Thursday, December 09, 2004

A former U.S. marine testified yesterday that the U.S. military "murdered" civilians in Iraq and that he pumped 500 rounds of bullets into vehicles that failed to stop at military checkpoints.

Jimmy Massey, a former marine staff sergeant, told an immigration and refugee board hearing in Toronto that he and his fellow marines shot and killed more than 30 unarmed men, women and children and even shot a young Iraqi who got out of his car with his arms in the air....

Mr. Massey testified in the refugee claim of U.S. army deserter Jeremy Hinzman, 26, who sought asylum in Canada after his application to be a conscientious objector was rejected....

--Toronto Globe & Mail

I see that second-tier right-wing attack pundit Michelle Malkin thinks both Hinzman and Massey are smearing the troops.

But in an article he wrote for last month's Atlantic, William Langewiesche -- an actual reporter who's spent most of the past year in Iraq -- wrote that the chaos on roads in Baghdad included

the presence of U.S. military patrols -- generally groups of machine-gun-equipped Humvees, operated by tense and frustrated GIs who swing their weapons at the surrounding traffic and were more than ready to shoot. If there was one remaining road rule in Iraq, it was to stay well behind those patrols, because of the understandable tendency of American soldiers to fire back indiscriminately when attacked. There are many stories, glossed over in official reports, of innocent Iraqis who were shredded in their cars because they happened to drive too close to a patrol that had been bombed or fired upon. Sometimes entire families died that way.

There's not a huge difference between that and what Massey says.

(Globe & Mail story via INTL-News.)

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