US troops disciplined over desecration


Afghanistan outrage

The US military said yesterday it was disciplining US troops over two incidents that provoked outrage in Afghanistan early this year – one involving a video depicting Marines urinating on corpses and another involving copies of the Koran being burned.

The military said the punishments were administrative, which could include actions such as a reprimand, reduction in rank or forfeiture of pay. Neither incident has so far resulted in criminal charges, however – something that may fail to satisfy Afghan demands for justice.

Afghan president Hamid Karzai branded the Marines’ actions in the video as “inhuman”, and initially called for a public trial for the soldiers over the Koran incident.

The Marine Corps announced three Marines pleaded guilty to charges over the video, including one for “urinating on the body of a deceased Taliban soldier”. Another had posed for a photo with human casualties, and the third lied about the incident to investigators. The video, which became public in January, was filmed on or around July 27th, 2011, the Marines said. – (Reuters)