Two Marines Charged over Video

So much for the quick arm of the law; Capt. James V. Clement and Sgt. Robert W. Richards were charged today. You might remember them from that incident:

Two Marines Charged over Video: Capt. James V. Clement and Sgt. Robert W. Richards

Two Marines Charged over Video: Capt. James V. Clement and Sgt. Robert W. Richards.

This is fair, our enemy always respects our war dead.

8 thoughts on “Two Marines Charged over Video

  1. Forgive my youthful ignorance, but isn’t it more important to treat people (even our enemy) with respect and punish those that show none, than to do what others are doing? Aren’t we supposed to uphold “the golden rule”; “One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.” Just because the enemy might do things ethically or morally wrong (I’m not saying they do or do not) doesn’t give those Marines or any other service member the right do do so, much less brag about it.

    • No, you speak the truth. Mostly. What bothers me about this incident: it took so long to punish them. This occurred more than a year and a half ago. And while I would never do what they did, I don’t think it worthy of them losing their careers over it. I find it hard to listen to the moral outrage emanating from populaces that show none when young women are burned with acid. Still, the “Golden Rule” is the way to go. . .

  2. In a war where combatants fight and kill each other in combat, show respect for the dead and even help bury the enemy, that would be appalling. But with the types of people our troops are fighting now, the dead got the respect they deserve. They take our guys bodies and drag them through the streets, decapitate them and other unGodly things. So give them what they deserve. I say, shove bacon up their asses and bury them in a shit hole. This PC bullshit during war is just as appalling. If we are going to send our guys in harms way, stand back and let them do their job the hardest, most horrible way they can. Make them wish they had never seen us…and fewer of them will if they know what is in store for them.

  3. War is war, and in the heat of battle many spur of the moment decisions results in the saving of life, or adds numbers to the casualty list. As long as that ‘boot’ on the ground has given their all in making a snap choice, they should hold their head high in reflection of their moment when it came.

    Hard repetitive training and muscle memory commands the action, whether it is right or wrong, it is the ‘boots’ decision on the ground, and normally taken at a hundred miles an hour. No armchair politician should have the right to dictate policy years after.

    However, what we have here is far from a fast tactical decision being taken in the heat of battle. What we have here reeks of pure un-professionalism; it was uncalled for and unworthy of the action that preceded it.

    Enemy dead are entitled to dignity and respect, more so the dead in this situation who believe they are fighting for their rights and an idealism that is brainwashed into them from birth.
    I understand that they felt the same dead were earlier responsible for the death of one of their own. (When anger and hatred takes over you cease being a professional entity).

    In this case ‘military’ punishment is the only solution; it should be dealt out fairly, quickly, and without civilian repercussions. By not conducting it in such a manner provides fuel for those who would wish to make political gain. Such gain gives back the advantage to the enemy; it also allows them to retaliate through atrocity in such a way that we, in our civilised world, have no true answers for.

    My belief is that each person responsible should have either been reduced by one rank, or suffered a two-year loss in promotion, with a fine thrown in.
    (Taking away seniority is effective, it also allows the individual to ponder his future as well look back on his past).

    Had I been present, I would have torn them to pieces with a bollocking that their great, great, grand parents would have heard. I would have demanded the deletion of all photographic evidence and then impounded all cameras. They would have been ‘watch on stop on’ the shitty duty list for the remainder of the tour, and then some. And I would ensure their promotion prospects suffered for at least two years. If they want the respect they think they deserve, then they earn it back the hard way; the ‘blood, sweat & tears’ hard way.

    Please allow me to quote the immortal words of (Ex SAS) Lieutenant Colonel Tim Collins (Commanding Officer) of the 1st Battalion Royal Irish Regiment of the British Army. Who gave a rousing eve-of-battle speech to his troops in Kuwait on Wednesday 19 March 2003.

    Quote;
    We go to Iraq to liberate not to conquer. We will not fly our flags in their country. We are entering Iraq to free a people and the only flag, which will be flown in that ancient land is their own. Show respect for them.

    There are some who are alive here at this moment who will not be alive shortly. Those who do not wish to go on that journey, we will not send. As for the others I expect you to rock their world. Wipe them out if that is what they choose. But if you are ferocious in battle remember to be magnanimous in victory.

    Iraq is steeped in history. It is the site of the Garden of Eden, of the Great Flood and the birthplace of Abraham. Tread lightly there. You will see things that no man could pay to see and you will have to go a long way to find a more decent, generous and upright people than the Iraqis. You will be embarrassed by their hospitality even though they have nothing. Don’t treat them as refugees for they are in their own country. Their children will be poor, in years to come they will know that the light of liberation in their lives was brought by you.

    If there are casualties of war then remember that when they woke up and got dressed in the morning they did not plan to die this day. *Allow them dignity in death. Bury them properly and mark their graves*.

    It is my foremost intention to bring every single one of you out alive but there may be people among us who will not see the end of this campaign. We will put them in their sleeping bags and send them back. There will be no time for sorrow.

    The enemy should be in no doubt that we are his nemesis and that we are bringing about his rightful destruction. There are many regional commanders who have stains on their souls and they are stoking the fires of hell for Saddam. He and his forces will be destroyed by this coalition for what they have done. As they die they will know their deeds have brought them to this place. Show them no pity.

    It is a big step to take another human life. It is not to be done lightly. I know of men who have taken life needlessly in other conflicts, I can assure you they live with the Mark of Cain upon them. If someone surrenders to you then remember they have that right in international law and ensure that one day they go home to their family.

    The ones who wish to fight, well, we aim to please.

    If you harm the regiment or its history by over-enthusiasm in killing or in cowardice, know it is your family who will suffer. You will be shunned unless your conduct is of the highest, for your deeds will follow you down through history.

    We will bring shame on neither our uniform, or our nation.

    [Regarding the use by Saddam of chemical or biological weapons]
    It is not a question of if; it’s a question of when. We know he has already devolved the decision to lower commanders, and that means he has already taken the decision himself. If we survive the first strike we will survive the attack.

    As for ourselves, let’s bring everyone home and leave Iraq a better place for us having been there.

    Our business now is north.
    End.

    Enough said.

    Yours Aye.

  4. I guess I would have to agree with our Ex Bootneck in this particular matter…I understand CP’s outrage and can see doing much the same….but unless I were there, I don’t think I would have lowered myself to that standard….it’s difficult to say…these men deserved disciplinary action, but I don’t think their lives should have been ruined for what they felt justified in doing…the Afghans have done much worse and I think this was more of an example of frustration than a tit-for-tat measure of free will…the American military on the ground is very frustrated at what our own politicians who dictate what wartime participants are allowed to do in theater. The enemies of America don’t respect us because of this and in fact continue to defy human reason and kindness….what they do is not kindness but its opposite and in effect evil…they know it and do it anyway without any thought …we have to follow consciences when they have none and that is what God dictates to us….k

  5. You all are thoughtful in your response. CP, my gut agrees with you. EB, my mind agrees with you. And Kris, we are frustrated. . .

    • LTC Collins is right, even if our gut says to respond in kind to the atrocities commid on our people, we must rise above and be better than those we fight. How can we expect our children to grow to be good people, if we defile our own morals to exact revenge.

      • The justice should have been quick and fitting to the crime. And this is just a blip on our usual high standing. Having spent time in the Middle East, we hold our guys to a far higher standard than they do.

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