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Murtha is still spineless, still denying rights of the accused

Information  May 30 2006
 — By Marcus

A few people that have left comments on the pervious Murtha entries that I can’t avoid writing about. In order to save time and space, I will not blockquote each comment. However, the same theme of Murtha being correct about the incident in Iraq exists in them all. Sadly, the people who responded with the “Murtha is right” idea missed the boat on the entire point of the pieces.

Over two hundred years ago, a group of men declared themselves and the rest of the American colonies free of British rule and in doing so wrote the single greatest basic framework for any government. That writing, the Constitution, was amended to include basic rights that all Americans possess.

Amendment V of the Bill of Rights (emphasis mine).

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Last I checked, Murtha was not a Grand Jury, nor is he a member of the Grand Jury.

Since the accused are members of the armed forces, another set of laws applies to them. In some cases, the Uniform Code of Military Justice is much more strict, and in other cases it provides the same rights to military members as does the Constitution to all Americans. In this case, the same rights apply.

Article 32, section A of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (emphasis mine).

No charge or specification may be referred to a general court-martial for trial until a through and impartial investigation of all the matters set forth therein has been made. This investigation shall include inquiry as to the truth of the matter set forth in the charges, consideration of the form of charges, and recommendation as to the disposition which should be made of the case in the interest of justice and discipline.

Murtha didn’t conduct a through and impartial investigation, nor does he have the authority to under Article 32 of the UCMJ now that he is retired.

I hope those who commented before are paying attention now, because the boat has come back to pick you up. Pay close attention this time, please? Murtha violated the rights of the accused by running to the press. That is why I have taken offence to his statements and that is also why I refuse to retract anything I have said or change my opinion.

If you don’t learn or remember anything about this event, remember this. Just because someone may be correct does not entitle him to strip away the rights of those whom they accuse.

(10) Readers Comments

  1. I’m giving you a standing ovation right now!!

  2. You’re absolutely right, CPL M. – Murtha shot his mouth off to the press before any investigation was done. He couldn’t wait to proclaim guilt.

  3. CPL M,
    I totally agree with you. Murtha has already pronounced the soldiers as being guilty even before the investigation is complete.

  4. I know I should try to be more articulate but what keeps running through my mind is “Murtha is a JERK!!!!”

  5. Murtha not only violated there rights, he has thrown this into the realm of lies and misunderstandings. I watched the news these past few days. It sways back and forth. It went from, “no IED” went off they just snapped. To, yes one went off and a soldier was killed. Murtha is constantly saying, “someone told me this, I heard that.” Isn’t that called gossip? He is just stirring this cesspool of discontent.

    If anyone thinks murtha is doing this because he is loyal to our troops think again. He just uses them as pawns to prove his point. Thats all, he wants to be right. Damn HIM!!! Our troops deserve better and they deserve our loyalty and patience.

    Please note this; I would like some military feedback.
    On CNN, one of the witness’s being interviewed said;
    “I was going to get out of bed to go to school. I new the bomb was going to go off, when I heard the truck coming. So I covered my ears.”

    A two second sound byte and the people conducting the interview said the girl was confused and didn’t know what she was saying. Yet it was said. She seemed very precise about everything else. Her cousins family were one of the others affected by this. If this young girl new the rest of them would have.

    Is this grounds for justified? For me, if they knew; God help them!! This isn’t a typical war. The enemy won’t fight face to face, hand to hand. These insurgents are weak, shamefull bast***!!! We already new they would use woman and children. Saddahm was like hitler, raising young boys to fight in his regime. Many of these people are brainwashed. Young and old. How far they would take this? To the bitter end. Sorry to go off, and I hope this makes some sense.

    What people are also forgetting;
    A Young marine lost his life that day. His family were the only ones that made any sense in any interview. God Bless them!!

  6. Standing alongside CJ giving you a standing ovation!!

  7. saoirse,

    I’m not 100% sure I’m understanding your question, so please let me know if I’m off. I understand that you want to know if killing the people who knew about the IED would be justified. In short, no it wouldn’t. If the people killed were true civilians and not harboring insurgents, then it would be murder. However, if they people killed were not civilians, i.e. if they were members of the insurgency or providing safe haven, then perhaps the deaths would have been justified.

    I’m not a military lawyer, nor am I an expert on their rules of engagement since I wasn’t there. This is my opinion, and I could be wrong.

    CJ, you want to give your two cents on saoirse’s question?

  8. Thanks For the response Cpl M. Looking back, I wrote somewhat hurriedly and jumbled. It did pretty much answer.

    It seems to me it is easy for people to say; This shouldn’t have happened. Yet the question is; What happened? That’s why I agree with CJ. This needs to be handled by the military. Then brought out if need be. Not the spin put on it, like we see.

    As well, I am a civilian so should probably not be commenting at all.

    Thank You!!

  9. I caught that too, saoirse, and I want to know the same thing. DID she (and they) know about it? Was her father/grandfather/whatever the one who actually planted the IED? Funny how only one of the girl’s three wildly varying accounts of the incident is getting attention, isn’t it–and not the one that would exonerate the Marines.

    Furthermore, NOBODY knows for certain what happened there, but everyone seems ready to believe “civilians” from terrorist-infested Haditha rather than United States Marines. Sorry, I call BS on that. The story from the Marines’ side hasn’t even been made public, much less broadcast across the planet (and among our enemies), so Murtha and everyone else’s pessimistic, negative take is being accepted as gospel. Murtha should be ashamed, and so should all those who parrot his partisan, addle-brained crap. It’s GD un-American to not allow them to be innocent until PROVEN guilty, and they haven’t even been indicted. Bullshit.

    On another note, Cpl M, glad to see you writing over here. Nice new look at the old place, too (although I will miss your artistic talent!).

  10. Thanks Beth. For a while there I thought I had imagined it. I have dvr, so at the time I heard her interview I was able to rewind over and over. I couldn’t believe she said it.

    Why isn’t that being played on every american newstation? Over and over. It should be in the headlines of american newspapers. The american public needs to see that over and over. Quite honestly I think CNN has the best stories on this. The one about the inbed in Haditha. Well, there you go!! Its not an excuse, but a reality.

    Take care and God Bless!

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