Murtha Lied; Marines Were Tried (And Acquitted)
On May 17, 2006, John Murtha, he of the unassailable 'warhero'/'patriot mythos, assailed his fellow Marines in Haditha as murderers “in cold blood.” The super-patriot made this indictment, in front of an international audience, before an investigation had concluded. His spurious charges seem to have done those eight men charged little legal damage – but they have caused incalculable harm to the United States armed forces still in the field.
At Camp Pendleton yesterday, military judge Col. Steven Folsom dismissed all charges against Lt. Col. Jeffrey R. Chessani, the highest-ranking officer accused in the Haditha massacre-of-justice. The ruling makes him the seventh of eight accused in the Haditha skirmish to have charges dismissed. In Chessani’s case, his charges were dropped without prejudice – meaning they could be filed again later, but CentCom could not be part of the process, as there had been fear the judge had an inappropriately close relationship with one of the investigators. Chessani had been accused of violating a lawful order and dereliction of duty in reporting the incident.
The antiwar Left morphed reporting errors into a “cover-up,” much as it deformed a self-defense operation against terrorists hiding amidst Iraq’s civilian population as an imperial assault on 24 blameless Iraqi civilians cowering “as if in prayer.”
Lt. Col. Chessani can now be reunited with his six young children.“We hope it’s over,” said his attorney Brian Rooney.” We believe it should be over.” Rooney added, “We’ve had to go through a two-year process to prove what we knew from the beginning.”
Rooney referred to the report of the military’s internal investigation, issued in March 2006, two months before Murtha denounced his own military before the world. (Watch Murtha slander our troops.) The report concluded, “there is no evidence that the Marines intentionally set out to target, engage, and kill non-combatants.”
Every trial to date has proven the report truthful and Murtha a calumnious liar: