No Court Martial for Lt. Col. West

Discussion in 'Middle East - General' started by lilcountriegal, Dec 10, 2003.

  1. lilcountriegal
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    lilcountriegal Senior Member

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    An officer in Iraq who used shock interrogation tactics to thwart an impending attack on American soldiers will not face a court martial, according to his lawyer.

    Lt. Col. Allen B. West will accept Article 15 non-judicial punishment from the commanding general of the 4th Infantry Division at a hearing Friday in Tikrit, Iraq, said Neal A. Puckett, a retired Marine officer.


    Lt. Col. Allen B. West in undated family photo (Courtesy Angela West)

    Puckett said in an e-mail, Maj. Gen. Raymond Odierno will conduct the hearing and decide whether West is guilty of aggravated assault.

    The commanding officer has discretion to accept or reject the recommendation of administrative punishment from the officer who presided over West's preliminary hearing in Tikrit last month, Lt. Col. Jimmy Davis. But Puckett said all indications are that West will not be court martialed.

    At his preliminary hearing, West acknowledged he allowed two soldiers to beat an Iraqi policeman who refused to reveal details of an ambush plot and fired his pistol near the man's head, threatening to kill him.

    If found guilty, the punishment could include a letter of reprimand and perhaps some forfeiture of his pay, Puckett said.

    That punishment would be recorded in his official military record, but does not amount to a federal conviction, the lawyer emphasized, which can only be adjudged by a court martial.

    "We presume that he will be ordered back to Ft. Hood [Texas] thereafter, but a timeline for his return has been neither established nor promised by the Army," Puckett said. "All indications are that Lt. Col. West will not be ordered to face trial by general court martial, and will be allowed to retire in the grade of lieutenant colonel sometime in the spring of 2004."


    Article


    He's still facing charges, which I think is absurd... but at least this is a start...
     
  2. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    OUTSTANDING NEWS!!!

    :clap: :clap: :clap:
     
  3. Johnney
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    Johnney Senior Member

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    So how big was the attack he thwarted supposed to be? I mean I know any loss of one of ours is too great, but was this supposed to be a massacure of some type?

    Court martial? shit give him a medal. Stop being so fucking PC about how we collect information, specailly when it saves our guys.
     
  4. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    I don't know the magnitude, but he most certainly saved lives. Even if it was just one US soldier who was saved - he still deserves a medal.
     
  5. Psychoblues
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    Psychoblues Senior Member

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    You were never a POW, were you? The Geneva Convention was and is a sound document. Come on, admit it, you're not even a Vet or even one of those fake Vets that survived the '60's, are you?
     
  6. lilcountriegal
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    lilcountriegal Senior Member

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    Too bad those on the other side dont abide by that "sound document".

    And please point me to the portion of the Geneva Convention that states one is not allowed to "scare the shit" out of someone without physically touching them?
     
  7. Johnney
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    Johnney Senior Member

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    No I wasnt a POW. No I didnt "survive" the 60's. I wasnt around until the 70's.
    and lilcountriegal is correct. The Geneva Convention would be a sound document IF they bad guys abided by it.
    Like i said, we need to get with the times. Our enemies dont go buy it, so why should we? Did our POW's get a chef flown in when they were captive? I seem to remember we extended that kindness to one of theres, some general. Now tell me, do you think that is the same care our guys recieved.

    And one more thing, I served for ten years. I paid for some of these nice freedoms I use. Can you say the same thing?
    Hey If your a Vet, thank you for serving
    If not, stop trying to harsh me about being one
     
  8. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    What does being a vet have to do with evaluating the circumstances in which Col. West extracted the information? I don't need to be a vet to see that he saved lives. Thank God you aren't any longer in the services, if you ever were at all.
     
  9. Moi
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    Moi Active Member

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    At his preliminary hearing, West acknowledged he allowed two soldiers to beat an Iraqi policeman who refused to reveal details of an ambush plot and fired his pistol near the man's head, threatening to kill him.

    Thus, the man in question is a civilian. Under the Geneva Convention:

    1. Civilians are not to be subject to attack. This includes direct attacks on civilians and indiscriminate attacks against areas in which civilians are present.
    2. There is to be no destruction of property unless justified by military necessity.
    3. Individuals or groups must not be deported, regardless of motive.
    4. Civilians must not be used as hostages.
    5. Civilians must not be subject to outrages upon personal dignity.
    6. Civilians must not be tortured, raped or enslaved.
    7. Civilians must not be subject to collective punishment and reprisals.
    8. Civilians must not receive differential treatment based on race, religion, nationality, or political allegiance.
    9. Warring parties must not use or develop biological or chemical weapons and must not allow children under 15 to participate in hostilities or to be recruited into the armed forces.


    The Geneva Conventions and supplementary protocols make a distinction between combatants and civilians. The two groups must be treated differently by the warring sides and, therefore, combatants must be clearly distinguishable from civilians. Although this obligation benefits civilians by making it easier for the warring sides to avoid targeting non-combatants, soldiers also benefit because they become immune from prosecution for acts of war. For example, a civilian who shoots a soldier may be liable for murder while a soldier who shoots an enemy soldier and is captured may not be punished.

    So, under a strict reading, this may have been against the GC but the slap on the wrist that he got was most likely for the "beating" not for the gun shot near his head. Technically speaking, beating a prisoner, whether civilian or miliary, is against the GC. The punishment seems to fit the crime however and I'm satisfied that justice was served.
     
  10. Johnney
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    Johnney Senior Member

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    Any military knows what the GC is for. But lets face it. Im sure niether side has EVER used deadly force against civies. Im jsut as sure that ever military has NEVER violated the GC. Things happen.
     

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