Skip to comments.The Haditha Marines-The Squad Leader-A Final Chapter (SSgt Wuterich-Master Thread)
Posted on 01/02/2012 10:28:48 AM PST by smoothsailing
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Yep, he's in the #2 seat under Gannon.
It’s absurd this “shocker!” is news to anyone that’s been following the Haditha story. It’s good, however, it’s finally getting the blistering light of day. And that can happen without the support of the scumbags in major media.
“The government is represented by veteran prosecutors Maj. Nicholas Gannon assisted by LtCol. Sean Sullivan, well known during the early pre-trial investigations for his fiery temper and forceful court room manner.”
Thanks. I somehow missed that.
It is interesting that the #2 seat outranks the lead prosecutor for this trial.
My favorite quote from Nat's Friday report:
I cant think of a single witness desiring of being helpful to the government, complained chief prosecutor Major Nicholas Gannon at the conclusion the tedious two-day voir dire proceeding.
That Gannon quote is a hoot. My first thought when I saw it was “Gee, I wonder where he got that idea.”
My thoughts are similar. Beyond the sheer idiocy of bringing charges in the first place, this whole nightmare has reeked of the stench of undue command influence from the get go. Anything less than a full and unconditional exoneration is just unacceptable and would forever be an indelible stain on military justice.
The scuttlebutt on the Gannon quote is that he’s calling members of SSgt Wuterich’s squad to the stand. They had just told him that they would only answer “yes” or “no” to his questions.
Some rumors have it that LCpl Tatum may testify today. Others say there be more investigation witnesses. So we’ll see.
By the way, after Col Watt, the other two witnesses yesterday were two members of his team. More of the same from them.
So right, Gene! The media sees what it wants to see—and what they want to see is America and her military in a bad light.
Thanks for the updates, smooth and all. Did atty Faraj get this expended cartridge info from an NCIS investigation of the scene or elsewhere? 9 mm????
As to the PID part of the ROE, I didn’t think this was in play (at the time) once a location was considered hostile.
It must have come from the immediate sweep by Marines because NCIS wasn’t involved until months after the event and shell casings, presumably, weren’t still laying around. We’ll have to wait for the defense’s presentation to find out for sure.
My guess is that NCIS ignored reports by Marines on the spot and started from scratch. But we’ll see.
Thankfully, the jurors have combat experience and (I pray) will understand that the E in ROE stands for Engagement. And men under fire are in the best position to know what the engagement calls for. Second-guessing that in a murder trial is a danger to our entire military.
Yes, that’s a strange comment. A photo of a car crash victim can be horrific. But it doesn’t mean the death was criminal.
Word is that LCpl Tatum will be the first witness this morning. (At least the word at the moment.)
January 10, 2012
Yesterday, the government called a retired Army Colonel to the stand to mitigate the report he did in February of 2006, which called the Haditha incident a legitimate combat action. The retired Colonel stated that he was not given BDA (battle damage assessment) pictures of the residential buildings. He further stated his opinion that if had he seen the pictures of the dead Iraqis he would have stopped the Army 15-6 investigation and reported to Lieutenant General Peter W. Chiarelli that a crime had been committed.
The Colonel praised SSgt Wuterich for being forthright and truthful in answering all questions posed to him on February 21, 2006. He also told the court that SSgt Wuterich, as the squad leader, walked into the interview room and immediately took full responsibility for the actions of his squad before being asked any questions. While the Colonel continued to stand by his report unfortunate deaths of civilians in a military combat action, he offered a caveat that the report was based on information he had at the time.
The Colonel stated the convening authority, LTG Chiarelli, identified the purpose of the AR 15-6 as to determine the facts of the combat action and determine if it was what Tim McGirk was about to report in the March 2006 edition of TIME Magazine or if it was the unfortunate result of combat actions during a complex insurgent attack on Marine forces.
It appears the Colonel, using hindsight, would amend his report done in 2006 which was based on interviews of all the Marines involved in the incident that day. At issue is how the passage of time affects memories. Since the Haditha incident, the rules of engagement, training, and equipment have changed for the better to safeguard all human life of both Marines and Iraqi families. Remembering the exact military rules of engagement in place in November 2005 and more importantly their application on the battlefield including the type of equipment the Marines had is critical to providing a fair trial for SSgt Wuterich.
Using hindsight, all events can be analyzed with should have, could have, would have. The events of that day had more than one Marine involved and in addition to the ROE and the environment in November 2005, another issue in the current trial is which Marine fired at whom and why.
Sounds like Watt is a CYA type now that the dust has settled. I wonder if he feels this strongly about the photos now, why didn’t he then? As Red said up the thread, car wreck photos can be terrible but they don’t mean a crime was committed.
IMO, this doesn’t speak well for Watt.
Watt’s a wimp.
Mark Walker’s report on Tatum’s morning testimony...
“Other members of Wuterich’s squad from Camp Pendleton’s 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment Kilo Company squad are expected to testify Tuesday afternoon.”
I’m pretty sure Justin Sharratt has been called as a witness.
Thanks, smooth. Justin is there—not sure if he’ll be called today. So is Maj Dinsmore.
The major prosecution witnesses from the squad will be Mendoza and Dela Cruz. Both were terrible in the Article 32 so we’ll see how the prosecution uses them.
I imagine the defense will be on them like white on rice.