November 25, 2013

Gurkha Who Beheaded Taliban Cleared

This is one of those instances where the double-standard imposed on our troops becomes almost unbearable. That somehow pissing on a dead Taliban soldier or taking the head off someone who is already dead is equivalent to what the Taliban do: behead someone who is alive.

I'm not saying we should be taking scalps, fingers, or heads off the enemy dead. Clearly this is wrong. But when this guy cut the head off a dead Taliban soldier he didn't "behead" him.

We use the word behead to denote the killing of someone, not the desecration of a corpse.

Moreover, crimes occur in all contexts -- even in war. It's how you treat the perpetrators of crimes that distinguishes the good guys from the bad guys.

If one of our soldiers were to behead a POW, we'd call him a murderer. When the Taliban do it, they call him a hero.

If you can't get that then you're not worth talking to. Unfortunately we have a word for people who don't understand such simple concepts. We call these people "reporters".

Fortunately this particular Gurkha soldier has been exonerated. It seems he only beheaded the dead Taliban because he was trying to get a positive ID on a high value target:

The Gurkha faced a court martial and possible jail sentence if he had been found guilty of a war crime.

However, the decision taken was that the soldier was fighting for his life and did not have time to reload his weapon as his victim attacked.

The Gurkhas had intended to remove the Taliban leader’s body from the battlefield for identification purposes.

But they came under heavy fire as their tried to do so. Military sources said that in the heat of battle, the Gurkha took out his curved kukri knife and beheaded the dead insurgent.

I'm glad this guy was found not-guilty and has been reinstated. What pisses me off are all the morons who called him a "war criminal". Once he explained himself to his commanding officer that should have been the end of it.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:02 PM | Comments |