A currently serving US soldier has been found guilty of murdering Afghan civilians by a military court-martial on Thursday. Army Staff Sgt. Calvin Gibbs has been sentenced to life in prison, eligible for parole in 10 years. He was found guilty of murdering them as well as illegally removing pieces of their corpses to keep as “souvenirs”, in the same manner as G. I.s did with human ears during the Vietnam War.
CNN is reporting that “The panel of three officers and two enlisted soldiers started deliberating in a military courtroom near Tacoma shortly before 10 a.m. (1 p.m. ET) and returned its verdict around 3 p.m. (6 p.m. ET).”
Gibbs was also found to have murdered civilians and planted weapons on them to make them appear as though they were Taliban fighters. Witnesses say Gibbs intentionally murdered unarmed civilians who posed no threat and place the weapons among their remains to legitimize their kills under a pretext of self-defence.
“Selling a fake engagement as a real engagement, that’s what they were doing.”
– Maj. Robert Stelle, prosecutor
Sgt. Gibbs also admitted during testimony that he fired on and unarmed civilian family in a car that failed to stop at a check point Iraq. He testified that he told this story to those subordinates under him as “proof” that troops would not face consequences for killing civilians.
Gibbs is reported to be part of a larger group of soldiers that are are accused of being a rogue “kill squad” that went around murdering civilians. At least seven other soldiers in the group are charged with lesser offences including abusing drugs, keeping “off the books” weapons and intimidating a fellow soldier not to speak out against the platoon’s alleged killings.
This is a common practise in both the Afghan War and the Iraq War, though officals have denied such charges. Media from all over the world have been reporting incidents such as these, attempting to drive home the point that the illegal occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan are about suppressing the populations into accepting a foreign controlled puppet government, not about bringing freedom.
Gibbs was also involved in a case where US troops were suspected of killing an Iraqi family in 2004. Initially the case was closed, but has now been reopened with the conviction of Gibbs.
“He said they were all dirty savages… He is the savage, not the innocent Afghans he murdered. It is monstrous. What kind of savagery does it take to do this? To cut a finger off a victim and show it to people? This is a savage being.”
– Prosecutor Maj. Andre Leblanc
Despite what the prosecutor or the US military would have you believe, these are not the actions of simply one lone soldier, a “bad apple” as they are commonly called. In is fact this common occurrence in all imperialist wars. These wars of aggression, not wars of freedom, have this savagery running through them. This is an example of the “savage beasts” that imperialism turns men into that Che Guevara spoke of at the UN. These wars turn otherwise normal civilized Americans into killing machines. Without these wars of aggression, and the military programming that goes with it, these soldiers would be normal healthy productive people who would live in peace.