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The Seattle Times, August 25, 2010

Stryker soldiers allegedly plotted to kill Afghan civilians

The soldiers allegedly killed the three Afghans while out on patrol, and anyone who dared to report the events was threatened with violence

In one of the most serious war-crimes cases to emerge from the Afghanistan war, five soldiers from a Stryker infantry brigade based at Joint Base Lewis-McChord are now charged with murder for their alleged roles in killing three Afghan civilians.

In two of the incidents, grenades were thrown at the victims and they were shot, according to charging documents. The third victim also was shot.

The soldiers allegedly killed the three Afghans while out on patrol, and anyone who dared to report the events was threatened with violence, according to statements made to investigators.

The Seattle Times has reviewed court documents — filed by a defense attorney with a U.S. Army magistrate — that summarize some of the evidence in the case. The Times also has interviewed attorneys for three of the defendants. The documents give new insight into how the murder plot may have evolved, but they give few clues about motives.

All five soldiers are awaiting court-martial proceedings. If convicted, they face the possibility of life imprisonment or death.

Category: US-NATO, HR Violations - Views: 8658



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