convention was ratified by the United  States in 1997.

Posted by b on November 10, 2005 at 0:03 UTC | Permalink

Comments
next page »

"you get tragedy where the tree, instead of bending, breaks"

ludwig wittgenstein culture & value

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 10 2005 0:14 utc | 1

& such tragedy, unlike premeption - is inevitable

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 10 2005 0:16 utc | 2

On additional thought. I know about war and that war is evil with or without WP usage in cities. What is important here is the effect on the (esp. US) public.

Owning a gun is ok. Using that gun to defend against an burgler may be okay. But owning and using a flame thrower is not ok.

This (incredible stupidid) distincting is what makes this important. It wakes up the public and may change the tide for support of such wars.

Posted by: b | Nov 10 2005 0:23 utc | 3

For those that may not understand certain military jargon usage ...

In this context to 'Shake and Bake' is to call a fire support (artillery) or air support (Ground attack aircraft) mission on a target.

Specifically the rounds fired will be a roughly equal mix of High Explosive (HE) (various configuration and fuse settings) and White Phosphorus (WP) rounds intermixed on the target. Especially typical used on enemy forces 'dug-in' in bunkers, foxholes, trenches, fortified buildings.

A typical mission could be anywhere from 4-10-60 mixed rounds per fire mission and in Vietnam could last up to 3 days (intermittent fire). For air-strikes napalm (new or old) is routinely substituted for WP.

The concentrated direct effects of the WP tend to force a defender to 'break cover' and seek to move out of the lethal area of effect of the concentrated WP or napalm. However, the intermixed HE rounds in each salvo mean doing so, 'breaking cover', results in extremely high probability of death by lethal shrapnel 'air-bursting' amongst the WP/napalm rounds.

A 'shake and bake' fire mission has nothing whatsoever to do with artificial illumination or laying a delivered smoke screen ...

Laws of War and Conventions/Treaties can supposedly be justifiably abrogated due to that flexible term, 'Military Necessity' ... according to the US ...

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 0:25 utc | 4

Lt. Col. William Kilgore (Robert Duvall): You smell that? Do you smell that? ...Napalm, son. Nothing else in the world smells like that. I love the smell of napalm in the morning. You know, one time we had a hill bombed, for twelve hours. When it was all over I walked up. We didn't find one of 'em, not one stinkin' dink body. The smell, you know that gasoline smell, the whole hill. Smelled like... victory.

Col. Walter Kurtz (Marlon Brando): We train young men to drop fire on people. But their commanders won't allow them to write "f**k" on their airplanes because it's obscene!

- Apocalypse now (1979)

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 0:34 utc | 5

b

& it is essential that we are reminded in the physical sense - in this instance seeing the photograph & filmed evidence of what is being done

the way this war is being fought by the occupation forces is similar to the einsatzgruppen in that 'normal' moral boundaries have been left, far, far behind

they do this & then are surprised that this same resistance is capable of using forward areas such as jordan as other bases of contact. i am not suprised in the least that it has extended to jordan - that it has taken this long perhaps is the only surprise

really, i cannot see how this will not become a generalised war -(& in that sense i wouldn't rule out entirely - us involvement in the jordan bombings) & that seems to me to be the only path out of the quagmire for the cheney bush junta

the logic of a generalised war - while completely mad - is absolutely consistent with the delirium that clearly determines the foreign policy of the empire

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 10 2005 0:34 utc | 6

dear god, that article from Field Artillery Magazine is blood-curdling.

concluding paragraph:

At the end of the fight we thought back on some of the things we were proudest of. What jumped to the forefront was infantry and tank platoon sergeants, platoon leaders and company commanders telling us that the artillery and mortars were awesome. At the end of the day, that is what it is all about: our maneuver brethren recognizing why we are called the "King of Battle."

Awesome. Their italics. Just "don't...call...me...dude."

Posted by: catlady | Nov 10 2005 0:50 utc | 7

Ran a news query re fallujah and the uruknet article (query)">http://www.uruknet.info/%3Fp%3Dm17621%26date%3D09-nov-2005_19:10_ECT">query)

Whats startling, well not really, is the complete lack or coverage by the major newspapers or media (i.e. CNN, NBC, ABC, WAPO, NewsDay, etc).

Also of note is a series of what I would describe as dis-information stories by the usual culprits (Telegragh.uk) brushing it off as helicopter fired 'illumination flares' ...

Also of note is that it would appear NO Murdoch newspapers, media or cable have run anything on the story at all ... so far ... rather conspicuous by their total absence ...

The BBC, UPI and Reuters are running it though ... hmmm ...

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 1:26 utc | 8

One of the problems here is that WP is not classified as a chemical weapon. It is a conventional weapon. Plain ol' non-lethal CS, for instance, is classified as a chemical weapon, and subject to more restrictions than WP.

If WP is used against enemy fortifications or structures (trenches, spider holes, or the cluster of buidlings mentioned) it's kosher. If it kills the enemy in the process, that's kosher, too. Death by burning is not a violation of the LLW.

What we have here (and we've had here for awhile) is a basic misunderstanding of how the Armed Forces operate - that is, with a legion of lawyers and miles and miles of doctrine, regulation, and SOP. They, like any massive organization, like any government entity, do it protect themselves and those in their employ.

So while the war can, and ought, to be tried in the court of public opinion, it's extremely unlikely (let me say that again: unlikely in the extreme) to make it to court, if you know what I mean. And so is the Administration. I sometimes wonder if the endless anticpation of it being otherwise is not akin to the hope for divine intervention.

We've got 3 more years of this, at the very least.

The opposition, whoever that is, is going to have to do the difficult and generational work of developing fundamental foreign policy alternatives. Nothing else will do.

Posted by: Pat | Nov 10 2005 1:29 utc | 9

for their crimes - the united states will have to down on bended knees to ask forgiveness for what it has done, for what it is doing & for what is about to come

the moral bankruptcy of the junta reall seems to have no bottom
you think you are there & then it falls even further

the empire is run by jackals, served by wolves & sung by bears

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 10 2005 1:33 utc | 10

@Pat
I respectfully disagree re WP.

It is not to be fired 'at' personnel, it is meant, intended, for illumination and primarily instantaneous smokescreens only.

And under no circumstances is it to be fired into civilian occupied areas.

The euphemistic definition of it as an incendiary by the US is meant to obscure its true definition as a chemical weapon when utilized outside the parameters mentioned. Its how the ordinance is 'employed' that determines the relevant applicabilty re LLW and conventions ...

Regardless, yes, no one will ever be tried re 'Shake and Bake', we've been doing it (we're not alone) for over 7 generations ... at least ...

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 1:39 utc | 11

Outraged,

I can not eat or sleep since seeing the evidence of what was done. There must be something we can do, surely there is something....Please, if you had any ideas about how to get the story out, please mention them. My freinds and I are planning to buy billboard space and we will continue to write....

Posted by: Enough | Nov 10 2005 2:18 utc | 12

Chemical Weapons Convention

Under this Convention, any toxic chemical, regardless of its origin, is considered as a chemical weapon unless it is used for purposes that are not prohibited (an important legal definition, known as the General Purpose Criterion).

9. "Purposes Not Prohibited Under this Convention" means:

(c) Military purposes not connected with the use of chemical weapons and not dependent on the use of the toxic properties of chemicals as a method of warfare.

Hence the use of an otherwise conventional weapon, White Phosphorous, as a method of warfare (i.e. to kill, incapacitate or maim) as is the explicit intent of 'Shake and Bake' fire missions is in breach of the actual intent of the CCW and specifically Para 9 (c).

Though, IIRC, the US is one of the few nations that hasn't ratified the CCW ...

As an 'incendiary weapon' it is also in breach re use when noncombatants (civilians) are in the target or affected target area, which they evidently have been re Fallujah, and this being demonstrably known by the belligerent, .i.e. the US Army & Marine Corps troops, ground and air.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 2:29 utc | 13

@Enough

Most things re warfare, even this, one is often able to compartmentalize and deal with abstractly, objectively.

Sadly, I fear the indicators are this will not be 'allowed' to 'fly' in the US Domestic media. And even if it did, for the reasons explained here and in other threads it would be relatively easy for the administration to deflect and obscure the International Law and treaty (convention) legal issues, which only leaves the matter of the humanist, moral argument.

I'm ... sorry ... I can't realistically suggest an idea, a workable course of action.

Mind, IIRC, just minimal 'peripheral' domestic coverage re napalm in Vietnam created phenomenal public outrage ... but are we the same people today ? Does the majority actually give a damn about some demonized 'ragheads', 'sand niggers' ?

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 2:45 utc | 14

Outraged, that was my point: WP IS NOT CLASSIFIED AS A CHEMICAL WEAPON. IT DOES FALL UNDER THE CHEMICAL WEAPONS CONVENTION.

You can argue that it should be classified as such, and as such be subject to the CWP. Currently, it is not.

Posted by: Pat | Nov 10 2005 2:48 utc | 15

Sorry, that ought to be: IT DOES *NOT* FALL UNDER...

Posted by: Pat | Nov 10 2005 2:52 utc | 16

@Pat
Certain 'well known', widely used, 'chemical weapons' are specifically identified in three definitions schedules of the convention. However, the convention explicitly details that they are not exclusive of any form of toxic chemical re warfare/combat usage.

However, the CCW also applies to any weapon that would otherwise be considered 'conventional' when it meets the definitions re 'toxic chemical' and actual employment (method of warfare) by utilization of its chemical properties.

'Shake and Bake' meets the convention definition re intentional usage of its chemical characteristics for warfare purposes.

We just obfuscate re WP SOP, supposedly doctrinal, 'designed for' usage, and deny the battlefield facts.

Respectfully suggest you reread the CCW block-quotes re my 9:29 PM post.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 3:09 utc | 17

It is not to be fired 'at' personnel, it is meant, intended, for illumination and primarily instantaneous smokescreens only.

And under no circumstances is it to be fired into civilian occupied areas.

- Outraged

Look, whether they use it to illuminate or to run them out, it's not considered 'antipersonnel.'

For God's sake, Outraged, you can hardly take a shit - never mind plan and execute an operation - without it having been legally vetted and cleared ahead of time by the busy vetters and clearers. But here we screw ourselves into the ceiling every month or so absolutely convinced that THIS TIME someone's going to the Hague, by God, or at least to impeachment.

We're kidding ourselves.

Posted by: Pat | Nov 10 2005 3:13 utc | 18

... THIS TIME someone's going to the Hague, by God, or at least to impeachment.

We're kidding ourselves.

Agreed. No such false illusions here.
Simply because we deem we are accountable to no one but ourselves.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 3:20 utc | 19

".. THIS TIME someone's going to the Hague, by God, or at least to impeachment.

We're kidding ourselves.

Agreed. No such false illusions here.
Simply because we deem we are accountable to no one but ourselves."

That leaves us asking the question of what that photo is doing at MoA or whether we should be trying to get networks to show the RAI doco on Fallujah.

And I'm not disagreeing with you giap about the need to get information out and I have been harrassing people myself to get them to show the RAI doco.

The thing is that given the odds are everyone who comes to moA and sees that image will already be firmly against the atrocities of Fallujah, then perhaps displaying the remnant of a once breathing, living, talking human may be voyeuristic.

More importantly we have no way of knowing what that once beautiful example of humanity would think of their miserable and horrid death being splashed about the interweb.

The first picture I ever saw like that was as a child staying with an aunt and uncle.

They were keen absorbers of information and had bought a series of books which claimed to be an historical record of WW2. Considering the publishers were Readers Digest looking back one has to recognise the chances are it wouldn't be letting too many facts get in the way of a good story.

Anyway there was a volume on the Pacific Theatre with a chapter on Okinawa. There was a snap of a Japanese bunker after the US soldiers had done it over with flamethrowers. Aged about 9 I was simultaneously fascinated and repelled because I had never seen anything as graphic before and that gave me pause.

NZers were bombarded with images of staunch Brits standing up to the Blitz where lots of incendiaries were dropped on civilian areas. Even photos of Germany showing for example Dresden after the firestorm didn't have this sort of explicit material. A few years later when the world was treated to the image of a naked Vietnamese or Cambodian child running screaming covered in napalm it occurred that we were seeing this image because the victims weren't whitefellas.

The issue is even more stark in Iraq where images of USuk forces corpses are supressed but despite UN/Amnesty/Human Rights watch warnings photos of raghead corpses and casualties are still leaked to a compliant media.

Every image tells us that 'these people' aren't like you or me they are non-people. if they were people the media wouldn't publish these images.

Posted by: Debs is dead | Nov 10 2005 4:04 utc | 20

Debs is--

I think it is important, very important, to remember the level of information domination, that was levelled at the Fallujah operation.

After all, don't forget a hospital was targetted because they were deemed a center of propaganda. And then there were the first aid stations and ambulances.

I agree with Outraged way upthread that the active media suppression is a very, very important issue here - because, unless it ends, it means that even overwhelming evidence will not deter the perpetrators.

.

Posted by: RossK | Nov 10 2005 7:00 utc | 21

@ Pat, Outraged and all contributors to this thread.

Thanks for your civil and illuminating observations, precious though paradoxical given the abominations under discussion. I agree with Pat that hoping for impeachment is akin to waiting for Rapture, but I still hope that the authors and prime movers for these horrors (and I mean the political leadership, of course) will at least come to be viewed as nothing more than war criminals by a large and vociferous minority of the U.S. population. The Nixonian silent majority will remain silent, the war lovers will remain intoxicated with their bellicosity, but let men and women of conscience, however much "beleaguered by negation and despair" continue to bear witness to the horrible truth and their efforts to find the thread of Ariadne that leads out of this dark labyrinth.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Nov 10 2005 7:00 utc | 22

my grandmother was a child during WW1. she remembered they had fires in her town in germany which would burn for a week or so because they were not able to put them off. these were due to phosphor bombs.

because of the what happened during WW1, the use of phosphor in war was prohibited in some treaties mentioned by other readers above. that the winning parties to that war signed these conventions means that what their people saw was horrible even for the standards of battle hardened officers.

and now the US is using this stuff on defenseless people and saying it is not against conventions ? i wonder how much against conventions the use of WP would be deemed to be if a couple of towns in the US or europe were 'shaked and baked' in this way and those disfigured corpses in the pics were those of some blonde church-going bimbos instead of anonymous brown people in far-away lands.

i think i need to go spit into the face of some american tourist today. they'll understand.

Posted by: name | Nov 10 2005 8:17 utc | 23

I still hope that the authors and prime movers for these horrors (and I mean the political leadership, of course) will at least come to be viewed as nothing more than war criminals by a large and vociferous minority of the U.S. population

hannah, don't you mean a vociferous majority?

Posted by: annie | Nov 10 2005 9:18 utc | 24

@ annie
That would be preferable, but I'm too pessimistic to think it will come to pass. Inertia, apathy, and willful ignorance will, I fear, be in the majority at least until something radical new shock arrives "where these live" to change that. I doubt that even the equivalent of a Tet offensive in Vietnam would now be sufficient to break the trance. I hope to be completely wrong, but am not expecting the Rapture to arrive this weekend.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Nov 10 2005 9:26 utc | 25

Make that
"some radical new shock"

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Nov 10 2005 9:27 utc | 26

Guardian comment: A name that lives in infamy

One year ago this week, US-led occupying forces launched a devastating assault on the Iraqi city of Falluja. The mood was set by Lt Col Gary Brandl: "The enemy has got a face. He's called Satan. He's in Falluja. And we're going to destroy him."
...
Like Jallianwallah Bagh, Guernica, My Lai, Halabja and Grozny, Falluja is a place name that has become a symbol of unconscionable brutality. As the war in Iraq claims more lives, we need to ensure that this atrocity - so recent, so easily erased from public memory - is recognised as an example of the barbarism of nations that call themselves civilised.

Posted by: b | Nov 10 2005 9:39 utc | 27

hannah, americans using wmd's in iraq is just starting to hit the airwaves .the timing of this news , the obsurdity of republicans complaining of the leak of secret prisons and not the presence of them, the awareness of faulty intellegence, the indictments... i don't think this is going away. i truly believe we are at a turning point not just of the administration but of our concept of who we are as a nation.
my lai will pale in comparison w/ torture and wmd's in iraq. especially if the house votes 90/10 on mccain's anti torture bill and bush vetos. i think cheney&co will be remembered as war criminals.
what other legacies could they have? 3 more years, it can only get worse for them, unless there is some rosy scenario waiting around the corner in the ME. impossible. it's all down hill and they know it. i wish i could say time is on our side, unfortunately thousands(millions?) will suffer between now and the awakening of the majority .

Posted by: annie | Nov 10 2005 10:55 utc | 28

Further to my previous posts ... back 'then' they were just being 'good Germans' ... now are we complicitly being 'Good Americans' ?

The Story the Mainstream Media won't report - the FACTS that are actively OBSCURED and DENIED when they aren't being otherwise NOT reported at all

In response to a question seeking to clarify whether WP is a chemical weapon covered by the CCW :

any chemical that is used against humans or animals that causes harm... [is] considered chemical weapons... prohibited behavior
- Peter Kaiser, Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, (audio)

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is an agency of the United Nations. It is located in The Hague, The Netherlands. Its mission is to promote membership of the Chemical Weapons Convention treaty and to check, by inspections, that members are adhering to the provisions of the convention. It was established in 1997. In August 2005 one hundred and seventy states had ratified or acceded to the convention.

Any remaining doubts now ? Unequivical enough ?


Re Hallabjah, from the Federation of American Scientists ...

House of Commons - Foreign Affairs - Minutes of Evidence

As the United Kingdom is a co-Depositary of the BTWC, it would be reasonable to expect the UK to show a lead in implementing this element of the Final Declaration.


CONCLUSIONS

14. The Foreign Affairs Committee is recommended to:

(a) To urge that the Government should take steps to increase public awareness of the danger to safety and security from chemical and biological weapons and that anyone working on the acquisitions, development or use of such weapons is guilty of a criminal offence;

(b) To encourage the Government to mount an initiative to ensure that the scientific and technical professions—chemists, biologists, doctors, immunologists, virologists and scientists and engineers in general—are aware of the total prohibition of the use of chemicals, toxins or biological agents as weapons. Such awareness needs to be incorporated into the training of all future members of the scientific and technical professions.

- Professor Graham S. Pearson is Visiting Professor of International Security in the Department of Peace Studies. He was previously Director-General and Chief Executive of the Chemical and Biological Defence Establishment, Porton Down. He is author of the book "The UNSCOM Saga: Chemical and Biological Weapons Non-Proliferation" (Macmillan, 1999). He has also written some 20 Briefing Papers and co-authored over 10 Evaluation papers for the delegations participating in the Ad Hoc Group in Geneva.


Just like Saddam Hussein and the gassing of Kurdish civilians at Hallabjah, it's time for regime change and War Crimes prosecution against the U.S. ... or is there one convenient standard re crimes against humanity and use of WMD for 'them', the 'others', and NONE for us ?!

Oh, and the other relevant UN convention, numerous precedents, is that whether an individual country has ratified a specific convention or not, it can be considered enforceable by the UN when more than two thirds of UN members have ratified (170 out of 192 is >2/3). But then again we are the worlds sole remaining Superpower and our elites consider themselves Ubermenschen, and needless to say above any law, even their own.

If you ever need prove re the co-ordinated manipulation and control of the US domestic media ... the handling of this story is the perfect example.

Sleepers Wake.

Do US soldiers 'indoctrinated' attitudes = Ubermenschen ?

You cannot fight against racism if you assume racism yourself, i.e. 'Sand niggers' and 'ragheads' ...

PS Is anyone fluent in Italian and able to translate the following ? Link

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 11:53 utc | 29

Hunter has an excellent diary on this taking on chemiacl/non-chemical legal/non-legal arguments: Melting the Skin Off of Children

Posted by: b | Nov 10 2005 12:07 utc | 30

@ Outraged Not a perfect translation, but not too bad either.
By the way, this news has "shocked" my significant other here
in Italy. It really does make one ashamed to be American.


White Phosphorous: our friend "Willy Pete"

White Phosphorous is a chemical agent that is used in ordnance that is defined as incendiary, like napalm. It was also used in Vietnam by the U.S. and by Saddam Hussein in the 80' during the war against the Curds, Its use is permitted only in tracers, smoke-bombs or bomb fuses because of its easy
combustibility. If however it is used in virtue of its toxicity to strike
directly at humans or animals it is then considered to be a chemical weapon.
It is an element that burns when it comes into contact with oxygen and it consumes the molecules that contain it (oxygen). For this reason it is capable of dissolving the body parts with which it comes into contact, the mucous tissues being the most exposed to its effects. White phosphorous has been prohibited for use in making matches since 1906 and was replaced by red phosphorous because it's highly toxic and poisonous, even if only inhaled or swallowed. It is also used in rat poisons in order to provoke internal hemorraging. As with all incendiary ordnance its use is limited exclusively to military objectives. However the Geneva convention prohibits its use in areas where civils are at risk. In military language it is called
by its nickname "Willy Pete", from the initials of White Phosphorous.

Is the battlefield use of white phosphorous legitimate?
We report the opinion of Peter Kaiser, spokesman for the UN agency on the prohibition of the use, production, and storage of chemical weapons who was asked by Maurizio Torrealta if White Phosphorous is a prohibited substance... (Translation of the video published here beside the text)
"No, white phosphorous is not prohibited by the convention on chemical weapons in the context of war operations, provided that use is not made of that substance for its toxic properties. For example, white phosphorous is normally used to produce smoke bombs that hide troop movements, and this is considered a legitimate use with respect to the conventions. But IF THE TOXIC OR CAUSTIC PROPERTIES OF WHITE PHOSPHOROUS are used as a weapon, then it is prohibited. Indeed, the convention is structured so that every chemical element that is used against men or animals and which provokes damage or death because of its toxic properties is considered a chemical weapon. Therefore it doesn't matter what substance is in question, but rather
whether or not the aim of its use is to wound via its toxic properties, which is prohibited behavior.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Nov 10 2005 12:48 utc | 31

@Hannah K. O'Luthon

Thanks Hannah. Good to get the RAI explanatory article 'on the record', in English.

Peace. Salaam. Shalom.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 13:49 utc | 32

"Those who excel in virtue have the best right of all to rebel, but then they are of all men, the least inclined to do so."

- Aristotle

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 14:04 utc | 33

Further to this story not getting coverage ... excerpts from interview trancsript with one of the soldiers on the RAI docu:

JEFF ENGLEHART: Well, I guess it's really my word against his.

I know for a fact I heard it (WP) being called for on the radio.

As far as media control, though, I know for a fact that if a journalist released a story that our task force wasn't happy with, that journalist just wasn't invited back.

And you had to look at it from the point of being a freelance journalist in Iraq where you're not getting protection. Of course, you're going to come out with a story that's more accurate. But when we had reporters from CNN, mostly CNN or the Army Times, they were protected, they were concealed in armored Humvees, protected by soldiers.

And it just seemed that they always told the Army's side of the story in return for that protection.

So, I mean, there's definitely a media control going on in Iraq. There's just no doubt about it.

And for him to say that they don't censor any stories coming out, I don't doubt that they don't censor them. I just think that if they don't like a story, they just don't invite the reporter back.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 16:11 utc | 34

This is the best discussing of the White Phosphorous issue on the web. Man cannot understand the capricious horror of war so he has to”compartmentalize and deal with it abstractly, objectively”. In the American Civil War to have been in combat was to have seen the “elephant”.

The US method of warfare since WWI has been to bring massed firepower on point and to flank the position. The USA has skirted international restrictions using depleted uranium, WP and napalm to destroy dug-in enemies. In the GWOT, the Bush Administration went one step farther and threw all international restrictions out the door.

The problem for empires fighting never ending wars on their periphery is that the empire cannot afford to prosecute the war to a victory. The USA does not have to money nor the troops to wipe out the Muslim insurgency. It cannot occupy all of North Africa without true economic and personal sacrifice. So just like Vietnam, the USA fights the Iraq Insurrection on the cheap. Fighting the war with tools inappropriate and counter to the goal of suppression of a national liberation movement.

Posted by: Jim S | Nov 10 2005 16:32 utc | 35

Its interesting how this "gets traction", after being "known" (and I confess) forgotten by those who were interested even at the time. As usual, it takes some
source with enough credibility to reduce the "plausible deniability", and the "Field Artillery" article by Cobb, LaCour, and Hight certainly does that "with a vengeance".
Nevertheless, it seems to be Giuliana Sgrena and the RAI
here in Italy who have provided the gut-wrenching photos that move it from the realm of "conspiracy theorists" to the realm of fact. The associated torture photos being shown on RAI 3 are equally gruesome, and perhaps even worse since one has the feeling that this sort of thing
is one of those freedoms that Bush really believes in fighting for. I remain pessimistic that even these latest war crimes will cause "right thinking" Americans
to say "enough is enough". If something to irretrievably undermine the official 9-11 mythology
should come along and "get traction", then reform might be possible, but absent that "miracle" it will very likely be business as usual with an occasional spasm of righteous indignation directed at external enemies rather than the filthy traitors in command.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Nov 10 2005 17:00 utc | 36

its interesting how this "gets traction"

@Hannah K. O'Luthon
Sorry, but other than a single brief and inaccurate article in the 'Boston Globe' and the 'Christian Science Monitor' ... it has yet to receive US coverage. Pleased to be corrected ...

The written record is what counts, radio or television is of transitory, fleeting impact (IMHO).

@Jim S
The 'elephant' exists in many forms ... some of us can be clinical about a topic like this whereas others cannot. There are specific things I, personally am incapable of expressing, let alone write about coherently ...

For those that are shocked or horrified by watching the video, please spare a moment to consider the effects on, the less obvious victims, the soldiers there in person ... ~50,000 US troops died in Vietnam, wounded ?, yet another ~50,000 returned soldiers suicided or died because of psychiatric disorders after they came home and the war was 'over'. In just these two years we have ~17,000 casualties in Iraq (KIA & WIA) ... that translates today, now, into another 17,000 'indirect' war dead from Iraq over the next decade or so ... and that's if it stopped right now !

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 17:30 utc | 37

Does it matter that the rest of the world follows these stories whilst the domestic US media 'buries' it or thier heads in the sand ?

So whats the greater significance for the War on Terra ?

Bush critics conclude U.S. is losing war on terrorism

Tuesday 1 November 2005, 12:14pm EST

By David Morgan

WASHINGTON, Nov 1 (Reuters) - U.S. terrorism experts Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon have reached a stark conclusion about the war on terrorism: the United States is losing.

Despite an early victory over the Taliban and al Qaeda in Afghanistan, the two former Clinton administration officials say President George W. Bush's policies have created a new haven for terrorism in Iraq that escalates the potential for Islamic violence against Europe and the United States.

America's badly damaged image in the Muslim world could take more than a generation to set right. And Bush's mounting political woes at home have undermined the chance for any bold U.S. initiatives to address the grim social realities that feed Islamic radicalism, they say.

"It's been fairly disastrous," said Benjamin, who worked as a director for counterterrorism at the National Security Council from 1994 to 1999.

"We have had some very important successes getting individual terrorists. But I think the broader story is really quite awful. We have done a lot to fuel the fires, and we have done a lot to encourage people to hate us," he added in an interview...

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 10 2005 17:33 utc | 38

I was with the battery that was providing artillery support for fallujah. The civilians were cleared out of fallujah. I say again, THE CITIZENS WERE CLEARED OUT OF FALLUJAH. Only a few were decided to stay. Just like a few decided to stay during Katrina. anyways, if you haven't received enemy fire from insurgents, I don't think you have a sense of reality of what's going on. It really is a situation of fight them there or fight them here if you know what I mean.

The citizens of Fallujah, even after being manhandled a little by searches, would come up and thank us. Even upon returning to their homes and finding them half destroyed, they would come up and thank us. One Marine shot an illum round from his M203 into the front of a truck because he didn't stop. The truck didn't explode or anything, but when he(the iraqi) explained what happened to the officers, he explained that the Marine was just doing his job and didn't want him to get into any trouble.

The insurgents of Fallujah were described as Ali Baba, or thieves. These people ransacked through peoples homes, used them to stash weapons and such. I guess I'm more reflecting on what happened there than making any sort of point. But having Fallujah citizens come up and thank us after bombing the crap out of their city is probably one of the greatest feelings of accomplishment. That I'd actually helped people to such a degree. If you talk to an Iraqi soldier or Policeman, you will find that about one half of them joined because either Saddam or these insurgents have killed a friend or family member. Anyways, I'm done rambling now.

Posted by: A United States Marine | Nov 11 2005 13:16 utc | 39

@A United States Marine
Welcome to our virtual bar. Civil discourse is highly valued here at MOA and therefore even though I'm going to challenge or question/debate some of your points, I'd like to express my appreciation for your respectful contribution.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 11 2005 13:31 utc | 40

@ Outraged and U.S. Marine

I look forward to the exchange of views, and second
the appreciation of Outraged for a contribution to the
discussion which promises to be highly stimulating.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Nov 11 2005 13:44 utc | 41

@A United States Marine
I was with the battery that was providing artillery support for fallujah

Can you confirm 'Shake and Bake' fire missions were executed on Fallujah ? Numbers ?

If the civilians were cleared out of Fallujah, then how do you explain multiple corroborated reports of up to 1/3 of the population being trapped, especially after the cordons were enforced and the city sealed ?

IIRC, all men aged 15-65 were not allowed to leave at all. How many of them were non-combatant civilians ? 90% ?

As a gunner, how can artillery 'Shake and Bake' fire missions be in any way considered 'precision' weapons, when the actual non-combatant occupants of a single building or for that matter a city block cannot be determined in advance ... only after the bodies are collected ?

Was Fallujah declared a free fire zone, if it moves it's a valid target, even though non-combatants were still within the city ?

Do you consider Fallujah's population suffered collective punishment for the acts of some insurgents, an act in breach of the Laws of War and the Geneva Conventions ?

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 11 2005 13:46 utc | 42

Kos okht ile nafadak

Posted by: | Nov 11 2005 13:50 utc | 43

Only a few were decided to stay.

hm, i for one do not believe you were really there. what would be the point of remaining anonymous if what you say is true.
what kind of marine would leave negative@negative.com as an address? have you seen the video from the italian press. apparently the soldiers on the video would not agree w/your assessment of the situation in fallujah. i would imagine we would have some footage of the citizens coming up and thanking you for the searches. come on??give me a little proof. some marine with a name who is proud of his service and not afraid to identify himself i would truly appreciate a dialogue with.

Posted by: annie | Nov 11 2005 17:13 utc | 44

Can you confirm 'Shake and Bake' fire missions were executed on Fallujah ? Numbers ?
Negative, I was in the FDC a good portion of the time and at no point heard any talk of Shake 'n Bake.

If the civilians were cleared out of Fallujah, then how do you explain multiple corroborated reports of up to 1/3 of the population being trapped, especially after the cordons were enforced and the city sealed ?
1/3 is a VERY high estimate. Maybe there was a party somewhere that I wasn't invited to cause I didn't see 1/3 of the civilians there. It's kind of hard to imagine that someone would be FORCED to stay in when all the leaflets told you to get out. The houses were all empty. I mean, like i said though, some people(VERY few) thought it would be cool to stay back.

IIRC, all men aged 15-65 were not allowed to leave at all. How many of them were non-combatant civilians ? 90% ?

Now, I'm not sure if I undeerstand your question correctly. But here's what I experienced, when we were letting the civilians BACK into Fallujah, many of them were of that age.


As a gunner, how can artillery 'Shake and Bake' fire missions be in any way considered 'precision' weapons, when the actual non-combatant occupants of a single building or for that matter a city block cannot be determined in advance ... only after the bodies are collected ?

HE Rounds have a 50 meter kill radius. They will usually take out one building at a time. Artillery isn't just "Hey, lets see what we hit when we put the deflection and elevation on such and such". This stuff is calculated on computers taking into consideration many different aspects including temperature and wind. The Forward Observers were confident in our ability for fast accurate fire. In training, being within a kilometer of your target is considered unsafe, these guys were either just nuts or very confident with their supporting fire.


Was Fallujah declared a free fire zone, if it moves it's a valid target, even though non-combatants were still within the city ?

Negative, I still have my R.O.E.(rules of engagement) Card around here somewhere. "No forces have been declared hostile." That means that you can't shoot anyone on sight. Only specific people listed with their photos. But yeah right, like you're going to see them. BUT, Carrying a weapon is declared a hostile act. Which means that if you're carrying a weapon, you're a target. There's a picture somewhere on my computer of a family coming out of the house as a Marine patrol is passing by, and they're just gesturing the people to go back inside.

Do you consider Fallujah's population suffered collective punishment for the acts of some insurgents, an act in breach of the Laws of War and the Geneva Conventions ?
Not at all.
I do ask that you remember this though.
Dressing in civilian clothes and shooting at military personnel is a crime.
Shooting unarmed civilians is a crime.
Stopping a pregnant woman's vehicle and then shooting her is a crime.
Looting Civilians is a crime.
Waving white flags and then opening fire is a crime.
Surrendering and then pulling a grenade is a crime.

Severing heads of civilians and posting the videos is a crime.

Remember that those commanding our troops, the officers, have careers on the line. The last thing they want is to be in a court-martial.

Posted by: A United States Marine | Nov 11 2005 17:19 utc | 45

a united states marine

i & others here also have sources close to the ground & the account you give seems to me very far from the truth

i don't know what you saw, how you saw it but from the evidence you offer here your eyes were looking elsewhere

we have here blogs from marines who fought there & who offere evidence far removed from your own

so i'm afraid i personally do not believe your 'objectivity'

i have experienced american firepower directly & it is nowhere near as clinical as you describe

we have other vets who have fought with the u s marines here & their experience too is very far removed from your own

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 11 2005 17:25 utc | 46

I don't like giving out my e-mail cause I have enough spam already. But I don't know too many people who have a 4x6 print of the city of fallujah.I don't know how to add in an image anymore apparently to HTML. so this is going to have to do. http://i29.photobucket.com/albums/c271/HechnoTechno/DSC00041.jpg

If you would like more proof. I've got 6 rolls of film developed from Iraq. I'd be more than happy to share it with you.

Posted by: A United States Marine | Nov 11 2005 17:34 utc | 47

A United States Marine:"Negative, I was in the FDC a good portion of the time and at no point heard any talk of Shake 'n Bake"

Do you believe that Captain James T. Cobb, First Lieutenant Christopher A. LaCour and Sergeant First Class William H. Hight are lying when they authored "We fired “shake and bake” missions at the insurgents, using WP to flush them out and HE to take them out."
...
"We used improved WP for screening missions when HC smoke would have been more effective and saved our WP for lethal missions" ?

A United States Marine:"It's kind of hard to imagine that someone would be FORCED to stay in when all the leaflets told you to get out."

Would it be easier to believe if the following humanitarian organisation signed a statement including: “While many ordinary people were able to escape Fallujah before the latest attack started, there are still many thousands of civilians here” .... “There is an urgent need for the protection of civilians living in this battle-ground. Children and women are too frightened to go about their every-day life - everything has ground to a halt. We need to see the international community take action to protect the civilian people who have been caught up in the middle of this conflict.”

ICS: Italian Consortium of Solidarity
Intersos
JVC: Japan International Volunteer
Center
MCC: Mennonite Central Committee
PU: Première Urgence
TDH: Terres des Hommes Italia
UPP: Un Ponte Per
War Child UK
WV: World Vision

Posted by: | Nov 11 2005 18:17 utc | 48

A United States Marine:"Negative, I was in the FDC a good portion of the time and at no point heard any talk of Shake 'n Bake"

Do you believe that Captain James T. Cobb, First Lieutenant Christopher A. LaCour and Sergeant First Class William H. Hight are lying when they authored "We fired “shake and bake” missions at the insurgents, using WP to flush them out and HE to take them out."
...
"We used improved WP for screening missions when HC smoke would have been more effective and saved our WP for lethal missions" ?

A United States Marine:"It's kind of hard to imagine that someone would be FORCED to stay in when all the leaflets told you to get out."

Would it be easier to believe if the following humanitarian organisation signed a statement including: “While many ordinary people were able to escape Fallujah before the latest attack started, there are still many thousands of civilians here” .... “There is an urgent need for the protection of civilians living in this battle-ground. Children and women are too frightened to go about their every-day life - everything has ground to a halt. We need to see the international community take action to protect the civilian people who have been caught up in the middle of this conflict.”

ICS: Italian Consortium of Solidarity
Intersos
JVC: Japan International Volunteer
Center
MCC: Mennonite Central Committee
PU: Première Urgence
TDH: Terres des Hommes Italia
UPP: Un Ponte Per
War Child UK
WV: World Vision

Posted by: Enough | Nov 11 2005 18:18 utc | 49

Sorry for the double post.

Posted by: Enough | Nov 11 2005 18:21 utc | 50

I do ask that you remember this though.

”Several of our Red Cross workers have just returned from Fallujah since the Americans won't let them into the city,”

Speaking on condition of anonymity for fear of U.S. military reprisal, a high-ranking official with the Red Cross in Baghdad told IPS that ”at least 800 civilians” have been killed in Fallujah so far"
[....]
”And they said the people they are tending to in the refugee camps set up in the desert outside the city are telling horrible stories of suffering and death inside Fallujah.”

Posted by: | Nov 11 2005 18:31 utc | 51

... and at no point heard any talk of Shake 'n Bake

You were in Arty, yet you've have never heard of 'shake and bake' ?
You have never executed training let alone combat fires where HE rounds are combined with White Phosphorus rounds to achieve the desired effect against 'dug-in' or 'entrenched' or alternately highly exposed targets ?
What was your MOS ?

"The munitions we brought to this fight were . . . llumination and white phosphorous (WP, M110 and M825), with point-detonating (PD), delay, time and variable-time (VT) fuzes."

"WP proved to be an effective and versatile munition. We used it for screening missions at two breeches and, later in the fight, as a potent psychological weapon against the insurgents in trench lines and spider holes when we could not get effects on them with HE. We fired “shake and bake” missions at the insurgents, using WP to flush them out and HE to take them out."

- according to Captain James T. Cobb, First Lieutenant Christopher A. LaCour, and Sergeant First Class William H. Hight, the authors of the article.

Ammo selection depends on commanders attack criteria. In english that means it depends on the situation at the time. ... The Fisters like a combo for bunkers. HE/PD followed by WP/PD. They call it "shake and bake" link

On 6 April, USAF fighters stopped at least three mass attacks on the compounds with what would later be known to even the Vietnamese as "shake and bake," a combination of conventional bombs, cluster bombs (CBU), and napalm...link

Fire Mission
10 rnds of Shake and bake with Candle light for dinner it's their birthday
Translation
10 rnds He with Wp and illumination
Remember Indirect Fire is never Friendly. link


Negative, I still have my R.O.E

Thirty-six years later, NBC war correspondent Kevin Sites, embedded with the U.S. Marines in Fallujah, wrote in his November 10 blog: "The Marines are operating with liberal rules of engagement."

Sites heard Staff Sgt. Sam Mortimer radio that "everything to the west is weapons free." Weapons Free, explained Sites, "means the Marines can shoot whatever they see - it's all considered hostile." On November 13, Sites videotaped a U.S. Marine killing an unarmed, wounded Iraqi in a Fallujah mosque.

During the U.S. attack on Fallujah, dubbed "Operation Phantom Fury," Associated Press photographer Bilal Hussein saw U.S. soldiers "open fire on the houses." Hussein also reported seeing U.S. helicopters fire on and kill people, including a family of five, who tried to cross the river.

"A large number of people including children were killed by American snipers," according to the Independent (U.K.). Civilians who remained in Fallujah "appeared to have been seen as complicit in the insurgency," the Independent reported. "Men of military age were particularly vulnerable. But there are accounts of children as young as four, and women and old men being killed."

Free fire zones, and indiscriminate killing of civilians, which constitute willful killing, are grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions. The U.S. War Crimes Act considers grave breaches of Geneva to be war crimes...

- Marjorie Cohn, a contributing editor to truthoout is a professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, executive vice president of the National Lawyers Guild, and the U.S. representative to the executive committee of the American Association of Jurists. Link

Care to explain the disparity between your 'unsupported'(no references) 'rosy' declarative statements and the following reports & quotes ?

Inside Fallujah — again, a city the size of Miami — cars will be banned. Buses would be used to transport ID-marked, retina-scanned Fallujan citizens through the city.

Lieutenant Colonel Dave Bellon, of the First Regimental Combat Team, told the Globe that "You have to say 'Here are the rules,' and you are firm and fair. That radiates stability... We need to be the benevolent, dominant tribe."

In the spirit of benevolency, the Marines have been discussing turning Fallujah into a giant work camp:

One idea that has stirred debate among Marine officers would require all men to work, for pay, in military-style battalions. Depending on their skills, they would be assigned jobs in construction, waterworks, or rubble-clearing platoons.

Some Marines don't like the idea of using forced labor in Fallujah. Their objections aren't moral, though. It's not that they don't like the idea of forced labor. It's that they worry that the Fallujans, already hateful, couldn't be "effectively coerced":

When they heard of the proposal to require men to work, some Marines were skeptical that an angry public would work effectively if coerced. Others said the plan was based on US tactics that worked in postwar Germany. DiFrancisci said he would wait for more details. "There's something to be said for a firm hand," he said.

The occupation apparently has high hopes for these measures. They want to turn Fallujah into a "model city" that will serve as a guide for "pacifying" other Iraqi cities.

Regardless of FOs or not, you haven't explained how it's possible to know if there are trapped non-combatants, hiding for thier lives, in the targeted building or for that matter, city blocks ... until after the bodies are collected ?

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 11 2005 18:38 utc | 52

And then there is this incidence:

White phosphorous used on the civilian populace: This is how the US "took" Fallujah. New napalm formula also used.

I gathered accounts of the use of phosphorus and napalm from a few Fallujah refugees whom I met before being kidnapped, says Manifesto reporter Giuliana Sgrena, who was kidnapped in Fallujah last February, in a recorded interview. I wanted to get the story out, but my kidnappers would not permit it.

Posted by: Fran | Nov 11 2005 18:47 utc | 53

What I Will Never Forget

The Face of War

This album contains photos taken by the military of dead men in Fallujah. They were taken on November 19th, 2004, to identify the dead. The IRC estimates that at least 60% of those killed in the assault of Fallujah are women, children and elderly. Warning:These are extremely graphic images posted simply to show the true face of war.

Posted by: | Nov 11 2005 18:50 utc | 54

no u s marine, i am afraid as outraged & others point out -- your comments here are unsupported by the evidence & i also remember that the nvra also called those things 'shake & bake'

one regular poster here - who is no friend of my positions (& who is a friend o the us army having worked & with family)- but whom i regard very seriouslly indeed - would also have problems with your 'evidence' & your absence of knowledge

& strangely for such a 'subjective' response to b's post - i read your posts very much as 'official policy' - however you are as outraged says, welcome

but i think a little more honesty is in order

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 11 2005 18:56 utc | 55

danr jamail's work is of the utmost importance

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 11 2005 18:58 utc | 56

I do ask that you remember this though.

Under the Laws of War and the GC irregular troops that do not wear uniforms, yet display personal weapons openly (i.e. dress as civilians) are 'protected combatants'. Do you remember the War of Independence ?

In the past, regardless of the actions of the enemy, which is not a mitigating defense, under the UCMJ, the Laws of War and the Geneva Conventions:

Shooting unarmed civilians is a crime.

Firing on clearly marked Red Cross and Red Crescent ambulances is a crime.

Looting Civilians and their property is a crime.

Kidnapping civilians and holding them hostage is a crime.

Summary execution and mistreatment of surrendered or wounded is a crime.

Denying enemy wounded or non-combatants equivalent medical treatment and care is a crime.

Mistreatment of any captured or surrendered enemy is a crime.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 11 2005 19:06 utc | 57


jamail

In a telephone interview with Jamail on Oct. 29, during his visit to Vermont for a speaking tour sponsored by social justice groups such as the Vermont chapter of the American Friends Service Committee and UVM Students for Peace and Global Justice, he discussed his day-to-day efforts to stay safe in Iraq, and media coverage of the conflict. He also suggested that the United States is instigating civil war, and provided some advice for independent journalists and anti-war activists.

VG: What do you think of the argument that U.S. troops should stay in Iraq in order to prevent civil war?

DJ: The argument is racist and imperialist, and is made by people who don’t understand what is going on. The U.S. [military] is using tactics that heighten the probability of civil war by rushing through this Washington DC-imposed timeline for the political process. They have a U.S.-backed Iraqi puppet government that is using the Kurdish and Shia army to fight a primarily Sunni resistance.

The U.S. pulling out is going to begin the process of stabilization in Iraq as well as be the first move to give Iraqis true sovereignty. The Iraqi people are fully capable of resolving their differences and setting up their own government, just as they did after the British pulled out.

Posted by: annie | Nov 11 2005 19:09 utc | 58

War is an atrocity. Expecting it to be atrocity-free is unreasonable.

Illegal weapons (take your pick), abuse of prisoners, POWs or random pick ups, sanctioned murders, rape, massive theft and looting, (always for all of those), lies, sabotage, concentration camps (gitmo, gaza), snipers who shoot old ladies shopping (chechnya), the extermination of villages filled with civilians, bombing of vital infrastructure (iraq) or just blasting away (dresden), human (ex yugo) and drug (south america) and money (usa) trafficking, ..and more...are all part of the picture.

There is no noble, clean war.

Participants, like the Marine here -pardon me for the distance-, like the victims in Iraq, experience a part, and must find reasons for what they do, or what befalls them.

Posted by: Noisette | Nov 11 2005 19:37 utc | 59

Oh, and if the billiions for the reconstruction of Iraq had created jobs and acceptable conditions for Iraqis (clean water, electricity, basic and free clinics as existed before, fields full of green, fruit, dates, to mention just a few things...) , there might -just might- be no ‘insurgency’ today.

Posted by: Noisette | Nov 11 2005 19:44 utc | 60

people like dahr jamail & there are others, many others including those working for red crescent who are revealing to our world the nature of operations in all their soridd splendour

those who would like to hide the facts just double the crime because as in my lai - the truth has a way of exerting itself even in the darkest of circumstances

but people like dahr - help the truth along at great risk to themselves staying very far way from the green zone & the publicity machines of the empire

it is a moment in human history where the truth is needed out of all measure

(& in this regard noisette - i admire your posts but the inclusion the other night of a nazi site - does you or us no honour - the truth itself is so ugly we do not need the vagaries of vulgar anti semitism - the socialism of the stupid

the great majority of us are able to criticise fundamentally the policies of israel & their propogandist without reaching into the blood & mud of anti semitism)

Posted by: r'giap | Nov 11 2005 19:52 utc | 61

If you talk to an Iraqi soldier or Policeman, you will find that about one half of them joined because either Saddam or these insurgents have killed a friend or family member.

Conversely, perhaps:

If you talk to an Iraqi insurgent, you will find that about one half of them joined because either the US or the other occupying forces have killed a friend or family member.

It's their country, Iraq, for Iraqis ... we have as much right being there, and continuing to be there, as we had to be in Vietnam ... none.

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 11 2005 20:02 utc | 62

i suspect the more we are able to see of photograzphs & films of what is happening on the ground - the more we will hear propoganda campaigns to say it is not happening at all

that the armed forces of the empire are follwing the book religiously, that no war crimes are occurring, that they are interrogating with kid gloves, that they do not massacre families of iraqis at checkoints,

that the insurgents in their diabolic & self interested method just blow up their families, their cousins, their tribes, their people - that they happily cut off the heads of the enemy, that they receive the monies & weapons of everybody from assad to chavez & castro

ô i am so tired of their lies & of their pornography, of their reasoned arguments

the war in iraq is a war of anhilation carried out by a culture that has lost a real interest in what it does & is thus capabnle of the worst crimes

the einsatzgruppen & the german armies that aided & abetted them were also ordianry humans who engaged in a crusade - pope pius even called that war on the east - the higghest mission in the defence of christian culture

i do not have pat's reserve about the ability of her army to do the things that we know they are doing but i do respect that what pat tells us is the truth as perceived by pat - but in the case of our marine here - i am simply inconvinced that it is a personal offering

"the lies they tell about the ideal state" from peter weiss marat/sade - still a worthy piece of theatre that can illuminate the truth

Posted by: r'giap | Nov 11 2005 20:21 utc | 63

Remember that those commanding our troops, the officers, have careers on the line. The last thing they want is to be in a court-martial.

Criminal liability for war crimes extends beyond the perpetrator. Under the doctrine of command responsibility, higher-ups can be just as liable if they knew or should have known their underlings were committing war crimes, but they failed to stop or prevent it. Commanders have a responsibility to make sure civilians are not indiscriminately hurt and that prisoners are not summarily executed.

If we blame and seek out the leaders of Al-Qaeda, Osama Bin Laden et al, as primarily responsible for the crimes of their foot-soldiers in order to serve justice ... then who has command responsibility for the actions of the foot-soldier grunt, trooper or jarhead ?

Yep, just 'a few bad apples', heh ?

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 11 2005 20:26 utc | 64

i am so tired of their lies & of their pornography, of their reasoned arguments

Reasoned?! . A United States Marine: "It really is a situation of fight them there or fight them here if you know what I mean."

I would be less tired if they would at least bother to vary the script a little.

Posted by: Enough | Nov 11 2005 20:47 utc | 65

this war was never inevitable

it is & remains an illegal war of occupation where all methods are being used & experimented including those that crash through international law & conventions with alarming velocity

so sordid has been this occupation & its many faces have included false flag operations

a reasoned history of such operations would leave little doubt that such things as death squads, targeted assassination, penetrated opposition grous, agent provocateurs etc etc are well within the limits of possibility & for my part feel that they are indeed probable

the bombings in jordan can be any number of things - it can be an extending of operations by the resistance - tho that this point that seems the least likely, it is the responsibility of a manipulated group which is 'owned' by the occupation forces, it is an intelligence operation directly coordinated by the occupation

nothing is too far fetched because all these possibilities exist & have existed with evidence during this immoral war & we have enough evidence from other interventions that it is well within the realms of possibility

i would like to believe that pat's army is an honest broker but i feel in the end they are tools of mad foreign policy just as ther german armies were complicit in a mad foreig policy & deliberately participated in illegal actions knowing they were illegal (this is very true in relation to the'commissar order' for example where there was great division in the general staff in particular on the question of legality)

all efforts that try to bring light where only darkeness exists are cause for hope & for that dahl ought to be thanked by larger communities

Posted by: r'giap | Nov 11 2005 21:59 utc | 66

ample recent evidence has been provided by our own outraged & stan goff for example in haiti & i would strongly suggest his book on that subject that can be bought through counterpunch

interesting book just published from a colloque on the fabrication of the jihad which is a very nasty piece of neocon work

Posted by: r'giap | Nov 11 2005 22:08 utc | 67

I just deleted my rant because there was nothing new in it. I am pleased to see that the mask of civility is starting to drop when engaging 'the us marine'; a nom de plume which reeks of exceptionalism.

Yeah yeah civility encourages dialogue and usually I try and keep dialogue 'bubbling along'.

Lets face it a us marine (in my world that says 'a mudering tool of the rich') won't be having his/her epiphany at MoA, if indeed he/she does have one, because he/she's still a long way from there.

In addition there is every chance that this taker of human life, believes his/her own bullshit. I suspect from what has been hid and did, not to mention said; that the marine may have got to Fallujah after the worst of the atrocities had been committed. When the siege had been lifted and a few 'connected' civilians were officially allowed back in.

Hence the talk of cringing gratitude etc. Yeah right normal people are always overwhelmed by gratitude after you've blown their town to smithereens and wasted a substantial portion of the population. Cause jeez 'Ali Baba' certainly aint gonna be stealing anything from my house, cause my house is just a big charred and empty crater.

That phrase 'Ali Baba' which I haven't really heard since the "Mission Accomplished' days can really hit the wrong buttons.

When u.s. troops were too busy protecting the oil ministry to guard the treasures of an ancient civilisation that they had just bombed into compliance after starving it for a decade, thereby following the same cruel tactics of siege on a civilian population which were foul and unconscionable at Masada, Warsaw or even Leningrad but S.O.P. at Hue, Bagdhad or Fallujah; they justified their callous indifference by calling the Bagdhad citizenry thieves.

From there some well-read grunt (irony alert) undoubtedly coined the phrase Ali Baba which was at least an attempt to find common cultural references by the dominant and at that time probably jubilant us troops.

The phrase reminds of the fragments of Thai, middle aged drunken sex tourists pick up and use around Patpong .
The words the tourist has bothered to learn (eg Thai for slut, human genetalia etc) demean and repress and don't work as the bridge that foreign guests normally construct with locals when they show thay are willing to try and meet the locals halfway and learn some language.

It pretty much says that all interaction has been limited, discourteous and patronising.

So the marine may be genuine and not some pentagon inspired attempt to slam the barn door after the horse has bolted. I mean it seems everyone knew that the first anniversary of the rape of Fallujah was coming around but the department of defence who may have been distracted by their attempt to get torture properly legitimised.

Now that the media is running more than a few stories about this atrocity I've no doubt Rummy's dummies are hopping around like fleas with their ass on fire, begging all and sundry to piss on them.

What was the name of that corporation run by some Englishman which defence was putting zillions into?

Remember the MoA mob recovered some of the rewrite just as it was being cast down the memory hole.

Didn't they specialise in 'correcting' anything on the interweb that may cast repugs in a less than favorable light?

This thread would qualify as an interweb meme which doesn't give repug activities a good look.

So we shouldn't discount the notion mariney is a plant. Although I don't really go with that because it is placing a lot of weight on MoA's stature, and that doesn't feel comfortable let alone credible.

Whatever the bona fides of the marine it really is difficult to see much purpose in having a dialogue with this perp.

And the new improved rant has ended up longer and 'older' but believe it or not slightly more civil.

Posted by: Debs is dead | Nov 11 2005 22:27 utc | 68

Talk about varying the script a little! Ha! What is the point of this continual drone that you all are making?? We get the point, already.... ! All wars expose the worst of human nature, so move on with it! Ending wars won't be achieved by posting ad nauseum on this topic.

On Veterans Day I'd like to wish my best to fellow Vets.

Posted by: Soandso | Nov 11 2005 22:29 utc | 69

my drone, as you call it, soandso, is as nothing compared to the constant drone that can be heard in every city of iraq - that of bombardements

& on veterans day - what would you like to thank your fellow vets for - the illegal interventions in panama or grenada, the absolutely inhumane complicity in the massacres & misfeance in haiti, would you like to thank them for training latin american dictators, or would you like to thank them yet another illegal war in south east asia where more than 3million lost their lifes. erhaps you would like to thank them for the folly that was korea

i cannot tell whehter you would be thankful for the veterans of the russian armies that stopped fascism, or of the veterans of the lincoln brigade who went to fight against fascism completely outside any form of self interest

would you thank the many thousands of american who went all over the americas to really help those people against their tyrannies who were supported completely by a state dept that has only their own interests at heart

if you expect me to change my tune soandso - i am sorry that i will not be forthcoming - the more i witness of this war & this war above all others - the mockery of humanity that governments do on 'rememberance days' will only make me, sicker

so the drone will continue - you are not obliged to listen to it as i pass over your implicit suggestions in silence

Posted by: r'giap | Nov 11 2005 22:54 utc | 70

@r'giap

Keep droning, sir.

Posted by: Tantalus | Nov 11 2005 23:24 utc | 71

The logic is hardly compelling. Sort of "Everyone knows its an evil business so shut up and let us be evil".

If paid killers don't like a sizable chunk of humanity considering them to be mercenary, murdering swine, the solution is really in their hands ie stop with the killing. I really don't see how demanding others to stop speaking their mind can serve anyone.

Posted by: Debs is dead | Nov 11 2005 23:28 utc | 72

Do you believe that Captain James T. Cobb, First Lieutenant Christopher A. LaCour and Sergeant First Class William H. Hight are lying when they authored "We fired “shake and bake” missions at the insurgents, using WP to flush them out and HE to take them out."

I have no clue what the army was up to

Would it be easier to believe if the following humanitarian organisation signed a statement including: “While many ordinary people were able to escape Fallujah before the latest attack started, there are still many thousands of civilians here” .... “There is an urgent need for the protection of civilians living in this battle-ground. Children and women are too frightened to go about their every-day life - everything has ground to a halt. We need to see the international community take action to protect the civilian people who have been caught up in the middle of this conflict.”
They were given 2 months to clear out. You can only do so much. And I hope to God that they didn't go outside.

You were in Arty, yet you've have never heard of 'shake and bake' ?
You have never executed training let alone combat fires where HE rounds are combined with White Phosphorus rounds to achieve the desired effect against 'dug-in' or 'entrenched' or alternately highly exposed targets ?
What was your MOS ?

I didn't say I didn't know what one was, I said I'd never heard one being called over the hooks.

As far as the forced labor issue goes, I don't know when that's dated. We used Iraqis on and off base. But I know they got paid.

Regardless of FOs or not, you haven't explained how it's possible to know if there are trapped non-combatants, hiding for thier lives, in the targeted building or for that matter, city blocks ... until after the bodies are collected ?

Do you even know WHY rounds are dropped? My guess is that probably because either heavy enemy fire is coming from there, or you're getting sniped. We had a limited supply of ammo. We didn't know when the next batch was coming in. Now then, with a limited supply, if Haji runs in there where a family is, and then draws fire from Marines. My condolences, but, that house is probably coming down. There's no point in clearing a house, and THEN firing artillery on it.

Don't even show me that image of the kid with the white flag. That bears no meaning whatsoever when insurgents lure out American troops with it and then open fire.

Conversely, perhaps:

If you talk to an Iraqi insurgent, you will find that about one half of them joined because either the US or the other occupying forces have killed a friend or family member.

Should this even be considered?

that the armed forces of the empire are follwing the book religiously
I'll be honest, you can't. When rounds start coming downrange you cannot follow the book verbatim.

that the armed forces of the empire are follwing the book religiously, that no war crimes are occurring, that they are interrogating with kid gloves, that they do not massacre families of iraqis at checkoints,

Massacring families at checkpoints is just about laughable. Now you have to add to the stories you hear, well gee, maybe there was some omission to the story such as, not stopping, or appearing to charge a barricade. The watch officer or whoever is in charge doesn't say "Hey, that car has a lot of people in there, lets shoot 'em".

I was in/around Fallujah from Oct '04 - Feb '05. I was there.

The terms Al-Harbee(or Al-Habi), i can't remember if the Iraqis put an r in it, and Ali Baba, were terms that the Iraqis used for the insurgents, not just something the troops came up with. Haji is something I'm sure the Americans came up with.

Debs is dead. I was there. You were not. I think that settles that argument. And even if you don't believe me, whatever.

Marines, who put their lives on the line FOR YOU. You have the nerve to question those who took an oath to give up for their lives for the protection of your country? I know, that when I look back in my life and think of something that I did was worthwhile, I will be able to say that I served not just in the US Armed Forces, but in the United States Marines. I used to be a bleeding liberal like you, but then after joining the Marines and got out and saw the world, I now have at least SOME clue as to what's going on. And on top of being a Marine, I can say that I was at one of the worst battles in a while. I served with some of the finest men. I consider myself a fairly intelligent person. I know it doesn't mean much but so far being in service, I have only come across two people who scored higher on the ASVAB than I. I'm not just some dumb jarhead.

& on veterans day - what would you like to thank your fellow vets for - the illegal interventions in panama or grenada, the absolutely inhumane complicity in the massacres & misfeance in haiti, would you like to thank them for training latin american dictators, or would you like to thank them yet another illegal war in south east asia where more than 3million lost their lifes. erhaps you would like to thank them for the folly that was korea

You ignorant piece of shit. I know it doesn't mean much to you, but this forward rambling is for my own sake. 7,000 motherfuckers died for your sorry ass at Iwo Jima ALONE. 20,000 died at the battle of Okinawa. and those are only two battles. How about you thank them for typing in the fucking english language. You ungrateful motherfucker. I bet it's pretty easy to type all that crap from behind a computer screen and not when rounds are flying over your head. War isn't perfect. I have no clue why we went to war with Iraq, that's Bush. whatever. But to say that those in Iraq now are nothing but a bunch of no good killers? Military service SHOULD be mandatory, but of course it's not going to happen, I don't expect it to. It would just give citizens a better understanding of the world around them and a newfound sense of belonging in the country they live in. I think I'm done here.

I've typed this long enough, and it will just be lost in the endless sea of webforums.

Posted by: A United States Marine | Nov 11 2005 23:43 utc | 73

wow i messed up the italics on that one

Posted by: A United States Marine | Nov 11 2005 23:44 utc | 74


All wars expose the worst of human nature, so move on with it!

I'll move on with it when the last soldier occupying Iraq moves on, reparations are paid, an apology is delivered and the mass-murdering criminals who engineered this insanity are brought to justice.

Marines, who put their lives on the line FOR YOU.

YOU PUT YOUR LIFE ON THE LINE FOR CRIMINALS

Posted by: | Nov 12 2005 0:00 utc | 75

I'll move on with it when the last soldier occupying Iraq moves on,

You really have no clue about the world around you.

Posted by: A United States Marine | Nov 12 2005 0:08 utc | 76

@Debs

"So we shouldn't discount the notion mariney is a plant."

My gut was telling me this was a troll when I saw the sobriquet, but the content is telling me another story. A troll would be here to start a fight and disrupt the flow of information; a plant would be here to lead the conversation and take names. This guy just seems to want to air his Weltbild and reads to me like many of the USGI's I have discussed things over a few drinks with. In any event, as I said in another thread, anonymity doesn't necessarily bother me and in many ways it keeps a lot of things clearer. Who our anonymous jarhead might be in realtime is as germane to addressing what they are saying as the earlier fight when people openly speculated about Billmon's identity. Let's just deal with what's in front of us... and so far, we're doing that pretty well.

I'm not chewing at you specifically, Debs. I just had a horrible epiphany earlier about the watchlists. Make no mistake that there are "plants" amongst the ranks here and more in the lurkers, but trolls and provocateurs are the least of our worries.

@USMC

"wow i messed up the italics on that one"

You apparently forgot to close an HTML tag.


Posted by: Monolycus | Nov 12 2005 0:14 utc | 77

he/she/it is a troll.

1st posts were "folksy" (anyways.. ), then it's a "intellectual", then a tough guy.

Oh well, who knows. Everyone around here is very polite. Except me that is. I would just like to say fuck off Mr United States Marine, and fuck off the US of A. See you in hell.

Posted by: DM | Nov 12 2005 0:14 utc | 78

Well murdering marine. There is one thing you can be sure of you didn't put your life on the line for me or my country. If either were in any real danger I'm more than prepared to go and take care of it myself.

I would never tolerate someone using me or my name to go into another country and try to tell the inhabitants that they can't go outside this week but last week they had to go out. In fact they had to leave their homes and everything they owned to be strip searched categorised, coded and humiliated. Then when the ordinary people living their ordinary but to them valuable lives didn't fully comprehend the absolute cruelty of what was to be unleashed on them, mistakenly chose not to leave everything they owned behind; got 'shaked and baked', some facile fool tries to justify it by saying it wasn't me, it was the army.

If Iraqis were sniping you your choice was clear, get the fuck out of there. It is their country not yours and they will do what they will do there.

"Marines, who put their lives on the line FOR YOU. You have the nerve to question those who took an oath to give up for their lives for the protection of your country? I know, that when I look back in my life and think of something that I did was worthwhile, I will be able to say that I served not just in the US Armed Forces, but in the United States Marines. I used to be a bleeding liberal like you, but then after joining the Marines and got out and saw the world, I now have at least SOME clue as to what's going on. And on top of being a Marine, I can say that I was at one of the worst battles in a while. I served with some of the finest men. I consider myself a fairly intelligent person. I know it doesn't mean much but so far being in service, I have only come across two people who scored higher on the ASVAB than I. I'm not just some dumb jarhead."

That bit takes the cake cause apart from the obvious like not being able to work a weblog. We see this jarhead confuses knowledge with intelligence, grades with common sense. Well then, please do look back on your murdering raping and pillaging and consider it worthwhile. As you do so pour yet another measured dose of the poison de jour that the the slime oozing out of your TV set has been cajoling you to consume for the past months. There's a zillion like you out there and they're not stictly fauna amerikanus I have found them in all corners of the globe and have learnt that engaging with them before they open their eyes is pointless.

I wonder why he/she puts United States in front of everything? What difference does it make what country an invader, rapist and murderer comes from once they're at someone else's place they are just a banal invader, rapist and murderer. Their origins are irrelevant.

Posted by: Debs is dead | Nov 12 2005 0:18 utc | 79

Everyone around here is very polite. Except me that is.

And me.

Kul khara we moot ya Ibn al-Himar.

Posted by: Haji | Nov 12 2005 0:19 utc | 80

It's the hypocrisy of the unpaid killers that poses the greatest problem. The ones who wail against the war yet continue to support the machine that wages them. The ones the let out the infantile cry about protecting the oil ministries, yet continue to consume more petroleum products than they would need in 50 lifetimes. The ones who scream about the unethical corporations yet pour their life force into their continuation on the backs of the downtrodden people around the world they claim to have so much compassion for.
If you really want to save those innocent Iraqis and everyone else you care for, you would stop devouring the earth's resources like a pack of insatiable monsters.

You sit in your spacious homes, stuffed with corporate products, overfed, safe, and morally superior, with the indecency to talk about the ending of war with such expertise.

When the rigid finger of blame that forever points outward completes the cycle and points back to the self, where the the answers to the collective agony originate... in each individual...where the correction of our own failures starts and our compliance with the collective crimes are faced... then we will truly reach the tipping point.

On this Veteran's Day, I am thanking no one. I am hoping that we will all face the truth and end the destruction of human bodies as a resolution of conflict.

Posted by: jm | Nov 12 2005 0:28 utc | 81

I wonder why he/she puts United States in front of everything?

I guess you would never understand considering you have no idea what a privelage it is to live in the United States, even though I'm currently in Japan. I'll be back home next year. You make me sick.If you hate the United States government so much and their military, why don't you stop supporting them by not paying taxes? Take a stand. Write on your 1040 that you refuse to support this war. Or are those McDonald's cheeseburgers too good to give up?

Posted by: A United States Marine | Nov 12 2005 0:34 utc | 82

us marine

you can thank 20,000,000 russians who saved your sorry ass in moscow, stalingrad, kursk, berlin - now that my friend is sacrifice - without them you'd be speaking High German or japanese - tho that in itslef would not be a bad thing

that you have to return to ww 2 says a great deal about every illegal intervention & occupation since

& my little soldier friend - i know a thing or two about being under fire & that in & of itself brings no authenticity - nor should it

as a regular in this bar i'd counsel you read the posts of anna missed, outraged, pat or hkol who also know a thing or two about bullets & fire

& in any case my soldier friend there are many intersting blogs by soldiers in your mans army who were actually there who while not agreeing with anything i might say give a glimpse of the truth that you seem incapable of doing

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 12 2005 0:39 utc | 83

listen moron .. McDonald's cheeseburgers taste like shit.

Posted by: DM | Nov 12 2005 0:39 utc | 84

dm

how could you say such a thing
a man's army marches on its stomach

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 12 2005 0:42 utc | 85

Okay. Definitely not a plant, just a garden variety troll-fest.

If we're going to hold civility in contempt, then I'll toss out my less-than-charitable observation. Trolls don't eat McDonald's hamburgers. Trolls eat angry, emotional responses on websites. And if a troll has tricked you into feeding it, it gets a big gold star and you get egg on your face no matter how "justified" your reaction to what it said was.

Jarhead is not going to be swayed about being a tool for the Empire, we are not going to be swayed about justifying atrocities... so why are we still talking about this?

Posted by: Monolycus | Nov 12 2005 0:46 utc | 86

About a week ago we (here MoA) had an occasion to reflect on Billmon's site, and the creation of this site. There was a sense of nostalgia and commenting on how much things have changed. Yes, MoA is a living thing and it has evolved as participants have come and gone. This isn't the enjoyable watering hole that it once was. Just a suggestion- some of you are posting way way too much and you ought to take a vacation!

Don't let the door hit me in the ass, you say!!! lol

Buh bye!

Posted by: Soandso | Nov 12 2005 0:50 utc | 87

@monolycus "I just had a horrible epiphany earlier about the watchlists. Make no mistake that there are "plants" amongst the ranks here and more in the lurkers, but trolls and provocateurs are the least of our worries".

I'm not sure what watchlists are but I agree that one should be careful in any forum such as this where such contentious issues are being discussed.

I'll be the first to admit I say too much about myself in here but usually to provide a frame of reference for my opinion rather than to 'prove' something by revealing superior more intimate knowledge of it. Nevertheless I doubt I will ever be travelling to the US again so I'm more careless than I could be.

Yep I suppose if I annoyed someone sufficiently they could seek some sort of redress on my own 'turf' but I just don't believe that is likely enough to get me to trim my mainsail.

The bigger issue is that we don't reveal any potential strategy or own to any chink in the armour of resistance.

Since none of us really have our finger on the pulse that is pretty unlikely.

I can't help but notice that there are few if any declared followers of Islam hanging about MoA and while there are many reasons for that (most particularly why would they care about what we think/say), I can't help but feel while that is the case we don't have too much to concern us about agent provacateurs.

That said I also take onboard comments about the concern when moving through airports that have been expressed and even if I don't share that concern I now recognise the concerns of others.

I dunno if marine was/is a troll/plant/fool. To tell you the truth I only responded after I thought he/she'd shuffled off precisely because I didn't want to get into some tiresome attempt to pointscore or whatever.

Still didn't stop me from being provoked by allegation that this murdering was being done for me and my country tho. ('Did' slaps hisself on back of hand and goes back to wondering if that rain pissin down outside is goin to stop for long enough to get a bit of fresh air).

Posted by: Debs is dead | Nov 12 2005 0:51 utc | 88

@A United States Marine
Considering the current administration is screwing Vets over via the VA, what gives you the right to be a spokesman on behalf of WWII, Korean, or Vietnam vets. A damned lot o' people did'nt sacrifice to give you the right to TELL others how it is. And the guilt/grateful trip shyte is purile when used as a device to support your, 'opinion'.

Your gross assumptions as to who has served or not, in what capacity, nor where or when combined with further stated assumptions on the level of knowledge, experience or service expertise of posters, doesn't add credibility to your claims ... especially having avoided specific questions...

Your politics are your view, your opinion. Don't fly the falacy 'flag' of them being the 'mandated' conformist beliefs of all who have served or are serving still. That's disguised authoritarianism, if not pseudo-fascism.

DM has nailed it. Sweet FA re facts ... he's highly probably a troll.

B, my apologies for having encouraged the wasted bandwidth.

Sadly, a Deja vu moment re this time last year ...

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 12 2005 1:17 utc | 89

why don't you stop supporting them by not paying taxes? Take a stand.

This is the only thing that you have said that is compelling.

My beloved older brother did just that. He moved to Norway (the ancestral home of his wife). He repeatedly asked me why I pay taxes that support this criminal intervention. I have acted. I am moving. I will not support you in any way.

Posted by: Enough | Nov 12 2005 1:30 utc | 90

Some of us will stick it out Enough, if only because we have no alternative, but perhaps too because some of us feel that we must stick by our country and see it though hard times.

I can understand USM's feelings, having been brainwashed myself in the past by the same bootcamp mentality. Sure he jerks your chain, but at least try and see where he's coming from: it is a rock to stand on, that cannot be allowed to crumble under any conditions...and yet geeezus it is crumbling! I look at that as similar to dreams I had as a kid where I was falling in a bottomless pit, with hungry crocodiles swirling around me.

Point is, reason is not enough to win this battle; you may be right but that is not enough. If we fight it as if "we right - you wrong" it serves only to raise the stakes. So let em fail if that is what will happen; you may assist in that failure in subtle ways, but don't get drawn into pointless arguments.

Especially since USM is serving us the citizens at our cost, and he is there to but do or die.

Posted by: rapt | Nov 12 2005 2:53 utc | 91

"We have become a Nazi monster in the eyes of the whole world -- a nation of bullies and bastards who would rather kill than live peacefully. We are not just Whores for power and oil, but killer whores with hate and fear in our hearts. We are human scum, and that is how history will judge us. No redeeming social value. Just whores. Get out of our way, or we'll kill you.

"Well, shit on that dumbness, George W. Bush does not speak for me or my son or my mother or my friends or the people I respect in this world. We didn't vote for these cheap, greedy little killers who speak for America today -- and we will not vote for them again in 2002. Or 2004. Or ever. 

"Who does vote for these dishonest shitheads? Who among us can be happy and proud of having all this innocent blood on our hands? Who are these swine? These flag-sucking half-wits who get fleeced and fooled by stupid rich kids like George Bush? 

"They are the same ones who wanted to have Muhammad Ali locked up for refusing to kill gooks. They speak for all that is cruel and stupid and vicious in the American character. They are the racists and hate mongers among us -- they are the Ku Klux Klan. I piss down the throats of these Nazis. 

"And I am too old to worry about whether they like it or not. Fuck them."

hunter s thompson

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 12 2005 3:09 utc | 92

The Pentagon has confirmed that US troops used white phosphorus during last year's offensive in the northern Iraqi city of Falluja.

US used white phosphorus in Iraq

Posted by: GM | Nov 15 2005 22:02 utc | 93

@GM

White phosphorus is an incendiary weapon, not a chemical weapon

Col Barry Venable
Pentagon spokesman

From an earlier post:

In response to a question seeking to clarify whether WP is a chemical weapon covered by the CCW :

any chemical that is used against humans or animals that causes harm... [is] considered chemical weapons... prohibited behavior[under the CCW]”
- Peter Kaiser, Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons

Col Venables just confirmed it. As a spokesman he's just trying to spin the categorization of WP as incendiary to deny and obfuscate the above. And the U.S. IS a signatory to the CCW and there were non-combatants in Fallujah ... where'd the civilian corpses appear from ?

Sadly, nothing will come of it though ...

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 15 2005 22:18 utc | 94

Pentagon lawyers and military spokesmen (PR flaks) may insist that white phosphorus weapons like the WP M110A2 155 mm "smoke" artillery round are perfectly legal "smoke, incendiary or illumination devices", but it is very telling that
military specifications sheets (Document ID: MIL-DTL-60477B(3))
for the preparation and handling/custody this type of white phosphorus weapon designate the Edgewood Arsenal (EA) Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC).

Does not Edgewood specialize in handling chemical and biological warfare agents ?

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 16 2005 0:04 utc | 95

Does not Edgewood specialize in handling chemical and biological warfare agents ?

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 15, 2005 7:04:44 PM | #

yes

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 16 2005 0:23 utc | 96

"Napalm was used in several instances during the initial invasion. Colonel Randolph Alles, commander of Marine Air Group 11, remarked during the initial invasion of Iraq in 2003: "The generals love napalm - it has a big psychological effect."

In his letter, Ambassador Tuttle claims there is a distinction between napalm and the 500lb Mk-77 firebombs he says were dropped - even though experts say they are virtually identical. The only difference is that the petrol used in traditional napalm has been replaced in the newer bombs by jet fuel."

independant londres

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 16 2005 0:29 utc | 97

"Published on Tuesday, November 15, 2005 by the Independent / UK

'I Treated People Who Had Their Skin Melted'

by Dahr Jamail


Abu Sabah knew he had witnessed something unusual. Sitting in November last year in a refugee camp in the grounds of Baghdad University, set up for the families who fled or were driven from Fallujah, this resident of the city's Jolan district told me how he had witnessed some of the battle's heaviest fighting.

"They used these weird bombs that put up smoke like a mushroom cloud," he said. He had seen "pieces of these bombs explode into large fires that continued to burn on the skin even after people dumped water on the burns".

As an unembedded journalist, I spent hours talking to residents forced out of the city. A doctor from Fallujah working in Saqlawiyah, on the outskirts of Fallujah, described treating victims during the siege "who had their skin melted".

He asked to be referred to simply as Dr Ahmed because of fears of reprisals for speaking out. "The people and bodies I have seen were definitely hit by fire weapons and had no other shrapnel wounds," he said.

Burhan Fasa'a, a freelance cameraman working for the Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation (LBC), witnessed the first eight days of the fighting. "I saw cluster bombs everywhere and so many bodies that were burnt, dead with no bullets in them," he said. "So they definitely used fire weapons, especially in Jolan district."

Mr Fasa'a said that while he sold a few of his clips to Reuters, LBC would not show tapes he submitted to them. He had smuggled some tapes out of the city before his gear was taken from him by US soldiers.

Some saw what they thought were attempts by the military to conceal the use of incendiary shells. "The Americans were dropping some of the bodies into the Euphrates near Fallujah," said one ousted resident, Abdul Razaq Ismail.

Dr Ahmed, who worked in Fallujah until December 2004, said: "In the centre of the Jolan quarter they were removing entire homes which have been bombed, meanwhile most of the homes that were bombed are left as they were."

He said he saw bulldozers push soil into piles and load it on to trucks to carry away. In certain areas where the military used "special munitions" he said 200 sq m of soil was being removed from each blast site.

© 2005 Independent News & Media (UK) Ltd.

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Nov 16 2005 0:40 utc | 98

War, nor combat, is without glory. It is not an awesome 'game' where we kick butt. It is not a match where one keeps score by counting casualties on either side. It is supposed to be an absolute last resort, when negotiations have failed, all other options exhausted, a to be avoided necessary evil sometimes, to keep a larger peace.

To kill another human being, an enemy, by a bullet, painful, but at least hopefully quick. An explosive, perhaps a shell or grenade; seems excessive, but intended at least to kill.

But cover him in a chemical that will painfully burn his damn skin off until maybe he dies screaming an inhuman howl if enough of it got on him. Or maybe he dies excruciatingly slowly in agony over days. Or maybe he lives on in chronic pain for a while, maimed, scarred and disfigured for life.

These chemicals as weapons are not weapons for killing. They are weapons for maiming, terrifying, and causing unbelievable trauma, with death an uncertain and perhaps not necessarily desired side-effect (psychological ?).

As a superpower with a standing professional army and chain of command, a Christian populace that claims to value morality, and the world watching, why resort to such weapons.

We have taken 'force protection' too far. If our war is just then we should accept the cost, the heavy burden, of our casualties. Are our soldiers warriors or button pushers of death from afar ?

To conduct warfare with no thought to the pain and suffering inflicted, to use unconventional weapons which are less humane and less discriminate (killing more civilians) is morally repulsive, unethical, and rightly so, to most of the world. This is why the Geneva Conventions and rules of warfare, the Laws of War, were created and exist.

Why do we even have to be reminded ?

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 16 2005 1:04 utc | 99

Posted by: Outraged | Nov 16 2005 22:17 utc | 100

next page »

The comments to this entry are closed.