Alan West, Black Tea Bagger… Torturer.

Yesterday I did a blog on Alan West, who is a black conservative candidate running in Florida’s 22nd District for the US Congress. West has raised a lot of money – most of it from donors out side the district as the only viable black Republican candidate for the past 10 years for a seat in the US Congress or Senate.

West was trash talking about demanding that Pelosi give up the gavel if he is elected.

According to an emerging series of stories, Alan West is very tough on folks who can’t fight back – in his fantasy case a woman, Speaker Pelosi.

So tough in fact, his Military career ended when he was offered the “broken sword” choice – retirement…

Or a Court Martial for torturing an Iraqi prisoner. Like everything dealing with “conservative heroes” there are two stories – the first from a conservative site -

Failure of Command – The case of Lt. Col. Allen B. West.

…around August 8, another member of the Fourth I.D. — an artillery officer and a veteran of the 1991 Gulf War — was assigned as a civil military-affairs officer in a hot zone in the Sunni Triangle. His job placed him in daily contact with local leaders, and his responsibility was to help them help the army, to run local elections, and stamp out the insurgents. The officer was told by the intel people that they had solid information, from three sources, about a plot to assassinate him. He wasn’t very concerned, his attention focused on a scheduled local election only a few weeks away. His boss told him to stay off the streets for a few days, and he did. Readying to go back out on patrol on August 16, the lieutenant colonel was stopped at the gate by some locals who wanted to talk to him. The patrol went on without him, and was ambushed. No Americans were hurt, but the officer was convinced of the plot.

Between August 16 and 20, intelligence identified an Iraqi policeman who was allegedly involved in the assassination plot, and the man was arrested on Aug. 20. According to the officer’s defense attorney, this is what happened.

Lt. Col. Allen B. West was told the policeman was uncooperative, so he took a few of his men to the interrogation area to see for himself, where he found the prisoner being questioned by two female officers. They told him the man was belligerent, and wasn’t giving them any information. (Surprise, surprise. The idiocy of having women question male Arab prisoners is apparent to everyone except the army commanders.) West entered the room, sat across from the man, drew his pistol, and placed it in his lap. West told him he had come to either get information, or to kill him. The prisoner responded by smiling and saying, “I love you.” The interrogation continued, and one of West’s troops lost his temper and started slapping the man. West then had his men take the prisoner outside, where he again threatened the man, telling him that he would kill him on the count of five if he didn’t tell what he knew. The prisoner refused, and West fired his pistol into the air.

The interrogation continued, but not the beating. After about 20 more minutes of useless questioning, West grabbed the man, held him down near a box full of sand used to discharge jammed weapons, and said something like, “This is it. I’m going to count to five again, and if you don’t give me what I want, I’m going to kill you.” West held the man down, counted to five, and then fired his pistol into the discharging box about a foot from the Iraqi’s head. He began talking. Over the next few minutes, the prisoner gave very specific information about the plot. He named the conspirators, gave times and dates of the assassination plan, and even described how attacks would be made.

“If you’re a bad guy, don’t ever get between me and the safety and the lives of the American people,” West says of the incident. “As a commander, your moral responsibility is to take care of your troops.”

And this far different story which is why Col West was Court Martialed -

In August 2003, Colonel Allen West – commanding a US unit in Baghdad – heard a rumour that one of the Iraqi policeman he was working with was a secret insurgent. He ordered his officers to go and seize Yehiya Hamoodi, a thin, bespectacled 31-year-old, from his home. They dragged him into a Humvee, beat him, and then handcuffed, shackled and blindfolded him. In a dank interrogation room, they told him he had better start talking.

Perplexed and terrified, Yehiya explained he didn’t know what they were talking about: why was he here? So West was called in. He told Yehiya he was going to be killed. While his men beat him again, he explained he had one last chance to save his life – by talking.

Yehiya protested: I am innocent! What are you talking about? So West took him outside, had him pinned down, and began to shoot. First he fired into the air. Then he ordered his men to ram Yehiya’s head into a barrel used for cleaning weapons – and fired right next to his head. Then he began to count down from five. Finally Yehiya began to scream out names – any name he could think of, just to make it stop.

The men he named were seized and roughed up in turn. No evidence was found of any plot, and after another 45 days of terror, Yehiya was released. Today, he is severely traumatised, and collapses when he sees a Humvee approaching. The story only came to light after one of West’s soldiers began to protest against these practices, and the Pentagon launched an investigation. At a pre-trial hearing, West was fined $5,000, and now concedes grudgingly: “It’s possible I was wrong about Mr Hamoodi.” But he says he would do it again, and again, and again.

West has even taken to joking about it, gaining applause for telling Republican audiences: “It wasn’t torture. Seeing Rosie O’Donnell naked would be torture.” But the 1994 Convention Against Torture, to which the US is a signatory, is explicit: “Threat of imminent death” is the third form of torture it outlaws. There are reams of studies showing it can traumatise a person for life.

Two months later, however, the Army told West he had a choice: Retire or face a court-martial. West retired and moved to Florida, where he spent the next year teaching high school in Broward County.

At the time, even some Republicans had heartburn with the hue and cry by platic patriots over Col West. Former Congressman Bob Barr had this to say -

“It may be an interrogation technique that worked in this instance, but that’s not an heroic act,” Barr told WorldNetDaily. “This man apparently has a very distinguished military career and much of what he’s done may be heroic, but I don’t think this is an heroic act.”

In most states, felons can’t vote or hold political office…

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27 Responses

  1. And these mofo’s want to dis Obama look at this:

    4/20/2010
    Argentina ex-dictator Gen Bignone jailed for 25 years
    Gen Bignone, 82, ordered abductions and torture while second in command of the country’s largest torture centre between 1978 and 1979.

    “Justice was slow in coming but it has finally arrived,” said Estela de Carlotto, head of the human rights group Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo.

    Human rights groups say some 30,000 people died or “disappeared” during the period, which saw the military target left-wing opponents.

    The trial comes after amnesty laws, which had shielded perpetrators from charges, were overturned in 2005 by the country’s Supreme Court.

    • With the braking news this morning of investigations into financial improprieties by the Republican NY Senate Head and Marco Rubio in Florida, Tea Party darling who is running for a Senate Seat…

      I think looking the other way at Republican criminality is over.

  2. I’ve known this about West for sometime; this never comes up on right wing blogs though.

  3. [...] Thinks he’s the real Jack Bauer (and got drummed out of the service for it)  … [...]

  4. Read more about it here including the military investigation http://nowestfl22.blogspot.com

  5. nanakwame,I’m not sure whay you were trying to say. What I am sure of is that you have nerver served your country,let alone been in a fire fight and seen your brothers in arms shot down. Comparing a dictator to a soldier trying to keep his men safe is absurd! Maybe you should enlist and serve in a war zone for a yesr to gain a new perspective on life.In fact,this goes pretty much to all that have written before m,e on this article.

    • I will let Nanakwame speak for himself.

      After WWII we held trials in Nuremberg of German Wehrmacht officers who did many of the same things Alan West did. We didn’t just try the Nazis.

      For the leaders, a special punishment – The condemned were hanged on October 16, 1946. Their bodies were taken to Dachau, where the ovens that had consumed so many were fed for the last time with the bodies of the men that had built them. The ashes were scattered over the Isar River.

      Several thousand of those officers were sentenced to prison terms, and some were executed for their crimes.

      We did the same thing with the Japanese involved in war crimes, where over 20,000 civilian and military personnel were tried and convicted, and 900 were executed.

      Why exactly do you believe we should hold our Military officer to a lower standard than we hold everyone else?

      • Col West stopped an attack on his troops when it was imminent. He did this by rising above the stultified normal Army interrogation process when not doing so would have meant the deaths of his troops. He is a hero and all attempts to say otherwise are are either uninformed, pure politics or misguided. Ask yourself this: whose interest did West have at heart when he took the actions he did, the enemies or his troopers? In whose interest have his detractors placed more value? It is easy to be an arm chair quarterback when you are not faced with having to make that choice. West is a genuine hero and a real honest-to-goodness leader someone we do not see in Congress or the Democrat party all that often. Socialism and Marxism will die but not with a huge fight first. West is a man who can lead in that battle.

      • West is a torturer, and a disgrace to everything the US Military stands for.

        He fits perfectly in as a Tea Bagger…

  6. For those who think the Constitution is in fact a suicide pact, and that there is reason for one man’s rights to supersede another’s life, the Obama administration is your kind of government. But for the rest of the country your Marxist thinking means you are the enemy. You are the enemy within that every Federal oath taker is promising to protect us against. So, is it any wonder that the battle lines have been drawn to spectacularly? Evil has always fought against good. In this case, the Democrat party has embraced evil with both hands and open arms.

    • Have to disagree with you , JL – Spent some time in a couple of communist countries before the Wall fell, even visited a former Nazi concentration camp…

      So I got to see up close and personal, what you Tea Bagger types are all about.

      Get it though your little goose-stepping head…

      We ain’t gong there.

  7. [...] It’s not just Chris Ingram. Two veterans organizations, including the Veterans of Foreign Wars, just say no to Allen West, who was drummed out of the Army under rather unpleasant circumstances… [...]

  8. That “far different story” (above) contradicting the “conservative” story was written by Johann Hari who in 2011, was suspended from The Independent (where this version above was reported) following multiple charges of plagiarism and was separately accused of making malicious edits of several of his critics’ Wikipedia pages under a pseudonym, an allegation he later admitted to. The exposed plagiarism led to his being forced to return his 2008 Orwell Prize which contributed to his decision to leave The Independent. This is all documented in wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johann_Hari . Why am I not surprised that the alternate version used to counter the so called “conservative” version is provided by such an extreme “liberal” source, written by a scandalous author who is an admitted gay and is a self proclaimed secularist and atheist. (again all documented). Hari’s work has also appeared in The Huffington Post, New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The New Republic, The Nation, Le Monde, El Pais among others as we can see all clearly bastions of the “liberal” cause.

  9. As reported in the New York Times Published: May 27, 2004 After West’s retirement he received more than 2,000 letters and e-mails offering him moral support. A letter supporting West was signed by 95 members of Congress and sent to the Secretary of the Army. Would this have occurred if what the much maligned Johann Hari wrote in The Independent had any veracity which is what is used here as the counterpoint to what is alleged to be the “conservative” version. The author of the counterpoint, Johann Hari is one who would clearly be suspected of bias and who’s frequently mendacious behavior would place in question anything he might say as contrasted to the point of view expressed in the so called “conservative” version reported by a renowned author who was a former United States Deputy Undersecretary of Defense. Think about it, IF the version expressed by the admitted liar Johann Hari was really accurate then would Lt Col West have been fined only $5000 and allowed a military retirement with full honors and have retained his military pension? One has to both consider the source and use due diligence as to what comports with common sense and logic to decide which of the two versions above is ultimately cogent.

    • West was discharged from the Military, in what would be called a Plea Deal in the Civilian world.

      West resigned from the military in 2004, following an incident involving his unit’s treatment of an Iraqi man. West himself was charged with two violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, including one against assault, and agreed to retire after an Article 15 hearing in order to avoid a court martial.

      And that’s the facts of the case.

      • If what was described in the counterpoint version as reported by the admitted liar and plagiarist Johann Hari were true then West would not have been allowed to “agree to retire” in the first place but would instead have been brought to trial. If you read what I’ve had to say about the person’s character that provided the counterpoint to the so called “conservative” version then you’d have to minimally question the veracity of his version on just those grounds. Whether a person is “charged” for anything either in the civilian jurisprudence or military law being “charged” does not constitute “guilt”. More to the point, the fact that West ends up retiring by his own volition and retaining his military pension would suggest that the military did not consider the “two violations of Uniform Code of Military Justice” to have reached the level of flagrance to have warranted a trial but instead gave West a choice to potentially face a court martial or honorably retire with full military benefits. The choice for West was obvious after nearly 20 years in the military. Fact is West admitted that his actions were not the best choices to have been made when he said “I know the method I used was not right, but I wanted to take care of my soldiers”. After a military hearing, West was only fined $5,000 in the end which is an outcome that Maj. Gen. Raymond Odierno could still have rejected and instead ordered a court martial if he so desired. The final outcome was at the sole discretion of the military thus would reflect on the gravity of the charges against West which based on the choices offered West would suggest when taken into context was not a violation that reached the level of severity to require a court martial otherwise the military would have not offered the choices to West in the first place. You’re looking at the outcome from the point of view of a “plea deal” when in fact the likely preference of the military was to end the issue without having a court martial in as much as everyone know the choice that would be taken by West. This was just a way to absolve everyone on both sides to a large extent and end a complex issue in the easiest and less troublesome way possible by all parties involved. I liken this to a situation where if we had in custody a person who’s answers could have avoided the twin tower disaster; would we really want to worry that much about proper legal etiquette or would we instead want to worry more about potentially saving the lives of nearly 3000 innocent victims. There are times when we have gray areas to consider as opposed to simple black and white issues in life.

      • btx3 – I would add that “Article 15″ (the choice the Army took) is a Non-judicial punishment (NJP) in the U.S army under the “Uniform Code of Military Justice” that you’ve mentioned. NJP permits the Army to “administratively discipline troops” without a “court-martial”. So it was the Army who made the decision to not have a “court martial”. The results were reported as such on CNN: “The commanding general of the 4th Infantry Division on Friday accepted a U.S. military investigator’s recommendation and ordered administrative action against Lt. Col. Allen West, who was accused of using improper methods to force information out of an Iraqi detainee.” That commanding General referred to in the CNN statement was Raymond Odierno who agreed to the “U.S. Military Investigator’s recommendation”. So upon further review you would appear to be incorrect in your characterization when you state the following: West “agreed to retire after an Article 15 hearing in order to avoid a court martial”. It was rather that the Military Investigators recommended Article 15 and the commanding General at that time agreed to that recommendation. So clearly the Military did NOT consider this incident to rise to the level of “court martial” in the first place and hence it was not Allen West’s decision but the decision of the Military as reported by CNN. So the more accurate way to put it is that West was “accused” of ” two violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice” rather than how you characterized it as being “charged” of ” two violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice”. An “accusation” is far different than an actual “charge”. West was never officially “charged” with those military violations you’ve mentioned. I was responding to your post assuming that what you posted was entirely accurate when actually it was not totally accurate. What you referred to as similar to what is “called a Plea Deal” where West was offered a choice between a court martial or discharge is simply not exactly what occurred.

        BOTTOM LINE: The military command essentially agreed to the “U.S. military investigator’s recommendations” and ordered “administrative action” against West which is what Article 15 happens to be. The Military never did intend or want to bring a “court martial”. As a result of Article 15, a “Military hearing” decided upon the “$5000 fine over two months”. West agreed to retire thus being assigned to the rear detachment of the 4th Infantry Division while waiting the processing of his retirement request. West remained in the Military for more than 8 months before his honorable discharge.

      • After Abu Gharib the last thing the Army wanted was another case of abuse by and American soldier – this time an officer. That, more than anything likely influenced how the case was handled. The 8 month stay in the Army until the legal proceedings were done isn’t unusual – nor is it any reflection on West’s guilt of innocence. Insofar as West’s “Honorable service” we don’t have any idea if he was involved in other situations, as his service record isn’t public. West was fined $5,000 as part of his punishment in the Article 15 – meaning the Army certainly didn’t think he was innocent…

        Allen West’s Torture of an Innocent Civilian Iraqi Policeman

        An American officer has been stripped of his command after pleading guilty to assaulting an Iraqi detainee during interrogation

        http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2003/12/14/us_officer_to_resign_for_assulting_iraqi?mode=PF

        Army Lieutenant Colonel Allen B. West, who brandished a pistol and threatened to shoot an Iraqi police officer while interrogating him in 2003.

        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/09/18/pincuss-double-standard_n_291801.html

        Before that August night he had never conducted or witnessed an interrogation. He was a commander, overseeing an artillery battalion of some 650 soldiers and officers.

        http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/27/politics/27WEST.html?ex=1400990400&en=71d7b26fe2922d57&ei=5007&partner=USERLAND&pagewanted=2

        Many months before the Abu Ghraib prison scandal raised questions about whether the military was permitting or tolerating the mistreatment of detainees, the Army pointedly rejected Colonel West’s aggressive tactics during that single interrogation.

        http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/27/politics/27WEST.html?ex=1400990400&en=71d7b26fe2922d57&ei=5007&partner=USERLAND

        West fired his pistol near the head of the prisoner, threatened to kill him, and allowed his troops to beat the man.

        http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2003/12/14/us_officer_to_resign_for_assulting_iraqi?mode=PF

        Said West: “Yes, there had been sporadic body punches and shoving to the individual, which I witnessed but did not allow to get too brutal.”

        http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/juice/2010/03/allen_west_military_career_abuse_iraqi_detainee.php

        West admitted to pushing Hamoodi’s head into a clearing barrel full of sand, which is typically used for clearing weapons. West then put his gun into the same barrel, near Hamoodi’s head and fired.

        http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/juice/2010/03/allen_west_military_career_abuse_iraqi_detainee.php

        “In my anger I do not know if I fired two shots in to the barrel or one into the air and another into the barrel,” said West in his sworn statement.

        http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/juice/2010/03/allen_west_military_career_abuse_iraqi_detainee.php

        Military Investigation
        Q: When you heard the first shot did you think the LTC had shot the detainee?
        A: Yes.
        Q: Why did you think he shot the detainee?
        A: He seemed very frustrated he wasn’t getting the right answers. He was getting more and more upset. It was like it was the last straw.
        Q: How many times did LTC fire his weapon near the detainee’s head?
        A: 3
        Q: After the incident, did LTC tell you not to talk about the incident?
        A: Yes.

        http://www.aclu.org/torturefoia/released/105_167.pdf

        No plans for attacks on Americans or weapons were found. Colonel West testified that he did not know whether “any corroboration” of a plot was ever found, adding: “At the time I had to base my decision on the intelligence I received. It’s possible that I was wrong about Mr. Hamoodi.”

        http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/27/politics/27WEST.html?ex=1400990400&en=71d7b26fe2922d57&ei=5007&partner=USERLAND&pagewanted=3

        Soldiers set up surveillance in hopes of catching those involved in the ambush, which was supposedly scheduled for the next day. But the attack didn’t occur. A search of Hamoodi’s home reportedly turned up no evidence of the plot.

        Hamoodi, who was interviewed by the New York Times nine months after the interrogation, said that he was never involved in any assassination plot and that the information he gave was induced by fear of death.

        http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/juice/2010/03/allen_west_military_career_abuse_iraqi_detainee.php

        Hamoodi was detained for 45 days, then released without having been charged. West told the Times, “It’s possible that I was wrong about Mr. Hamoodi.”

        http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/juice/2010/03/allen_west_military_career_abuse_iraqi_detainee.php

        During a closed-door tribunal Friday in the town of Tikrit, West was found guilty of three counts of aggravated assault and a single count of communicating a threat. The ruling was issued after West pleaded guilty to misconduct.

        http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2003/12/14/us_officer_to_resign_for_assulting_iraqi?mode=PF

        When disciplinary proceedings were commenced against West, senior congressional Republicans, including Senator John Warner and Congressman Duncan Hunter — who as chairs, respectively, of the Senate and House Armed Services Committees, had their hands on the Pentagon’s pursestrings — intervened aggressively to protect him. The result: instead of facing punishment that could have included prison time, West got off with a fine, a reprimand and early departure from the service.

        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/09/18/pincuss-double-standard_n_291801.html

        If he were to be found guilty at a court martial of the two articles against him, West could have faced 11 years in prison, a military prosecutor told CNN.

        http://www.cnn.com/2003/US/12/12/sprj.nirq.west.ruling/

        The investigation found probable cause that West violated two statutes of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which forbade threatening a prisoner and assaulting him. The army initially moved forward with a criminal prosecution of West, until a hearing officer dismissed the case, fining West $5,000.

        http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/juice/2010/03/allen_west_military_career_abuse_iraqi_detainee.php

        The military decided against court-martialing Colonel West. He was fined $5,000, and he submitted his resignation, which becomes effective this summer, when he will retire with full benefits.

        http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/27/politics/27WEST.html?ex=1400990400&en=71d7b26fe2922d57&ei=5007&partner=USERLAND&pagewanted=4

  10. ^ and I would add that it wasn’t until after Lt. Col. Allen West served in our Military to the best of his ability for TWENTY-TWO YEARS that he was ultimately “honorable discharged” with full benefits.

    • Of course the “Army certainly didn’t think he was innocent” just as you say. I don’t think anyone is trying to suggest this. West didn’t think he was innocent either and said as much. The point is that his actions DID NOT RISE to the level of a “court martial” thus your characterization that what occurred is similar to what is “called a Plea Deal” therefore West was offered a choice between a court martial or discharge is simply not what occurred. Your last linked point: “The military decided against court-martialing Colonel West. He was fined $5,000, and he submitted his resignation, which becomes effective this summer, when he will retire with full benefits.” is exactly what happened. Thus my conclusions: “The military command essentially agreed to the ‘U.S. military investigator’s recommendations’ and ordered ‘administrative action’ against West which is what Article 15 happens to be. The Military never did intend or want to bring a ‘court martial’. As a result of Article 15, a ‘Military hearing’ decided upon the ‘$5000 fine over two months’. West agreed to retire thus being assigned to the rear detachment of the 4th Infantry Division while waiting the processing of his retirement request.” is EXACTLY what DID happen. West was accused of misconduct but never “CHARGED” with misconduct. It was the ARMY (not West) that decided to employ “Article 15″ (NJP) a Non-judicial form of punishment. As a “non-judicial form of punishment, NJP permits the Army to “administratively discipline troops” without a “court-martial”. Clearly the Army DID NOT consider the actions by West to warrant a “court-martial”. Whether politics entered into the decision or because of Abu Gharib is totally speculative. As to whether the manner in which the Army dealt with this incident has any reflection on guilt of innocence is irrelevant but rather whether or not to the extent their is guilt legal proceedings (court-martial) against West was warranted. As to West’s “honorable discharge”, since we do not have any information (just as you say) that would diminish the status of his discharge there is no reason to make any assumptions otherwise. We can question anything and everything in life but without any evidence to the contrary what is the point? As to the $5000 fine “meaning the Army certainly didn’t think he was innocent” as you suggest, this again as I’ve said before is obvious. There is clearly a level of “guilt” and as I’ve said West himself acknowledges this fact. Again, the point being based on what we know is factual, West was only “accused” and not “charged” and most importantly NOT “court-martialed” simply because U.S. Military Investigator’s who obviously investigated the “charges” did not recommend a “court-martial” and the commanding officer agreed to this recommendation as reported by CNN as I’ve already stated. All of the links you’ve provided while perhaps interesting in and of itself DO NOT add anything to this conclusion. I am curious, why is it that you have this apparent preoccupation with trying to paint West as “guilty” of some extreme “evil” act simply because West while admittedly wrong, no question about it, of which he himself admits as well was nevertheless trying to do the best he knew how under the circumstance at the time to protect the men under his command. I know this maybe unfair to ask, but consider a circumstance where it might have been YOUR SON under West’s command at the time? We really should keep in mind that there is some level of priority by those in command to keep our troops from harm if at all possible and I assure you this is EXACTLY how many would feel in the event their own sons were in that situation. Again, this is certainly NOT to suggest in any way that West was necessarily correct, but on the other hand one should also consider the circumstances that West found himself in and understand why he may have gone admittedly to far in his goal to protect his troops.

      • No – west was charged and confessed to misconduct. What didn’t happen is a Courts Martial, which would have been the penalty phase of the process. By admitting his guilt, the Army reduced the charges. By any other name a plea deal. The interesting part of this is why did a Republican Senator, head of the Committee on the Military intervene? The political explanation is to save the US from further international embarrassment. The cynical explanation is the West got bought. What would be interesting to investigate is if West had any political affiliations before the incident, and had come into contract with said politicians. I suspect there is an interesting back story there.

        Net net – West didn’t do the Army any favors with his criminal actions…

        Nor has he done the country any favors since.

        And as to the so-called “heroics” of West – no. Those rules against such reprehensible conduct were put in place after My Lai to prevent criminals like West from committing even worse crimes under the excuse of “saving his men”. This sort of excuse making was exactly what we hung hundreds of German soldiers for after the trials at Nuremberg.

        In vast majority the Officers of the American Services are folks we, as Americans can be proud of – not out of some febrile excercise in plastic patriotism – but because of their demonstrated Integrity, morality, and commitment. West is a disgrace to their efforts, the uniform, the Military… And the country.

  11. You choose to color the incident your way, and of course choose to post a counterpoint version to what you refer to as the “conservative” version that none of the other links you provide paints in such negative terms as the version you use is purported by a known plagiarist. And of course of the 17 links (some broken I might add) they are actually only comprised of FOUR different (separate) articles, so while on the surface the 17 links looks superficially daunting it’s really nothing more than a ruse to appear you’ve comprised overwhelmingly impressive narratives in support of the one questionable negatively slanted narrative you’ve used for this blog.

    And then you go to such links as to try and equate this incident with atrocities the German Nazi’s did in WWll in your quest to demonize West far more than would be warranted. Your narrative is clearly slanted in terms of demeaning “conservatives” with references to potentially alleged nefarious actions by “Republicans” as well. Your point of view is to a large extent is clearly drawn from a political stance which I’m afraid clouds your perspective in many ways and produces a very cynical view as a result of your “liberal” outlook on the entire subject matter.

    And you might notice in some of your links this quote from the very victim in this incident: “Mr. Hamoodi said he did not really blame the Americans for ”arresting and torturing me.” Obviously, someone had informed on him, he said, and they had to act on the information they obtained.” So even Mr. Hamoodi, the actual victim in question is more capable of understanding the ramifications of why West acted in the manner that he did more than you can understand as a bystander.

    Thankfully, while West was admittedly very wrong in many ways just as everyone would agree including West himself, it’s good to know that reasonable people will avoid slanting the entire issue in the matter you and the plagiarist Johann Hari choose to portray the incident.

    You go ahead and live in your preconceived bubble that in general will tend to reflect negatively toward any so called “conservative” point of view. And be sure and cling to your notion that everything in life revolves around stark black and white issues unmindful of any level of compromise that would reflect an understanding towards each unique circumstance in life.

    The fact of the matter is that repeating your narrative over and over that “west was charged and confessed to misconduct. What didn’t happen is a Courts Martial, which would have been the penalty phase of the process. By admitting his guilt, the Army reduced the charges. By any other name a plea deal.” does not make it true. West was never formally “charged” because he was never “court-martialed”. This is the legality involving “accusations” and actually being “charged” with a crime. The “court-martial” is the TRIAL not the “penalty phase” as you suggest is the case. And again, it was not a matter that “admitting guilt” is what resulted in “reduced charges”, again he was never “court-martialed” thus never formally “charged” as a result. What DID occur is that the military command essentially agreed with the U.S. military investigator’s recommendations that administrative action against West be applied in this case which again is what Article 15 happens to be. Article 15 does not involve legally applied “charges” be brought against the alleged suspect but instead relegates the action to merely “administrative action” which in part is why West was only fined and given an “honorable” discharge from the army after 22 years of service.

    • And then you go to such links as to try and equate this incident with atrocities the German Nazi’s did in WWll in your quest to demonize West far more than would be warranted.

      I am not “demonizing” West – but I am calling into account his defenders who use the same excuses as the Nazis. West after all, admitted his guilt. It is his defenders who have the moral issues.

      And you are right – I don’t like conservatives. I consider modern conservatives a plague upon the country. That doesn’t make me a “libera;” – it just means modern conservatives and conservatism are despicable.

      • Just curious, what “same excuses as the Nazis” have I used?

        As to defending West, I am for the most part explaining how and why article 15 was employed as opposed to proceeding with a “court-marital”.

        In regards to “conservatives”, you’d better hope they have some say in our future otherwise our debt will continue to spiral out of control for one thing placing an incredible hardship on America’s future generations. As well as the fact that absent the political influence of “conservatives” on keeping in check out of control spending and addressing our ever expanding entitlement programs where we currently have nearly 1 in every 6 people on food stamps that is creating a cycle of dependency in America that will lead our economy in the same direction as Europe. Regarding this growing culture of dependency that liberals are guilty of creating in America; we find that compared to our country, Europeans work far less hours and have developed a built in psyche engrained with a dependency of government support that now runs rampant. For example, currently there are somewhere around only one Frenchman in five for example, ages 60 to 64, that are contributing to their work force. Contrast that to that of the United States where it is around 65 percent of men in that age group that are currently working, more than triple the French rate. The “entitlement state” promulgated by “liberals” abroad hasn’t worked out to well for Europe as they continue to fail economically under the burden of an entitlement culture out of control and there is no reason to believe that if we continue on this same path that it would work out any differently here at home, wouldn’t you agree?

      • The US is now 17th in terms of the chance someone from the bottom economically can become a millionaire.

        That is a direct result of conservative policies since Raygun.

        One of the reasons I have problems with conservatives is their lack of understanding of how the Government works, and inability to come up with any economic solution. Like a broken record debt, entitlements, and taxes. There are two sides to paying the debt – taxes and raising revenue. “Revenue” is the tax money paid to the federal government when you put everyone back to work. Ergo, a healthy economy generates more than a dying one. After most of the last 30 years under Republican Presidents taxes in this country are at their lowest point as a percentage of income in history.

        Starving the Beast, AKA Austerity has cratered every European Country where it has been tried. Why do conservatives want to repeat the same stupid?

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