Goldsmith on Courts Martial

#3
As has been widely reported before Lord Goldsmith would not know credible if it sank teeth into his ample arrse. That is unless some of his political cronies told him to react. :lol:
Methinks that Bliars hand is firmly up his dark and naughty 8)

Well done to the soldiers that got through that courts martial. Now back to the fold.

fastmedic
 
#4
Oh yes, Goldsmith, Crony of Tony and New Labour lackey.... very independent. Who knows, one day, he may be held accountable for his political persecution of decent soldiers... Readyaimfire!........ Sorry Sir, proper gabbler me Sir....
 
#5
The man is a cock! They were aquitted on all counts. Someone needs to explain to Goldsmith that fact alone means that the evidence was NOT credible. It was tested in court and found wanting!
Thanks to him & the wonderful tw*ts in the MOD one of the lads has already said he will quit the Army because of the way the MOD has treated him.
 
#6
I'll just begin by saying that I am delighted that these guys were acquitted at their Court-Martial and I have to say that I think it's a triumph for the Military justice system. As for whether or not they should have been prosecuted in the first place I'm afraid I'll have to disagree with the majority opinion on this and I'll explain why. We had a situation here where a young Iraqi died apparently after being thrown into or forced into a canal by the defendants. These bare facts do not appear to have been disputed and it also appears that at least one of them was so concerned about the life of the youth that he was preparing to dive in and rescue him. He was prevented from doing so by the SNCO present for one reason or another and the soldiers left the scene and the youth died. If I am correct an autopsy was unable to state definitively the cause of death. Would anybody out there,given those circumstances be prepared to go on record as their CO and state categorically that there was no case to answer here? I'm buggered if I would! Had this incident simply been "written off" and no action taken what's the odds that we (the Army, the UK and indeed the Coalition as as whole) would have had this thrown in our faces by our enemies at home and abroad for the next 30 years (Bloody Sunday enquiry anyone?) It would have given credence to the argument that we are callous murderers and no better than our opponents and called into question our moral authority in Iraq. No, this had to go to trial and the full facts had to be heard and thank God the board found the defendants had no case to answer. I'm afraid I'm with Lord Goldsmith and his well-padded lawyers arrse on this one.
 
#7
If the IG courts martial cost £5m and presumably the PARA one had the same order of cost, whose budget does the £10 million jimmy o goblins come from? MOD or another Government department?

I only ask because I can think of much more worthwhile expenditure for £10m in the current military-economic climate - retention for example?
 
#8
Oh, you teasers.

When i read the title i thought Goldsmith was being courts martialled!!!!!
I don't know how it could happen, but fun none the less

OS
 
#9
Oneshot said:
Oh, you teasers.

When i read the title i thought Goldsmith was being courts martialled!!!!!
I don't know how it could happen, but fun none the less

OS
Sorry - wishful thinking - but the avalanche of truth may just be starting to gain momentum.
 
#10
Jaegar, Well said, ^ . It is not only the about justice it is about been seen to deliver justice. I note that all those involved were allowed to serve and thus limit damging their careers. I am glad they were cleared.

I am alarmed that with the recent CMs that there has been little asked about the role of the CoC, I knwo that CM are limited in what they can look at but surely it is time to determine some general guidance on what is and is not permissable. Otherwise, might I suggest that fall back to RoE, and use 5.56 rounds as standard level of 'minimum force' to prevent the lose of life or serious injury.

I suspect that would result a lot more fatalities but we would be defending the beating, beasting or wetting of detainees....
 
#11
Jaeger said:
I'll just begin by saying that I am delighted that these guys were acquitted at their Court-Martial and I have to say that I think it's a triumph for the Military justice system. As for whether or not they should have been prosecuted in the first place I'm afraid I'll have to disagree with the majority opinion on this and I'll explain why. We had a situation here where a young Iraqi died apparently after being thrown into or forced into a canal by the defendants. These bare facts do not appear to have been disputed and it also appears that at least one of them was so concerned about the life of the youth that he was preparing to dive in and rescue him. He was prevented from doing so by the SNCO present for one reason or another and the soldiers left the scene and the youth died. If I am correct an autopsy was unable to state definitively the cause of death. Would anybody out there,given those circumstances be prepared to go on record as their CO and state categorically that there was no case to answer here? I'm buggered if I would! Had this incident simply been "written off" and no action taken what's the odds that we (the Army, the UK and indeed the Coalition as as whole) would have had this thrown in our faces by our enemies at home and abroad for the next 30 years (Bloody Sunday enquiry anyone?) It would have given credence to the argument that we are callous murderers and no better than our opponents and called into question our moral authority in Iraq. No, this had to go to trial and the full facts had to be heard and thank God the board found the defendants had no case to answer. I'm afraid I'm with Lord Goldsmith and his well-padded lawyers arrse on this one.
Agree to this (- well he would say that wouldn't he!) The cooling off process was used in EOKA times when rioters were rounded up and bussed some 30 or so miles away to walk home and cool down. It worked - until one unit thought it would be fun to drop a few Greek youths off after dark in the middle of a Turkish village. Thereafter known as Butchers Village. The take them for a swim process in Iraq could well have spread in like manner. Camp Breadbasket demonstrated how things creep. If civpol chucked a kid into the Thames and he drowned, we here would all be up in arms. The civvies more so. There is a need for public to see some checks and balances. If the idea got around that the Army is loath to look at dodgy actions, there is a risk that many of a COs powers would be removed.
 
#12
Does anyone know on what grounds the Guardsmen were acquitted? As far as I can see they admitted forcing him into the Shatt, where he subsequently drowned. In pure legal terms, it would appear pretty open and shut. Did the court consider that they had no alternative?
 
#13
fastmedic said:
As has been widely reported before Lord Goldsmith would not know credible if it sank teeth into his ample arrse. That is unless some of his political cronies told him to react. :lol:
Methinks that Bliars hand is firmly up his dark and naughty 8)

Well done to the soldiers that got through that courts martial. Now back to the fold.

fastmedic
I think you are thinking of Faulkener, not that Goldsmith is any better. However, in his defence he is a skinny cnut new labour lacky....... Not forgetting of course that it was his absent-mindedness/vagueness/lack of integrity, which okayed TELIC. So, good lad all round :x
 
#14
SO3Paperclips said:
Does anyone know on what grounds the Guardsman were acquitted? As far as I can see they admitted forcing him into the Shatt, where he subsequently drowned. In pure legal terms, it would appear pretty open and shut. Did the court consider that they had no alternative?
The deliberations of the jury are suposed to kept secret amongst the 12 of them
 
#15
Poppy said:
SO3Paperclips said:
Does anyone know on what grounds the Guardsman were acquitted? As far as I can see they admitted forcing him into the Shatt, where he subsequently drowned. In pure legal terms, it would appear pretty open and shut. Did the court consider that they had no alternative?
The deliberations of the jury are suposed to kept secret amongst the 12 of them
Actually 5 on a DCM (more on a GCM?). Presumably the defence might have mentioned it. Does anyone know the basis of the defence?
 
#16
SO3Paperclips said:
Does anyone know on what grounds the Guardsman were acquitted? As far as I can see they admitted forcing him into the Shatt, where he subsequently drowned. In pure legal terms, it would appear pretty open and shut. Did the court consider that they had no alternative?
As I understood him, Lord Goldsmith implied in a radio interview that at least one of the group "must have done it" but that the prosecution had been unable to prove individual involvement.

I also understand that the issue of lack of preparation for the invasion was heavily stressed by the defence.
 
#17
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,7374-2214686_2,00.html


Attorney General defends Iraq court martials
BY SIMON FREEMAN AND AGENCIES



Lord Goldsmith, the Attorney General, today vigorously defended the decision to pursue court martials against soldiers serving in Iraq, amid outcry from military figures and politicians that they were "show trials".
Two of the three soldiers cleared this week of killing a 15-year-old Iraqi looter announced that they were quitting the Army today, accusing their superioirs of making them scapegoats.



A panel of seven officers took less than five hours to acquit Guardsman Joseph McCleary, 24, Guardsman Martin McGing, 22, and Colour Sergeant Carle Selman, 39, of manslaughter on Tuesday after a five-week court martial which cost £2.5 million.
The three Guardsmen were accused of ordering 15-year-old Ahmed Jabar Karheem, an asthmatic who could not swim, into the Shatt al-Basra canal in Basra at gunpoint in May 2003. Prosecutors had alleged that Karheem had struggled in "obvious distress" before disappearing under the water and drowning.
Today, as the Ministry of Defence opened a new investigation into the death of a 13-year-old Iraqi boy who was allegedly struck in the head by a rubber bullet during a riot yesterday, Guardsmen McGing and McCleary made strident attacks on their superiors and announced their resignations from the Army.
Guardsman McCleary, of Bootle, Merseyside, said they had been singled out as scapegoats amid mounting reports of soldiers mistreating Iraqis. He said: "We were told to put the looters in the canal. I was the lowest rank, and we were always told we weren’t paid to think. We just followed orders.
"I don’t know why the Army went ahead with the prosecution. It was when there were reports about British soldiers mistreating Iraqis and they wanted to look like they were doing something. We were scapegoats."
Guardsman McGing, of Oldbury, West Midlands, said that he had received good support from his regiment but been let down by the Army. He said: "I’m bitter at the way the Army has treated us for doing our duty. I always wanted to be a soldier. Now I have a different view because the Army hung me out to dry.
"They put me in court and led to this hanging over me and my family for three years. I want out as soon as possible."
He warned soldiers heading to Iraq: "Hire a good lawyer in case the Army stabs you in the back."
Their acquittals at the Colchester court martial followed the collapse of the trial last November of seven paratroopers accused of murdering an Iraqi civilian. That case cost about £5 million.
The judge then delivered withering criticism of the military investigation and the unreliability of the witnesses who were brought over at taxpayers' expense to give evidence.
The acquittals followed an admission in court that the policy of "wetting" looters, forcing them into dykes and ditches as punishment, was a widespread and appeared to have been approved higher up the chain of command.
Lord Goldsmith, however, said he was happy the prosecutions had been justified. "I’m quite satisfied it was quite right to bring the case because there was sufficient and credible evidence of wrongdoing," he said today.
Derek Conway, Conservative MP for Old Bexley and Sidcup, said: "Can you imagine what it must be like to be a young soldier in Basra having to look ahead for bombers and snipers and behind for the Attorney General?"







Military justice in the dock after acquittals
BY MICHAEL HORSNELL AND MICHAEL EVANS
• British soldiers cleared of killing 15-year-old Iraqi looter



THE policy of prosecuting British soldiers for misconduct in Iraq was in doubt last night after three Guardsmen were cleared of killing an Iraqi looter.
The men, who had been accused of ordering the 15-year-old at gunpoint into a tidal canal where he drowned, walked free after a five-week court martial costing £2.5 million.



A board of seven officers deliberated for just five hours yesterday before reaching the unanimous verdict that cleared the men of the elite Irish Guards and the Coldstream Guards.
The officers refused to accept the evidence of another looter who was the only witness to the drowning of Ahmed Jabar Karheem on May 8, 2003 in six feet of water in the Shatt al-Basra canal.
The acquittals call into question the future of Britain’s court martial system for dealing with serviceman accused of committing abuses while on duty.
Lord Goldsmith, QC, the Attorney General, will call today for a full debriefing from the prosecuting counsel to identify if any lessons need to be learnt for the three further alleged abuse cases still pending.
The acquittals at the Colchester court martial followed the collapse of the trial last November of seven paratroopers accused of murdering an Iraqi civilian. That case cost about £5 million.
The judge then delivered withering criticism of the military investigation and the unreliability of the witnesses who were brought over at taxpayers’ expense to give evidence.
In the latest case, Guardsman Joseph McCleary, 24, and Guardsman Martin McGing, 22, both of the Irish Guards, and Colour Sergeant Carle Selman, 39, of the Coldstream Guards, were all acquitted of manslaughter.
A fourth soldier, Lance Corporal James Cooke, 22, was acquitted of manslaughter last month after directions from Judge Advocate General Michael Hunter, after two days of legal argument.
Government legal sources said that the Attorney-General would want to know whether the acquittals had any potential implications for other cases.
The most controversial pending case, involving five members of The Queen’s Lancashire Regiment and two from the Intelligence Corps, all charged in connection with the death of Baha Musa, a hotel receptionist in Basra, is due to start in September.
Ministry of Defence sources insisted last night that the court martial system had worked effectively in the latest trial, and said that the judge had not made any criticisms of the prosecution’s case.
However, the MoD has accepted that the military system has to be changed radically to bring it closer to civilian prosecution procedures. A new Armed Forces Bill which will lead to the creation of a tri-Service military prosecution authority — getting rid of the present single-service arrangement — is currently going through Parliament. A second reading is due in the Commons next week.
The acquittals yesterday followed an admission in court that the policy of “wetting” looters, forcing them into dykes and ditches as punishment, was a widespread and appeared to have been approved higher up the chain of command.
..............cont p 2"

rather more detailed reporting than the BBC site. If there was enough evidence to keep the panel of officers deliberating for 5 hours surely that suggests there was merit in the prosecution?
 
#18
Bloody Looters, we were in the Bread-basket and one of the scrotes robbed our satellite phone, I think at this point our Commander rang Army Legal, to ask if we could shoot them, as we couldnt do anything else with them.

The memory of him legging it with our phone and the OC in tow, as he was a bit of a runner.

Didnt catch him though, major morale blow, there was no OWP sat phone.
 
#19
Dunking young looters in the nearest water might have seemed like a good idea at the time, but it has to call into account the judgement of commanders on the ground - the drowning of some kid was going to happen at some point........ the lesson to be learned here perhaps is that commanders don't unwittingly put their soldiers in situations where things could go wrong and their soldiers be prosecuted - the world has changed and even innocent seeming actions could have unforeseen consequences in the current climate.
 
#20
I agree with what has been said but surely it is about lack of troops on the ground to effectively control the situation. I understand that the senior military commander asked the senior legal ad visor if troops on the ground could use lethal force IE shoot looters. This has been the traditional way of stabilizing and controlling a situation in order to allow the situation to calm. The legal ad visor said that only none leather methods could be used. So we are left from the CO downwards having to make up policy on the spot without enough troops to even begin to take control of widespread looting and civil unrest. Just how do we expect our soldiers to control such a situation? I then ask the next question if during the war on terror we are faced with similar situations in the future and the present size of the army does not allow for sufficient troops to pacify situations without resorting to lethal force just how are troops to do the job. Surely it is those who sent them who should be in the dock? Surely you must dominate the ground in order to take control if you can't use lethal force you must dominate with thousands of troops which we have not got.
 

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