US Soldiers Charged by Spanish Court

Discussion in 'Military' started by pegwinn, Oct 19, 2005.

  1. pegwinn
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    pegwinn Top of the Food Chain

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    I vividly remember this incident. It's utter nonsense. If you are going to go into a hostile fire zone, then whatever happens is an act of God. I am really surprised that our government isn't cooperating though. Means there is hope for them yet.

    Soldiers charged in journalist's death
    Spanish judge issues international arrest warrant

    From Al Goodman
    CNN Madrid Bureau Chief


    Wednesday, October 19, 2005; Posted: 6:51 p.m. EDT (22:51 GMT)

    Spanish TV cameraman Jose Couso died at a hotel in Baghdad
    MADRID, Spain (CNN) -- A Spanish judge issued an international arrest warrant Wednesday for three U.S. soldiers, charging them with murder in the death of Spanish TV cameraman Jose Couso in Baghdad, Iraq.

    Couso, who worked for Spain's Telecinco network, died at the Palestine Hotel on April 8, 2003, as U.S. forces advanced to take control of the city in April 2003.

    Investigating magistrate Santiago Pedraz of the National Court will seek the extradition of the soldiers to Spain, a court spokeswoman told CNN.

    They are wanted for "murder" and "a crime against the international community," according to the warrant, a copy of which was viewed by CNN partner network CNN+.

    The warrant said the soldiers were assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division and identified them as Sgt. Thomas Gibson, commander of the tank that allegedly fired a projectile at the hotel where Couso was filming; Capt. Philip Wolford, Gibson's superior; and Lt. Colonel Philip D. Camp, the captain's superior, CNN+ reported.

    It said the United States provided "no judicial cooperation" in trying to resolve the death of the cameraman.

    The judge previously had sought to question the soldiers but received no response from U.S. authorities.

    Couso's family has waged a campaign calling for an independent investigation into his death.

    A lawyer for Couso's family told CNN+ she doubted the warrant would have much practical effect.

    She said she understood the United States would not extradite the men and they stood little chance of arrest unless they left the United States.

    And the National Court prosecutor's office said later Wednesday it would appeal the arrest warrant on the ground the magistrate has no jurisdiction in the case, Spanish news reports said.

    It is understood the warrant remains in force until other more senior judges at the National Court resolve the prosecutor's appeal, expected to be formally presented Thursday.

    The Pentagon did not immediately respond to requests for reaction to the warrant.

    In the past, European courts have issued indictments for war crimes for U.S. officials, including Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Gen. Wesley Clark and other military officers. The United States does not turn over its soldiers.

    Couso was one of three journalists killed in two different buildings that day in Baghdad.

    Also killed at the Palestine Hotel was Reuters cameraman Taras Protsyuk, 35, a Ukrainian national based in Warsaw, Poland, the news agency said. Three other employees were wounded, it said.

    Al-Jazeera television reporter Tariq Ayoub was killed at the Arabic language network's facilities on the other side of the Tigris River from the Palestine Hotel, near Iraq's Ministry of Information. Three other Al-Jazeera employees were wounded, the network said.

    Telecinco said Couso died during surgery following the attack.

    The U.S. Central Command said U.S. forces came under "significant enemy fire" from both buildings and responded "consistent with the inherent right of self-defense." (Full story)

    Al-Jazeera said its facilities were deliberately targeted, an allegation denied by U.S. Central Command.

    "We don't target journalists deliberately -- not now, not ever," said Central Command spokesman Brig. Gen. Vince Brooks.

    Journalists from three Western television networks told CNN they were in the Palestine Hotel when the tank fired and saw no outgoing fire from it.

    "These tragic incidents appear to be the latest example of the Iraqi regime's continued strategy of using civilian facilities for regime military purposes," Central Command said in a press release. The reference to regime was to the government of Saddam Hussein.

    CNN's Jamie McIntyre contributed to this report
    SOURCE
     
  2. Mr. P
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    Mr. P Senior Member

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    Does anyone REALLY need more examples of why we DON'T want the UN world court BULLSHIT!
     
  3. archangel
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    archangel Guest

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    since when did Spain receive authority in Iraq or any other country outside their Jurisdiction...being a former Tank Commander...I say put a "Heat" round up the prosecutors arse! :death:
     
  4. Hobbit
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    Hobbit Senior Member

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    You know what? They're right. We're being jerks. Our soldiers shouldn't have fired at that hotel, knowing their could be journalists in there. Well, I can't do anything about it, so I say Spain should sanction us with their strong economy and might military. We all know that it takes a lot to break Spanish resolve and...and...and...BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! I just couldn't hold it in any more. Spain lost their credibility when they ran away with their tails between their legs after one terror attack. Cobardes! I spit on them and curse their yellow hearts which empower the most cowardly of the cowardly, the terrorists.
     
  5. Gunny
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    Gunny Gold Member

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    Nope. This is the PERFECT example. Screw Spain ... Screw the UN .... and screw the World Court, and screw this Spanish judge who attempting to push obvious agenda by European nations to emasculate the US.

    ANY US politician who signs on with this wins a nastygram e-mail and will NEVER get a vote from me.
     
  6. theim
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    theim Senior Member

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    It really is only logical. Al Qaeda told them who to vote for, they are the Spaniards' new masters. If they can pick who the Spanish choose as their leader, why is it a stretch to say that this judge feels it is his duty to preemptively do Al-Qaeda's bidding before they get punished again?
     
  7. Mr. P
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    Mr. P Senior Member

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    Yep..I'm with ya. :thup:
     
  8. ekrem
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    ekrem VIP Member

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    You should concern.

    Spanish court decisions have effect in the whole world.
    Even Augusto Pinochet had to experience this.

    This decision is going to lead to troubles between Madrid and Washington, as Washington sees this decision as non-sense.

    But maybe not and it is only a sign for Spanish people to show independency from Washington.
    I can not really believe US-Soldiers being effected by this court decision.


    As long as these 3 Soldiers never leave US-soil as private persons, nothing won't happen.
    But when they leave US-land as private persons, Spanish judicary will probably get them.
     
  9. theHawk
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    theHawk Registered Conservative

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    Thats exactly why this is bullshit, now they arent free to travel anywhere outside the US.
    I'm sorry but any journalist that was there at that time knew full well the dangers. I like how one of the reasons the judge is doing this is becuase the journalists inside the hotel didn't see any fire coming from the hotel. Excuse me how can people inside a building know there was no fire coming from it? These guys have x-ray vision and can see the entire exterior of the building from their room inside?

    :bs1:
     
  10. Gunny
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    Gunny Gold Member

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    Armed confrontation between Spain and the US? Gee, wonder who will win .... :rolleyes:
     
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