Trials of Enlisted Men
Iraq War Items & Stats
of Enlisted Men
NOTE: It is impossible to send troops into areas of arbitrary gunfire -- shots from a building here, a mosque there -- and expect them to show descretion. Primary human reaction to unpredictable risk of death is to shoot anything that moves until the risk is eliminated. There's not much doubt that crimes have been committed. The problem is that the "crimes" have been engineered by officers and politicians by putting enlisted men in situations in which such behavior could be expected on the basis of elementary human psychology. |
It is also likely that the enlisted "culprits" were directly ordered by superior officers to act accordingly. Orders are given verbally, which carries the following implications:
Pantano, 33, a former film executive from New York, has been charged with two counts of premeditated murder in the deaths men whom his unit stopped during a cordon-and-search operation in Mahmudiyah. But the idea of a Marine's facing execution for killing suspected insurgents in a war zone has created an outcry.
Besides 2nd Lt. Ilario Pantano, at least 16 U.S. military personnel have been charged with murder as a result of field operations in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2001. The following list does not include soldiers charged in connection with the deaths of prisoners.
Army spokeswoman Lt. Col. Pamela Hart said Tuesday that 15 Army soldiers have been charged with murder during the Iraq conflict. Of those, she said, eight have gone to trial.
Some of the Army cases include:
Staff Sgt. Johnny Horne pleaded guilty in December to killing a severely wounded 16-year-old Iraqi male during fighting in Baghdad's impoverished Sadr City neighborhood. Staff Sgt. Cardenas J. Alban was convicted in January in the same killing.
Capt. Rogelio "Roger" Maynulet was convicted in March of assault with intent to commit voluntary manslaughter in the shooting death of a wounded Iraqi.
Pvt. Federico Daniel Merida of the North Carolina National Guard pleaded guilty in September to killing a 17-year-old Iraqi soldier after the two had consensual sex in a guard tower.
Sgt. 1st Class Tracy Perkins was acquitted in January of involuntary manslaughter in the alleged drowning of an Iraqi civilian, but was convicted of assault for forcing the man and his cousin into the Tigris River for violating curfew. 1st Lt. Jack Saville pleaded guilty in March to assault and other crimes in the same incident.
Staff Sgt. Shane Werst has a pending court-martial on charges that he murdered an Iraqi civilian during a search for suspected insurgents.
Cpl. Dustin Berg of the Indiana National Guard faces a court-martial on a charge that he murdered an Iraqi police officer.
Spc. Brent May and Sgt. Michael P. Williams face charges of premeditated murder and lesser counts in a killing in Sadr City, Baghdad. A court-martial is pending.
- The Untold Stories