California military prosecutors have charged four Marines with murder and four others on related charges for the now-infamous Haditha massacre. The Marine Corps announced the decision late on Thursday.
What Iraq’s prime minister calls a “terrible crime” may have been worsened by a subsequent cover-up. After the death of one of their comrades in a roadside bomb in the western Iraqi town it is claimed the Marines ran amok. 24 civilians died in all, with one family decimated, losing 11 members. The soldiers originally reported that the civilians had died in the explosion of the roadside bomb. The army now believes they were summarily executed.
The four men charged with murder are all non-commissioned officers. The four others range from Lt. Colonel to First Lt. Haditha is but one of a number of similar incidents that are slowly being brought to justice. The occupying forces face more such enquiries into allegations of warcrimes.