Skip to comments.Allen B. West, Lt. Col., U.S. Army
Posted on 11/07/2003 2:39:48 PM PST by FlyLow
Last week, Allen B. West, Lt. Col., U.S. Army, was indicted on criminal assault charges for the psychological intimidation tactic he used to acquire vital intelligence from a captured enemy combatant in Iraq. Col. West's interrogation -- which included, as a last resort, twice firing his sidearm away from the detainee -- obtained information of an imminent attack against soldiers under his command, undoubtedly saving an untold number of American lives. Apart from his prosecution, Col. West's so-called "criminal assault" produced other, more constructive results: "There were no further attacks from that town," notes the colonel. "We further apprehended two other conspirators (a third fled town) and found out one of the conspirators was the father of a man we had detained for his Saddam Fedayeen affiliation."
He now faces an Article 32 hearing scheduled for November 10 in Kirkuk, which could result in his court-martial. The 4th Infantry's divisional judge advocate initially offered West the option to resign his commission and forfeit his retirement benefits (one week short of his 20-year retirement eligibility) or face a general court-martial and a sentence of eight years in prison. (Gee, thanks, Your Honor.)
Article 128 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice describes criminal assault in these terms: "Any person subject to this chapter who attempts or offers with unlawful force or violence to do bodily harm to another person, whether or not the attempt or offer is consummated, is guilty of assault and shall be punished as a court-martial may direct." The Army's judge advocate interprets West's actions to be in violation of this restriction. This may be correct, but in both civilian and military courts, decisions are frequently made to decline prosecution based on extenuating circumstances -- and this, clearly, should be one of those cases.
In his only statement since the incident, Col. West asks, "[The enemy detainee] and his accomplices were a threat to our soldiers and the method was not right, but why should I lose 20 years of service or be forced into prison for protecting my men?"
The Federalist asks the same question and calls on fellow Patriots to come to the aid of Col. West and all officers on the front line in our nation's ongoing war against Islamic terrorism and its state sponsors. How can we expect our frontline officers to fight wars the Bush administration calls "preemptive" if they are not given the latitude to respond -- preemptively -- to the asymmetric threats of terrorist aggressors? Would the deaths of American soldiers in the ambush Col. West thwarted at Saba al Boor have constituted a more acceptable result for the Army's judge advocate? While the military is successfully adapting its capabilities to meet the challenges of asymmetric, anti-terrorist warfare, a paradigm shift in how the military expects its officers to carry out such a war seems to be in order.
In the last two days, almost 70,000 Patriots have signed our petition to exonerate Col. West from this grossly misguided criminal prosecution. Please join us. Link to -- http://PatriotPetitions.US/colwest
A couple/few REAL soldiers ought to find the nosey Parker, tattletale, sissified a$$ muncher and pay him a little visit.
The enemy is laughing at us on this one, I assure you.
Allen B. West, Lt. Col., U.S. Army Thanks for posting this article and the link to the petition.
Please sign this petition.
We, the people of these United States, rightfully petition our President, House of Representatives, Senate and Department of Defense on behalf of Army Lt. Col. Allen B. West. Col. West, together with his fellow line officers engaged in combat with terrorists in Iraq, has been ordered to complete a difficult mission under impossible circumstances. U.S. forces in Iraq are not engaged in conventional warfare. They are facing a terrorist enemy who blends into the civilian population -- hiding behind women and children -- only to reemerge to conduct deadly attacks against our troops, themselves fettered by the rules used to govern traditional wars. Col. West's own battalion faces such attacks almost every day. While we acknowledge that U.S. soldiers have an obligation to adhere to a higher standard than their enemy counterparts, and that the Uniform Code of Military Justice is a fair and just standard in ordinary cases, we believe the circumstances surrounding Col. West's case are extraordinary, to say the least. It is beyond dispute that Col. West's actions saved the lives of men under his command when he extracted information of an impending attack against himself and his men from an enemy combatant in his custody. In twice firing his sidearm, Col. West never intended nor did he actually harm the interrogated prisoner. In this case, the end does indeed justify the means.
Col. West's actions do not merit prosecution, demotion, loss of benefits or prison time. Col. West's actions merit the praise of his countrymen for the lives he saved in the line of duty. We, citizens of the United States, do hereby petition for Col. West's reprieve from prosecution and return to duty through the intervention of the President, the Congress or the Department of Defense. We will not forget how our nation's leaders choose to treat this brave soldier.
Please let me know if you want ON or OFF my General Interest ping list!. . .don't be shy.
Thirty-two years ago right now I was slogging my way through Atlas Shrugged too !
My senior year in HS. What a read ! It sure got my head to thinking, I tell ya !! I'm glad too !
Thank you ! ...
Since you're a vet, I'll give you the place of honor and let you go first! Thanks for serving this country which, at times, sounds so stinking ungrateful. There ARE some of us who ARE grateful. I am one! God bless you, sir!
Aw. I sure hope you get back to 100% real soon ! ...
John / Billybob
Here's the memorial plaque for him located at 3rd Ave & E. 88th St, where he probably met his fate.