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Archive for Saturday, January 2, 2010

Iraqis outraged at Blackwater decision

January 2, 2010

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— Iraqis seeking justice for 17 people shot dead at a Baghdad intersection responded with bitterness and outrage Friday at a U.S. judge’s decision to throw out a case against a Blackwater security team accused in the killings.

The Iraqi government vowed to pursue the case, which became a source of contention between the U.S. and the Iraqi government. Many Iraqis also held up the judge’s decision as proof of what they’d long believed: U.S. security contractors were above the law.

“There is no justice,” said Bura Sadoun Ismael, who was wounded by two bullets and shrapnel during the shooting. “I expected the American court would side with the Blackwater security guards who committed a massacre in Nisoor Square.”

What happened on Nisoor Square on Sept. 16, 2007, raised Iraqi concerns about their sovereignty because Iraqi officials were powerless to do anything to the Blackwater employees who had immunity from local prosecution. The shootings also highlighted the degree to which the U.S. relied on private contractors during the Iraq conflict.

Blackwater had been hired by the State Department to protect U.S. diplomats in Iraq. The guards said they were ambushed at a busy intersection in western Baghdad, but U.S. prosecutors and many Iraqis said the Blackwater guards let loose an unprovoked attack on civilians using machine guns and grenades.

“Investigations conducted by specialized Iraqi authorities confirmed unequivocally that the guards of Blackwater committed the crime of murder and broke the rules by using arms without the existence of any threat obliging them to use force,” Iraqi government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said in a statement Friday.

He did not say what steps the government planned to take to pursue the case.

Comments

anon1958 4 years, 3 months ago

barrypenders (Anonymous) says…

anon goggles may help seeing clearly through Progressive Articulate Enhancement Shaman advancements. PAES are not melee healers. Flame Shocks may work. Pity-Guilt is emotionally charging, but recoverable.

I am quite baffled by this, please explain in further detail. Many of my students have referred to me as a master of the obscure reference, a weakness I have been avoiding here, but I have not been able to penetrate the meaning of the above post.

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barrypenders 4 years, 3 months ago

anon goggles may help seeing clearly through Progressive Articulate Enhancement Shaman advancements. PAES are not melee healers. Flame Shocks may work. Pity-Guilt is emotionally charging, but recoverable.

Stimulus, Pity-Guilt Enhancement, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless you

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kansanbygrace 4 years, 3 months ago

No, Tom, you just are the easiest party-liner of the ultra-right brand, are imminently predictable, and 9 of 10 of your screeds are ridiculous. Takes no analysis..you just set yourself in the bullseye of informed liberals and conservatives alike, day after day.

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Tom Shewmon 4 years, 3 months ago

If you all are that excited to analyze me and are patting each other on the back, it's serving as proof positive I'm on the right course. Far-left loon's analysis of me are always good for a laugh.

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beobachter 4 years, 3 months ago

anon1958, thanks for your concise, accurate analysis of Tom. Exactly what most posters here already knew.

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JustNoticed 4 years, 3 months ago

Anon1958 Very well put, concise and compassionate. In other words, pity the fool.

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anon1958 4 years, 3 months ago

TomShewmon (Tom Shewmon) says…

The 'blame America first' crowd will be up in arms over this one. They were fairly laid back when Daniel Pearl was beheaded and a soldier was dismembered and dragged through the streets of Baghdad.

Tom do you actually know anything about this story at all? It appears to me from your comment that you are woefully uninformed about this incident. You should be as upset as anyone else about the well documented massacre of innocents perpetrated by these Blackwater criminals. Do you include the criminal investigators of the United States Army as part of the "blame America first" crowd. They were among the first to get "up in arms" about this war crime.

I honestly think that your comments posted here reveal a depth of ignorance and radicalization that can only be described as profound. Have you been so completely programmed by FOX News that your every reaction is to spout some nonsense that only you and your peers are true Americans and everyone else is a week kneed crying liberal.

You really have no right to invoke the name of Daniel Pearl in your rants. Lucky for him he never met you in real life. I am reasonably sure he would judge you, from your writings and posts here, as an uninformed, know nothing lunatic.

My own view of you has changed from annoyance to feeling somewhat sympathetic toward you on the account of the fact that something has obviously compromised your ability to synthesize facts and come to a reasoned judgment.

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anon1958 4 years, 3 months ago

This is one more compelling reason to end our reliance on mercenaries. Anyone that has been following this important story knew almost for certain that this case was going to be tossed and deeply concerned about the reaction from justifiably outraged Iraqi's.

This incident was thoroughly investigated in Iraq by members of our own armed forces and they concluded that these Blackwater thugs gunned down the civilians without any provocation. Forensic examinations revealed that a number of Iraqi citizens were shot in the back while fleeing.

The eight years of the Bush administration's failed policies overextended our military capabilities to such an extent that we rely on civilian contractors to a shameful degree.

These Blackwater thugs are outside the chain of command and of course not subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice. This is just an unconcionable and intolerable situation created by Bush/Cheney and actually being made worse by Obama/Hilton in their continued reliance on mercenaries. Our own officers in the field are undercut and reasonably upset about these modern Prussians.

At the top of Blackwater is a man that is a self-proclaimed Christian crusader. His war crimes are well known to many reporters, former disgruntled employees and not a few congressmen. However, there is no doubt that he has a ton of dirt on many important and powerful people. Hopefully his arrogance will eventually lead him to take an action that cannot be ignored, regardless of the fallout.

Meanwhile he is in charge of a very capable and by no means small private army with significant air assets and impressive intelligence gathering capability.

The obvious place to send the Blackwater thugs accused of slaughtering Iraqi citizens is to the Netherlands where they can be tried by an international tribunal at the Hague.

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smitty 4 years, 3 months ago

OK bozo, google Blackwater case thrown out. Here is the cut and paste from NPR, not they are any more reliable reporting our gov press releases, than the other sources quoted.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=122154231&ft=1&f=1001

....U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina cited repeated government missteps in the investigation, saying that prosecutors built their case on sworn statements that the guards had given with the idea that they would be immune from prosecution.....

.....Were the incident to happen again today, the legal outcome might be much different. The U.S.-Iraqi security pact that took effect Jan. 1, 2009, lifted the immunity that foreign contractors had in Iraq. A British security contractor accused of shooting two colleagues is currently being held in Iraq and could be the first Westerner to face an Iraqi court since the immunity was lifted....

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Tom Shewmon 4 years, 3 months ago

Will Obama be "no drama" about this like he is about 300 people nearly getting blown out of the sky?

Does the Napster think this ruling is a 'man made disaster' too?

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 3 months ago

"The federal prosecution messed up big time."

I don't think that it was the prosecution that screwed up here. The screwup was that the State Dept., for whom Blackwater worked, immediately jumped in and gave everyone immunity-- likely so they could cover their own a$$es.

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smitty 4 years, 3 months ago

What's to happen to the one Blackwater employee who told the truth about the massacre? That is, other than to teach our mercenary soldiers how the code of silence works?

The federal prosecution messed up big time. Not so odd that the arrogance of the code of silence and protected roll over testimony used to corrupt the USA legal system is the same practices at the center of this major snafu in the so-called war on terror.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years, 3 months ago

That's an incredibly stupid post, even for you, Tom.

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Thing 4 years, 3 months ago

You have no idea as to the guilt or innocence of these Blackwater operators. You are just ranting your political views as usual.

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Tom Shewmon 4 years, 3 months ago

The 'blame America first' crowd will be up in arms over this one. They were fairly laid back when Daniel Pearl was beheaded and a soldier was dismembered and dragged through the streets of Baghdad.

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smitty 4 years, 3 months ago

*Citing repeated government missteps, U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina dismissed a case that had been steeped in international politics. The shooting in busy Nisoor Square left 17 Iraqis dead and inflamed anti-American sentiment abroad. (Pay attention, if possible)The Iraqi government wanted the guards to face trial in Iraq and officials there said they would closely watch how the U.S. judicial system handled the case.*

Urbina said the prosecutors ignored the advice of senior Justice Department officials(are you paying attention) and improperly built their case on sworn statements that had been given under a promise of immunity(corrupted rollover aka USA LE tactics). Urbina said the government's explanations were "contradictory, unbelievable and lacking in credibility."

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barrypenders 4 years, 3 months ago

Good point beobachter. Barack Hussein Obama should use your justice for the terrorists he moved to the New York court.

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/americas/guantanamo/story/1075188.html

Why is Barack Hussein Obama "coddling" the Muslim Terrorists? What is his end game?

Stimulus, Coddling Terrorists, and Posercare live unprecedented

Darwin bless you

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beobachter 4 years, 3 months ago

Turn them over to Iraq for true justice. That was where crime was committed.

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smitty 4 years, 3 months ago

The one blackwater guard who told the truth is behind bars now. The bottom line taught is of a corrupted system...wall of silence. Keep the silence regardless of the truth is the policy of authority/LE through out our system.

“There is no justice,” said Bura Sadoun Ismael, who was wounded by two bullets and shrapnel during the shooting.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091231/ap_on_go_ot/us_blackwater_prosecution

.......The case against the five men fell apart because, after the shooting, the State Department ordered the guards to explain what happened. In exchange for those statements, the State Department promised the statements would not be used in a criminal case. Such limited immunity deals are common in police departments so officers involved in shootings cannot hold up internal investigations by refusing to cooperate..........

.....It was unclear what the ruling means for a sixth Blackwater guard, Jeremy Ridgeway, who turned on his former colleagues and pleaded guilty to killing one Iraqi and wounding another. Had he gone to trial, the case against him would likely have fallen apart, but it's unclear whether Urbina will let him out of his plea deal......

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