UK Marine Guilty of Murder

by duncanr

prisonerA court martial has found a UK marine serving in Afghanistan guilty of murdering a wounded Taliban fighter, in clear violation of the Geneva Convention on the treatment of wounded captives

Sentence has not yet been passed, but the marine could be sentenced to ‘life in prison’

Some folk, however, (e.g., Maj Gen Thompson) are arguing for a more lenient sentence (say, 5 years), citing the pressures of war, heat of the moment, moment of madness

The problem I have with this defence is that . . . the murder was anything but heat of the battle, spur of the moment. It was clearly a cold-blooded, calculated killing. The wounded fighter was dragged out from the open and into the shelter of some nearby trees where the soldiers and their prisoner would be out of sight of the surveillance cameras on the helicopter overhead

The other issue I have with giving this marine a ‘mild’ prison sentence is the message it sends to the Taliban. If we want UK soldiers captured by the Taliban (or any other foe) to be treated in accord with the Geneva Convention, we must ourselves be seen to adhere to it in our own treatment of prisoners and to punish severely those who flout it

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