Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Fallujah prisoner shot -- notes for the record

This morning's hot story was about the shooting of a prisoner who was not yet really a prisoner. He would have become a POW had he lived, but he was shot first at close range by a US marine. This is the stuff of war, but this time it was filmed by an NBC cameraman.
My purpose is not to belabor the point, but simply to record the incident and note various reactions as of this writing.

Needless to say, Al Jazeera is carrying it as a lead story. No surprises there.
The New York Times says The marine who shot and apparently killed a wounded Iraqi prisoner in a mosque in Falluja on Saturday has been removed from the battlefield for questioning, and American commanders in Iraq said they were bracing for a wave of outrage in the Middle East after the airing of the videotaped shooting.
Christian Science Monitor has to have the best of understated headlines: "Setback to US image" I recall a Jay Leno remark after Abu Ghraib along the lines of "...and just when things were going so well!" Right.
Radio talk show host Neal Boortz was circumspect in writing [These Islamic insurgents have, in the past, feigned death in order to lure American soldiers closer. They would then open fire, or they would detonate a bomb hidden in their clothes. It's judgment call, to be sure. I wasn't there, so I can't really judge if the Marine acted correctly.] but on the radio he was ready to defend what had happened.
Interestingly enough, the blogosphere seems not to be paying much analytical attention. Bloggers of all political leanings tend to take a wider view of issues. This incident will become another peg in the pegboard.

The first thing I read this morning was American Soldier. And. He. Is. Pissed. At this writing his post has thirty-five comments that overwhelmingly support what he wrote.

If it weren't for the profanity, I would post it in full here, because in spirit it captures exactly my own reaction. And that is why I am making note of it. (Besides, I appreciate a passionate rant from the heart. It reveals so much about character.)
I want to be able to go back and read it to remind myself how easily I can sink into the pit of righteous indignation and moral depravity that makes me think that in this case what the marine did was not only permissable, but praiseworthy.

This is an illustration that I need to revisit to keep me from walking too close to the edge of nihilistic thinking. There are many slippery slopes during wartime.

1 comment:

American Soldier said...

Hello Hoot,

Thanks for mentioning my site and my post. I won't say sorry about the swears but that was raw emotion in that post. I am glad I got the support that I did.

American Soldier