Sergeant Bales trouble indicators
Sergeant Bales trouble indicators
1. Prior domestic violence charge
2. Multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan (4)
3. Wounded with head injury in IED attack
4. Wounded with foot injury in another battle
5. Witnessed close mutilation of a peer in a blast
6. On a path to a recruitment assignment when reassigned to Afghanistan
It takes extraordinary individuals to go into battle for one’s country. “What is the spirit of the bayonet,” cried the Drill Sergeant?
The required response was, “To kill, Drill Sergeant.”
You see the primary mission of infantry troops whether Army or Marines is to kill. When you deploy trained killers in a war zone, you don’t ask them to stand around serving as a target for attack by the enemy.
Troops in Kandahar are surrounded by the Taliban enemy and by a hostile Afghanistan public that is served and led by weak and corrupt leaders. When we deploy our troops in that manner there is going to be trouble springing from the weak and troubled warriors. We have many because they are overused.
Never in the history of our nation have we placed such a burden on them
Sergeant Bales sprung a mental leak. What he did was criminal. He will be prosecuted and likely found guilty as charged, though the conditions of his employment and deployment may have been unreasonably brutal.
One cannot forgive murder and atrocities like he committed, though you can consider the circumstances when it comes time for sentencing.
March 17, 2012
Staff Sgt. Robert Bales is locked up today in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where he is being housed in a private cell away from other inmates.
Charges are expected soon against Bales, who allegedly went on a killing spree that ended the lives of 16 Afghan civilians. Bales was flown out of Afghanistan and arrived at the Army post Friday night.
Bales, 38 and the father of two, is accused of breaking into several Afghan homes in the middle of the night last Sunday and killing 16 civilians, mostly women and children. He could face the death penalty if found guilty.
The combat veteran's neighbors reacted with shock at the news.
Kassie Holland, a neighbor in Lake Tapp, Wash., where Bales lived, told the Associated Press that she would see him playing with his two kids.
"My reaction is that I'm shocked," she said. "I can't believe it was him. There were no signs... He always had a good attitude about being in the service. He was never really angry about it. When I heard him talk, he said, it seemed like, yeah, that's my job. That's what I do. He never expressed a lot of emotion toward it."
Pentagon officials said that Bales' being brought back to the U.S. does not necessarily mean that his military court procedings will be held in the U.S., holding out the possibility that they could be held in Afghanistan. The Afghan government is demanding that Bales be tried in Afghanistan.
Details of Bales' military record have also emerged and they depict a soldier who has seen intense combat and lost part of a foot.
Bales, who enlisted shortly after the 9/11 terror attacks, was first deployed in November 2003 when his unit spent a year in Mosul, Iraq.
In June 2006 he and his unit were sent back to Iraq and their year-long deployment was given a three month extension until September 2007. During that time, he saw duty in Mosul in the north, Bagdad when the city was pressed by militants, and then to Baquba where his unit took major casualties.
His final Iraq deployment was from September 2009 to September 2010 in Diyala province, which was also a hotbed of insurgent activity.
In December 2011, he was ordered to Afghanistan.
Bales' alleged murderous rage is in stark contrast to what he said after a fierce battle in Zarqa, Iraq, in 2007.
"I've never been more proud to be a part of this unit than that day for the simple fact that we discriminated between the bad guys and the noncombatants and then afterward we ended up helping the people that three or four hours before were trying to kill us," he told Fort Lewis' Northwest Guardian.
"I think that's the real difference between being an American as opposed to being a bad guy, someone who puts his family in harm's way like that," Bales said at the time.
John Henry Browne, Bales' lawyer in Seattle, told The Associated Press Thursday that the soldier had witnessed his friend's leg blown off the day before the massacre.
Bales reportedly spent his entire 11-year career at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington state and lived not too far from the base. Originally from the Midwest, he was deployed with the Second Battalion, 3rd Infantry Regiment of the 3rd Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division in December.
Browne said that he was highly decorated and had once been nominated for a Bronze Star though he did not receive it. He also lost part of a foot because of a combat injury.
"He's never said anything antagonistic about Muslims. He's in general very mild-mannered," Browne told the AP.
Bales reportedly left Camp Belambay, where he was stationed to protect Special Operation Forces creating local militias, in the middle of the night wearing night-vision goggles, according to a source. The shooting occurred at 3 a.m. in three houses in two villages in the Panjway district of southern Kandahar province.”