Skip to comments.A reporter's shock at the Haditha allegation (Was embedded with Marines - different perspective)
Posted on 05/30/2006 12:49:13 PM PDT by gondramB
BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- It actually took me a while to put all the pieces together -- that I know these guys, the U.S. Marines at the heart of the alleged massacre of Iraqi civilians in Haditha.
I don't know why it didn't register with me until now. It was only after scrolling through the tapes that we shot in Haditha last fall, and I found footage of some of the officers that had been relieved of their command, that it hit me.
I know the Marines that were operating in western al Anbar, from Husayba all the way to Haditha. I went on countless operations in 2005 up and down the Euphrates River Valley. I was pinned on rooftops with them in Ubeydi for hours taking incoming fire, and I've seen them not fire a shot back because they did not have positive identification on a target.
I saw their horror when they thought that they finally had identified their target, fired a tank round that went through a wall and into a house filled with civilians. They then rushed to help the wounded -- remarkably no one was killed.
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....
How they didn't fire at shadows, not knowing what was waiting in each house, I don't know. But they didn't.
And I was with them in Haditha, a month before the alleged killings last November of some 24 Iraqi civilians.
I'm told that investigators now strongly suspect a rampage by a small number of Marines who snapped after one of their own was killed by a roadside bomb.
Haditha was full of IEDs
(Excerpt) Read more at cnn.com ...
>>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.<<
>>Now, all these months later, while watching the tapes, I found a walk and talk with one of the company commanders that was relieved of his duty as a result of the Haditha probe.<<
1. A fresh perspective from a reporter with first hand experience.
2. This is the first I've heard of commanders being relieved of duty.
Somewhere, an editor is saying "He's too close to be objective. All our accounts should be from people who know nothing about it. The facts confuse the readers".
Tonight, we give you a sharp picture of life of a GI at war. CNN's Arwa Damon reports from the front lines of Operation Steel Curtain near the Syrian border.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right to the left of the two long ones! Reloading! Reloading!
ARWA DAMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Gunny Jeff Cullen and his platoon in the thick of battle. With a front line that is never really clear.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Clear! Come here! Cover your heads!
DAMON: From combat to confronting civilians.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One with child, another with kids, hands up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hands up!
DAMON: It's the reality of war in Iraq. And of this particular mission: To clear Juseva (ph) of insurgents who operate among the civilians who had no way to flee the fighting.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cover your ears. It's going to be a little loud. Eyes up! Eyes up!
JEFF CULLEN, GUNNY, MARINES: It's kind of difficult. You shoot a rocket at one building because you have an insurgent inside and then you go to the next block up and you've got a family with six kids running around.
This guy can kiss his job with CNN goodbye.
But she wasn't with them at the time of the incident in question.
>>But she wasn't with them at the time of the incident in question.<<
No. I hit the limit on length of title allowed or I would have made that clear.
>>This guy can kiss his job with CNN goodbye.<<
Its a girl and she's cute for a war reporter.
She's got a head as big as Tony Snow's, but not too bad. Bless her for writing that piece.
With liberals it's often hard to tell the difference, but this "guy" sure appears to be a woman.
Read carefully. This isn't a story symapthetic to the accused, but a "banality of evil" story--what Bush's war is doing to nice, ordinary Americans.
And yet we have the "Honorourable Murtha" who having been elevated to the super postion of 'holy warrior' for having worn a uniform, has now acted as judge & jury in the case of innocents beig killed during a crossfire with these terrorists.
Every day that passes its more & more clearer that the Democrats, Liberals and esp the MSM are allies of these same terrorists that we claim to be fighting OVER THERE!!
there is some of that. But she obviously liked the guys. that's a far cry from the suits in Atlanta or NY.
Well, I was a little fast on the post. LOL
It'd be fitting if the only additional US "victim" of Haditha was Murtha's political career..
I don't know...She has a strong jaw but i think she's cute. Even in her little helmet.
I think there is empathy in the piece but the fact that CNN is posting it proves my point, IMHO. It's not a story about whether or not they SHOULD be under investigation; it's publishing a sympathetic position, but think about the positioning. It's certainly not a piece saying "They're innocent" but "They're good guys who apparently are murderers in Bush's war." It's another in the Abu Grahbe series--ordinary Americans doing Bad Things in this evil war.
Re- commanders. Reportedly some 3-4 officers have been relieved/fired. Official version of matters seems to be that none of them had to do with the incident, directly, but supposedly "dereliction of duty."
She must be new at CNN...not gotten the memo.
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