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Hell & Haditha
National Review Online ^ | June 2, 2006 | W. Thomas Smith Jr.

Posted on 06/02/2006 5:32:45 PM PDT by SuzyQ2

The vehicle, if close enough to the blast, flips into the air, snapping necks and spinal cords. Heads and limbs are torn from bodies. Gasoline ignites and ammunition cooks off, burning any survivors to a crisp. Those soldiers and Marines (many of whom are still teenagers) who witness the action are instantly shocked, physically sickened, grief-stricken, and enraged over the horror of having watched buddies—who have become closer than any sibling might ever hope to be—torn to pieces. Badly wounded buddies are screaming in agony. Yet the ones uninjured or with minor injuries have to respond as trained. They are dismounting from vehicles, simultaneously removing safeties from weapons and racing for cover or assaulting in the direction of the ambush where seen or unseen forces are shooting at them. The counterattack often requires the instant establishment of a base of fire by one group while an enveloping force prepares to overwhelm the enemy. Blood-pressure is peaking. Adrenaline is pumping.

(Excerpt) Read more at article.nationalreview.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: al; america; anbar; army; haditha; infantry; iraq; marines; murthawatch; operations; recon; soldier; special; vietnam; war
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1 posted on 06/02/2006 5:32:47 PM PDT by SuzyQ2
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To: SuzyQ2
removing safeties from weapons

1) You don't "remove" a safety from a weapon. Duh.

2) Safety on in a WAR ZONE? WTF?

2 posted on 06/02/2006 5:40:06 PM PDT by Hardastarboard (Why isn't there an "NRA" for the rest of my rights?)
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To: Hardastarboard
2) Safety on in a WAR ZONE? WTF?

Sure. If you're walking point, not likely. But if you're convoying around with your rifle between your legs, probably.

3 posted on 06/02/2006 5:41:55 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: SuzyQ2; Chieftain; SandRat

wow. The best write up and description of combat I have read.

The libs are immature teenagers whining and posturing while the real heroes are facing the ugliest of realities.
It is nauseating to hear the Libs and traitors like Murtha and Kerry who know this reality a little bit at least and still throw our troops under the truck...not for any good intentions for our country but for their own flabby political egos.


4 posted on 06/02/2006 5:42:47 PM PDT by Recovering Ex-hippie (Illegal Aliens....STFU!)
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To: Hardastarboard
Yep, safeties are on even in a war zone if you're inside a vehicle.

On an M-16 I did it by keeping my thumb on the safety and my trigger finger alongside the trigger guard.

As you move your finger towards the trigger, your thumb sweeps the safety into the firing position.

L

5 posted on 06/02/2006 5:45:14 PM PDT by Lurker (Real conservatives oppose the Presidents amnesty proposal. Help make sure it dies in the House.)
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To: SuzyQ2

Thanks for the post, very good piece.


6 posted on 06/02/2006 5:47:33 PM PDT by jazusamo (DIANA IREY for Congress, PA 12th District: Retire murtha.)
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To: 91B; HiJinx; Spiff; MJY1288; xzins; Calpernia; clintonh8r; TEXOKIE; windchime; Grampa Dave; ...

Worth the read


7 posted on 06/02/2006 5:48:43 PM PDT by SandRat (Duty, Honor, Country. What else needs to be said?)
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To: Lurker

still this sounds like an excuse to me, a justification. Adrenaline makes me able to do things longer without feeling tired..it doesn't make me do irrational things.


8 posted on 06/02/2006 5:48:55 PM PDT by londonboy (COME ON ENGLAND!!!)
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To: Hardastarboard

Safeties are on in vehicles. Sometimes no chambered round was the rule. (At least it was in VN.)


9 posted on 06/02/2006 5:52:06 PM PDT by BIGLOOK (Keelhauling is a sensible solution to mutiny!)
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To: BIGLOOK; Coop; Lurker

I never served (it shows, doesn't it?), so I didn't know. Thanks for the (gentle) clarification.


10 posted on 06/02/2006 5:54:13 PM PDT by Hardastarboard (Why isn't there an "NRA" for the rest of my rights?)
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To: Hardastarboard

Most weapons are on safe most of the time. Nonetheless, the number of accidental discharges are pretty high. Not all of these soldiers, air men, and Marines are too swift when it comes to handling fire arms.


11 posted on 06/02/2006 5:58:07 PM PDT by elhombrelibre (The MSM is "the propaganda arm of our enemies." - Jack Kelly)
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Comment #12 Removed by Moderator

To: SuzyQ2

Now I'm wondering, technically, how an IED is set off. It's not like a landmine where anyone who rolls over it sets it off, right? It's remote controlled? Or are there different kinds being used in Iraq right now?


13 posted on 06/02/2006 6:01:36 PM PDT by wizardoz
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To: wizardoz
There are several different types being used now. At first they were using cell phones to set them off but our troops began jamming the signals as they moved into an area for operations.

There are literally dozens of ways to set off IEDs. They can be remote detonated, command detonated, set off by weight, set off by tripwires, or by timers of some type although from what I understand those aren't being used much over there now.

The most sophisticated and lethal variants are being smuggled in from Iran.

L

14 posted on 06/02/2006 6:05:42 PM PDT by Lurker (Real conservatives oppose the Presidents amnesty proposal. Help make sure it dies in the House.)
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To: Baynative
I heard that quote too. There is more than one house in this town. There must be some reason that the Marines chose that one. There must be a reason the Marines went in blasting. Are we supposed to believe that they just chose it randomly? I don't think so.
15 posted on 06/02/2006 6:08:53 PM PDT by SHOOT THE MOON bat (Disclaimer: No live moonbats were harmed during the making of this screen name.)
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To: Lurker

My solution? Do what the Israeli's used to do..blow up houses. When an IED goes off, after the clean up, blow up the nearest house after it gets evacuated. That'll put new meaning into the words "neighborhood watch"!


16 posted on 06/02/2006 6:09:56 PM PDT by Ronaldus Magnus Reagan
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To: wizardoz

They're set off by a variety of means. Some are set off by radios, some are set off by wires, some are set off by cell phones, and some are set off by infrared. It's a tough thing to counter all of them.


17 posted on 06/02/2006 6:14:13 PM PDT by elhombrelibre (The MSM is "the propaganda arm of our enemies." - Jack Kelly)
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To: SuzyQ2; freema
Are Marine infantrymen, by virtue of the nature of their work, “cold-blooded” killers?

On the contrary: It is because of the nature of their work—usually performed under extreme stress and fatigue—that Marines truly have to be some of the most moral men on the planet if they are going to be effective warriors. That doesn’t mean they are flawless.

“[A Marine] lives on the razor’s edge of fury and retribution, along with disgust for what he sees, i.e., how the enemy treats their own people,” Col. Ripley says. “He is gripped with emotion when he sees children, many the same ages as his own brothers and sisters, and especially when he sees the mothers trying to protect them from the line of fire. He will put himself in great danger, exposing himself to that same fire just in an attempt to remove non-combatants from this danger.”

He adds, “a Marine is disgusted when he sees how the enemy treat their own people by putting them in situations where they will assuredly become casualties, for the obvious reason that they can blame it on the Americans.”

So it would be unfair and foolish to pass judgment on these Marines, without first finding what exactly happened at Haditha.

To truly understand the depthes to which muthra has sunk we should remember that at one time he knew this, believed this, and lived this.

18 posted on 06/02/2006 6:14:45 PM PDT by usmcobra (A single rogue Marine, yeah that can happen, but a whole Unit, only a liberal would believe that BS)
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To: SuzyQ2

Bump


19 posted on 06/02/2006 6:15:53 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (We want our day: A day without hearing SPANISH ...)
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To: londonboy
still this sounds like an excuse to me, a justification.

I'm sure it does.

20 posted on 06/02/2006 6:15:53 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: Hardastarboard
Good evening.
"2) Safety on in a WAR ZONE? WTF?"

I always walked with the weapon on safe and my thumb on the safety.

The movement to fire with an M-16 safety is smooth and natural and with use becomes instinctive and silent.

The safety is, in my opinion, the worst part of a Kalashnikov's design.

Michael Frazier
21 posted on 06/02/2006 6:16:45 PM PDT by brazzaville (no surrender no retreat, well, maybe retreat's ok)
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To: Ronaldus Magnus Reagan

The so-called witness was totally coached. I smell a RAT!


22 posted on 06/02/2006 6:16:52 PM PDT by observer5 ("Better violate the rights of a few, than of all!)
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To: Hardastarboard
I never served (it shows, doesn't it?), so I didn't know.

No sweat. It's a fair question.

23 posted on 06/02/2006 6:17:07 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: Baynative
I heard a quote read today from the investigation. It was from the lone survivor in the house, a 12 year old girl. She said she was getting ready for school and when she heard the vehicles coming she covered her ears because she knew the explosion was coming.

Where could I read that?

24 posted on 06/02/2006 6:17:13 PM PDT by wizardoz
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To: Hardastarboard

YES, safetys on in a war zone. Unless that is...you wanna pop your best buddy in the head before you get to the fight?


25 posted on 06/02/2006 6:19:09 PM PDT by TheGunny (Re-read 1&2 Corinthians)
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To: SuzyQ2

I never watch CNN but I happen to have run across it flipping channels and Larry King is on. What I have been seeing makes me want to puke. What asses they are.


26 posted on 06/02/2006 6:19:43 PM PDT by isthisnickcool (What is it about "illegal" you don't understand?)
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To: Ronaldus Magnus Reagan
yep , I agree . These regularly troublesome town and villages
should be put the the D-9's blade , leave nothing standing .

It should be also decreed that if the inhabitants support the terrorists their area will be declared a free fire zone with easy rules of engagement. Enough of this hand wringing and crying over spilled milk. Just please please , try to spare the women , kids and old people !
27 posted on 06/02/2006 6:21:13 PM PDT by LeoWindhorse
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To: SuzyQ2
Thanks for the post! It is the best balanced explanation of this situation I have read thus far. We can't sit here behind our keyboards and possibly imagine what combat over there is like. To judge them within the context of our daily lives is hypocrisy. Another previous post described Haditha as a haven for the insurgency with regular beheadings of Iraqis by Iraqis that were then published on DVD and circulated daily. What a debased hellhole! Why would we not think they would be affected by it?
28 posted on 06/02/2006 6:22:19 PM PDT by MountainMenace
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To: usmcobra

29 posted on 06/02/2006 6:25:47 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
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To: Ronaldus Magnus Reagan
My solution? Do what the Israeli's used to do..blow up houses. When an IED goes off, after the clean up, blow up the nearest house after it gets evacuated. That'll put new meaning into the words "neighborhood watch"!

That's not what the Israelis do or ever did. They blew up houses of perps or the relatives of suicide bombers when they could definitely identify them.

The Israelis did not blow up houses at random.

30 posted on 06/02/2006 6:27:52 PM PDT by sinkspur ( Don Cheech. Vito Corleone would like to meet you......Vito Corleone.....)
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To: SuzyQ2

Excellent piece.But the story is (will be) too complicated for the simpleton media, the opportunist pols and their audience and supporters. We've got our Mylai, as Dan Henninger observes in this morning's WSJ. I, and I think we all, don't need to know any more beyond what we already know. Enough hand wringing, war is hell, those fighting it and dying in our name are not some neurotic Dustin Hoffmans, and the standards of polite society will never be met, sorry. The people we went over there to rescue are often the enemy. Imagine that! Henninger quotes the father of the dead Marine as saying (from memory) "I don't even watch the news any more." Enough!


31 posted on 06/02/2006 6:30:18 PM PDT by Revolting cat! ("In the end, nothing explains anything.")
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To: rlmorel

One of your better efforts, I was impressed.


32 posted on 06/02/2006 6:36:27 PM PDT by usmcobra (A single rogue Marine, yeah that can happen, but a whole Unit, only a liberal would believe that BS)
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To: londonboy
still this sounds like an excuse to me,

Of course it does dear, when the only action you've ever seen has been fantasies on TV.

33 posted on 06/02/2006 6:37:25 PM PDT by McGavin999
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Comment #34 Removed by Moderator

To: Revolting cat!

The people we went over there to rescue are often the enemy.



My son said the guys giving you cigarettes, smiling and waving at you in the morning are the SAME ones who shoot to kill you at night. And somewhere in the midst of THAT madness...our Army and Marine Corps are expected to win "the hearts and minds"..


35 posted on 06/02/2006 6:43:16 PM PDT by SE Mom (God Bless those who serve.)
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To: rlmorel; McGavin999; Revolting cat!; SuzyQ2; Hardastarboard; Recovering Ex-hippie; ...
Don't know how I missed this comment from treasonous EX-Marine Jack Murtha:

Murtha contends photographic evidence of the incident proves beyond a doubt that the Marines at Haditha committed war crimes, making it critical the military take prompt action.

"These kind of things have to be brought out immediately," he told "This Week," "because if the Marines got away with it, other Marines might think it's okay."

http://abcnews.go.com/ThisWeek/story?id=2013939&page=2

Dishonorable Mr. Murtha - this former Marine has made you my extra special project between now and November. It's a promise.

Yet another bump for your worth opponent - Diana Irey

36 posted on 06/02/2006 6:43:25 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: All

To my knowledge Ms. Irey's campaign has received at least 600 online donations since Dishonorable Jack opened his treasonous mouth to pronounce judgment on combat Marines. I don't know dollar amounts, nor do I know about snail mail donations. But suffice it to say that her support has exploded very recently. I look forward to that explosion continuing.


37 posted on 06/02/2006 6:46:21 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: Coop

Now all we need is for the President to order more sensitivity training for those deployed to Iraq. Actually, its thought control, but that sounds too 1984ish.

Vets around the country should be sending his opponent money. She is far behind in fund raising, $75K to $1.2 million.


38 posted on 06/02/2006 6:47:22 PM PDT by armydawg1 (" America must win this war..." PVT Martin Treptow, KIA, WW1)
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To: Baynative

Thank you Baynative. And what about the outside, unspoken, maybe, just maybe possibility that the civilians were used as human shields? Also, the BBC has a video tape on their site that shows the bodies of several children with no bullet holes or damage to their heads, where they were supposedly shot.

What do you think Murtha? Someone lying here? Maybe you?


39 posted on 06/02/2006 6:50:37 PM PDT by armydawg1 (" America must win this war..." PVT Martin Treptow, KIA, WW1)
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To: TheGunny

the first saftey is between the ears. no friendlies get zapped IF the 4 rules are followed, no exceptions.


40 posted on 06/02/2006 6:50:46 PM PDT by bobby.223
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To: usmcobra

I hoped a Marine would see what I was trying to say there, thanks for your service. Not being a Marine (an ex-squid) I hoped nobody would take offense at my effort, however presumptious, to blow off a little steam.

I cannot imagine how Marines must feel, but I am pretty steamed at Murtha and his ilk. It is not a knee jerk reaction in defense of our Military (although, to paraphrase Ann Coulter when she spoke of Liberals and Communists) that isn't a bad or often wrong knee jerk reaction to have when dealing with liberals.

His craven use of this issue, however it turns out, for craven political purposes, just burns me to the core. Reminds me of Ted Koppel going over to Vietnam and taking the word of the Communists over the word of our own men (regarding Kerry and the Swift Boat Vets...)

BTW...that was a horrible picture on your page of your customized Mustang...just awful. I can only imagine how much work went into it, to have it end up like that...:(


41 posted on 06/02/2006 6:51:12 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
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To: armydawg1
1) Your incessant whining about mean ol' President Bush is really wearing thin. You could only hope to be half the man he is.

2) Those fundraising numbers are no longer accurate, especially after these past 2-3 weeks.

42 posted on 06/02/2006 6:52:16 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: Coop

Thanks for posting it...I went to her site and contributed. Hell, I live in Massachusetts...I can't give any money to candidates up here!

We should start a massive Freep campaign to raise money to defeat him.


43 posted on 06/02/2006 6:53:04 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Innocence seldom utters outraged shrieks. Guilt does." Whittaker Chambers)
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To: usmcobra

Murtha is the darling now of Al Jazzera. They quote him, show him, rely on him for anti Marine Corps, anti Army, anti American news. He gets top billing on their news shows.

He makes me want to vomit.


44 posted on 06/02/2006 6:53:12 PM PDT by armydawg1 (" America must win this war..." PVT Martin Treptow, KIA, WW1)
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To: Coop

I was thinking (while walking the dogs) about remarks like that by Murtha, Kennedy, Kerry etc. It's striking to me that no one in the Democratic Party stands up and says anything in opposition to these statements. No one.

I contrast that with statements made by Republicans that are sometimes over the top- and sure enough, before you know it, some other Republican is refuting, disagreeing with, or disavowing the remarks. Who can forget the Trent Lott "incident"? We squabble all the time here on Free Republic. When someone is out of line- someone else will call them on it.

I keep waiting, in fact I keep hoping, that SOMEONE, really ANYONE in the Democratic Party will get on a talk show or hold a press conference and say Jack Murtha is WAY OUT OF LINE.

The silence is heavy.


45 posted on 06/02/2006 6:56:02 PM PDT by SE Mom (God Bless those who serve.)
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To: Coop

Those fund raising numbers were released yesterday.

Tough sh** if you dont like what I have to say, go read something else.


46 posted on 06/02/2006 6:56:45 PM PDT by armydawg1 (" America must win this war..." PVT Martin Treptow, KIA, WW1)
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To: rlmorel

It's been rebuilt but not repainted, for now I'm driving it in primer and teeth.


47 posted on 06/02/2006 6:57:05 PM PDT by usmcobra (A single rogue Marine, yeah that can happen, but a whole Unit, only a liberal would believe that BS)
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To: rlmorel
We should start a massive Freep campaign to raise money to defeat him.

Start?!? LOL. Where ya been???

Seriously, thanks for supporting her campaign. And my condolences on your state of residence.

Would you like to be added to the Irey/Murtha ping list?

48 posted on 06/02/2006 6:57:26 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: SE Mom

Unfortunately the silence is also heavy from the GOP representatives.


49 posted on 06/02/2006 6:58:13 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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To: armydawg1
Those fund raising numbers were released yesterday.

Really? That's amazing, considering I posted them a few weeks ago. Maybe I'm psychic.

Do you ever make a claim that is accurate? It's gotta be tiring to be so consistently wrong.

50 posted on 06/02/2006 7:00:40 PM PDT by Coop (FR = a lotta talk, but little action)
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