Wikileaks Page 3

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  • KTM 6 Apr 2010 01:48:06 1,674 posts
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    I get the impression people are thinking that that van just happened to be bimbeling by and just decided to help out some fellow humans that needed urgent help.

    There are no other people in that area, on that video, apart from the solider and the victims. A combat indicator.

    There are American heavy armour in the area, 2 apaches over head and a load of infantry.

    And ahmed the friendly neighbour decides to take his bus for a spin at that exact time?

    It can all be percieved as suspicious behavior, from the large group of men to the bus turning up. Bearing in mind we've no idea of what the situation outside the scope of that video is. I would like to think that I wouldn't have come to the same decision that those guys came to but they had they're reasons and they can show they acted in good faith. Their questionable comms with each other may be cause for concern. But in the fog of war everything seemed very clear to them. I doubt they would have been punished and rightly so. Many soldiers have been punished After the media got hold of a story and the general uninformed public start baying for blood. I think living with the knowledge that you killed that many innocent people would be punishment enough.


  • Retroid Moderator 6 Apr 2010 01:51:25 44,503 posts
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    It's quite obvious that van turned up to help any survivors. It's not obvious at all that anyone in it was armed, or they couldn't just follow it / ID it for patrols.

    The whole situation existed because they decided that the "something" the journos were carrying were guns & RPGs based on very little; for that they decided to wipe out a crowd and anyone who came to help.
  • NBZ 6 Apr 2010 01:53:18 2,351 posts
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    And ahmed the friendly neighbour decides to take his bus for a spin at that exact time?

    Or he hears loud noises, sees people needing medical attention and decides to get his van out to ferry them to the hospital.

    There was no threat. So what if maybe an injured insurgent got away? Why was it important to kill the suspected people?

    If there were humvees, soldiers in the area, they could have been allowed to mop up, pick the people up if need be.

    There was no need to shoot at and kill the people associated with the van even if some cover story or fog of war could be used for the earlier incident.
  • mal 6 Apr 2010 01:53:39 22,336 posts
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    So it's now preferable to kill rather than take prisoners all of a sudden is it? A van turns up and heads for the one man who's still conscious and moving but injured - maybe he told them where he was. They're not carrying weapons, so if there are infantry around as you suggest, why not tell one of them to wave his gun around and arrest those people for helping the enemy. Should be easy - though admittedly not quite as easy as the apache killing every motherfucker in the room as it turned out.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • Bremenacht 6 Apr 2010 01:55:11 17,613 posts
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    Wow - so that's what a 'battle' is like: sitting somewhere safe and murdering civilians. Commendations must be in order.
  • Deleted user 6 April 2010 01:56:39
    Bremenacht wrote:
    Wow - so that's what a 'battle' is like: sitting somewhere safe and murdering civilians. Commendations must be in order.

    Is that not modern gaming in a nutshell?
  • KTM 6 Apr 2010 02:02:55 1,674 posts
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    I'll make up a context and then consider that video again under new circumstances.

    There has been a suicide bomb on the bazaar in the city. Your sent down to help out the local population and control the situation. On the way your convoy is ambushed and you have 2 fatalities and a couple of casualties. The ambushers get away relatively unscathed. A bit further down the road you get intel over the radio that there maybe another suicide vehicle in the way to the bazaar and that the ambushers are swinging round to launch another attack on you while your cordoning an controlling the previous site.

    Your apaches that are covering the immediate area spot a large group of men carrying what appear to be weapons.

    Your rules of engagement would allow you to open fire. There are no other people on the streets, it's like a ghost town but for the group of men.

    The situation now seems pretty justified to me. A terrible mistake yes, but not barbaric and not trigger happy cunts smashing in what ever the feel like.

    There isn't much point at pointing a rifle at an apache, it's way out of range and you wouldn't do anything to it if you hit it. There is, however, a good reason to point a rifle at men. The most effiecient and less likely to lose life way to win a fight is to win it immediately with out the other guy having a chance. So use the apache. It's a guaranteed winner.

    Then from no where a bus turns up, it's not like the poor bloke that didn't die could call it up and neither could any one else.

    There's some thing unexplained going on in that video and it's not an open and shut case of soldiers killing people for fun.
  • NBZ 6 Apr 2010 02:04:57 2,351 posts
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    it's not like the poor bloke that didn't die could call it up

    Actually, he was on the phone talking to a colleague accoprding to the rest of the info... he was on it til the moment he died according to the text.
  • Khanivor 6 Apr 2010 02:05:46 40,388 posts
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    It sure seems as if something bad has happened but is it really wise to view a video downloaded from a site called collateralmurder.com, which only hosts this one video, as being impartial? They've seen fit to editorialise the video, who knows what was edited out of it as well.

    The site has also gone down.
  • Deleted user 6 April 2010 02:07:03
    Khanivor wrote:
    The site has also gone down.

    Not here it hasn't.
  • NBZ 6 Apr 2010 02:07:32 2,351 posts
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    I doubt the US forces will provide us with unedited video though...

    and the real site is wikileaks. the other one is just a separate hosting for that one video if I understand it correctly.
  • KTM 6 Apr 2010 02:09:54 1,674 posts
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    I tell you what lads when your mates are dead and you've had people trying to kill you with RPGs and small arms IN REAL LIFE then you might have a little clue as to why these disconnected videos you see on YouTube and read about in the sun happen the way they do.

    No you can't kill civilians but just as nothing in that video (apart from the intro and outro) proves that they are civilians equally nothing proves that they aren't insurgents. The context that is missing from those 15 minutes would, I think, provide you with enough reasons to justify their behavior.

    You weren't there, it wasn't your decision and you don't know what else was happening. So none of us can decide if it Was right or wrong.

    Hopefully I'm getting across a different take on the situation though.
  • KTM 6 Apr 2010 02:11:10 1,674 posts
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    NBZ wrote:
    it's not like the poor bloke that didn't die could call it up

    Actually, he was on the phone talking to a colleague accoprding to the rest of the info... he was on it til the moment he died according to the text.

    Edited by NBZ at 02:05:23 06-04-2010

    I remeber now, you are right. Perhaps that is why the van arrived. But there's no proof either way on there.
  • Retroid Moderator 6 Apr 2010 02:11:44 44,503 posts
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    KTM wrote:
    it's not an open and shut case of soldiers killing people for fun.
    I don't think anyone has seriously said that.
  • Khanivor 6 Apr 2010 02:13:05 40,388 posts
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    It appears you're right NBZ. Still, making a production of it in the manner that has been done with the video seems to be milking the situation. Is the George Orwell quote really relevant to the incident, or is it relevant to Wikileaks' income?

    Reading other sources on the story and the original incident it certainly seems likely that the video shows the journalists being killed. I'm not going to jump to the conclusion that it happened in the way that it's presented by Wikileaks.

    The US forces do not need to provide an unedited video, when that video has been given to a group who chose to edit it themselves before releasing it to the public.
  • Retroid Moderator 6 Apr 2010 02:14:53 44,503 posts
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    Ask them if they can provide it unedited somewhere, if they haven't already.
  • Khanivor 6 Apr 2010 02:20:23 40,388 posts
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    Anyone else notice that at the end of the first cut it's sounds like British forces requesting immediate action, "We need to move time NOW!"?
  • Khanivor 6 Apr 2010 02:22:30 40,388 posts
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    Retroid wrote:
    Ask them if they can provide it unedited somewhere, if they haven't already.

    Unless you want to donate money there's no obvious way of contacting them. No email addy on that page at all, just donate now buttons a-go-go.
  • Lukey__b 6 Apr 2010 10:18:22 3,725 posts
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    @KTM

    I think most people understand that a day in Afghanistan as a squaddie isnít the same as Joe Bloggs in London.

    It doesnít make it right.

    Iíve never been in a situation where my group of mates has gang raped someone, but I can still say its wrong if someone joins in. I wasnít around in the 1700 -1800s, but I still think slavery is wrong. You see where Iím going? Iím not comparing what they did to slavery or rape, but I can still say if something is wrong or rightÖ.

    We are sending people in with the mentality of Them rather than Me. Which is completely understandable, but it is wrong. If I had people occupying my country for my safety, I would feel a lot better knowing they would value my life higher than theirsÖ. Like a fireman, or policeman seems to do.

    Itís not the case though. Weíre sending in people who are there to help, but will rather kill civilians than risk their lives. Iím not talking about running through a hail of bullets, using water pistols as weapons to save some Afghans catÖ I mean spending the extra risky few seconds to make sure the people you are going to kill really have weapons.

    Itís the shoot first, ask questions after mentality. I donít see why civilians should die before soldiers. Unless you are 100% sure, youíre not allowed to fire. Yes, there will be more allied casualtiesÖ. Donít want to die? Donít fucking sign up. The Afghanís didnít.

    *Interchange Afghan with relevant Arab nation.

    'Sup, what's guanine?

  • daz_john_smith 6 Apr 2010 11:03:24 1,636 posts
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    @Lukey_b

    Well said
  • sirtacos 6 Apr 2010 11:16:29 7,268 posts
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    Khanivor wrote:
    Is the George Orwell quote really relevant to the incident, or is it relevant to Wikileaks' income?

    IMO it absolutely is, given the context of the incident and the name of the site itself. The point is that no matter how organized, 'sanitized' or regulated warfare is, the nature of the beast is still murder.
    Language has a way of obscuring these realities, especially when euphemisms such as 'collateral damage' are routinely used. This is particularly relevant here, when the US Army lied outright (I don't really blame it though, in the same way that I don't blame a lion for killing a gazelle - what else could the Army do, shrug coyly and tell everyone "hey guys, we messed up and killed a bunch of civilians again. Oops! Sorry Reuters lol")...
    The quotation is even more relevant when you consider that political language is responsible for the Iraqi situation in the first place ("give an appearance of solidity to pure wind").

    when that video has been given to a group who chose to edit it themselves before releasing it to the public.

    From collateralmurder.org: "WikiLeaks has released both the original 38 minutes video and a shorter version with an initial analysis."
    Here's a link to the supposedly uncut vid: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=is9sxRfU-ik
    Obviously they have an agenda, but it's not like they're withholding information.
  • KTM 6 Apr 2010 11:23:26 1,674 posts
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    @Lukey_b

    In the majority of cases this is what happens. Soldiers do stop and think before pulling the trigger. I'm trying to defend the blokes in the helicopter as there is always a reason for an incident occurring.

    And I think its important to note that the majority of Afghans want us to be there. We are helping them get rid of oppressors. We build schools, hospitals and power stations. Provide clean water and medicine.

    More innocent Afghans are killed by Taliban than are killed by us.

    The lack of understanding and the the way that people are so happy to say this is right and this is wrong when they haven't got a clue is very frustrating. It's a massive problem in this country and a big reason why our forces are not supported as well as they should be.

    EDIT: I can't really argue for this any more, everyone is entitled to their opinion and to life life as they see fit. A lot of young British lads are being killed and maimed and they don't ask anything from you except for a bit of understanding or at least an open mind towards the conflicts and incidents that happen.

    I love EG and value these discussions greatly. I'm going to have to bow out of this one now as I'm to close to the subject matter to be objective any more.

  • sirtacos 6 Apr 2010 11:28:59 7,268 posts
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    Good point KTM - it doesn't help to jump to conclusions when the entire problem is caused by jumping to conclusions in the first place.
  • Bloodloss 6 Apr 2010 11:39:37 4,499 posts
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    It's not a matter of a 'few extra seconds.' They'd still look very much like a group of young men carrying weapons no matter how long they looked at them and it still looks to me that some of them actually did have weapons.

    I completely agree with KTM and it's nice to have someone from the other side who actually knows what they're talking about in these discussions for once.
  • Lukey__b 6 Apr 2010 11:47:54 3,725 posts
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    Thatís cool that theyíre happy for us to be their. What Iím saying is I think we would come off a lot better if they were seen to act selflessly all of the time. That means putting their life after civilians.

    This isnít a war where we need to be there for the defence of our own country. We are there as the world police, if weíre going to be the world police and start these conflicts then we need to change the way we act in these sort of conflicts. More like international police than a military arm of the government with the ironic name of Ďdefenceí.

    Iím not second guessing the soldiers, Iím sure they are doing what they are trained for. The problem I have is that all of it is fundamentally wrong on a base level. There is a difference between police and the military and what we seem to be doing is global policing, with the military.

    Get a country full of people wanting to invade another country, call them the enemy, declare war and then send in the boys to do the job. Thatís what the army is good forÖ not for policing entire countries.

    BleughÖ. Iím waffling on. Iím not angry at the soldiers themselves but at the fuckers who put them where they are in the situation they are in.

    'Sup, what's guanine?

  • Whizzo 6 Apr 2010 11:49:00 43,033 posts
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    Appalling stuff, the Apache crew seemed to have convinced themselves there were weapons there and they were in fact shooting as well, they saw what they wanted to see and reacted accordingly.

    This space left intentionally blank.

  • mal 6 Apr 2010 12:06:14 22,336 posts
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    I hope you're right, KTM. I hope there is some background we're missing that explains how the chopper crew could make such a deadly mistake. And I hope it's convincing enough to persuade the Afghans that it's an understandable mistake, otherwise this isn't exactly going to help the situation out there.

    Course, if the chopper crew hadn't targetted unarmed civilians in the first place there wouldn't be a problem - but you're right, there must be a reason why they did that.

    There needs to be a separate explanation for the van shooting as well. That's a separate issue imo.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • KTM 6 Apr 2010 12:11:24 1,674 posts
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    mal wrote:
    I hope you're right, KTM. I hope there is some background we're missing that explains how the chopper crew could make such a deadly mistake. And I hope it's convincing enough to persuade the Afghans that it's an understandable mistake, otherwise this isn't exactly going to help the situation out there.

    Course, if the chopper crew hadn't targetted unarmed civilians in the first place there wouldn't be a problem - but you're right, there must be a reason why they did that.

    There needs to be a separate explanation for the van shooting as well. That's a separate issue imo.

    That van is identified at the beginning of the full length video. I think the whole situation isn't as clear cut as it presented to be.
  • KTM 6 Apr 2010 12:17:14 1,674 posts
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    In 2007 it may not have been such a good idea to openly carry weapons, especially when there are American forces in the area. Remember that the war photographer was there for a reason and had his camera out for a reason. These Iraqi people aren't stupid, they know what they are doing.
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