The Barikaw Event

About: wounded afghans say american forces fired on civilians


Photo: AP Rahmat Gul
Afghan men carry a body of a civilian who, they said, allegedly was killed by American soldiers after a car bomber attacked an American convoy in Barikaw in Nangarhar province, eastern Afghanistan, Sunday, March 4, 2007. A suicide car bomber attacked an American convoy in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday, and up to eight Afghans were killed and 22 wounded in the blast and ensuing gunfire, officials said. Hundreds of Afghans gathered to protest the violence, blocking the road and throwing rocks at police.

This is a under reported story, and as it is swiftly dissapearing from the world's attention, I will give it coverage here.

source: BBC news, March 11

Last Sunday, a suicide bomber struck an American convoy close to the eastern city of Jalalabad. The American soldiers opened fire in the aftermath killing at least eight Afghans and injuring 34.

Questions have been raised over the Americans' insistence that they were ambushed after the bomb blast and were merely returning fire.

Two freelance journalists from the Associated Press news agency were on the scene within half an hour and they filmed and photographed a civilian car, 100m from the bomb attack, where three Afghans were killed.

They were ordered by an American soldier to delete the footage from their cameras, which they did.

The US military has said this was justified, claiming it could have compromised a military investigation and led to the public jumping to the wrong conclusion about what happened.

"Investigative integrity is one circumstance when civil and military authorities will reluctantly exercise the right to control what a journalist is permitted to document," said Colonel Victor Petrenko, chief of staff to the top US commander in eastern Afghanistan, in a letter to AP.

He added that images taken by "untrained people" might "capture visual details that are not as they originally were".

Cover-up?

In disputing this, AP Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll in New York said: "That is not a reasonable justification for erasing images from our cameras.

If they say they support democracy and freedom they should not be so strict about it in Afghanistan - it goes against the American constitution

"AP's journalists in Afghanistan are trained, accredited professionals... in democratic societies, legitimate journalists are allowed to work without having their equipment seized and their images deleted."

A photographer in Kabul for the New York agency World Picture News, Jean Chung, also said her photograph of a gate at the US Bagram Airbase which was targeted by a suicide bomber while Dick Cheney was in Afghanistan, had been forcibly removed from her camera.

"They grabbed my lens and threatened to destroy my camera," she said.

"If they say they support democracy and freedom they should not be so strict about it in Afghanistan - it goes against the American constitution. I feel they are trying to cover up a lot of things."

Civilian casualties are a problem for the international forces as the incidents and the way they are reported will make a difference to the way they are perceived by the Afghan population.

My commentary:
 

There are no doubts that wars are waged not only on the battelfield but also in the press for the hearts and minds of the citizenry.  To tie the hands of the military to censor battlefield coverage would be to grant an outrageous advantage to the enemy.  At the same time preserving the people's right to scrutinize the actions and results of a war which are being waged on their behalf is of the utmost importance for our democratic ideals and way of life.   It is a delicate balance.  Eeach person will decide, for themselves, whether in this particular incident the military's censorship was justified. 

For my part, based only on what i have read in the pointers below, It sounds like a "cover up" of an over reaction by our boys, where civilians were unnecessarily killed.   If i were the commanding officer in charge, i would convene an investigation by an unbiased third party.   Let the chips fall where they may.  Use the event to insure that our  boys over there take all necessary precautions to prevent unnecessary civilian deaths.  Think of it this way ... every unjust civilian death, produces 2 more terrorists.  Look at it as fighting terrorism.

We have seen similar events in recent conflicts, the My Lai Massacre in VietNam and The Killings In Haditha in Iraq.  Today 60 minutes had a piece on the Haditha killings which you can view here.  All of these share a common thread with The Barikaw Event:  our soldiers came under sever stress after taking casualties and then they snapped and failed to accurately discriminate between combatants and innocent civilians.  In an interview on 60 minutes Frank Wuterich the 25-year-old sergeant involved in the Haditha event accurately expressed the rules of engagements as follows:
Scott Pelley: "As you understood them, what were the rules for using deadly force?"

Wuterich:  "the biggest thing was PID -- positive identification. It means that you need to be able to positively identify your target before you shoot to kill.  Obviously, anyone with a weapon, especially pointed at you Hostile act, hostile intent was the biggest thing that they had to have, so if they had used a hostile act against you, you could use deadly force. If there was hostile intent towards you, you could use deadly force."
The rules of engagement are fine and will work very well if they are followed.  My concern is if the soldiers are being trained to follow them even under the stress of taking casualties.  Even though Wuterich could accurately quote the rules, he still seemed to think that his killings were justified notwithstanding that no "positive identification" was made.   Watch the 60 minutes report, it totally highlights the concerns of this item. 

Here are the stories as they appeared in the press chronologically:

March 4: Afghan, U.S. Reports on Firefight Differ, By RAHIM FAIEZ


March 4: Wounded Afghans say American forces fired on civilians.

March 5: Some video of the scene survived and can be viewed here.

March 5: NATO Airstrike Hits Afghan House By AMIR SHAH, AP

March 10: US justifies erasing attack footage Military: Deletion of AP footage justified By Matthew Pennington , AP
 
March 10: US justifies erasing attack footage, Front Page Al Jazeera
This is where i first saw the story.  I never did see it on US broadcast news, nor even on the the Google World News page.

March 23: Top General in Afganistan expells marines ! (Thanks M)

April 14: Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission releases the report of their investigation.  With the following findings ...
source: last 2 paragraphs of summary
The AIHRC investigation of the incident found that the large majority, if not all of the victims were civilians. While the AIHRC condemns the suicide attack, the level of force utilized by US forces in consequence was almost certainly excessive and disproportionate to any threat faced or military advantage anticipated. In failing to distinguish between civilians and legitimate military targets the US Marine Corps Special Forces employed indiscriminate force. Their actions thus constitute a serious violation of international humanitarian law standards.

In the aftermaths of the attack several journalists were hindered from accessing the site and some were expressly threatened and forced to delete all pictures and videos they had taken. This obstructed the ability of the media to seek, receive and impart information about the incident and so constitutes a violation of the right to freedom of expression.
And the US military's response is found here ... 
source:  post: Excessive Force By Marines Alleged
U.S. officials familiar with the report by the constitutionally mandated Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission said its findings are "troubling" and consistent with the U.S. military's preliminary investigation, which led this week to the opening of a criminal investigation into the March 4 shootings in Afghanistan's eastern Nangahar Province.
...

Tags

  1. afghanistan
  2. news
  3. barikaw
  4. military censorship
  5. item 6335
  6. haditha killings
  7. 60 minutes
  8. my lai massacre
  9. events
  10. petraeus
  11. fm 3-24
  12. counterinsurgency manual
  13. underreported news

Comments


Seth says
M 2007-03-12 07:40:30 6335
Is your new picture relevant to some kind of a truth or just another anti-US, war pain picture with your usual agenda behind it?
Apparently it is the same story.  You could have easily verified that yourself by clicking on the reference i gave above to Worldnews network which has that photo by Rahmat Gul attached.  The attached article, by AP correspondant Rahim Faiez, was titled "Wounded Afghans say American forces fired on civilians" is the the only original source of this what happened near Barikaw that i can find ... all the other articles just quote from this one.  I would watch this team and see what other kinds of things that they report about the situation in Afghanistan.

Mark de LA says
source: ... I'm sure that you have no desire for our military to unnecessarily kill and wound innocent civilians.  How are we to insure that does not happen if the military is allowed to screen out any evidence of such killings? 
... Wars are nasty business! War, surgery & making sausage are things you probably should not watch closely if you have a weak stomach.  To expose every mistake under the banner of the public's right to know even if it is  used by the enemy for the purpose of  anti-US propaganda & rioting causing deaths, etc is IMHO treasonous. Who said that there are civilians & combatants & that in a war you have to surgically hit only the combatants?  In this war the enemy makes no such distinction including muslim against muslim.  I'm sure you believe otherwise.


Seth says
I don't understand the logic and implications of 6340 nor its reference to this item. Photographs and other digital imagery are evidence of what happened.  That this evidance can be altered or composed with bias is no justification for their deletion; because that something can be done, has no bearing on whether it will be done.  A better way to fight biased digital imagery is to record other digital imagery that can refute any alterations or biases.  

I'm sure that you have no desire for our military to unnecessarily kill and wound innocent civilians.  But how are we to insure that does not happen if the military is allowed to screen out any evidance of such killings? 

Mark de LA says
seth 2007-03-11 13:17:29 6335
M 2007-03-11 13:05:53 6335
Who said that there are civilians & combatants & that in a war you have to surgically hit only the combatants? 
How about the Geneva Convention that was signed by the USA, ratified by Congress and is now the law of the land?  But that is not the biggest reason.  Every innocent civilian casualty  contributes directly to recrutment of more terrorists.  Civilian casualties must be avoided above all else.  There are no sane voices in our country who have suggested otherwise ... well perhaps there is one exception.
I'm sure you can't find that in the Geneva Convention!  It is sort of like the Rodney King riots. Some 50+ people were killed while dear old Rodney got beat up (an injustice to be sure) & later became a millionaire. Which was the greater evil ? The beating of Rodney or the incitement & coverage by the media which resulted in the rioting about the jury verdicts & the deaths?


Seth says
A Hoel 2007-03-11 15:10:32 6335
seth 2007-03-11 13:28:35 6335
M 2007-03-11 13:25:03 6335
I'm sure you can't find that in the Geneva Convention! 
Try Fourth Geneva Convention "relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War"
Be more specific than giving me a whole convention document.  cite the line & text & the interpretation.  I read this from the start as not applying to accidental killing of civilians in a raid.  How do you know they were civilians?

I don't know how you could have missed it ... it's right there at the top:

Article 3
In the case of armed conflict (1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities,... shall in all circumstances be treated humanely ... To this end, the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned persons:
(a) Violence to life and person, ...

Seth says
M 2007-03-12 09:05:08 6335
Your censorship is showing again ! Henceforth, I am no longer interested in this subject.
Sorry, if your other comments contained any actual information about this item, i certainly missed it. 

Seth says
M 2007-03-12 08:51:01 6335
The point my dear friend is that the picture furthered nothing toward finding out the truth about what happened.
It is part of the record of the facts about the topic that is in front of us.  It is an essential part. As i cannot go to Afghanistan and collect facts myself it is all that i have.  After i closely examined these photos I know far more about the story than just reading the text that has been published.  After all a picture is worth a thousand words.

Seth says
Warner Todd Houston goes back to the civil war to shed light on the aftermath of The Barikaw event thusly ...
source: Newsbusters, Exposing and Combating Liberal Media
U.S. Civil War General, William Tecumseh Sherman once said of the press, "I hate newspapermen. They come into camp and pick up their camp rumors and print them as facts. I regard them as spies, which, in truth, they are." It seems from coverage of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that the press has little changed in the last 140 years -- in fact, it has gotten worse if only because the speed with which facts can be checked out gives the press no excuse for its slipshod work. The reliability of modern communications lends credence to claims that the media really aren't interested in the truth but is only interested in their agenda.
In the end he wonders "if this incident will get wider notice?" ... and so do I.


Seth says
And while we're at it here is the other "associated" picture i found.  It was captioned "US troops reportedly started shooting after their convoy was attacked by a suicide bomber [EPA]" by Al Jazeera.  Perhaps the mass of rubble you see here is what was left of the suicide bomer and his target.  It was associated with the first article i found about the incident.

As this item is about pictures and their deletion, i think it is certaily appropriate to show what digital imagery is being published about the event.

Seth says
M 2007-03-11 22:55:23 6335
How do you know whether they took an active part like harbor terrorists, supplies etc. ? I say there are very few innocents in this conflict.
It will take a forensic style inquiry to determin what happened.  Obviously what you or I  "say" in this regard is irrelevant.

Seth says
I've changed the about link of this item to the first and most detailed report of the incident.  This report even identifies the photographer in question ..
source: By Rahim Faiez AP, Originally published March 4, 2007
U.S. forces near today's bombing later deleted photos taken by a freelance photographer working for The Associated Press and video taken by a freelancer working for AP Television News. Neither the photographer nor the cameraman witnessed the suicide attack or the subsequent gunfire. It was not immediately known why the soldiers deleted the photos and videos. The U.S. military did not immediately comment on the matter.

The freelance photographer, Rahmat Gul, said he took photos of a four-wheel drive vehicle where three Afghans had been shot to death inside.

An American soldier then took Gul's camera and deleted the photos. Gul said he later received permission to take photos from another soldier, but that the first soldier came back and angrily told him to delete the photos again. Gul said the soldier then raised his fist as if he was going to strike Gul.
... I'm still having troubles figuring out exactly where these alleged events took place.  Any actual help in that regard would be greatly appreciated.  I mean where is this "busy highway in Eastern Afghanistan" ?  I can't find any bloody highways up there, can you?

Seth says
You may want to follow the stories posted by the AP reporter Rahim Faiez.

Seth says
source: United States Central Command 3/4/2007
Militants assaulted a Coalition forces convoy Sunday morning as it moved east along Highway 1 killing eight civilians and wounding 35 people in Nangarhar Province.

The five-vehicle convoy was moving through a crowded market place near Bari Kot, located in the Muhmand Dara District, when militants attacked the convoy from several directions with small arms fire and a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device.
 
Coalition forces returned fire in defense of the patrol and Afghan National Police, Afghan National Army and Coalition forces responded promptly to the attack, securing the area and providing immediate on-site medical attention to the wounded civilians.
 
One Coalition servicemember was wounded and later treated at a nearby fire base.
 
"This attack put every innocent man, woman and child buying food or clothing in the bazaar at risk," said Army Col. John Nicholson, the Task Force Spartan commander. "The criminals and terrorists responsible for this attack show no regard for the lives of innocent Afghans.  We deeply regret this loss of life and will work closely with Islamic Republic of Afghanistan authorities to investigate and identify those responsible."
This press release makes it sound as if the 35 people in Nangarhar Province were killed by the militants.  Whereas AP correspondant Rahim Faiez reports that "More than a half-dozen Afghans recuperating from bullet wounds told the Associated Press that the U.S. forces fired indiscriminately along at least a six-mile stretch of one of eastern Afghanistan's busiest highways".  What is the truth of the matter?


Mark de LA says
Meanwhile, over in Afganistan the Taliban are mutilating those who are suspected of helping the US.  This is the kind of war being fought.  The taliban mutilates while we investigate.


Seth says
M 2007-03-17 18:47:09 6335
For someone who has never been in combat nor in the military it is extremely easy to say that you are just blowing our your arse. I said prosecute if culpable.  But to assume the US is at fault without all the evidence is the usual anti-war left way of methane production.
I agree, there should be an inquiry to determine all the evidence.

Mark de LA says
seth 2007-03-17 09:56:00 6335
M 2007-03-16 19:24:14 6335
seth 2007-03-16 18:56:59 6335
M 2007-03-11 13:05:53 6335
Who said that there are civilians & combatants & that in a war you have to surgically hit only the combatants? 
Another place you can find this is in ...
source: General Petraeus's counterinsurgency manual
"F-9 Even in a clear case of taking out an insurgent headquarters or command center, care has to be taken to accomplish the mission while minimizing civilian casualties."
... IOW, it is just good strategy to "surgically hit only the combatants" ... read the entire section, he will explain to you why.
Prolly don't need both of these.  IMHO, if an accident happens in the fog of war then there is no violation of the rules ~Geneva or Petraeus'!
The facts of this incident do not indicate an "accidental happening" ... why do you keep bringing up accidents ?
Accidents happen in the confusion & adrenalin of combat, more often than may be supposed by the ordinary civilian anti-war protester or Democrat. In fact I think that the accidents during the Clinton admin were more than the US casualties in Iraq - and that was non combat. OTOH, if there was willful killing then it should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. In either case it can't be said to be a top-down order to kill civilians where they are distinguishable as such. Furthermore, it only serves scandlemongering & enemy propaganda purposes to exaggerate the incidents beyond their natural proportion in this war.

Seth says
M 2007-03-16 19:24:14 6335
seth 2007-03-16 18:56:59 6335
M 2007-03-11 13:05:53 6335
Who said that there are civilians & combatants & that in a war you have to surgically hit only the combatants? 
Another place you can find this is in ...
source: General Petraeus's counterinsurgency manual
"F-9 Even in a clear case of taking out an insurgent headquarters or command center, care has to be taken to accomplish the mission while minimizing civilian casualties."
... IOW, it is just good strategy to "surgically hit only the combatants" ... read the entire section, he will explain to you why.
Prolly don't need both of these.  IMHO, if an accident happens in the fog of war then there is no violation of the rules ~Geneva or Petraeus'!
The facts of this incident do not indicate an "accidental happening" ... why do you keep bringing up accidents ?

Seth says
M 2007-03-17 12:48:43 6335
 In either case it can't be said to be a top-down order to kill civilians where they are distinguishable as such.
Well if Khalid Shaikh Mohammed is "on top", then "The language of war is victims".  I had thught that somone who would ask a question like "Who said that there are civilians & combatants & that in a war you have to surgically hit only the combatants? " might be speaking the same language. In general i think that our profesional armed services have a healthy and practical attitude about avoiding civilian casualties. However we are fighting against an enemy who thinks the opposite.  There for a moment i couldnt't tell which side you were on.

We don't know what really happened in this incident.  But if we believe Rahim Faiez report, then it looks like our guys, under the stress of battle, lost their ability to recognize who were civilians and who where combatants.  This has happened before (references can be provided if needed).  It seems to me that a command structure which covers that up, (if indeed it is a cover up), is compromising our ability to sussfully combat the insurgency.  It seems to me that, if the facts are as presented by AP, then there is a hole in the training regiments that needs to be plugged.  But when we take the attitude without investigation, as you have, that the other side is just spreading progoganda, (which certainly might be the case), then this hole in our training will never be filled.
To summarize: you attitude is distinctily unprofesional and definitely sucks .

Seth says
source: Attullah Ludin, an MP from Nangarhar province
We want assurance that civilians will not be targeted under any circumstances any more. We want coalition forces to take responsiblity for their shootouts and bombings of civilians
... but with attitudes like ...

Seth says
M 2007-03-19 16:41:01 6335
BTW, NATO is in charge in Afganistan.
So what, it was U.S. Marines who allegedly ran amok, it was U.S. forces who deleted the photos, and those U.S. forces are under U.S. commanders, and those commanders are supposed to be responsible for the actions of their men.  Those commanders should be clear about the rules of engagement, should enforce them, and should not be offering excuses.  Instead Colonel Tom Collins, chief U.S. military spokesman in Afghanistan, is talking out the side of his neck.

Mark de LA says
Insurgency & terrorism works exactly because you can't tell who is an enemy combatant & who is a civilian who lives in the country legitimately & not part of the conflict.  Furthermore, terrorists blackmail, kidnap, torture & do other things to force the natives of the land to become suicide bombers & commit atrocities to keep their families alive.  Just exactly how do you think you can surgically kill the bad guys in this context without collateral damage & suffering significantly more casualties by the good guys?

Seth says
M 2007-03-19 21:56:45 6335
I think your agenda is showing again...
This comment appears to be just about me and does not address the issue that i have raised.  It does not inform in any manner.  Rather it is just an excuse for you to moon me out.  If you actually have a point about the issue i have raised, then please by all means articulate it.

Please note the suggested fbi way of deleting a comment from an esteemed college.  Being civil at fbi is part of being interesting.

Back on topic.  This is a slippery slope ... "positive identification" is a line drawn on that slope. It is contra productive for the command structure to blur that line.   That it is hard to positively identify combatants in an insurgency does not excuse a soldier for stepping over the line. 

Btw, my agenda is to find our what actually happened at Barikaw and to become aware of the difficulties in drawing this line on this slippery slope.

Seth says
M 2007-03-20 10:41:32 6335
 Just exactly how do you think you can surgically kill the bad guys in this context without collateral damage & suffering significantly more casualties by the good guys?
I assume those questions are answered in General Petraeus's counterinsurgency manual.  If there is no way to do it, then the rules of engagement are a sham.  You really can not have it both ways.  This is what i am trying to get at.  Perahps you and Colonel Tom Collins are right ... but then if that is the case, we should know about it and change the rules of engagement to reflect the reality of the battle field.  This kind of schezophrenic thinking is not what our boys and girls over there should be trained in. 

Mark de LA says
Maybe you are trying to force war into a mold it just does not fit within. Maybe it is not just a black & white situation.  War sucks. It is not predictable. Shit happens.


Seth says
Actually this manuel may not have been written by Petraeuss.  We have the final copy of it here.  Wuterich got the ROE absolutely correct ...
source: p228 (D2) COUNTERINSURGENCY, Departmen of the Army
They may fire when they positively identify a member of a hostile force or they have clear indications of hostile intent.
... and because M was confused about what the legal justification, i will show it here from page 229 for the record:






Mark de LA says
To me "Rules of War" is a ridiculous concept! That sums it up, particularly because it is one-sided currently.  The enemy has no honor.  There is no action to be taken except perhaps to give those who die, presumably for this country & for the freedom of others, some slack if they occasionally make mistakes in the heat of battle unintentionally.  To be in a combat zone where anytime (24hours a day) you are subject to being killed or maimed, blown up, or poisened is unimaginable to most civilians.  The UCMJ takes care of the rest - those who commit war crimes.

Seth says
M 2007-03-21 10:02:16 6335
If you actually read the bulleted rules you can see without much interpretation that a bomb dropped anywhere will kill more than just combatants, especially in the context of terrorism and insurgency. For example (the first one): Soldiers and marines fight only enemy combatants precludes dropping an atomic bomb unless you know that an entire city only contains enemy combatants.  Theoretically, beyond all practicality, if such a clause is in the entire Geneva Conventions confusing batch of treaties it would preclude nuclear war!  Go for it!
Well yes, to restate the obvious, the nuclear war that never happened was not covered in the Geneva Conventions.  So what?   Did the threat of nuclear war provide some kind of loophole in the treaties?  Are they now invalidated for conventional warefare?   I still don't get your train of thought.  I had thought that i figured it out (read above), but apparently it goes much deeper than what my shallow mind can comprehend.  What specifically am i supposed to "Go for"?  

Mark de LA says
seth 2007-03-21 08:37:32 6335
M 2007-03-21 06:36:05 6335
what kind of rules of engagement will prevent this kind of enemy behavior ?
Obviously your ROE do not "prevent" attacks from your enemy.  Certainly you are not suggesting that allowing soldiers to fire upon people who are not positively identified as combatants, will be a good tactic against using decoys.  Clearly the more innocent civilians you kill the more of these kinds of attacks you will be faced with. 

Relivant and on topic, Mark, what is your point (or adgenda) ?  Do you think the ROE should be changed?  Do you think that commanders should not enforce it?   Do you think that they should look the other way when soldiers don't follow the ROE ? 
While you have selective outrage at what some of our soldiers do, you should share some of that outrage for the nasty atrocities that the enemy does.  This comment was to give you a reality check once in a while about the nature of the fight .  There is an old joke (Bob Newhart) about the way we won the Revolutionary War over the British.  I forget the entire thing but it one of the punchlines had to do with the colonists hiding out in the bushes, firing at will while the redcoats wore bright red uniforms with a criss-cross white (read target) straps on their chests and marched in a row.  You seem to want to have us play the redcoats in this war.

Seth says
M 2007-03-21 06:36:05 6335
what kind of rules of engagement will prevent this kind of enemy behavior ?
Obviously your ROE do not "prevent" attacks from your enemy.  Certainly you are not suggesting that allowing soldiers to fire upon people who are not positively identified as combatants, will be a good tactic against using decoys.  Clearly the more innocent civilians you kill the more of these kinds of attacks you will be faced with. 

Relivant and on topic, Mark, what is your point (or adgenda) ?  Do you think the ROE should be changed?  Do you think that commanders should not enforce it?   Do you think that they should look the other way when soldiers don't follow the ROE ? 

Seth says
seth 2007-03-21 09:18:18 6335
M 2007-03-21 08:58:28 6335
seth 2007-03-21 08:24:33 6335
M 2007-03-20 11:54:50 6335
So this would obviously prevent a nuclear bomb from ever being dropped! Way to go!
I don't understand this or how this relates to the slippery slope of fighting,  move it somewhere else ... it will be deleted from here.
Maybe you should remove your head our of your agenda.  If you read the rules of engagement there is no soldier or marine that can drop a bomb on anyone not identified as an enemy combatant - least of all whole village or city or country!
Wow, i still don't get it.  If there ever was a ROE that would prevent sombody from detonating an atomic bomb that would truly be a magical encantation worth its weight in ferries.  Certainly us dropping a nuke on a civilian population is breaking our own ROE.  Now that we have dispensed with the obvious, wtf are you saying?
Oh wait a moment .. i get it.  You must be talking about using something akin to the old nuclear deterrance from the cold war: if you nuke our cities, we will nuke your cities.   Yes, that may have prevented  the Soviet Union from nuking our cities.  If that indeed is your train of thought, then how do you propose to write the new ROE ?

Mark de LA says
Maybe your column had an effect? See Top General in Afganistan expells marines !

Seth says
M 2007-03-23 10:19:52 6335
Thanks for the report ... i had missed it.

Seth says
M, in the light of subsequent events, do you believe the the AP camera man's attempt to expose a "mistake under the banner of the public's right to know" was treasonous?

Mark de LA says
seth 2007-04-14 10:40:53 6335
M, in the light of subsequent events, do you believe the the AP camera man's attempt to expose a "mistake under the banner of the public's right to know" was treasonous?

Well, we don't know yet, the full investigation by our own military has not come to light. The public's right to know has been abused beyond belief.  Grand jury testimony (which is legally secret) has been leaked. National classified secrets have been leaked. And, the MSM has the mentality & ethics of if it bleeds it leads . My impression is that the MSM doesn't really know what really will happen if we loose an important war.  Their cherished 1st amendment will go down the drain - maybe with their lives.

This too shall pass!


Seth says
M 2007-04-14 11:56:39 6335
My impression is that the MSM doesn't really know what really will happen if we loose an important war.  Their cherished 1st amendment will go down the drain - maybe with their lives.
Well i call that "fear propoganda".  This meme spread by the administration that if we do not force the radicals of the ME into submission, that they will persue us here in America is, imho, simply untrue.  There is no evidance whatsoever to support it. Another 9-11 will happen or not regardless of our agressive stance in the ME ... in fact, many analysist say that the Bush doctrine makes it much more likely.  What is so strange is that politicians and pundits think that repeating an unsubstantiated assumption over and over again will improve it's truth.  It is time that our citizens unhack that from their brains.

Seth says
M 2007-04-14 13:41:37 6335
Sorry, dude - I've had that opinion since the 60's, unrelated to the current administration.  Enjoy your RWG - it's irrelevant. If the MSM thinks they are independent of this country they have a far different viewpoint than mine.  Look at Russia, China, Iran, Syria, Saud Arabia.....do you think your cherished freedom to speak would be honored any any of those countries?
Sorry, "dude", that kind of schoolboy graphics are not permitted on this kind of events tracking node.  An informative response to my last comment would have presented facts and analysis making the case that "they will follow us here".  Looking at that might acutually been interesting ... as that is one of my current focuses of inquiry.

Seth says
M 2007-04-15 08:36:49 6335
Well, there you go ... the gets his wish! 344 stories on google this AM.
Didn't make Google World News  ... which begs the question why it didn't? ... there are many stories there with less than 344 citations. 

Mark de LA says
Well, there you go ... the gets his wish! 344 stories on google this AM.


Mark de LA says
Networks That Hyped Haditha 'Massacre' Now Ignore Acquittal More here.


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