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Wikileaks Video Released!!

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posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 02:52 PM
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They made a mistake. A big one. However...

1. From what I understand, the purpose of those helicopters is to support and protect ground troops. If you hesitate, you are risking their lives, and possibly your own. I have no doubt that at least a few of those voices we heard had been in the situation in the past, where they hesitated because they were unsure of the intentions of potential enemies and they themselves nearly died. Or, they nearly, or actually did get another American soldier(s) killed by such hesitation. What is motivating these men the most is pure raw, monkey-boy, pleistocene driven fear; and like it or not, most of us wouldn't fare much better under the same stimuli. What would you do? Think about that. Not the moral high road that's easy to take from in front of your computer... But what would you really do if people were trying to kill you and the other people you depend on to stay alive? The reptile brain is a bugger, and not really equipped to factor in something as potentially counter-survival as 'ethics'.

Were there American troops on the ground? Had they engaged with insurgents in that area within that time frame? What was the overall scenario in that area for that day? Week?

We. Don't. Know.

On another note, I don't know how far away that helicoptor was, and neither do any of you. With the information available, debating the distance of the helicoptor vs. the potential range of an RPG (which most of us don't know either) is a non-sequiter.

2. There is a man carrying something that looks enough like a gun for it to be assumed to be a weapon when your life, and the lives of your friends is on the line. I know all of the 'camera tripod vs. RPG arguments'... (Personally, I think it was likely a rifle, not an RPG or a tripod, but there is no way to know for certain). I would back up the pilots interpretation that at least some in the group were armed.
The guy crouched behind the wall...? Interpretational. The men with the camera's...? Interpretational. They interpreted incorrectly, and the information they had was insufficient to make the assumptions they did on those counts, and their state of mind led them to hasty conclusions. (IMO).
However, overall, I feel that the initial engagement was justifiable since there were those in the group carrying what were probably weapons, and from what I could glean, there were American troops on the ground in the area. Tragic mistake. But justifiable in a combat situation.

3. The decision to fire on the van was wrong. Period. No one picked up a weapon. They simply picked up the injured and got lit up for it. Why did they need to wait for the injured man to 'pick up a weapon' before they could fire, and this was not so with the people with the van? If they were worried about them being insurgents recovering weapons, why couldn't they allocate the resources to follow, (another helicoptor maybe?) and get more information? There was no way to know the intent or affiliation of those in the van until they were openly hostile, and they never did anything even as aggressive as picking up what could be interpreted as a weapon. The decision to fire was hasty, foolish, and callous.

4.The shoot-em-up banter was deplorable. The callousness, and eagerness to kill makes the skin crawl. Not to mention, the '...shouldn't bring your kids into a battle' comment was inexcuseable--'Trying to stay sane' my a**. That isn't staying sane, that is excusing your insanity.

5. Whoever gave them permission to fire should be held accountable as well.

6. This shouldn't have been covered up. The mistake should have been admitted and rectified as quickly, and as well, as possible.

7. As unfortunately common as I suspect these scenarios are, it is good that this one came to light. Perhaps it will help fuel public opinion in the U.S. to get us out of this war that never should have started that much sooner.




posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 02:56 PM
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I have not weighed in in on this thread and will withold opinion. War is not pretty and as part of my work, I have seen much worse. (Mostly Sniper related. A NDA precludes further comment.)

But consider this. This was one patrol on one day in a "war" we've been in since 2003. You can do the math.Iraq War Timeline

If this group was tallied as "enemy combatants" and not "civilian casualties" makes you wonder about the accuracy of statistcs.

This video is indirectly related. Pay attention @ :59 sec and 1:17 to hear what a Law Professor said about a similar situation. ( For clarity sake, this was related to the assertion that Snipers were "baiting" civilians.) But in my mind it relates to the driver of the van. Interesting that it was also in 2007. (Sept.)





[edit on 6-4-2010 by kinda kurious]



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:05 PM
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Originally posted by brainwrek

Originally posted by GorehoundLarry

But yeah, ruthless military we have.


Would you rather we have a kind, gentle military?

Wouldnt be all that effective then would it?


Actually, it would be more effective. You'd be surprised what a little respect and dignity can do.



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:15 PM
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soldiers are trained to kill follow orders and stand and die. they are trained to be like they are. which is sad. dont forget that they got the orders to shoot. the guy on the radio is guilty to. from what they told him, it was clear that it was all quiet. how long did the two helicopters circle them? and they did not hide? There is absolutely no excuse for shooting the van. as I see it he shot the van to stop the “bad man getting away”!!! and did not care that he shot innocent people. god only knows what we dont know about...



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:21 PM
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I haven't weighed in on this yet and now I feel obligated to. My 1st offense is the yellow so called journalism preceding the video. It's colored to produce a particular response. Pay no attention to the intro. The Reuters employees are with armed combatants. They knowingly put themselves in jeopordy and who knows what their true purpose was? Watching the cam, I got a couple of things. US forces are acting on intelligence that hostile targets are in the area. Doing what I don't know. But I don't know what the intelligence was either. Second I saw armed men in the picture.

Being as Iraq asked us to stay and we are "policing" the region and weapons are a no no, I saw nothing unjustifiable about the kills. They did not fire on the survivor because he was unarmed. The van was picking up the combatants which leads one to assume that they are in league with them. Most people are not going to pick up armed men from the street. Meaning they are designated hostile as well.

Then I hear complaints about the gunner. He was enthusiastic about his job for sure. But he saw armed combatants in a public street. He's protecting the normal people not walking around with AK-47s. And he wanted to take the shot because he may not get another. And he may be forced to take a shot that would put civilians in danger. So he wanted his shot at the hostiles then.

No offense if I had my children with me I most certainly wouldn't stop to pick up armed me in a war zone indiscriminately. I saw nothing unethical in the video. The outcome had some bad results, nobody wants to see children or civilians get injured, but in this case the civilians knowingly inserted their family into a hostile situation.



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:43 PM
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That's what happens with the paranoia in a warzone and hate of the enemy!

I guess with enough justification and distraction, theses so-called appauling leaks will be old and boring news in a couple of weeks from now and it will be politic/business as usual.
And then you will still have the "innocence" of the people verse the evilness of corrupted shadow government.


[edit on 6-4-2010 by Exv8densez]



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:45 PM
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More news from Wikileak's Twitter:



NYTimes, Weekly standard falsely imply we doctored Iraq massacre video


Wonder how much proof they had when claiming this huh?



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:50 PM
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Originally posted by Theomi

Originally posted by ModernAcademia
Poor guy, it's a shame he had to say allah akbar in the beggining


Why is this a shame?
All he is saying is "god/allah is great", wheres the shame in that...
I am not a religious man but i respect other peoples faiths....


nice of you to snip the rest of my post where I say to each his own




posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:51 PM
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Its been amazing reading through the replies of thoughts and feelings on this video, and the topics surrounding it (war in general, americans, etc).. It's understandable the views expressed by many that this is, like it or not, a war and there are of course times in all wars where 'accidents' happen and civilians are killed.. i think most of us here do understand that war is not a nice, happy, fluffy bunny kind of world event, of course its not. But, that said, this video, the many others out there that are like it, and the probable dozens upon dozens more videos and accounts of 'pleasure hunting' of civilians, reporters, children and the like that we will never see nor hear of, does not show war, it shows bored, blood hungry cowboy types who feel the power of being seen by those back home as 'heroes', as a 'do whatever they feel like, all access card' to slaughter. It was not the incident so much itself that angered me personally, but the way in which these...soldiers (i use the term very losely here) acted in this case.. if one didnt know different, their fun and friendly banter amongst one another sounds like a bunch of teen boys playing Xbox war games in their parents living room and just having a laugh.. this alone is disturbing.. I do also understand that soldiers within a battle situation have to protect themselves mentally and emotionally from the actions that take place by themselves, their fellow soldiers and the so deemed, enemies..in order to just keep their own level and handle on sanity in such a place in time.. but this also causes the problem of many (not all) of them coming out of the zone with complete disregard for all human life after awhile, which becomes a danger to all.. I am sure most of us agree that war is a danger to all in innumerable ways as it is.. but there is war and there are war crimes, and this video, like many others that have come out randomly over the years, are imo only, clear cut cases of war crimes.

"Even the purest of souls can be corrupted" -Dantes Inferno



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:55 PM
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Well CNN's piece was pretty shameful they didn't even mention that kids were in the van, and only had a single retired general for commentary. I'm all about the debate on this I'd have really liked to have heard an opinion from someone other than a Retired US General.

CNN no wonder no one with any discernment believe anything the MSM says anymore.



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 03:58 PM
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Originally posted by ModernAcademia

Originally posted by Theomi

Originally posted by ModernAcademia
Poor guy, it's a shame he had to say allah akbar in the beggining


Why is this a shame?
All he is saying is "god/allah is great", wheres the shame in that...
I am not a religious man but i respect other peoples faiths....


nice of you to snip the rest of my post where I say to each his own



sorry it was not to put you in a bad light..
What was my point is that as you say your self "to each his own", when then bother commenting on the allah thing ?



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:00 PM
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Here's a darn good question:
With the unlimited budget the military has, and the already ghastly cost for one of these gunships is approved, why can't they spend a little more and get some decent frigging cameras? They zoom in and it's still only black/white blurry crud.

Don't ya think that maybe being able to differentiate between a telephoto lens and an rpg would be a worthwhile investment Uncle Sam?

The gov has software to recognize faces and shapes of people to ID from cruddy camera footage; employ that into weapon recognition and you might be onto something that the public would support.



[edit on 6-4-2010 by primus2012]



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:10 PM
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Just wanna let you guys know that, they talked about this video on danish television. However the debate was about, what the left and what the right felt, about the whole thing
All sterile



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:14 PM
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I saw on CNN about a half an hour ago (EST), that they are now saying the video is of an apache killing "Iraqi fighters". The caption at the bottom of the screen read
eath from Above. They only had it on for about 30 seconds. They are trying to marginalize it.



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:20 PM
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reply to post by Brahmanite
 


I want to start this post out by saying that I have never been a supporter of the Iraq war. However what I saw in this video does compel me to point out what so many are either unwilling or unable to see. In the video the pilot states the individuals have guns and an RPG. I can clearly see the RPG in the video as the pilot states this. I can also clearly see that others in the group are armed with some sort of long barrel weapon and can even see muzzle flashes through the dust caused by the U.S. weapon fire. To any rational person a group of armed individuals that are clearly not aligned with your side of the fight is something that cannot be tolerated in a combat situation.

It is regrettable that in the process of eliminating this group the two reporters were killed. I feel compelled to point out that being a war photographer is an inherently dangerous job. These men willingly walked with armed combatants. They knew the risk before they ever went out with that group.

Why though are so many people ignoring the obvious fact that we can see this group of Iraqi's is armed? I am not able to provide zoomed in images of still shots to support my point of view. I honestly feel however that those images are not needed as what I have mentioned can clearly be seen when watching the video.

Now as for the van lets look at the information that was available to the U.S. chopper crew. A group of armed Iraqi's had just been eliminated. A van pulls up and begins to load one of the bodies into it. Is it not logical to assume that if you have just eliminated a group of armed individuals that the large van being loaded and the individuals loading the bodies and weaponry of that group are aligned with them and represents a further threat?

As for the children. It is horrible that they were injured. However is it the job of our military to insure children are not in a combat situation or is it the job of the parents of those children to keep them safe. Do not get upset if you use your child as a human shield and they get shot. Thats pretty simple logic too isn't it?
I feel someone had to fill the role of devil's advocate on this one and since I am at work and between tasks I thought I would take up that roll.



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:22 PM
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Originally posted by DrJay1975
Being as Iraq asked us to stay and we are "policing" the region and weapons are a no no, I saw nothing unjustifiable about the kills.


Considering the video is from 2007, do you stand behind that assertion?

When did they "ask us to stay?" Just kurious.



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:26 PM
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I have watched the video. I am not a pacifist and by all means understand that mistakes happen. I am a very detail oriented person and have studied the footage from the stand point of looking for actual weapons. I cannot under any twist of observation identify a single weapon in the footage. What is seen is cameras, it is not that difficult to identify that in fact these are not weapons. It is obvious that the man peeking around the corner is taking a photo with a telephoto lense. If our men in charge of identifying targets cannot tell the difference between a telephoto lense and an rpg then we have serious problems on our hands. At one point in time a man is caring a long skinny object that has three legs, this is a tripod and is very easily identified as such. I only watched this video once just to make sure that I only picked up immediate details.

The cover-up of this event is a travesty. I do question as to why this did occur. It could very well have been planned in order to dispose of journalists in posession of sensitive footage or it could be just gun-ho troops. Those calling for the prosecution of those who authorized the shooting are wrong. They made the call based on what they were being told by troops in scenario. It is not their fault if the troops gave bad intelligence. The troops that were looking at the live feeds and relaying information back to command need to be prosecuted. The gun operators need to be prosecuted as well.

This is a bad representation of the American People. We do not condone the actions in this video. I do think this may have happened on several occasions that we are not aware of as well. It bothers me that this could be the image in so many childrens minds as to how Americans are. This type of interaction with a people that we are trying to help will only cause more violence. If it were my family in that video, I would do anything to avenge their deaths, thus creating an infinite circle of violence.

If incidents like this did not occur, I feel we as Americans would see less violence towards our attempt at aiding these people. This video alone will be used by insurgents to fuel the insurgency. People will want to join in the combat against the American forces due to the misjudgement of a handfull of troops.

I appoligize to any foreign peoples that may read this thread, and that may have been affected by such actions. We as American Citizens to not condone these actions. I ask that those who are angered at America by this footage understand that as it stands now, our military does not represent the American People. The citizens of America have no control over the actions of our government nor our military. I request that you direct your anger away from the American People and point it towards our government and military. We are good and compasionate people that value the lives of all on this planet and we want this violence on innocent people stopped. I hope you really understand that this is not how Americans act.

J



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:31 PM
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I didn't see any violations of rules of engagement here.

On the other this is identical to various incidents of friendly fire.

There are lessons to be learned from this.

1.Apache pilots need more visual testing and better optics on the gunships.

2. The Pentagon needs to be blunt when this or friendly fire happens. Thorough investigations need to be done and findings need be upfront.

These kinds of incidents and friendly fire need to be eliminated. Better training and better equipment will help with this.



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:34 PM
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reply to post by redhorse
 



If you hesitate, you are risking their lives, and possibly your own. I have no doubt that at least a few of those voices we heard had been in the situation in the past


Yes, if you hesitate, some one could die.

But these guys weren't hesitating.....they also weren't exercising caution.

You could hear the eagerness in their voice to "LET ME FIRE LET ME FIRE"
"look at those dead bastards"

I mean for Christ sake - they opened up fire on an UNARMED van that was doing nothing more than trying to pick up dead bodies.

THat isn't being cautious and protecting ground troops


That's called playing too much Modern Warfare, going for a kill streak.

Well, looks like he got about 15 kills from the Chopper Gunner....guess it's time to call in the tactical nuke?



posted on Apr, 6 2010 @ 04:36 PM
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Originally posted by Clisen33
reply to post by Elieser
 


They are already free, but yet they use that freedom to kill their own people. If they were civil enough to work with their own government, I'm sure we would have been out a long time ago.


Right The Imperialist United Satan is going to leave Iraq because their whole goal the entire time was to free the people right and have them work with their government ? You can't be that gullible to believe such a facade.



That's just sheer ignorance man, it doesn't work that way, the civil unrest is a strategy that the American military wants so that they can keep their presence in the area. All this money and time isn't being spent on "freeing the people" that's propaganda that's all it is.

There is a lot more strategy and vested interest in this war than freeing the Iraqis and having them work with their government.



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