March 06, 2005

Rules of Engagement


CNN reports: Ex-hostage disputes U.S. account of shooting.

An Italian journalist shot by U.S. forces in Iraq shortly after being freed from her captors disputes a U.S. account of the incident in which she was wounded and a security agent protecting her was killed.

In an article published Sunday in her newspaper, Il Manifesto, Giuliana Sgrena wrote, "Our car was driving slowly," and “the Americans fired without motive." She described a “rain of fire and bullets” in the incident.

The U.S. military said Sgrena’s car rapidly approached a checkpoint Friday night, and those inside ignored repeated warnings to stop. Troops used arm signals and flashing white lights, fired warning shots in front of the car, and shot into the engine block when the driver did not stop, the military said in a statement. ...

Saturday, the left-leaning Il Manifesto accused U.S. forces of "assassinating" Calipari.

Sgrena's partner, Pierre Scolari, also blamed the shooting on the U.S. government, suggesting the incident was intentional.

"I hope the Italian government does something because either this was an ambush, as I think, or we are dealing with imbeciles or terrorized kids who shoot at anyone," he said, according to Reuters. [Emphasis added]

Dave Dilegge at Small Wars Journal (see "7 March 2005") has commentary and a compilation of articles illustrating how this incident is being exploited by that "anti-war" left to smear America. Little Green Footballs is also following the story closely.

UPDATE I -- March 7: InstaPundit has more.

UPDATE II: CNN reports: White House: U.S. didn't target journalist.

Responding to Sgrena's statement that the car may have been deliberately targeted, [White House press secretary Scott] McClellan said. "It's absurd to make any such suggestion, that our men and women in uniform would target individual citizens. "That's just absurd," McClellan repeated.

He said the airport road "has been a place where suicide car bombers have launched attacks. It's been a place where regime elements have fired upon coalition forces. It is a dangerous road, and it is a combat zone that our coalition forces are in. Oftentimes, they have to make split second decisions to protect their own security."

UPDATE III: Michelle Malkin gets results regarding a contradiction in a CNN story on the Sgrena incident. Davids Medienkritik finds that previous Sgrena reports indicate she knew the dangers. And The Jawa Report has many related links

UPDATE IV -- March 8: This cartoon appears in today's (Tuesday's) Investor's Business Daily.

UPDATE V: Here is an Italian translation of our cartoon by buroggu.

UPDATE VI: This cartoon appeared in Tuesday's The Detroit News.

Posted by Forkum at March 6, 2005 10:37 PM