Haditha Marines: Murder Dismissed, Other Charges Filed

Good news and bad news in the Haditha case

The Marine Corps’ top commander of forces in the Middle East dismissed murder and negligent homicide charges against an infantryman implicated in the deaths of innocent Iraqis but ordered him to a general court-martial for lesser charges, officials said Friday.

Lt. Gen. James N. Mattis also ordered a separate general court-martial for the Marine’s infantry battalion commander, who faces dereliction of duty and orders violation charges for allegedly failing to accurately report and investigate war-crime allegations involving some of his men in the Nov. 19, 2005, deaths of Iraqi civilians in the village of Hadithah.

In each case, Mattis, who commands Marine Corps Forces-Central Command and I Marine Expeditionary Force, “made his decision after consideration of information developed from investigations by Marine, Army and Naval Criminal Investigative Service investigators, as well as evidence produced during an Article 32 investigation hearing,” officials said in separate news releases announcing the decisions. Neither court-martial has been scheduled.

That is more then John Murtha (Defeatocrat-Pa) did when he made his decision to call them all murderer’s and psychopaths. Of course, they were immediately accused of murder initially, but, the investigation found that the charges were incorrect, and most of the Haditha Marines have been exhonerated of those charges, as they should be.

Will Murtha say he was incorrect? Doubtful.

Lawyers for Lance Cpl. Stephen Tatum, however, said Friday they plan a strong fight against the prosecution. Mattis referred Tatum to trial on charges of involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment and aggravated assault.

“We are very disappointed that the commanding general did not follow the recommendation to withdraw and dismiss all charges made by the experienced trial judge who heard all the evidence during the Article 32 investigation,” they said. The Article 32 investigating officer, Lt. Col. Paul Ware, had recommended dismissal of the charges.

Now it is time to let the military justice system do its thing. We await the outcome.

Mattis’ decision to send the case to trial “imperils every young Marine and soldier who faces a split second decision in combat,” Zimmerman and Sampson warned. “The success of future infantry combat operations is at stake. We remain convinced that the military justice system eventually will reach the right result.”

I’m sure they will. Usually do not have to worry about hypersensitive and activist liberals in the military.

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One Response to “Haditha Marines: Murder Dismissed, Other Charges Filed”

  1. darthcrUSAderworldtour2007 says:

    Damn the politicians and Pentagonners for making our Leathernecks fight a ‘civilized’ war with ‘rules of NON-engagement’ against crazed islamofascist killers that don’t have to fight by any rules… without uniforms…insignias or flags! We saw this in Vietnam until Nixon dropped the B-52 heat over Hanoi in ’72!
    – Operation Arc Light Kiss Your A**es Goodbye

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