Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Speedy, Feb 23, 2005.
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No news on the sentence as of yet.
Sentencing on Friday, up to 2 years in the nick.
according to the times
The BBC reporter on 6 O'clock news raised question as to why no one senior has been charged and was quite strong on the Major who ordered the hard working. Seems he was excused on grounds of misguided zeal even though case brought out that any work by prisoners was illegal.
Thanks for bringing that to attention OLR, while I would normally not have anything to do with bliars propoganda machine I have to agree with the Beeb here, real strange why no seniors have tapped the boards as well.
If they didnt order it or at least condone it then they are at least guilty of deriliction of duty in not picking it up sooner! and as such are not fit to be in charge of a cage of hamsters much less members of HM's troops!!!
Ok rant over...
Just watched Channel 4 News this evening. They were particularly condemning of the Major who ordered the looters to be 'worked hard'. It seems pretty clear that his order was illegal no matter how it was interpreted. I am not sure we are sending the right message either to the public or our soldiers by prosecuting the JNCOs and not their OC. One rule for them, another for us? Even if you ignore his illegal order - what happened to an officer being responsible for the actions of his men?
I think its time for a big change and some courage in the senior ranks. There should be an example made of this officer, without it more stupid acts will be allowd to happen with more of the Army being brought into disrepute in the public eye.
Joe public are not that stupid.
Just why should an example be made of this officer? He did not 'allow' this sort of behaviour any more than you or I did.
Work hard (illegal order or not) does not equate to stripping prosoners and getting them to pose like they are getting amongst each other / strapping them to fork-lift trucks. And that is what the trial was about.
And as for 'should have known earlier'. Damned right, the NCO who allowed it to go on should have brought it to his attention. He didn't, hence the OC did not know, hence said NCO has been convicted.
I'm not sure what the QM meant by 'working hard', but I'm sure he didn't mean 'strap one to the front of a forklift truck and have a laugh with him' and whilst you're at it 'smack him about a bit' or 'strip two of them off and make one nosh the other'.
Yeah, the QM's instruction could be perceived as being over zealous, but how the fcuk else were they going to deter these people who raided the Bread Basket in thier 100's? Shoot them? I think you'll find the QM will more than likely be off for a discrete early bath in the not too distant future. Sadly.
The problem is, that the blame culture has seeped in and the press wanted a head and an Officers head at that. I don't much like nor respect British Army Officers (LEs or DEs) so don't think I'm being protective of them. These JNCOs went way over the top . What they did was to assault people and put them in fear of thier lives. There's no way anybody will convince me that the bloke hung from the front of the forklift hadn't thought for a minute that he was going to be topped after these clowns have had thier fun. As for the posed 'pretended' punch. Bollox. He hit that bloke.
They'll all get what they deserve the nasty little b*stards. There is no excuse for thier conduct, despite thier lawyers attempts to blame everyone else.
"I was only following orders"..........now where have we heard that before?
I accept that 'work hard' does not equate to the acts these soldiers committed. However, if we are charging these soldiers for breaking the Geneva Conventions (i.e. Law of Armed Conflict) then shouldn't we equally charge the OC for the same offence. Both (allegedly) broke the law, admittedly to differing degrees. Charging the officer does not mean he is guilty but merely means that there is complete transparency and a level playing field for all those concerned. At present, rightly or wrongly, this whole case will be viewed as a white-wash and there will be the usual allegations of making scapegoats etc etc.
None were charged with breaches of the Geneva Conventions.
Biscuits, have you been taking sensible pills today?
Not directly, but the root of their charges will have come from MML and QRs and the relevant part of these sections will have been derived from Geneva Conventions amongst others.
Whether or not the Major knew what was going on in the camp is pretty irrelevant....he should have known. If the abuse was as widespread as we are led to believe then even blind pugh and his dog would have known what was going on
Notwithstanding this, how many times have we heard of the police or a politician stepping over the line and everyone (well the media) calling for heads at the top to roll?
As biscuits said, the nasty b*astards deserve everything they get....especially the stupid cnut who took the pictures to the local shop to be developed.....should have been court martialled for gross stupidity.
Just wondered what anyone thought about the whole "combat soldiers cannot be expected to go straight into a peace keeping role". surely the whole point of training is to make sure a soldier can cope with any situation he faces.
I think it should have been obvious to any of us, and anyone in the Army, that the acts depicted in the photograph were not permissable. Commonsense alone (do I mean morality) would have indicated that. Let alone the basic education in the Conventions etc which we have received. (Not going into the issue of whether there was any failure to provide that education in the case of these individuals).
The fact that 'forced labour' is illegal is not obvious in quite the same way. The Convention relative to prisoners of war, for example, does contain provisions for labour by POW under very specific conditions.
Illegal as it apparently was, I have no difficulty in seeing the decision to "work the prisoners hard" as an error, rather than as a wicked act. I find it difficult to make the same excuse for what was depicted in the photographs. True, they are not on the same scale as other crimes involving prisoners in recent years.
I agree it would be outrageous if say, an illegal order had been given but the only ones to be prosecuted were the more junior personnel who carried it out. I don't believe that is quite what happened here. Yes, the issues of command responsibility and the supervision of the order's implementation may be relevant also. The fact of such an order having been given is, presumably, part of the mitigation put forward by the defence team.
This highlights a bigger bag of worms. Can the looters be considered POWs or even just straight prisoners? Are they merely civilians thieving? To my understanding the conventions on making POWs carry out legal forced labour does not apply to civilians criminals. Fog of war? Shades of grey? Does this just highlight the difficulties faced in the twilight zone between 'War','TTW' and 'Peace Sp'? How do we make sure this does not happen again?
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