Justice served…..almost

The U.S. Marines who have murdered many Iraqi civilians in Bush’s War have been facing justice in the U.S. lately and almost all of those who have been charged have either plead guilty or convicted in variety of horrendous crimes ranging from the Abu Gharaib abuse to the Haditha/Mahmudiyah massacre. Today one of the conspirator of the March 2006 Mahmudiyah massacre in which a teenage girl was raped, murdered, and burned along with her entire family has been found guilty of conspiracy to murder, rape, cover up, and breaking and sent to jail for 110 years in jail. This Marine, Private Jesse Spielman, was not actually charged with the committing of these atrocities but he was a conspirator for the other tfour Marines who actually did the crime, but he was charged as a “conspirator” because he was the lookout man. In essence, he had the ability to stop this unconscionable crime from taking place but he didn’t – choosing to drink whiskey and “chill”. In fact, the prosecutors charged, Pvt. Spielman was “few feet away while Abeer Qassim al-Janabi was being raped by Spc Barker, Sgt Cortez, Pf. Bryan L Howard, and the ringleader Pvt Steven Green.” Ironically, Spielman is the only criminal to receive the largest jail time for this crime, while the three – Baker, Cortez, aand Howard – received sentence ranging from 5 years to 100 years.The ringleader, Steven Green, is being prosecuted as a civilian with capital punishment if convicted in a federal court.

Actually, Spielman would only serve “10” years before he is eligible for parole as the prosecutors made that deal before the trial regardless of what the jury had recommended after his conviction. But what is outrageous is the fact that this Marine is receiving more punishment than some of the guys who actually raped, burned, and murdered that whole family. In fact one of the perpetrators is only getting 5 years. Yes, five fucking years. Are they serious? I’m not saying Pvt. Spielman should not be punished harshly but at the same time, he was a stupid drunkard who failed to stop a terrible crime, not the actual perpetrator. Yes I’m happy Spielman is away for a long time but I’d rather had Spielman get five years than one of the others. Justice is served halfway this time. Some of the murders got lesser punishment because they cooperated early and plead guilty before going to trial but that doesn’t mean they should get away with rape, murder, and discretion. This has certainly left a foul taste in my mouth but at the same time I’m encouraged by the United States judicial system as long as that asshole Steven Green gets the death penalty. Then I’m satisfied.

Like the many so-called developed countries, the United States is not perfect but no one can argue that the U.S. holds its military personal to a higher code of conduct than other countries (don’t quote me on that). I don’t remember those Brits in Basra who were caught on camera beating the shit out of an Iraqi kid being prosecuted and punished. But almost every U.S. soldier accused of a crime or misconduct against civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan have either already been prosecuted or are awaiting trial; that is not something I can say for Gitmo interrogators. I’m sure one day those interrogators will be brought to justice. I just believe that there are more good conscionable Americans than not, and at the end of the day, those with good conscious will prevail over bad ones like Spielman, Cortez, Barker, Howard, and Green. Yet I know there are some Americans who are so evil, so repugnant, so coldblooded that they believe things like this:

“It’s time this nation faced the truth. War is an ugly business. If we’re going to wage it, we should be completely ruthless and devastatingly violent, because doing so will end the wars quickly and limit the casualties on both sides…. We’ve been fighting stupid for decades now.” – A blogger at Media Lies. How fitting.

I’m glad to know that this is not what the majority of Americans believe or support. But it is really sad to see Republican presidential candidates (we should redouble Guantamo Bay – Mitt Romney) cater to such a hateful and anti-American values.

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