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Group Claims 3 GIs Killed Over Rape-Murders

#1
Group Claims 3 GIs Killed Over Rape-Murders
By ROBERT H. REID, Associated Press Writer

BAGHDAD, Iraq - An al-Qaida-linked group claims it killed three U.S. soldiers last month and mutilated two of their bodies to avenge the rape-slaying of a young Iraqi woman by troops of the same unit, an institute which monitors extremists Web sites said Tuesday.

The Mujahedeen Shura Council made the claim in a 4:39 minute video posted on the Internet which included the mutilated bodies of two of the soldiers attacked June 16 near Youssifiyah southwest of Baghdad, according to a statement by the SITE Institute. Their remains were found three days later.

The institute released still pictures from the video showing two of the American dead, one of whom had been decapitated.

According to the institute, the statement by the insurgent group said the video was released as "revenge for our sister who was dishonored by a soldier of the same brigade."

Two sergeants are among five American soldiers charged in the March 12 alleged rape-murder and the killing her parents and a younger sister. The U.S. military released the identities of the suspects Monday.

A previously discharged soldier had been arrested in the case last month and charged with rape and murder.

According to the SITE Institute, the statement by the insurgents said that as soon as fighters heard of the rape-slaying, "they kept their anger to themselves and didn't spread the news."

"They decided to take revenge for their sister's honor," the statement said. "With Allah's help, they captured two soldiers of the same brigade as this dirty crusader."

The Mujahedeen Shura Council is an umbrella organization of several Islamic extremist groups, including al-Qaida in Iraq. It claimed responsibility for shooting down a U.S. Apache helicopter in the Youssifiyah area in April.

U.S. investigators had said there was no evidence linking the deaths of the three soldiers last month to the alleged rape-slaying.

Sgt. Paul E. Cortez, Spc. James P. Barker, Pfc. Jesse V. Spielman and Pfc. Bryan L. Howard are accused of rape and murder and several other charges as alleged participants. They could face the death penalty if convicted.

A fifth, Sgt. Anthony W. Yribe, is charged with failing to report the attack but is not alleged to have been a direct participant.

The five will face an Article 32 hearing, the military equivalent of a grand jury proceeding, to determine if they should stand trial.

They are charged with conspiring with former soldier Steven D. Green, who was arrested in the case last month in North Carolina. Green has pleaded not guilty to one count of rape and four counts of murder and is being held without bond.

The U.S. military spokesman in Iraq, Maj. Gen. William Caldwell, declined to comment further on details about the attack, saying the investigation continues.

"But they obviously had enough information in the initial investigation to go ahead and charge those four soldiers all with alleged rape, rape, obstruction of justice, housebreaking, arson and the other offenses," he told reporters in Baghdad.

Spielman, of Chambersburg, Pa., is a 2002 graduate of Chambersburg Area Senior High School.

His mother, Nancy Hess, told WGAL-TV in Lancaster, Pa., on Monday: "I don't believe the charges and I'm still proud of him." She said her son always wanted to be a soldier.

According to an FBI affidavit filed in Green's case, he and at least two others targeted the young woman and her family for a week before the attack, which was not revealed until witnesses came forward in late June.

The soldiers drank alcohol, abandoned their checkpoint, changed clothes to avoid detection and headed to the victims' house, about 200 meters (yards) from a U.S. checkpoint in the "Triangle of Death," a Sunni Arab area south of Baghdad known for its violence, the affidavit said.

The affidavit estimated the rape victim was about 25. But a doctor at the Mahmoudiya hospital gave her age as 14. He refused to be identified for fear of reprisals.

Green is accused of raping the woman and killing her and the three other family members, including a girl estimated to be 5 years old. An official familiar with the investigation told The Associated Press that Green set fire to the rape victim's body in an apparent cover-up attempt.

Iraqi authorities identified the rape victim as Abeer Qassim Hamza. The other victims were her father, Qassim Hamza; her mother, Fikhriya Taha; and her sister, Hadeel Qassim Hamza.

The March 12 attack was among the worst in a series of cases of U.S. troops accused of killing and abusing Iraqi civilians.

U.S. officials are concerned the case will strain relations with Iraq's new government and increase calls for changes in an agreement that exempts American soldiers from prosecution in Iraqi courts.

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has demanded an independent investigation into the case, which comes after a series of allegations that U.S. troops killed and mistreated Iraqi civilians.
I call bs. They would have said that before if this were true. They did not. The soldiers changed out of their uniforms, and as a result, both local eye-witnesses (including relatives of the family) and US Army investigators initially thought it was an insurgent attack. Also, the girl's own family has been openly cooperating with the US Army investigators in this case. However, I'm not truly qualified to anylize the situation, what do you guys think?
 
#2
Much prefer to let the legal system take its course.
 
#3
I agree that its bulldust CJ. Also, it's interesting that the insurgent group felt the need to claim the link - are they feeling the pressure of international disgust at their actions?
 
#4
Al-Qaeda linked group? It is very easy to brand any ingurgent group as 'al-Qaeda linked'

Link between the rape and murders and the deaths of 3 GIs. Likely it exists. Because it is a first case (as I remember) then coalition soldiers were mutilated.

Why the insurgents has claimed about it only now? Rape of a young girl is a very sensitive matter. Even its mention without permission of relatives would be a violation of local customs (maybe). Now the relatives cooperate with American investigators and it is in fact an indirect permission.
 
#5
KGB_resident said:
Al-Qaeda linked group? It is very easy to brand any ingurgent group as 'al-Qaeda linked'

Link between the rape and murders and the deaths of 3 GIs. Likely it exists. Because it is a first case (as I remember) then coalition soldiers were mutilated.

Why the insurgents has claimed about it only now? Rape of a young girl is a very sensitive matter. Even its mention without permission of relatives would be a violation of local customs (maybe). Now the relatives cooperate with American investigators and it is in fact an indirect permission.
My own experience (long while ago) includes investigating murders of troops by Arabs (Egypt). It was not an unusual feature to fnd sexual mutilation. That it has not been previously mentioned in Iraq may be to spare the relatives. I would call tearing bodies apart and hanging them from a bridge multilation and beheading must be close to it.
Where di the opinion about keeping rape quiet come from? The "dishonour" likely to be balanced by chance to get a few quid. Whether the insurgents did what they claim is immaterial. Most locals will believe them. Most will see it as a proper thing for the 'terrorists' to have done as retribution. Even if this draws one new recruit to their cause, it was an expensive night out. It might also help our side - troops to remember that what they do will have consequences - what goes around etc. My little bit of beasting some Arab leads to some other soldier being shot.
 
#6
OldRedCap said:
KGB_resident said:
Al-Qaeda linked group? It is very easy to brand any ingurgent group as 'al-Qaeda linked'

Link between the rape and murders and the deaths of 3 GIs. Likely it exists. Because it is a first case (as I remember) then coalition soldiers were mutilated.

Why the insurgents has claimed about it only now? Rape of a young girl is a very sensitive matter. Even its mention without permission of relatives would be a violation of local customs (maybe). Now the relatives cooperate with American investigators and it is in fact an indirect permission.
My own experience (long while ago) includes investigating murders of troops by Arabs (Egypt). It was not an unusual feature to fnd sexual mutilation. That it has not been previously mentioned in Iraq may be to spare the relatives. I would call tearing bodies apart and hanging them from a bridge multilation and beheading must be close to it.
Where di the opinion about keeping rape quiet come from? The "dishonour" likely to be balanced by chance to get a few quid. Whether the insurgents did what they claim is immaterial. Most locals will believe them. Most will see it as a proper thing for the 'terrorists' to have done as retribution. Even if this draws one new recruit to their cause, it was an expensive night out. It might also help our side - troops to remember that what they do will have consequences - what goes around etc. My little bit of beasting some Arab leads to some other soldier being shot.
I don't know if the locals really trust insurgents. My friend wrote a bit about the things some of the elders said about the insurgence in his are of operations http://gozarthetraveler.blogspot.com/2005/10/no-illusions.html . Of course locals are different everywhere. Every town, every neighborhood has it's own dynamic.
 
#8
Who gives a toss what reason the terrorists use to justify their acts. Next you will be telling me the Gerry and Martin are politicians and not terrorist scum who should have been slotted years ago.
 
#9
Who gives a toss what reason the terrorists use to justify their acts. Next you will be telling me the Gerry and Martin are politicians and not terrorist scum who should have been slotted years ago.
 
#10
Chief_Joseph said:
I don't know if the locals really trust insurgents. My friend wrote a bit about the things some of the elders said about the insurgence in his are of operations http://gozarthetraveler.blogspot.com/2005/10/no-illusions.html . Of course locals are different everywhere. Every town, every neighborhood has it's own dynamic.
And the locals tend to say what they think the listener would like to hear. Just read back about how nice the old man in 'ghan seemed to the female reporter immediately before directing them onto a non-existant bridge and a Tali ambush.
 
#11
Inf/MP said:
Who gives a toss what reason the terrorists use to justify their acts. Next you will be telling me the Gerry and Martin are politicians and not terrorist scum who should have been slotted years ago.
I'm sure that some of us remember the murder and mutilation of three of our brethren in the early years of NI. PIRA are the same as the rest of the terrorist scum. Slot them fast and without mercy.


fastmedic
 
#12
Howayman said:
Not the first case of US forces being mutilated in attacks. I can recall one incident near Fallujah in Jun/Jul 2004.
As I remember mudered 4 were civil contractors and didn't belong to US forces. Stricktly speaking it was not mutilation, rather abusing of dead bodies that I unconditionally condemn. The death must be respected. Abusing of dead body is absolutely unacceptable. Btw, the video presented by News of the World showed a British soldier that kicked a head of dead Iraqi. Was the soldier at least disciplined?

As for so called 'beating' then rather Iraqi youngsters got a good lesson but kicking of dead body... It is a shame for British army likely the best in the World.
 
#13
Inf/MP said:
Who gives a toss what reason the terrorists use to justify their acts. Next you will be telling me the Gerry and Martin are politicians and not terrorist scum who should have been slotted years ago.
Part of the problem is they were both .Killing them though satisfying would only put another face to negoiate with.
pity the yanks cant hand their soldiers over to local authorities if anyone deserves beheading on the internet they do .
 
#15
My concern now is that they now have yet another flag to rally around and will have carte blanche to kill and dismember coalition troops (Though The Times report I read was that they will kill 10 Americans for the crime) and the locals will see it as justice. I am incredibly urined off in the fact that US soldiers raped a woman and murdered her family in cold blood. It's own goals like this that will loose us the war, as all coalition forces will be seen as infidels who should be treated as animals by Joe public.

In comparison to NI, do you remember when Howes and Woods the two scalies were dragged out of there car, tortured and then shot (All within shouting distance to the SF) this was caught on TV. I remember that there was condemnation from both sides of the fence (Prod and Catholic) in how they were treated. Now in Iraq do you hear any of the locals? No. The reason? Because of the crime, which they feel this type of retribution is justified. I feel that the scum bags that did do the crime should now also be tried for the murder of these three soldiers. In fact send them to an Iraqi prison, maybe that'll keep the locals happy.

I know that the insurgents are using this crime as an excuse, we know it is crap so do they. But the average Iraqi won't see it like that. Why are they getting this type of propaganda handed to them on a plate. You also have to bear in mind that this news doesn't just go Iraq but every other place in the Mid East.
 
#16
KGB_resident said:
Howayman said:
Not the first case of US forces being mutilated in attacks. I can recall one incident near Fallujah in Jun/Jul 2004.
As I remember mudered 4 were civil contractors and didn't belong to US forces. Stricktly speaking it was not mutilation, rather abusing of dead bodies that I unconditionally condemn. The death must be respected. Abusing of dead body is absolutely unacceptable. Btw, the video presented by News of the World showed a British soldier that kicked a head of dead Iraqi. Was the soldier at least disciplined?

As for so called 'beating' then rather Iraqi youngsters got a good lesson but kicking of dead body... It is a shame for British army likely the best in the World.
The 'Blackwater' deaths were in Mar/Apr. In Jun/Jul, insurgents overran an OP position and killed approx 6 GI's between Fallujah and Ar Ramadi. However, they also video'd the attack and the subsequent 'coups de grace' and mutilation of some.
 
#17
brettarider said:
It is but lets not forget that the Russians were quite fond of it during WW2 as well!
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/mai...ngi25.xml&sSheet=/news/2006/04/25/ixhome.html

The full extent of the crime wave that the "overpaid, oversexed and over here" American forces brought to wartime Britain is disclosed today.

Home Office files kept secret for 60 years show that GIs committed 26 murders, 31 manslaughters, 22 attempted murders and more than 400 sexual offences, including 126 rapes, in the three years between their arrival and the end of the war.
It was made by the Americans in the UK. So we can only imagine what was done in France in and Germany. So all armies committed war crimes (including rapes). As for numbers and proportions then they are unknown. There are only espimates that could be wrong.

And note that now we live in another world. Now 2006.
 
#18
Howayman said:
KGB_resident said:
Howayman said:
Not the first case of US forces being mutilated in attacks. I can recall one incident near Fallujah in Jun/Jul 2004.
As I remember mudered 4 were civil contractors and didn't belong to US forces. Stricktly speaking it was not mutilation, rather abusing of dead bodies that I unconditionally condemn. The death must be respected. Abusing of dead body is absolutely unacceptable. Btw, the video presented by News of the World showed a British soldier that kicked a head of dead Iraqi. Was the soldier at least disciplined?

As for so called 'beating' then rather Iraqi youngsters got a good lesson but kicking of dead body... It is a shame for British army likely the best in the World.
The 'Blackwater' deaths were in Mar/Apr. In Jun/Jul, insurgents overran an OP position and killed approx 6 GI's between Fallujah and Ar Ramadi. However, they also video'd the attack and the subsequent 'coups de grace' and mutilation of some.
Sorry, I was wrong.
 
#19
Do you think if nazi germany had done to the UK or the USA what it did to russia ,anyone would give a shit about how are troops treated the locals? Diffrent times diffrent wars .
 
#20
fastmedic said:
Inf/MP said:
Who gives a toss what reason the terrorists use to justify their acts. Next you will be telling me the Gerry and Martin are politicians and not terrorist scum who should have been slotted years ago.
I'm sure that some of us remember the murder and mutilation of three of our brethren in the early years of NI. PIRA are the same as the rest of the terrorist scum. Slot them fast and without mercy.fastmedic
If you are referring to the murder of 3 young Jocks up by Ligonel, I can state with 100% certaintity that the only marks of violence were from the manner of their death - shot in the back of the head, If not these guys, I can also add that there were no mutilations between 70 and 72.
 
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