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SAS Soldier Quits Army In Disgust At 'Illegal' American Tactics In Iraq
The Telegraph (UK) ^ | 3-12-2006 | Sean Raymet

Posted on 03/11/2006 5:43:21 PM PST by blam

SAS soldier quits Army in disgust at 'illegal' American tactics in Iraq

By Sean Rayment, Defence Correspondent
(Filed: 12/03/2006)

An SAS soldier has refused to fight in Iraq and has left the Army over the "illegal" tactics of United States troops and the policies of coalition forces.

After three months in Baghdad, Ben Griffin told his commander that he was no longer prepared to fight alongside American forces.

Ben Griffin told commanders that he thought the Iraq war was illegal

He said he had witnessed "dozens of illegal acts" by US troops, claiming they viewed all Iraqis as "untermenschen" - the Nazi term for races regarded as sub-human.

The decision marks the first time an SAS soldier has refused to go into combat and quit the Army on moral grounds.

It immediately brought to an end Mr Griffin's exemplary, eight-year career in which he also served with the Parachute Regiment, taking part in operations in Northern Ireland, Macedonia and Afghanistan.

But it will also embarrass the Government and have a potentially profound impact on cases of other soldiers who have refused to fight.

On Wednesday, the pre-trial hearing will begin into the court martial of Flt Lt Malcolm Kendall-Smith, a Royal Air Force doctor who has refused to return to Iraq for a third tour of duty on the grounds that the war is illegal. Mr Griffin's allegations came as the Foreign Office minister Kim Howells, visiting Basra yesterday, admitted that Iraq was now "a mess".

Mr Griffin, 28, who spent two years with the SAS, said the American military's "gung-ho and trigger happy mentality" and tactics had completely undermined any chance of winning the hearts and minds of the Iraqi population. He added that many innocent civilians were arrested in night-time raids and interrogated by American soldiers, imprisoned in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison, or handed over to the Iraqi authorities and "most probably" tortured.

Mr Griffin eventually told SAS commanders at Hereford that he could not take part in a war which he regarded as "illegal".

He added that he now believed that the Prime Minister and the Government had repeatedly "lied" over the war's conduct.

"I did not join the British Army to conduct American foreign policy," he said. He expected to be labelled a coward and to face a court martial and imprisonment after making what "the most difficult decision of my life" last March.

Instead, he was discharged with a testimonial describing him as a "balanced, honest, loyal and determined individual who possesses the strength of character to have the courage of his convictions".

Last night Patrick Mercer, the shadow minister for homeland security, said: "Trooper Griffin is a highly experienced soldier. This makes his decision particularly disturbing and his views and opinions must be listened to by the Government."

The MoD declined to comment.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: american; army; courtmartial; disgust; gallowaygroupie; gwot; illegal; iraq; jenjiscon; oef; oif; quits; sas; sheehananiteloser; sodoff; soldier; tactics; uktroops; wanker
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Gentle Ben?
1 posted on 03/11/2006 5:43:29 PM PST by blam
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To: blam

Relative of John Kerry?


2 posted on 03/11/2006 5:46:08 PM PST by somemoreequalthanothers (All for the betterment of "the state", comrade)
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To: somemoreequalthanothers

That seems kind of odd for a member of the SAS.


3 posted on 03/11/2006 5:46:43 PM PST by Perdogg (The Opinions expressed by Perdogg are correct and should be relied upon)
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To: blam

Next time the British Isles get invaded you are on your own lad. We pulled your country's bacon out of the fire twice and are still trying to pick up the pieces after your empire collapsed.


4 posted on 03/11/2006 5:47:08 PM PST by RKV ( He who has the guns, makes the rules.)
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To: Perdogg

But probably not for one who intends to enter politics...


5 posted on 03/11/2006 5:48:20 PM PST by Philistone (Turning lead into gold...)
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To: blam

I Guess he not manly enough to live up to the SAS motto: He who dares first wins


6 posted on 03/11/2006 5:48:46 PM PST by Garvin (Oxymoron? Slick Willy signed my Honorable Discharge)
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To: blam

He's Gay.


7 posted on 03/11/2006 5:48:53 PM PST by Dallas59 (ALLAH DOES NOT EXIST - MOHAMMED LIED)
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Comment #8 Removed by Moderator

To: blam

Has he been reading the NY Slimes? Or reporting for it?


9 posted on 03/11/2006 5:50:21 PM PST by synbad600
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To: blam
Lack of Moral Fiber.


WWII British code words for cowardice in the face of danger.
10 posted on 03/11/2006 5:50:58 PM PST by usmcobra (I always sing Karaoke the way it is meant to be sung, drunk, badly, and in Japanese)
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To: Perdogg

To say the least. I've read several books on the SAS and he doesn't sound like any of them.


11 posted on 03/11/2006 5:51:16 PM PST by jazusamo (:Gregory was riled while Hume smiled:)
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To: Red Nucleus
They employ very harsh tactics in their doctrine.
12 posted on 03/11/2006 5:51:40 PM PST by Perdogg (The Opinions expressed by Perdogg are correct and should be relied upon)
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To: blam
Instead, he was discharged with a testimonial describing him as a "balanced, honest, loyal and determined individual who possesses the strength of character to have the courage of his convictions". Last night Patrick Mercer, the shadow minister for homeland security, said: "Trooper Griffin is a highly experienced soldier. This makes his decision particularly disturbing and his views and opinions must be listened to by the Government."

If only our administration had a clue how to diffuse a controversy as well as this. Send the guy on his way with a pat on the back and a letter of recommendation! What class!

FYI - I think the dude is off his rocker.

13 posted on 03/11/2006 5:51:40 PM PST by kerryusama04 (The Bill of Rights is not occupation specific.)
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To: blam

Fine. Better he's out of there rather than undermining efforts from within.

As for his apparently unqualified statements as to the goings-on in Iraq, one has to wonder why it sounds so familiar and similar to the anti-war talking points and comes without evidence to support, or specific instances to be refuted or challenged. Vague assertions of illegal activities are hard to disprove, and the assertions themselves do not constitute proof.

Thus leaving the U.S. to prove a negative.


14 posted on 03/11/2006 5:52:19 PM PST by coconutt2000 (NO MORE PEACE FOR OIL!!! DOWN WITH TYRANTS, TERRORISTS, AND TIMIDCRATS!!!! (3-T's For World Peace))
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To: blam

Benny, will soon be starting as the "catcher" in the sequel to Brokeback Mountain......Brokeback Commandos.



15 posted on 03/11/2006 5:53:08 PM PST by bannedfromdu
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To: RKV

Britain has never been defended from an "Invasion" on British soil by American forces.

Dont mean to be technical, and I dont mean you any disrespect. But I dont like gung-ho blowhard fallacies being touted as fact.

Whether or not American intervention prevented such an eventuality is a different matter.

And the "collapse" of the "British Empire" was a good thing. Indeed the creation of the United States was but a part of that process, and I for one am fairly pleased about it.


16 posted on 03/11/2006 5:54:11 PM PST by ketelone
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To: blam

This guy's story smells like last week's milk. I don't know what really happened with him, but my BS meter is pegged.


17 posted on 03/11/2006 5:54:21 PM PST by Slings and Arrows ("Facts are a Zionist plot!" --MarkL)
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To: blam
American military's "gung-ho and trigger happy mentality"

It's called "establishing fire superiority". Basically, you don't let the other guys believe they have a chance to prevail. ;-)

18 posted on 03/11/2006 5:55:06 PM PST by glorgau
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Comment #19 Removed by Moderator

To: blam

"He said he had witnessed "dozens of illegal acts" by US troops"

And he did not report any of this to his superiors at the time of the alleged acts?

"He added that many innocent civilians were arrested in night-time raids and interrogated by American soldiers, imprisoned in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison, or handed over to the Iraqi authorities and "most probably" tortured."

If this guy knows who is innocent and who is guilty ... I wonder why doesn't he just point out the bad guys who are creating and planting the IED's?


20 posted on 03/11/2006 5:58:13 PM PST by Ludicrous (I support a woman's right to choose an effective contraception method)
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To: blam

Utter bullshit. When our two countries decide to hand over policy to his sorry ass, I'll listen.

He's an embarassment to Queen and country.


21 posted on 03/11/2006 5:58:13 PM PST by RightOnline
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To: blam

Firing squad at dawn.

That's the 'gung ho', 'trigger happy' thing to do.

I bet something like this wouldn't happen again...


22 posted on 03/11/2006 5:59:13 PM PST by EternalVigilance (Your nation is being destroyed from within and without. What are you doing about it?)
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Comment #23 Removed by Moderator

To: RKV

He is a single bad apple the SAS is much better off without him.


24 posted on 03/11/2006 6:00:27 PM PST by ncountylee (Dead terrorists smell like victory)
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To: kerryusama04
"Trooper Griffin is a highly experienced soldier. This makes his decision particularly disturbing and his views and opinions must be listened to by the Government."

I wonder if they will listen equally carefully to the views and opinions of the thousands of other "highly experienced soldiers."

25 posted on 03/11/2006 6:06:15 PM PST by hinckley buzzard (Morgan is mad today...madder than yesterday...)
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To: blam
Hmmm...Wonder if he knows this guy or if they're the same person?

But on November 8, 2005, the London daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat reported: "The Global Islamic Media Front has threatened [the West] on the Internet by means of its new soldier, whom it calls Rakan Ben Williams, and whom it claims is a white Englishman who converted to Islam." [2]

Interesting they're both named Ben.

26 posted on 03/11/2006 6:08:05 PM PST by jellybean (George Allen 2008)
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To: hinckley buzzard
I wonder if they will listen equally carefully to the views and opinions of the thousands of other "highly experienced soldiers."

I think the chances of what Rush Limbaugh calls "the drive by media" of doing any responsible reporting here are incredibly slim.

27 posted on 03/11/2006 6:09:30 PM PST by kerryusama04 (The Bill of Rights is not occupation specific.)
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To: ketelone

"Britain has never been defended from an "Invasion" on British soil by American forces.

Dont mean to be technical,..."

Then leave that last word off such a sentence, because it is only technically true with it.

Hitler had no use for England and wanted the Lion dead. Because an American commander in chief was who happened to be no blow hard and also happened to be gung ho for a fight with Hitler got lend-lease going, England had the wherewithall, long befor American troops entered the fray, to stave off disaster.


28 posted on 03/11/2006 6:09:47 PM PST by TalBlack (I WON'T suffer the journalizing or editorializing of people who are afraid of the enemies of freedom)
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To: blam
It is simple, the cute guy simply does not like those upstart Americans! He is probably still p'ed off because we kicked his kind out of those disrespectful American Colonies!
29 posted on 03/11/2006 6:10:31 PM PST by RAY
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To: SIDENET

That pic that I posted showed up unexpectedly with an advertisement. Sorry.


30 posted on 03/11/2006 6:10:46 PM PST by SIDENET (Anything worth fighting for is worth fighting dirty for.)
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To: blam
Ben Griffin told commanders that he thought the Iraq war was illegal

"Sir,I want to leave the Army!" Commander,"And why would you want to do that,soldier" "Cause everydody's carrying guns,someone might get hurt!"

31 posted on 03/11/2006 6:13:02 PM PST by Uncle Meat
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To: Ludicrous

"If this guy knows who is innocent and who is guilty ... I wonder why doesn't he just point out the bad guys who are creating and planting the IED's?"

LOL.... I suspect a planted/biased story where there is more/less than meets the eye. Either that, or he's a brainwashed leftist.


32 posted on 03/11/2006 6:14:07 PM PST by WOSG (http://freedomstruth.blogspot.com/)
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To: ketelone
"Britain has never been defended from an "Invasion" on British soil by American forces."

And you believe that Hitler WOULDN'T have eventually invaded Britain without US intervention??

33 posted on 03/11/2006 6:14:09 PM PST by Wonder Warthog (The Hog of Steel)
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To: Dallas59

He certainly looks gay.


34 posted on 03/11/2006 6:14:57 PM PST by Kenny Bunkport
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To: bannedfromdu

Don't you mean "Backboneless Commandos"?


35 posted on 03/11/2006 6:15:42 PM PST by Kenny Bunkport
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To: ketelone
Sounds like you have been brainwashed. The collapse of the British Empire was one of the world's geatest tragedies.

I personally think the Empire reached it's peak during Victoria's rule, long after they lost the U.S.

I can't think of a single country which gained it's independence from Britain in the last 100 years which is not worse off for it.

36 posted on 03/11/2006 6:16:20 PM PST by yarddog
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To: blam

"he thought the Iraq war was illegal"

Someone please explain how an 'illegal war' differs from a 'legal one'?


37 posted on 03/11/2006 6:16:39 PM PST by WOSG (http://freedomstruth.blogspot.com/)
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To: All

Disgrace.

He expected to be labeled what he is: A coward.


38 posted on 03/11/2006 6:16:44 PM PST by NoJoke
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To: Kenny Bunkport

He sure has a pretty mouth......


39 posted on 03/11/2006 6:16:58 PM PST by isthisnickcool (Jack Bauer: "By the time I'm finished with you you're going to wish you felt this good again".)
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To: blam

So, the Brit is an expert on American tactics after only three months in Bagdad?

And the illegal acts, of which he has witnessed many, were exactly what?

Inquiring minds want to know.

He was probably p.o.'d that our guys didn't want to have tea with him every afternoon.

This article has no specifics. Without specifics, this article is so much sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Tell the Brit thanks for playing. Pacifying Iraq is not for the faint-hearted.

His so-called protest plays right into the hand of the enemy.


40 posted on 03/11/2006 6:17:51 PM PST by exit82 (Congressional Democrats---treasonously stuck on stupid.)
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To: yarddog

"I can't think of a single country which gained it's independence from Britain in the last 100 years which is not worse off for it."

Oh please... other than the 3rd world hell-holes, which were hellholes as colonies anyway, places like Australia, Canada, and India, as well as US, have prospered.


41 posted on 03/11/2006 6:18:04 PM PST by WOSG (http://freedomstruth.blogspot.com/)
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To: blam
This guy has served his country for eight years and has a right to his opinion.

However, our breaking down doors in the middle of the night has led to the arrest or death of terrorists and uncovered arms and bomb caches.

Of course we could be kinder and gentler and just knocked on the doors in broad daylight and asked them if they had any terrorists or bomb factories inside. I am sure the people living there would have appreciated that and cooperated fully. /Sarc
42 posted on 03/11/2006 6:20:26 PM PST by Americanexpat (A strong democracy through citizen oversight.)
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To: WOSG

First of all, the U.S. gained it's independence way more than 100 years ago. Canada and Australia are for all intents and purposes another Great Britain. They are not better off than they were before gaining independence. Maybe not worse but no better.


43 posted on 03/11/2006 6:22:30 PM PST by yarddog
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To: blam
quote I did not join the British Army to conduct American foreign policy /quote

I joined it for the social club, physical fitness, and world touring aspects. Nobody said there would be shooting.

44 posted on 03/11/2006 6:26:21 PM PST by Surtur (Free Trade is NOT Fair Trade unless both economies are equivalent.)
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To: blam
"I did not join the British Army to conduct American foreign policy," he said

That's it right there. He'll be a hero to America bashers everywhere.

45 posted on 03/11/2006 6:29:00 PM PST by Just Lori (To everything, there is a season.........Ecclesiastes, 3:1-8)
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To: blam

SAS, the sequel to brokeback mountain.


46 posted on 03/11/2006 6:30:13 PM PST by Modok
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To: blam
He said he had witnessed "dozens of illegal acts" by US troops, claiming they viewed all Iraqis as "untermenschen" - the Nazi term for races regarded as sub-human.

Quoting Nazis. How very interesting.

47 posted on 03/11/2006 6:30:16 PM PST by airborne (Satan's greatest trick was convincing people he doesn't exist.)
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To: blam
Mr Griffin eventually told SAS commanders at Hereford that he could not take part in a war which he regarded as "illegal".

Hey, Griffin who made you an war analyzer?. Further more in your position as a special ops member, you take orders and execute them, not analyze!

Obviously you forgot how the military operates. It is a benevolent dictatorship and as such you take orders and execute them as ordered (whether right or wrong), period!

48 posted on 03/11/2006 6:30:42 PM PST by danmar ("Reason obeys itself,and ignorance submits to whatever is dictated to it....... Thomas Paine)
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To: blam; Squantos; Travis McGee; tonycavanagh

Before everyone gets on their hi horse, there is something this extremely well trained individual saw that went against the grain. We do not have all the facts. Considering the extremely high quality of the troops in "The Regiment", I would personally like to know more of the facts before rendering judgement.
The "Pilgrims" are some of the most professional soldiers in the world. There was something that definitely got to him. He was released without dishonor. Consider that!
I am now donning my flame suit.


49 posted on 03/11/2006 6:30:46 PM PST by TEXASPROUD
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To: TEXASPROUD

Ouch, my vagina hurts.


50 posted on 03/11/2006 6:31:56 PM PST by Modok
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