I’m going to keep repeating it until someone notices. CNN’s current series Killing at the Canals, which focuses on the investigation and conviction of the Army NCOs who murdered detainees execution style and dumped their bodies into canals, is about the First Sergeant who commanded Scott Beauchamp. His name is First Sergeant John Hatley, and he wrote the following letter to outside sources trashing Beauchamp, a soldier in his command:
My soldiers conduct is consistently honorable. This soldier has other underlining issues which I’m sure will come out in the course of the investigation. No one at any of the post we live at or frequent, remotely fit the descriptions of any of the persons depicted in this young man’s fairy tale. I can’t and won’t divulge any information regarding this soldier, but I do sincerely appreciate all the support from the people back home. Again, this young man has a vivid imagination and I promise you that this by no means reflects the truth of what is happening here. I’m currently serving with the best America has to offer. I have worked and fought closely with every soldier within my company and they are consummate professionals in an area most people can’t fathom. I’m proud of my soldiers and would gladly give my life for any one of them. Please continue to keep them with you in your prayers and thank God that we have these courageous men willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for their country, Americans, and the people of this struggling nation.
1SG Hatley and the other NCOs executed these men in March of 2007. Scott Beauchamp wrote Shock Troops in July 2007. Hatley wrote this letter after July of 2007, insisting that Beauchamp was disturbed because he wrote about making fun of someone in a cafeteria or running over a dog. He wrote that letter attacking Beauchamp, knowing that just a few weeks earlier, he and others had taken it upon themselves to put a gun to the back of several detainee’s heads, pull the trigger, and dump their bodies into a canal.
But they would have you believe that no one in their unit would run over a dog.
Or play with bones.
By the way, Scott Beauchamp is still in uniform serving his country honorably. None of the wingnuts who freaked out about him at the Weekly Standard or elsewhere have gotten around to enlisting.
*** Update ***
God, watching the CNN show tonight was just gut-wrenching. They didn’t just murder four men, they also have put their wives and loved ones through sheer hell. No matter what these men did, you have to feel bad for their families.
Considering it was a complacent, stupid, gullible, and thoroughly feckless media that got us into Iraq in the first place, colour me fucking shocked that they fail to put one and one together on this one.
I think you need to set up a webcam on a sandbox where you can demonstrate that a tank can actually turn, along with some proof that dogs aren’t perfect evaders. I’ve never heard of a dog getting hit by a vehicle before. Isn’t that impossible?
And and please email us your credentials proving you don’t hate america.
I applaud your efforts to bring this point to light John but don’t hold your breath waiting on our feckless MSM. They suck.
Keep at it. This is yet another example of the catastrophic failure of the press in this country.
Well, the reichtwingnutz are serving madly in teh Cheeto Brigade. Just look at their fingertips….you can tell.
Not with douchebags like Beauchamp running around the army, ready to rat them out for raping kittens and using orphans for target practice.
Belafon (formerly anonevent)
But in wingnut logic, it’s OK to call a soldier a liar even if what he said is true, because his truth is wrong.
If we just privatised the rest of the military, handing it over to Blackwater/Xe, we’d never have to hear about Americans being convicted of heinous crimes.
Retards, disfigured folk and dogs > Arabs. What’s so difficult about this? It’s a classic conservative trope. It’s not what you do that counts, it’s what you say. And Hatley can’t believe Beauchamp would say those things.
It’s like worrying about “civility” when discussing torture or war.
I didn’t pay a lot of attention to this story, but did any of the bloggers who attacked Beauchamp ever apologize for it?
I know, I know, but cut me some slack: I was only born yesterday.
The silence this story has been met with shouldn’t have surprised me, but it did.
Well said, John.
I hate that their attack with vicious lies first always tells the first, and only, that most end up hearing about an issue. Few who sided with Beauchamp’s detractors will learn the truth, with a giant assist from our “news” media.
Wingnuts are too busy trying to figure out ways to get KSM off and call Newsweek sexist to pay any attention to this.
We love you for your tenacity, John.
Wow. Drop a few words and the whole thing makes no sense. I’m not even going to bother reposting. Time to step away from the keyboard.
Ann B. Nonymous
I think you have to call these human farts out by name. Like that “Confederate Yankee” jackass, what’s-his-name Owens.
(Didn’t he once hold a pledge drive because his outdoor grill tipped over during a storm? My heart bleeds for his loss.)
I ran into a post from a female Air Force MstSgt where she supports Hatley and said that putting a bullet through their brains was “protecting America”. Executing a bound prisoner who has not been prosecuted or interrogated and not in the heat of battle or some atrocity the guy may have committed.
(I give a pass to something like the contractor who shot and killed the Taliban wacko who had flung kerosine on his partner, a female anthropologist, and set her on fire while she was talking to villagers. She sustained fatal burns, and the Taliban suspect was tackled and held by an Afgani policeman. The contractor saw how badly his partner was hurt…the burns had destroyed her body fat and she shivering and repeating “I’m cold I’m cold”…and proceeded to where the handcuffed Tali was and shot him. His partner died in a hospital a couple of months later, and the man pled guilty to whatever and got 5 years probation because of the circumstances. Sorry, but I would have done the same thing there. Some idiots on academic forums were calling him a war criminal. NO. This kind of thing where there is premeditation and sadism like what you see from Hatley is a war crime.)
I am wondering just how far this kind of thinking has permeated the NCO corps. I don’t want to ascribe too much weight here, especially since I am a veteran and feel almost disloyal bringing it up. It is what it is though. There are people in uniform who are spitting on their sacred oaths in the name of “protecting America” when what they are doing is the exact opposite.
There was going to be a dispute. Hatley got his offense as defense in there and tried to discredit Beauchamp. The media is hopeless for the most part. This week it’s Palin. They are lazy. Truth tellers always get clobbered.
Good job bringing this up, John, even if it’s quixotic.
The very wingnuts who tried to destroy Beauchamp will attack this conviction as anti-troop.
The whole thing is sickening on more levels than I can count.
Yep. Look at this amazing bit of swill from the comments at CNN:
It seems we should not have civilian political control of the military. I saw that meme in several of the comments.
Just Some Fuckhead
That’s kinda depressing.
I find this comment amusing, mostly because when you look at the countries that signed the Geneva Convention, you’ll notice that we don’t go to war with them anymore.
Shawn in ShowMe
C’mon now, we know how this goes.
1. War infects some soldiers with the monster virus.
2. Soldier reports that members of his unit are turning into monsters.
3. Press decries the very notion of American soldiers becoming monsters as absurd. States in emphatic terms here that the only monstrous thing going on are the accusations.
4. Soldiers cum monsters say they are not monsters. Press points to those statements as proof.
5. Soldiers later revealed to be monsters.
6. Citizen demands accountability from the MSM.
Yep. It reminds me of The Patterico mouthbreathers who think that since are criminals, er…don’t follow the law, then neither should the police have to either.
The authoritarian impulse in this country right now frightens me beyond belief.
It’s impossible to swerve a Bradley Fighting Vehicle in time to run over a dog, as proven by my unsuccessful attempts to run over an orc with a World of Warcraft siege engine.
Just Some Fuckhead
And as a bonus, shit like the Fort Hood shooting woulda never happened. That was just typical government bungling to leave that dangerous guy where he was. I say we privatize the military this very minute. Government can’t do anything right. We need the glorious invisible hand of the free market protecting us like the force field on the Star Trek Enterprise.
Oh yes. But Welfare? That’s horrible.
John: Thank you for this.
About the time that Hatley and the others were convicted, so many on the right like Confederate Fuckwit stated that just because Hatley and the others were convicted of multiple counts of murder didn’t mean that anything that Beauchamp said was true.
That’s what they are reduced to.
Here’s an intellectual excercise for you–
1. Senior NCOs commit multiple murders, involving several junior soldiers from the command.
2. Different junior soldier from the command alledges some bad behavior not rising to criminal level by other junior soldiers of the command.
3. Same Senior NCOs from (1) cut off communications to and from junior soldier in (2), calling him a liar and claiming that the soldiers of the unit always act honorably.
4. Army investigation clears junior soldier in (2) of wrongdoing or criminal behavior, but based upon claims made by senior NCOs at (1) does not extend investigation.
5. Army investigators from (5) are contacted by junior soldier from (1) and initiate war crimes investigation leading to courts-martial, and convictions for most personnel involved with (1).
Have I got all that?
One of the new Striker IFV’s would kill both the dogs and the Orks with no problem. Crunchy road juice.
In seriousness, I heard about stuff like this from Somalia when I was in. One of my friends described seeing a Belgian Army track ( an armored personnel carrier) with chunks of human scalp and viscera plastered on the front. The guys had run over some “Sammies” and thought it was funny as hell.
I don’t know the details, like if the guys had thrown molotovs at the Belgians or what…but damn.
There are usually two components to these kinds of problems:
1) the instigators
2) the followers
There aren’t many of the former, but there are a LOT of the latter and the former serve as catalysts for the behavior in the latter. This is why places like Nazi Germany can happen – you put a handful of sociopaths in positions of power and they ‘activate’ all of those followers to go along. Don’t put those instigators in power, and the situation would never happen. It’s also how organized religion and other social hierarchies work. It’s it odd that you get these groups of amoral individuals in one unit? It’s that statistically improbable? But if you only need one amoral individual and a bunch of commonly found followers (with Beauchamps being the uncommon non-follower) then these situations (like the gang rape situation up north) are much easier to understand.
You can’t eliminate the followers – they actually represent a pretty big percentage of the population and probably a somewhat bigger percentage of the military. You need to identify and remove the instigators. There aren’t many of them, they usually aren’t all that hard to spot if you are diligent, but there needs to be the resolve to remove them which means that the superiors have to be independently minded. Keeping that structure clean can be pretty hard to do – especially when you have a conflict going on and need the people.
So the question to ask is what category that MstSgt belongs in and if she’s a follower, where in the military is this attitude coming from?
That’s why I worry most about the efforts the fundamentalists are putting into getting members into high ranking positions in the military. They understand the multiplying effect of putting an instigator in an organization.
Wasn’t it TNR that was pushing the Beauchamp-must-be-a-liar story ad nauseam? I see their website allows comments so maybe we could add many comments asking whether they want to revise their defense of Hatley now and linking to John’s post.
@Nutella: That was the
Weekly StandardWeakly Neoconservative.
TNR was the magazine that showed absolutely no backbone in defending either their articles or the guy who wrote them and then published a hardly-noticible blurb later that they may have jumped the gun a little on throwing Beauchamp to the wolves.
The Grand Panjandrum
Why hasn’t TNR taken this up? They have a vested interest in seeing this connection made in the establishment media.
Good analysis. The “prison experiments” back in the 60’s come to mind.
@Notorious P.A.T.: A good track driver can do amazing things. I have seen M-577 drivers who were skilled enough to swerve and hit a dog. A Bradley is hella more responsive than a tracked command post.
I love how these pricks invoke God when they’re lying through their teeth.
Teh Great Gazoogle tells me the reason why nobody is talking about this is because Kos ran it April 16 and TPM April 17. I don’t know that CNN adds anything new to the story.
John – if you are waiting for a rational and deliberative report from the national media, then you are going to find yourself one day scratching a long white beard with skeletal fingers wondering why you wasted so much time.
Quick story: During the first Gulf War, the cheerleaders from the national media praised the Patriot missile for its amazing abilities, a super-duper weapon of brilliant precision that could very well change the nature of war itself. They would show video of the Patriot intercepting Saddam’s Scud missiles in the sky with a bright explosion. Then the very next video showed you the damage caused by the Scud warhead when it landed because the Patriot missile rarely intercepted the Scud before the warhead separated – those explosions in the clouds actually only showed the destruction of the empty Scud fuselage. After the war, a little-noticed report showed that the Patriot actually increased ground damage because the debris from the explosion fell to earth in a far more destructive and widespread manner than if the empty fuselage had just fallen to the ground in one piece.
As a viewer I banged my head up against the wall, wondering how in the hell they could be heaping praise on a weapon that by the very evidence before our eyes wasn’t working. Daddy Bush took advantage of the endless positive coverage by touring the Patriot missile factory, although after the war he quietly ended that program. That was in the days when the GOP still felt a sense of fiscal responsibility and no matter how much the public had been deceived, he wasn’t going to piss away dollars on a system that had failed.
Ever since that incredible episode, I just expect the traditional news media to play along with whatever narrative is most popular at DC dinner parties. Once you don’t expect anything more, news coverage always makes perfect sense.
The Moar You Know
@Alan: You don’t need to invoke the Divine when telling the truth.
The Patriot had been designed to shoot down fighters, not IRBM’s. I don’t think the software had really been sufficiently developed for the missile to do that task.
See Sinclair, Upton: It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his job depends on not understanding it.
Sweet! I’ll contact the King of Stormwind and have him put in an order.
My sarcasm failed. I was making a reference to an incident which someone else already referenced in post #2, where some idiot conducted “experiments” with a sandbox and some toy trucks to prove that you can’t swerve a Bradley in time to run over a dog.
I attempted to put a link to this post on the CNN website article about the story. It has not yet passed the moderator.
@celticdragon: Was it the Patriot Missle that had a memory leak that caused problems if it was left operational for too many hours in a row?
Does anyone know exactly who was the idiot with the sandbox? I’m trying to Google it out but haven’t had any luck so far.
That was, I believe, Confederate Fuckwit.
There’s a word for that 1St Sargeant- Sociopath.
Having served in the Navy, and not being a follower, my observation would be that the followers in the military is a much larger percentage than in the general population. Other than one episode of stealing mooring lines from a tender because I felt the we needed them more than she did, I was not an instigator, though.
@The Moar You Know: Good point.
Keep at it JC. Somewhere there’s a right-wing blogger just dying to be baited into embarrassing him/herself on this issue yet again.
OT – My sister has been a reporter for the Grand Rapids Press since 1994. Grand Rapids is where “Divacuda” is starting her book tour today and my sister was told that she had to cover it. She called me earlier talking about the over the top national press coverage. Here was her first story of the day.
@Notorious P.A.T.: Any experiment performed by TIDOS Yankee = FAIL. QED.
To be fair to CNN, don’t think the Beauchamp rumble made it outside of blogworld. If they mentioned Hatley was Beauchamp’s NCO, pretty sure most viewers would likely say “huh?”
I remember during a phone call to dad back in the Beauchamp day mentioning the Purple Heart bandaid warriors’ most outrageous outrage of the day then was a soldier writing his unit had run over a few dogs just to do it. That they claimed he was lying as no soldier during war would do that nor was it possible for tracked vehicles to do so based on their astute sandbox analysis using toys to recreate the scenarios. Dad said “you’re making that shit up.” Told him no, the guys on your side of the aisle ARE that loony and stupid.
Left Coast Tom
From the article:
Starting to wonder if someone has a story from Gulf War 1 they’d like to tell. Confession is good for the soul, or so I’ve been told.
this is just so sickening. given that we (the public) need to know what’s what, and that the media is utterly uninterested in telling us, perhaps Jon Stewart could be enticed to make fun of the media’s execrable coverage of this? it’s certainly got all the right elements.
Colbert has the capacity to do something appropriately savage, and the freichtards wouldn’t even mind — they’d think it was praise.
thanks for persisting, John.
@Trinity: Nice Story by your sis. But I did notice that the story referred to Palin’s book as Going Rouge. I wonder how many new outlets will do the same thing and how much it will help this book out.
@Left Coast Tom: This may have occurred subconsciously! I’m not sure she even knows about The Nation’s book. lol I texted her to let her know. She’s gonna laugh her ass off.
Man, can you imagine? If John copped to running over a dog, that would be the biggest Comments Section Clusterfuck ev-ah.
@tripletee: I’m thinking he made fun of a disfigured arab man/ woman and called him/ her a haji. Although, if I recall correctly, “sand n****r” was the favored term of that era.
@Trinity: You might tell your sister about the typo in this line:
Nice irony, that — using the title of the satirical book “Going Rouge — An American Nightmare,” compiled by Richard Kim and Betsy Reed, senior editors at the left-leaning The Nation magazine.
I wonder if any of the Palindrones bought the wrong book. Oh, we can hope, eh?
I think he made fun of a disfigured Arab dog before running it over. It would be irresponsible not to speculate.
I knew an MP who ran over a dog in Bosnia back in 2001. She was this little innocent MP, and boy, did her gun-truck crew mess with her.
All over the camp, photocopied “Lost Dog” posters with this picture of a cute furry puppy went up overnight–“Lost Dog. Pet of our six-year-old orphaned niece. Last seen on Route UTAH in village of Whateveritwas in close proximity to US Army vehicle with such-and-such bumper number”
@Just Some Fuckhead quoted someone saying: I’m currently serving with the best America has to offer.
Just Some Fuckhead: That’s kinda depressing.
I agree but I understand how the “brainwashing” that accompanies membership in many organizations would lead to a service member saying this. That’s one of the reasons I’m not much of a joiner…can’t spout the BS convincingly.
What bugs me more is that folks NOT in the military say this over and over. When civilians speak about the military, they often invoke the phrase “these American heroes”. Enlisting in the army does not make somebody a hero. Going to Iraq does not make somebody a hero. All enlisted voluntarily. Color me unconvinced that they all did it because they love their country and want to serve.
On CSPAN last night I saw a big military muckety-muck saying that most enlisted people are re-upping because there are no jobs on the outside. He said explicitly: this is NOT why people should re-enlist. And it’s not why someone should have joined in the first place.
People should be deemed honorable (or “the best”) because they have acted in an honorable (or exceptional) fashion, not because they wear a uniform.
I vaguely recall something about that. I was a helicopter crewchief in the Cav, so most of what I learned about SAM’s tended to be from Jane’s and Aviation Week and Space Technology.
Because they already showed their belly and cringed and repudiated the story.
I wonder if any of the Palindrones bought the wrong book. Oh, we can hope, eh?
Even better if they can get her to sign it.
Uh, just why do you think that people want to serve, then?
Is the college angle really worth going to Iraq for? Or, do you think that we signed up to get our body count bragging rights?
Wikipedia spends 2,000 words burying Beauchamp, ending with these two lines:
Just Some Fuckhead
I ran over a dog once with my car. It was pretty easy but it was very upsetting, both to me and the dog. He lost a leg and I could still hear that awful yelp a week later.
Yeah, that entry is controlled by wingnuts — every time someone fixes it, it gets wingnutted back.
@Notorious P.A.T.: Why, that would be Power Line reader Stuart Koehl, who later turned up at the Weekly Standard making an ass out of himself.
And we wonder why Muslims in our military might get the impression that out war on terror is actually a war on Islam…
@celticdragon wrote: Uh, just why do you think that people want to serve, then?
I don’t know what motivates every person that enlists. But as I said (and as you blockquoted my saying):
Color me unconvinced that they all did it because they love their country and want to serve
I added some bold there for emphasis.
What I am NOT saying: no one enlists because he/she loves their country and wants to serve.
@celticdragon: Just jumping in to say I didn’t read this as impugning everyone who served. Hyperlon didn’t say that “no one” did it from a desire to serve, just “not all”.
Some love their country and want to serve, for sure. The only one I know directly is my nephew, and he did it mainly because it was his best career option. Love him tons, and it was the right choice, but twasn’t just patriotism that got him in.
oh, and zie answered right above me. :-)
@HyperIon: Color me unconvinced that they all did it because they love their country and want to serve.
I was quoting Hyperlon in that first sentence. Blockquote fail.
@HyperIon: Patriotism is the main reason I joined the service. I joined the Army specifically over the Air Force and Navy because it had the best college benefits–way better than what the other services were offering at the time.
I really wanted to join the Coast Guard but in 1988 there was a two-year wait and I wasn’t about to sling pizza for two more years.
So what are you getting at, then?
It certainly looks like a blanket condemnation. The classical definition of a hero is somebody who risks his/her life for a communal good. Most people who voluntarily enlistto serve in dangerous war zones probably fulfill those conditions, so I am curious as to just what you are actually asserting.
@celticdragon: Nah, we’re all poor schlubbs who only deserve the scorn of the really caring people. You see, so much more gets done for the communal good by commenting on a blog than actually enlisting/ joining a group of people for the benefit of the country or community.
Damn, think one person enlists for their own reasons, and you are a fucking traitor. Harsh crowd.
You can think what you want. Although, as numbnuts suggest, that joining the military is no different than choosing to be a clerk at Exxon or BP, then yeah expect to be called an idiot.
You’re forgetting the role Matt Sanchez played in all this. In 2002, Sanchez gave up his lucrative career as a $300 an hour gay prostitute and joined the Marine reserves. (Sanchez denied owning the escort page that I linked to, but if you check the source code you’ll see his name in the author tag. Why he was never kicked out of military is a mystery to me. I guess DADT is only enforced if you’re not a rabid wingnut.)
Matt Sanchez was one of the main contributors (using his own name and various sockpuppet accounts) to the Wikipedia article that comes up as the first link when you google “Scott Thomas Beauchamp.”
No, no. I agree. Every single one of our brave heroes in uniform joined for the utmost of purest pure reasons. All hail everyone who serves!!
@BethanyAnne: Well, it’s obvious you have no interest in actually talking, other than to make moronic remarks, so i’ll just assume you like pie form here on out.
*shrug* I’d say suit yourself, but all you see is pie.
Most people who voluntarily enlistto serve in dangerous war zones probably fulfill those conditions…
How do you know they did that, once you enlist you go where you are sent. And you think they should be subjected to multiple tours.
And how would you tie up a tour in Iraq with “defending America”?
Face it, chump, we threw away our volunteer Army on George Bush’s dumber son. Ol’ George new how to use a volunteer Army, get a sure thing, do it and scramble outta there.
But they gave it to Dubya, and he broke it. And don’t tell me about the heroes in the Army. Everybody up in the officer corp knew what was happening, and got together with the contractors to suck the corps dry.
Sure, in the entire mess, the enlisted men had the least power, and the least choice about what they could or couldn’t do. I’ll give you that.
But everybody thought it would be a Gulf War 1 replay, only with more glory to go around. And those guys weren’t going to “protect America”, they were going to conquer Iraq.
What the hell uis it to you, anyway? There’s more than enough blame to go around, and now we have a President who has sunk even lower; instead of being unafraid to start a war he’s afraid to stop one! In some ways, that’s even more contemptible.
I do think some serve from patriotism. I know that’s not true in every case. We’re humans, and we come with a variety of motivations. And I’m enough of a lefty to have questions about the value of patriotism. I have a hard time separating it from nationalism and jingoistic excess. I just haven’t bought into American exceptionalism enough to think of patriotism as an unalloyed good. I certainly don’t think it’s evil, but it just seems alien to me. We separate into little teams because of where we were born, and root for that team always? I dunno. I just don’t get it. Maybe that’s because, as Cassidy so aptly put it, I’m an idiot. Mmmm, pie.
@BethanyAnne: Damn, think one person enlists for their own reasons, and you are a fucking traitor. Harsh crowd.
Be fair. No one has called me a traitor. Yet.
But I appreciate your ability to comprehend what you read.
q. are all police heros?
Yeah, all those benefits America has realized now that we are responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands Iraqi citizens and a few more thousand Afghans as well. Fuck the hundreds of thousands who are now refugees living in squalor on the borders of Iraq, they were in the fucking way of the USA!
To be ordered to invade and occupy a country that was, is not and will not be, an existential threat to our nation is doing what youi are told. You can wrap that shit in whatever trinket of Americana you wish, but trotting out the tired ass “we’re protecting our country” bullshit just doesn’t fly.
Like T. Boone Pickens said, American blood was spilled for that goddamned Texas Tea and American oil companies had better get their share of those motherfucking lucrative oil contracts. You went and served to protect the Bush families oil interests, pulling the Betsy Ross flag draped garbage just makes you a target for mockery and ridicule.
The last time an American soldier was called on to fight directly for the salvation of his nation was in 1861.
Look, an Army is an institution of men and women, people.
They are the ones who determine its standards and day to day operations. And an Army, like any human institution can go wrong. And there’s no point in pretending it hasn’t gone bad when it has.
It’s corrupt from top to bottom, and on any lines you want to pursue: morally, medically, legally, and militarily, financially and worst of all, it has politics, and bad politics, and is also shot through with a noxious brand of Christianity.
But hey, you gave it to Dubya, and it’s not as if his service record didn’t give you an idea of how much respect Dubya Bush has for the services.
If you want to tyake an army on a basically criminal mission, you need an army of criminals. You can either recruit them, or make then in-house, since most volunteers will be pretty malleable, and being young, they may have no settled moral or ethical basis. You can’t blame the enlistees.
But weren’t the officers, and the Doctors, supposed to know better? Wouldn’t the officers know that for the Army’s own sake getting involved in a long cruel and criminal occupation was the worst thing they could do?
But hey, anything for Dubya. He wantsa break the Army, give ’em the Army.
So, was 1st Sargent Hatley a “hero”? Sure, make whatever excuse you want about the Iraqis he executed, but what kind of guy, under those circumstances, slags Scott Beauchamp, when he in fact is guilty of murders?
So did he write the letter out of “patriotic” motives.
Look you wanna commit a crime, you need criminals. There’s no reason why they can’t be patriotic criminals. In fact, get enough together and you can commit “patriotic” crimes.
I would never suggest anything of the sort. I am just disagreeing with you. This may be getting out of hand, so I am inclined to drop it.
Well that’s the rub, isn’t it?
I think most people do join for patriotic and honorable reasons. That being said, war is the proverbial “bad barrel” that we keep putting good apples into.
Things may have changed over the years but don’t all services have the same benefits? They did when I joined, 1969. Same pay, same benefits, just different names for each rank in each branch of service. The active duty time one joined for differed depending on what each branch wanted to offer but the total time of service was 6 yrs, not all active. The navy was 4 active 2 non active reserve.
I joined for the same reason. Most of the guys I served with told me the same thing. Too many getting dead being drafted in the army/marines. I thought it was a bullshit war but jail or self-deportation didn’t seem like the answer either.
And they probably made “brmmm brmmm” noises while they were doing it.
I’d like to think I was joking.
@Ruckus: In the mid to late -80s, the Army had The Army College Fund in addition to the GI Bill. The GI Bill at the time paid $10,800 for college after a four-year committment. The ACF was $38,000 on top of that, and only the Army had it, and only for recruits who selected Combat Arms or Combat Support. Combat Service Support MOSs weren’t eligible.
The Navy and Air Force both had the corner on the pencil-necked-air-conditioner-sucking geek MOSs and the Marines–probably didn’t want people who considered themselves college-material, being Marines and all. The Army had to do something to get good recruits in the door.
Some time in the mid-90s when recruiting got harder because of the great economy brought to you by Bill Clinton, the other services also got their own versions of the Army College Fund, but when I enlisted there was only the Army had it.
@celticdragon: I would never suggest anything of the sort. I am just disagreeing with you. This may be getting out of hand, so I am inclined to drop it.
Sir, (assuming it’s “Sir”) that is an honorable sentiment.
Truly, I meant no offense (and did not expect to get called a traitor…I thought I included a smiley after Yet but I guess not).
@soonergrunt: The strikethrough?! FYWP!
@HyperIon: I believe it’s Ma’am, but I’ve prolly caused enough trouble today butting in. XD
BTW, I wanted to go through and see if Malkin had ever come correct with any of her hateful rhetoric on Beauchamp (not likely, I know) and found that she’s made her site unsearchable by google. Nice. Powerline never mentioned his name after October 2007, Blackfive only mentions him once in August 2008 to say “ignore him” (days before the word of Sgt Hadley’s conviction came out, curious that), that’s about all the energy I have for searching the idiotsphere…
These folks have an amazing ability to ignore the essential when it doesn’t benefit them (their investigative abilities end at kerning).
Ok, not only has Malkin never looked at this again, she’s still trumpeting it as an example of conservative reporting.
@Notorious P.A.T.: According to TBogg, it was Powerline reader Stuart Koehl.
See also “Curse You, Scott Beauchamp!” in our very own Balloon Juice Lexicon. Which now needs updating, I suppose.
This is seriously the dumbest damn thing I have ever heard. Go fuck yourself. It’s civilians like you that make us despise you.
@BethanyAnne: You know what, I don’t actually think your an idiot. But, you were making some pretty annoying generalizations that weren’t ven related to the point being argued. sorry if I get a little antsy.
But, patriotism has very little to do with why most of us join. And typically, it has even less to do with why we stay in. Honestly, and this is anecdotal, me and my team, and a few groups I’ve worked with in the past, think the American Public is 70% defective. We try to have as little to do with civilians as possible. Be they right or left, most of them talk out their ass about things they know nothing about. And really, since punching someone in the mouth is considered a social faux pas these days, it’s just better to ignore you and walk away. Yes I know, I’m an elitist and an asshole. Got it. heard it before.
@BethanyAnne: for the love of god, get a grip on yourself, will you?
@Cassidy: So, the interesting thing to me is that you’re basically saying the same thing that Hyperlon said at 68 that started this kerfluffle (take that, spell check!). It seemed to me that you read condescension into it, and I didn’t get that from his post. Or perhaps there was another reason it offended you?
@BethanyAnne: No. His statements for why people join are really not that far off. It was his assertion that anything less than pure altruism for joining makes a person’s enlistment less than what it is that was offensive. Really, the reasons people join have nothing to do with at. But even if your only reason for enlisting is to live in coed barracks and get as much tail as possible, it doesn’t change that said person enlisted during an active time of war. And joining during a war takes a bit of gumption that 70% of the American population doesn’t have.
“Go fuck yourself. It’s civilians like you that make us despise you.”
Cassidy, if you think I put the slightest credence in what someone who couldn’t wait, after gaining his majority, to throw his liberty and moral agency in the shitter and promise to obey the orders of southern frat-boy Officers, you need to think again.
Oh, and Cassidy, as far as despising the citizens who pay your salary, you don’t have the right, chump.
You wanna suck military titty, you get what comes with it, and that includes the contempt of any man who values his own freedom.
BTW, you wanna give me the name and address of your CO? I’m sure he’ll be glad to know about your attitude towards American civilians. Or was he the one who encourages you to despise civilians.
And I meant what I said: There has got to be something criminally wrong with American men who would go half-way around the world to break down the doors of family homes and terrify women and children for George Bush. Or did you guys help us narrowly avoid an invasion from Iraq?
And, as I said, if the Army can’t get criminals going in, they can make them. Knowing the right man for the job is something the Army has long experience with.
I mean, look what they did to you.
The connection between cold-blooded murderer Sgt. Hatley, the unit members who participated in and/or covered up the murders, and their shabby treatment of Scott Beauchamp for reporting their much less serious acts of brutality was first made by Bernhard at the now-departed Moon of Alabama in late August 2008. I posted about it, linking to and crediting him, at A Tiny Revolution (and my own obscure blog).
Spencer Ackerman posted about it in his Attackerman blog in poiting to his review of l’affaire Beauchamp in Radar.
And, as someone earlier pointed out, there was a bit of commentary on the Beauchamp connection when Hatley and several others were convicted this past April.
But it’s worth mentioning every time the subject comes up. I read the CNN article as an effort to excuse the murders, so this post is particularly worthwhile. Thanks, John.