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May 04, 2005

Silent Rebuttal


I don't know what you see when you look at this picture, but it's not Bob Herbert's military:

The officer's comment was a harbinger of the gratuitous violence that, according to Mr. Delgado, is routinely inflicted by American soldiers on ordinary Iraqis. He said: "Guys in my unit, particularly the younger guys, would drive by in their Humvee and shatter bottles over the heads of Iraqi civilians passing by. They'd keep a bunch of empty Coke bottles in the Humvee to break over people's heads." He said he had confronted guys who were his friends about this practice. "I said to them: 'What the hell are you doing? Like, what does this accomplish?' And they responded just completely openly. They said: 'Look, I hate being in Iraq. I hate being stuck here. And I hate being surrounded by hajis.' "

"Haji" is the troops' term of choice for an Iraqi. It's used the way "gook" or "Charlie" was used in Vietnam.

The soldier in this picture is comforting an Iraqi child injured in a car bomb blast in Mosul.

The child died, later.

Bob Herbert has no harsh words for the animals who tore that child's flesh apart. He saves his calumny for our military men and women. But I have.

God damn them to Hell.

Thanks to CKC for the photo.

Update: Via Michelle Malkin, some perspective on Herbert's story of the shooting during a riot at Abu Ghuraib. Herbert's version:

Mr. Delgado, who eventually got conscientious objector status and was honorably discharged last January, recalled a disturbance that occurred while he was working in the Abu Ghraib motor pool. Detainees who had been demonstrating over a variety of grievances began throwing rocks at the guards. As the disturbance grew, the Army authorized lethal force. Four detainees were shot to death.

Mr. Delgado confronted a sergeant who, he said, had fired on the detainees. "I asked him," said Mr. Delgado, "if he was proud that he had shot unarmed men behind barbed wire for throwing stones. He didn't get mad at all. He was, like, 'Well, I saw them bloody my buddy's nose, so I knelt down. I said a prayer. I stood up, and I shot them down.' "

A report from Delgado's CO to the Abu Ghuraib Commission:

There was a riot in late November where my unit had to respond to. One of my soldiers killed an Iraqi rioter after expending his non-lethal rounds. There were a total of four rioters killed that day in order to calm the riot, but that was only after using up all the non-lethal rounds. There were a number of my soldiers injured that day. The riot was a Camp Ganci. I am not aware of any riots at Camp Vigilence or the hard site. An investigation was conducted, but 1 wasn't briefed on the outcome. The ROE was adjusted after the incident, so that the MP' s could go to lethal force a lot sooner. The use of lethal force is dependant on the situation. Lethal force is authorized for the defense of oneself or U. S. Forces if necessary.

There are other isolated incidents where detainees have got out of control and have had to have non-lethal rounds shot at them in order to calm them done. There haven't been any more incidents were lethal rounds had to be used.

Via Baldilocks, another Sergeant who was there comments:

The compound where the riot took place, compound 8, was run by my Company, the 870th MP [Military Police] Co. The riot also was an escape attempt. It wasn't just a few stone throwers; the sky was black with throw debris, which effectively suppressed the compound towers from their overwatch duties. The stones being thrown represented a deadly force threat. Some of them were head size. It was only when the riot became a danger of a serious breakout attempt and less than lethal force(rubber shot from M203 and rubber point munitions from 12 GA shotguns) had been applied to no effect was the request for deadly force made. When permission was granted, two soldiers fired on the ring leaders. 3 were killed outright, ending the riot immediately. One more died later and 12 more were wounded. I know both of the soldiers who fired; they are good people and only did what they had to do to keep others from further harm. Given that one of the soldiers was using a M249, it could have been a bloodbath. [SNIP]

This Delgado guy was a mechanic; he was no where near those compounds. I also highly doubt he "confronted" the SGT who fired; he wouldn't have even known who he was. Different unit, not working anywhere near the compounds.

Meanwhile, Greyhawk takes on the Coke bottle story.

So much for Bob Herbert.

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that somewhere in Iraq, an American soldier or Marine has done something dishonorable. For that is the nature of war: it is ugly, cruel, often dehumanizing.

It is also capable, at times, of bringing forth the finest qualities from the men and women who endure its horrors: bravery, sacrifice, honor, loyalty, chivalry. Even kindness. Bob Herbert served in the military. He, better than most of us, should know the hardships our men and women face.

But Mr. Herbert chooses to tell us nothing of these qualities. He passes over what is laudable and seeks out the ugly and the profane. On the pages of this country's largest newspaper he paints a portrait of the Anecdotal Soldier: vicious, racist, cruel, small-minded and brutal.

Not someone to be looked up to, or thanked for a difficult job well done. Someone to be spat upon, as our returning vets were spat upon after Vietnam. To be shunned.

The Anecdotal Soldier never wins a medal for gallantry on the field of battle. He never charges the enemy position, never risks his life to save his comrades. Never the Navy corpsman who runs back and forth through a hail of enemy fire to treat wounded Marines. Never the 19 year-old PFC whose alertness saves an entire camp from a suicide bomber. She is never the now-legless Lieutenant who will not walk down the aisle in her wedding dress. Who faces painful rehab with a grin on her face and not a trace of self-pity; the only words on her lips, "Happy to serve".

Bob Herbert no longer recognizes the sentiments in this quote, nor that his precious freedoms were bought and paid for by the men and women he reviles on a daily basis. He has lived with them so long that he has forgotten the debt we all owe, and how many people in this world do not enjoy the freedoms we take for granted:

"THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated."
- Thomas Paine

Posted by Cassandra at May 4, 2005 05:56 PM

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Tracked on May 5, 2005 09:20 AM


Yes, damn them to hell...AND those who try to justify their actions.

Posted by: JannyMae [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 07:31 PM

When I look at this, I don't see a pulitzer prize.

Posted by: Pile On [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 07:45 PM

I understand how you feel, kiddo...I feel it myself. But God doesn't damn anyone; they do it to themselves...

Posted by: camojack [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 08:37 PM

It was just a baby.

Posted by: Cassandra [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 08:43 PM

Oh my...oh my. The poor baby and will his mother ever know what happened to him? Will she be able to bury him and try to make sense of what happened? That the vile excuses for human beings who did this
want to restore more of the same to Iraq?

I will keep that little one's family in my heart for a while, and be comforted that he has gone to a much better place...and dry my tears.

Posted by: La Femme Crickita [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 08:47 PM

Cass, I don't think Camojack was talking about the baby, I think he meant the terrorists that you were talking about when you said "God damn them to Hell."

Posted by: Pile On [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 10:17 PM

Bob Hebert is nothing more than two hump camel excrement. And if he'd like to hook up I could explain it to him. Personally! I detest that guy Cass. I can't even read his drivel any longer. The guy wouldn't know honor or integrity if it reached up and bit him on the butt!

As for Mr. Delgado, you should do some research and find out just exactly what his agenda is. You might be surprised. Or NOT! He wasn't even front line or anywhere near where he "alleges" these incidents to have taken place. He was a rear area mechanic, not some glorified interpreter as the lovely Bob "I'm An Anal Cavity Surrounded By A Sphincter Muscle" Hebert states. Gee, one lies and the other swears to it! Go figure!

BTW, I've finally gotten this Typekey thing all worked out. That didn't take but what? A month? I may not be fast but I am real slow! ;-)

Dammit! There was story about a very young 1/5 Marine that I wanted to share but I can't find it now. It was an absolutely fantastic story of bravery under fire much along the lines of young Butler's heroism in the fire truck attack. If I can reacquire it I'll pass it on.

Met a recently mustered out 1/7 Marine today. We got to swap stories and not only was he surprised that I was aware of their last mission but he also knew my youngest son from some football camp years ago. Small world! Great young gun having a bit of trouble adjusting to the MSM's coverage of the Stan and Iraq. That seems to be the biggest hurdle these guys have and like others I've spoken with they just simply quit watching the news. Even Fox. They get their updates from e-mail and internet. Probably a good thing since if they read some of the contrived tripe like Hebert's it'd drive them over the top. I'd truly like to see Bob "I've Got No Balls" Hebert embedded with a rifle company somewhere. I know a Bn that's getting ready to ship out and could probably get him a billet! :-o

Posted by: JarheadDad [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 10:42 PM

And what of this young man?
What is he to carry with his life?
The anguish of a tiny human life, bleeding
Tender and growing cold, until
Silently, innocently

At the networks, there is video
Hostages, Jackson, desperate wives
and the caskets on the plane
Tomorrow run-away brides
Mercy my dear Lord
Mercy or vengeance.

Posted by: spd rdr [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2005 11:02 PM

I imagine the tears that stained that Iraqi childs face were mostly those of that American Soldier.
It sure doesn't look like that soldier was, at the moment, thinking too much about his own safety.

I have yet to be able to look at it, without tears instantly running down my face. In the midst of many emotions, looking at pictures like this, I'm reminded of the simply stated bumper sticker, that I would be dishonest in not admitting that I rather like: "F*** Terrorism"
I'll ad to that....."and that goes for the "no blood for oil" asshat friends of the terrorists, too!"

God bless the efforts of those working to make terrorists an endangered (extinct) species.

Posted by: CKCat [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 01:23 AM

It is at times like this I pray for our military.
I sort of know how hard that is but I don't have to walk through a meat grinder every day, either over there or the way our law enforcement does here.

I only know what I was taught as a child and what I look forward to now, and that is Christ's return.

Posted by: La Femme Crickita [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 02:56 AM

Pile, I do know what camo meant. He is right, and I knew it. I wasn't arguing with him. That was just all I could think of - all I could manage to say - in explanation.

And I am sorry. I owe all of you an apology.

I am not normally a very emotional person. Actually I guess that's not true - I'm very emotional, but I can usually put things into perspective, take them in stride. I should not have posted this picture, or said what I said.

It just made, makes me so angry, and I failed to stop and think.

I just can't believe that people still don't understand what we're fighting. And when I read people like Herbert maligning the military it sickens me beyond belief. But I shouldn't have inflicted that on you all, and I regret having done that.

mr. rdr, I think you are hereby named the poet laureate of this blog. I was paralyzed into inarticulateness and you managed to turn it into something that wasn't ugly. I should apologize to you most of all.

Posted by: Cassandra [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 05:20 AM

Hey...I understood where you were coming from, both times. Occasionally words are insufficient. And sometimes people need to be reminded that our troops are not just a rabble of cold-blooded killers. The picture is an indescribably sad yet poignant statement of that basic truth. Don't keep beating yourself up over it, OK?

Posted by: camojack [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 07:08 AM

Thank you for understanding.

Posted by: Cassandra [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 07:36 AM

The Anecdotal Soldier. Would that be Jean Fraud Kerrie? He didn't win his medals either. He had them awarded to him.

And the two humped lump of camel fertilizer who wrote of the mean spiritedness of the persons who did this needs to be have his blog looted in a manner reminiscent of Genghis Khan. What a load of

Posted by: La Femme Crickita [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 08:28 AM

It is a very good post Cass, made even better today. Powerful. Painful. But very good, nothing to apologize for.

Posted by: Pile On [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 09:10 AM

Thank you Pile. That means a lot to me :)

Posted by: Cassandra [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 09:35 AM

Absolutely no need for an apology. Camojack has it right, sometimes words cannot express the sentiments of the heart.

People need to see that while fighting the inhuman brutality of those who kill children for fun our soldiers keep their souls.

I don't know enough to tell if the soldier is Army or Marine: But he was "no better friend" to that little child and if he wasn't already, you can be sure he's "no worse enemy".

Posted by: Masked Menace [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 10:28 AM

Now I'm tempted to feel like a shiitehead for sending the pic, Cass. I make painstaking efforts to not add to anyones stress.

Yet, IMHO--this picture visually draws the very distinct line between "the good guys and the bad guys", and yet ONE MORE TIME answers "Why are we there?"

From the looks of that Soldiers "committment" to that child, I imagine he's already replayed that event & seen that child over multiple times in his mind and heart. Meanwhile, the spawn from the lower regions that are responsible (and probably have children of their own!!! *shudder*) are planning & plotting the next murder of whoevers children happen to be "in the way". Prayerfully, those efforts completely frustrated by both Military & divine intervention!!

The visual serves as a re-fueling of resolve in eliminating hells offspring!

Posted by: CKCat [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 12:21 PM

Cat, I'm a big girl - I wouldn't have posted it if I hadn't felt strongly about it. I was the one who made the decision. I think perhaps I could have been less inflammatory in the way I went about it, that's all. It just spoke to me.

I almost never do anything impulsively. I literally had to hold myself back from sending it around. I felt that strongly about it, and you know I never - or almost never - send my posts to anyone. I just didn't want to upset anyone.

Posted by: Cassandra [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 12:31 PM

I know you's a big (petite) girl! (~;)

There IS such a thing as "righteous indignation". This is that!!

Heck, sometimes my bible thumpin' self could make a Marine blush as I respond outloud when I sit in front of my puter and read these kinds of stories, see these pictures. Some of the time I'm not even that emotional about it when the "words" fly. (~;) [I've gotten kinda sloppy about that, truth be told.]

I continue to pray Psalm 83, (most of it) regarding terrorists. It's not exactly sweet--AT ALL, yet it'still in line with God's heart in the matter.[TRUE God, of course, not this allah clown they yack about. I know who that is, and that "god" ain't God! I have abbreviated my prayers re: that lately and just say: "Father, do a Psalm 83 on them.". (~;)

Camo said it already. They condemn themselves to hell by their choices, as does anyone who makes the choice(s) that results in that consequence.

There really is no shame or embarrassment in accompanying...or "accesorizing" an intellectual response with some emotion.
Jesus didn't *lose* his temper when he flipped the capitalists (heh!) table in the temple, but he was ticked---righteously..rightly. God's not a peace sign flashing hippie. (~;)

Posted by: CKCat [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 5, 2005 01:23 PM

Here's what Oliver North (remember him?) wrote about the picture:

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words

Posted by: camojack [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 6, 2005 03:49 AM


Appologize? Get out! Good post, great picture. We needed to see that picture. I hadn't seen it anywhere else.

Posted by: KJ [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 6, 2005 05:01 PM

Well if you want a really big laugh, it was on the front page of the WaPo, which I get delivered to my front door every morning and I didn't see until 10:30 pm that night.

I've been working so much I haven't been opening the mail or the papers. When Cat sent it to me it just knocked me flat. And it had been sitting in my driveway since 5 am that morning, but I never even went out to get it because I had my nose buried in what I was doing.

Posted by: Cassandra [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 6, 2005 05:05 PM

Posted by: camojack [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 6, 2005 10:35 PM

Wish I saw this site earlier. I am not afraid to post my name. I was in the 870th MP CO as well. It was guys from my platoonthat pulled the trigger the day of the riot. I even knew one of the girls involved in the scandal with the prisoners, not England but the other on in the pictures. So if you really want to know what happened that day of the riot or the true situation dealing with prisoners...email me.

Posted by: Emory Landon at June 27, 2007 06:12 PM

I would like to use this picture as part of a video i am making for my high school film class. I need written permisson to do so. Could you please send me an e-mail giving your consent. I would really appreiciate it.

Posted by: seyrra croy at September 24, 2007 04:50 PM

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