Drone strike that killed children to go unpunished – Pentagon13 Dec, 2021 19:21 / Updated 3 days ago
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FILE PHOTO. A man grieves during a mass funeral for the 10 civilians killed in a US drone airstrike, in Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug. 30, 2021. © Getty Images / MARCUS YAM
No members of the US military involved in the Kabul drone strike that killed 10 civilians including 7 children during the retreat from Afghanistan will be penalized in any way, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin reportedly decided.
The US Air Force’s inspector general investigated the August 29 drone strike and found no violations of law, but left the decision to discipline, reprimand or demote the people involved to the commanding officers. Austin agreed with the recommendations of Central Command Chief General Kenneth F. McKenzie, Jr. and Commander of U.S. Special Operations Richard D. Clarke that no punishment was necessary, the New York Times reported on Monday.
Lieutenant General Sami Dia Said, who led the Air Force’s IG probe, told reporters at the Pentagon last month that just because he didn’t call anyone out over the botched strike, it didn’t mean the command would not.
“They can de-credential folks. They can retrain folks. They can fire folks. They can do a variety of different things,” Said said.
Initial report by the Times quoted a senior official speaking on the condition of anonymity. Pentagon spokesman John Kirby later confirmed that McKenzie and Clarke had not made any recommendations regarding accountability, only about improving procedures.
For two weeks after the strike, the US military maintained it had been “righteous” and killed a “facilitator” for Islamic State Khorasan (ISIS-K), a terrorist group that took responsibility for the suicide bombing at the Kabul Airport that killed almost 200 people, including 13 US troops. On September 17, however, McKenzie acknowledged the strike “was a mistake” and offered condolences to the surviving family of Afghan charity worker Zemari Ahmadi and nine others, including seven children, who were killed.
Ahmadi worked for Nutrition & Education International, a California-based charity. His white Toyota wasn’t carrying explosives but rather water, and the children flocked to greet him when he returned to work.
“How can our military wrongly take the lives of 10 precious Afghan people, and hold no one accountable in any way?” NEI founder and president Steven Kwon told the Times, calling the decision “shocking.”
Kwon said he had been “beseeching” the US government for months to evacuate the NEI employees from Afghanistan, which apparently has not happened yet. Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said last week that the military has been “trying to get the necessary information in place” to both conduct the evacuations and send condolence payments to Ahmadi’s surviving relatives.
Unheard Voices | US airstrikes claim lives of innocent children in Afghanistan
It's tragedy, but unless it was intentional rather than error no country/military in the World would ever punish its soldiers for poor professionalism.
Still, the victim family has full right to seek restitution form US government.
"Legally speaking, when you drive your car too fast which provokes an accident that results in people being killed, you will be sentenced for manslaughter and your crime is deemed intentional."Legally speaking, when you drive your car too fast which provokes an accident that results in people being killed, you will be sentenced for manslaughter and your crime is deemed intentional.
Same thing if you shoot a guy, but instead of hitting him, you hit another one next to him. That's not a murder, but a manslaughter, yet still an intentional crime, legally speaking.
Basically, every time you commit an act, knowing it could result in injuring and/or killing people, even though that is not your intent, and yet still, end up injuring and killing people, your crime is considered intentional, because whether you wanted such result or not, you are supposed to have anticipated eventual consequences, and accepted the risk of them occurring, and then still knowingly decided to commit the act.
And that becomes not only an intentional act, but also an aggravated behavior, in light of the frequency of such bad results, when it comes to drone attacks, carried on by the US Army.
And when a soldier is so stupid/reckless/incompetent that he constantly has to pile up behind him a number of innocent civilian casualties all year around, then still giving him a gun and sending him on such mission, becomes not only an intentional crime commissioning, but also a deliberate war crime, from the top of the chain of command, to its bottom.
"Legally speaking, when you drive your car too fast which provokes an accident that results in people being killed, you will be sentenced for manslaughter and your crime is deemed intentional."
This example is incorrect because cars are designed to transport and killing is not their drivers function.
"Basically, every time you commit an act, knowing it could result in injuring and/or killing people"
That's exactly the military intent - to kill.
However, it's not designed to intentionally kill innocent.
Like I said, either you prove intent to kill civilians and then prosecution of perpetrators will be in order or you'll have to settle for case of either mistaken identity or friendly fire.