Wednesday, October 19, 2005

CENTCOM condemns desecration of bodies, says investigation is forthcoming

Just got this in an email from CENTCOM:

October 19, 2005
Release Number: 05-10-71



MacDill AFB, FL -- Recent media reports out of Afghanistan have alleged that U.S. forces were involved in an incident involving the desecration of the bodies of deceased enemy combatants.

Under no circumstances does U.S. Central Command condone the desecration, abuse or inappropriate treatment of enemy combatants. Such actions are contrary to U.S. policy as well as the Geneva Convention.

The Army Criminal Investigation Division has initiated an investigation into the alleged misconduct. Should that investigation uncover actions by U.S. personnel that were contrary to the Geneva Convention and U.S. policy, legal and disciplinary action will be taken in accordance with the U.S. Code of Military Justice.




Oct. 20, 2005
Release # 051020-02

U.S. Investigates Allegation of Law of War Violation

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan - The Army Criminal Investigation Division has initiated an investigation into alleged misconduct by U.S. service members,including the burning of dead enemy combatant bodies under inappropriate circumstances.

"This command takes all allegations of misconduct or inappropriate behavior seriously and has directed an investigation into circumstances surrounding this allegation," said Maj. Gen. Jason Kamiya, Combined Joint Task Force-76 Commander. "If the allegation is substantiated, the appropriate course of action under the Uniform Code of Military Justice and corrective action will be taken."

Service members are expected to abide by the highest standards of behavior and the law, he said.

"This command does not condone the mistreatment of enemy combatants or the desecration of their religious and cultural beliefs," Kamiya said.

"This alleged action is repugnant to our common values, is contrary to our commands approved tactical operating procedures, and is not sanctioned by this command. Our efforts to thoroughly investigate this allegation are a reflection of our commitment to the Government of Afghanistan and the Afghan people."


Milbloggers and friends-of: CENTCOM is requesting widest possible dissemination of this information. You can find it here: Recent CENTCOM News Releases.


UPDATE: Open Post at the Mudville Gazette.

UPDATE: Here's a version of the story from Film rolls as troops burn dead.

In the story, writer Tom Allard says PSYOPS soldiers were taunting the Taliban in a village over a loudspeaker, saying things like "you are cowardly dogs" and "lady-boys."

His conclusion is noteworthy:

The incident is reminiscent of the psychological techniques used in Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison.