Wednesday, November 24, 2004
When Good Marines Go... Off?
Maybe It's Time To Change Policy...
I found this posted at Any Which Way.
It's an "Open Letter" to the Marines of 3/1 from Kevin Sites, the embedded NBC newsman who videotaped the young Marine shooting a wounded insurgent in a mosque in Falluja.
It was a hard read. Almost from the start, I knew where it was going and I didn't like it. It reads true, however. I don't know Mr. Sites. In fact, prior to this, I had never heard anything of him. But his words ring true. Which leads me to believe that scroff was right - this guy just "lost it".
You can "lose it" in a heartbeat. You just DO something. Spontaneously. It's almost a knee-jerk reaction. You don't think, you just DO. You are not even totally aware of what you are doing. It just seems to happen. Then you are left with the consequences.
I had a buddy who was in the Army in Viet Nam. He shot a kid. No-one knows how old this kid was, but he was young, maybe 7 or 8 years old. He ran up to my bud and his squad like many kids did, "Hey! G.I.! You got sop-sop?*" I don't know what my buddy saw, but something wasn't right. He shot the kid and the fucking kid blew up! The force of the blast knocked them all on their asses. They all survived, but "Freddy", (not his real name), hasn't been "right" since.
I don't know what happened in that mosque. I don't know if this Marine made a split second choice that broke the wrong way, or, if he did, in fact, "lose it".
You will have to make up your own minds. Personally, if this is an accurate account of what happened, (and I imagine it is - Sites will surely be relentlessly interviewed by C.I.D.**), then I guess it may be time for an un-official "policy change".
I do know that he shouldn't have to face a Court Martial.
If he was wrong he'll live with that for the rest of his life.
In my mind, that's punishment enough.
For my non-military readers:
*sop-sop - chocolate from C-Rats, cigarettes, food, basiclally, anything you were willing to give them.
**C.I.D. - Criminal Investigation Division