Fast, and rather disgusting. And rather poorly timed, the same day Lynndie England is convicted for her Abu Ghraib big adventure.
Think about how crass the Pentagon is. DOD is contacted about this scandal earlier today, tell the press they're investigating, because of course they only JUST heard of this horrible scandal recently (that's why they didn't act sooner, of course), and then a few hours later says sorry, we can't prosecute but we'll be sure to consider disciplinary action. Huh?
An Army spokesman, Paul Boyce, later told AP that the preliminary criminal inquiry determined, based on available evidence, that felony charges could not be pursued. But the matter, including the possibility of disciplinary action, was being handled in coordination with other military services, he said.Why can't they prosecute? This could be very well be a violation of the Geneva Conventions, and I quote the conventions themselves:
Article 34.-Remains of deceasedAnd tell me that our distinguished military lawyers, the ones who are able to take "conduct unbecoming an officer" and twist it to mean simply being gay - these same folks aren't able to find posing with dead bodies as trophies and using photos of those bodies to trade for porn, that they can't find in their little legal minds a way to make this stick? Come on.
1. The remains of persons who have died for reasons related to occupation or in detention resulting from occupation or hostilities and those of persons not nationals of the country in which they have died as a result of hostilities shall be respected
Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ)Now in all fairness, maybe the military means they're considering a court martial when they say they're looking at "disciplinary" measures. Though somehow I doubt it.
ART. 133. CONDUCT UNBECOMING AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN
Any commissioned officer, cadet, or midshipman who is convicted of conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.
Maybe somebody should buy Mr. Rumsfeld a copy of the Geneva Conventions and explain to him that the reason we signed on to these "quaint" rules was to protect OUR SOLDIERS from being treated improperly, be they dead or alive. We certainly don't have a lot of standing to criticize others for abusing our soldiers when we abuse theirs and look the other way.
Ah, the whitewash begins. And are the bodies even cold yet?
PS I'm a lawyer, but I'm not an expert on international law or the UCMJ. Can someone out there tell me: is a violation of the Geneva Conventions a felony under US law; how are such violations prosecuted; and is a violation of the UCMJ a felony? And if not, are there any felony charges that exist that apply to this situation?