Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Haditha . . . perspective?

Andrew Sullivan points to this article by a CNN journalist named Arwa Damon for "context" regarding the alleged Haditah massacres. Damon says she was embedded with the same unit now accused of murdering Iraqi women and children.

Read the article for yourself, but the only "context" I perceived was that Ms. Damon has lost any sense of journalistic objectivity. For example, take this passage:

I was with them in Husayba as they went house to house in an area where
insurgents would booby-trap doors, or lie in wait behind closed doors with an
AK-47, basically on suicide missions, just waiting for the Marines to come
through and open fire. There were civilians in the city as well, and the Marines
were always keenly aware of that fact. How they didn't fire at shadows, not
knowing what was waiting in each house, I don't know. But they didn't.

Uh, Ms. Damon, American soldiers are specifically trained to not fire at shadows. They are supposed to wait for proper rules of engagement before discharging their weapons. If they started shooting at shadows, one can only imagine the kind of humanitarian disaster we'd have on our hands in Iraq.

Here's how I feel: the vast majority of American soldiers are decent, well-trained fighters who perform an admirable, and heroic, service. But the Haditha massacre, if the alleged facts are proven true, is a shameful, horrific event that may eclipse even Abu Gahraib in its atrocities. Thankfully, the journalists at Time and elsewhere aren't quite as starry eyed -- and conflicted -- as CNN's Damon.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you send this to HER, not just your choir here!

It is stomach churning evil. I know I can't imagine what it is like, the fear and stress the soldiers must be feeling, but murder is the wrongful taking of another human life. Shooting an enemy soldier is one thing (I guess, I really am not so sure) and shooting a little girl in a closet, well, that's evil. I guess now I am preaching to the choir director, but it is horrifying.

I think your posts also need to be sent to our representatives.

3:05 PM  
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