Should…not Could

CNN headline is that the Ex-Army GI who orchestrated the killing of two Iraqi’s, their youngest daughter, and the raping and killing of their oldest daughter “Could face the Death Penalty.”

What did he do? Here’s a little tidbit…

Spc. James Barker, one of the soldiers involved, told investigators that the soldiers were drinking whiskey, playing cards and hitting golf balls when Green brought up the idea of going to the house near the checkpoint where they were stationed to rape the girl. Barker described Green as persistent.

So I say change that “Could” to “Should” or “Will.”

Personally, I think we hand him back to the Iraqi’s. This never should have gone to civilian court in the States. Either prosecute him under the UCMJ, or let Iraq have him.

I think they could be much more creative in assigning a fitting punishment for him.

(H/T LEX)

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2 Responses to Should…not Could

  1. A Random J.D. says:

    I wish that the Iraqi’s could try him, as well. I’m sure that their society is far less tolerant of this type of horrendous crime.

    As for why this is in US civilian court–Green was discharged from the military before he was charged with this crime. He can only be tried under the UCMJ (or court martialed) if he is currently in the military. It doesn’t matter that the crime occurred WHEN he was in the military. He would have to re-enlist in order for the military to court martial him.

    But in this case I’d rather the US civilian courts handle it than the military courts, anyway. Here’s why: although the UCMJ has the death penalty for many crimes (including both murder and rape), the president has to sign off on it/approve it, thus it is very rare for someone who has been court martialed to actually be executed for a crime. (I think they created this rule after WWII to stop impromptu trials and executions, but I’m not 100% sure.)
    Anyway, Bush signed off on one, but I don’t think the execution actually went through. So the last time the military actually executed someone was when JFK was in office.

  2. fastnav says:

    JD, makes sense to me.

    Although it’s not unheard of for folks to be “re-enlisted” against their will in order to be prosecuted for crimes, I see where you’re coming from.

    Not to disparage our justice system, but I can see the media hysteria over “justice” having more of an effect on the outcome of a civilian court proceeding.

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