Guest views are now limited to 12 pages. If you get an "Error" message, just sign in! If you need to create an account, click here.

Jump to content
  • CRYPTO REWARDS!

    Full endorsement on this opportunity - but it's limited, so get in while you can!

'Our blood is cheaper than water': anger in Iraq over Trump pardons


Recommended Posts

 

 

Joe Biden to be lobbied to reverse decision to pardon security guards jailed over massacre

 

 

Martin Chulov and Michael Safi

Wed 23 Dec 2020 16.21 GMT

 

 

2464.jpg?width=700&quality=85&auto=format&fit=max&s=23825e9b79a80e43c7601c67fb081896
A burnt-out car at the site where Blackwater guards opened fire in western Baghdad on 16 September 2007
Photograph: Ali Yussef/AFP/Getty Images
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Photograph: Ali Yussef/AFP/Getty Images
  • Upvote 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, umbertino said:

 

 

Joe Biden to be lobbied to reverse decision to pardon security guards jailed over massacre

 

 

Martin Chulov and Michael Safi

Wed 23 Dec 2020 16.21 GMT

 

 

2464.jpg?width=700&quality=85&auto=format&fit=max&s=23825e9b79a80e43c7601c67fb081896
A burnt-out car at the site where Blackwater guards opened fire in western Baghdad on 16 September 2007
Photograph: Ali Yussef/AFP/Getty Images
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Photograph: Ali Yussef/AFP/Getty Images

Nobody is going to respond to this post I am betting. Many don’t agree with Trumps decision, but don’t want to say anything. It was a bad move that should have never happened. 

  • Upvote 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

How about a unbiased report?

Trump pardons Blackwater security contractors convicted in deadly Iraq shooting

 

By ERIC TUCKER | Associated Press | Published: December 23, 2020

 
 
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday pardoned four former Blackwater Worldwide contractors convicted in a 2007 massacre in Baghdad that left more than a dozen Iraqi civilians dead and caused an international uproar over the use of private security guards in a war zone.

 

Supporters of the former contractors had lobbied for the pardons, arguing that the men had been excessively punished in an investigation and prosecution they said was tainted. All four were serving lengthy prison sentences.

 

“Paul Slough and his colleagues didn’t deserve to spend one minute in prison,” said Brian Heberlig, a lawyer for one of the four pardoned defendants. “I am overwhelmed with emotion at this fantastic news.”

 

The pardons, issued in the final days of Trump's single term, reflect Trump's apparent willingness to give the benefit of the doubt to American servicemembers and contractors when it comes to acts of violence in warzones against civilians. Last November, he pardoned a former U.S. Army commando who was set to stand trial next year in the killing of a suspected Afghan bombmaker and a former Army lieutenant convicted of murder for ordering his men to fire upon three Afghans.

 

The Blackwater case has taken a complicated path since the killings at Baghdad's Nisoor Square in September 2007, when the men, veterans working as contractors for the State Department, opened fire at the crowded traffic circle.

 

Prosecutors asserted the heavily armed Blackwater convoy launched an unprovoked attack using sniper fire, machine guns and grenade launchers. Defense lawyers argued their clients returned fire after being ambushed by Iraqi insurgents.

 

They were convicted in 2014 after a months-long trial in Washington's federal court, and each man defiantly asserted his innocence at a sentencing hearing the following year.

“I feel utterly betrayed by the same government I served honorably,” Slough told the court in a hearing packed by nearly 100 friends and relatives of the guards.

 

Slough and two others, Evan Liberty and Dustin Heard, were sentenced to 30 years in prison, though after a federal appeals court ordered them to be re-sentenced, they were each given substantially shorter punishments. A fourth, Nicholas Slatten, whom prosecutors blamed for igniting the firefight, was sentenced to life in prison.

 

A federal appeals court later overturned Slatten's first-degree murder conviction, but the Justice Department tried him again and secured another life sentence last year.

 

Heard's lawyer, David Schertler, said they were “thrilled and grateful” for the pardon. “We have always believed in Dustin’s innocence and have never given up the fight to vindicate him. He served his country honorably and, finally today, he has his well-deserved freedom.”

 

A lawyer for Liberty, Bill Coffield, said, “These are four innocent guys and it is completely justified."

 

The American Civil Liberties Union decried the pardons. Hina Shamsi, the director of the organization's national security project, said in a statement that the shootings caused "devastation in Iraq, shame and horror in the United States, and a worldwide scandal. President Trump insults the memory of the Iraqi victims and further degrades his office with this action.”

 

The trial was held years after a first indictment against the men was dismissed when a judge ruled that the Justice Department had withheld evidence from a grand jury and violated the guards' constitutional rights. The dismissal outraged many Iraqis, who said it showed Americans considered themselves above the law.

 

Joe Biden, speaking in Baghdad in 2010 as the vice president, expressed his “personal regret” for the shootings in declaring that the U.S. would appeal the court decision. The Justice Department later revived the case.

 

Blackwater contractors were notorious in Baghdad at the time and frequently accused of firing shots at the slightest pretext, including to clear their way in traffic. The shooting in the traffic circle stood out for the number killed, but was far from an isolated event in Iraq at the time.

 

Armed militants opposed to the U.S. presence in Iraq frequently deployed vehicle bombs next to Western and Iraqi motorcades in traffic, making the ubiquitous armed guards accompanying most dignitaries extra jittery — and in Blackwater's case, insistent about not allowing other vehicles near them.

 

The Blackwater firm was founded by Erik Prince, an ally of Trump and the brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. It has since been renamed.

 

Associated Press writer Ellen Knickmeyer in Oklahoma City contributed to this report.

  • Upvote 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Jaygo said:

Nobody is going to respond to this post I am betting. Many don’t agree with Trumps decision, but don’t want to say anything. It was a bad move that should have never happened. 

Its doubtful that any Americans just started shooting Iraqis without good reason, and you will be hard pressed to find any truth in the Maliki years.

  • Like 2
  • Upvote 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, KDuesing said:

Its doubtful that any Americans just started shooting Iraqis without good reason, and you will be hard pressed to find any truth in the Maliki years.

 

i know of a couple truths about Maliki , minor infractions ..... ordered his army to flee when isis rolled into iraq allowing them to destroy the country  ....

 

june 12 2014 speicher massacre ... at least 2000 unarmed cadets executed by isis ....

 

maliki was never held accountable for those atrocities and thats just the tip of malikis spear ,,,

......so ready to exchange outa this jacked up mess , letsroll

  • Pow! 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



  • Testing the Rocker Badge!

  • Live Exchange Rate

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.