It keeps getting uglier

Another piece of context for the Mahmudiyah rape-murder atrocity falls into place

A US military hearing has examined testimony of how three soldiers took it in turns to try to rape an Iraqi girl aged 14 in Mahmudiya in March.

The girl and three family members were allegedly killed by four US soldiers.

Graphic details of the attack at the family’s home came in a sworn statement by one of the accused, James P Barker.


Investigator Benjamin Bierce interviewed Mr Barker, 23, on 30 June and took down his statement, he told the hearing at a US military base in Baghdad.

On the day of the attack the soldiers had been drinking Iraqi whisky mixed with an energy drink and practising golf strokes at a checkpoint south of Baghdad, Mr Barker’s statement said.

One of the soldiers, Steven Green, said he “wanted to go to a house and kill some Iraqis,” it alleged.

The four eventually went to a house about 200 metres (yards) away and put the parents and their five-year old daughter in the bedroom, but kept the older girl in the living room.

According to Mr Barker’s statement, he and Mr Cortez took it in turns to rape or attempt to rape her.

Mr Barker heard shots from the bedroom, and Steven Green emerged with an AK-47 in his hand saying “They’re all dead. I just killed them.”

According to the testimony, Mr Green then also raped the girl and shot her dead.

Her body was doused in kerosene and set alight.

The first day of the hearing on Sunday saw an Iraqi army medic describe how he found the bodies of the four Iraqis.

He told prosecutors he was ill for weeks after witnessing the crime scene.

I can’t honestly say I blame him. I’m feeling sick just from reading this.

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2 Responses to It keeps getting uglier

  1. Wren says:

    What kind of context could ever excuse the raping of a fourteen-year-old girl and killing her and her entire family? They might as well go for the insanity plea. That makes more sense than saying they were in combat and stressed out so it’s understandable for them to relieve that stress by raping a girl, killing her and her family and then burning them to cover it up. It is sick to think that is these soldiers’ defense. If the stress of war is an excuse, why even have such a thing as a war crime? However, Bush doesn’t even have that as a defense for starting this war of aggression and continued occupation.

  2. Bina says:

    There’s one reason the insanity defence won’t work here: It took planning and premeditation between as many as four individuals. One nut acting alone might pass muster, but four, acting together? That’s folie a quatre–surely a novelty in any court of law.

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