Seventeen Iraqis were killed and 14 seriously wounded in an unprovoked attack by the four who indiscriminately fired machine guns, sniper rifles, and rocket-propelled grenades into a crowd of unarmed civilians. Among the dead were two boys, 9 and 11 years of age, and a woman burned alive in her car. The four killers suffered no injuries and their claims of self-defense were rejected by Iraqi and U.S. investigations. It was one of many atrocities committed by U.S. and allied forces.
U.S. trials and retrials found the four guilty of heinous crimes including first-degree murder and manslaughter.
But why were they never tried in Iraq, the site of their monstrous actions?
The U.S.-led war on Iraq, which formally began in March 2003 but essentially started more than a decade earlier with frequent aerial bombing and oppressive economic sanctions, was greenlit by the U.S. Congress under false pretenses. It was sold to the American people by political leaders and corporate media via a mass disinformation campaign. The war was a regime change war and a war for oil, rooted in racism, revenge, imperialism and capitalism. It violated international law on multiple levels, including as a war of aggression. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis were killed and maimed. Over 4,500 “coalition forces,” most of whom were Americans, lost their lives. Tens of thousands more were wounded, many permanently. Nearly two decades on, occupying soldiers and Iraqi civilians are still dying. Some refer to the ongoing violence as blowback; yet, it is anything but unintended. It is the very nature of a military occupation to win by attrition, no matter the cost in lives or money.
"At this cemetery the team must respect those rites. With relatives allowed to watch from a distance, a student from a local seminary leads prayers around each Muslim grave. Two Christians were recently buried here as well."