Another cog in the wheel known as the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy to combat the Extreme Left-Wing Media.

Monday, March 07, 2005

What really happened in the tragic shooting of Italian agent?

If you have read a newspaper or watched television news in the last few days you are aware of the shooting of an Italian agent who facilitated the release of Giuliana Sgrena, the journalist for the Italian Communist paper Il Manifesto who was being held hostage in Iraq. Initial reports led me to believe it was just one of those things that happens. For example, in a hurry, scared, etc the car skips a check-point and our military, which has learned the hard way to take those things seriously, starts shooting at the car to stop it. Since the initial news reports the story has taken off in many directions.
* The Italians may not have notified the U.S. led coalition of Sgrena's release since the U.S. has a policy against paying kidnappers.
* One report says 300 to 400 shots were fired at the car.
* Sgrena has claimed they didn't pass any check points and there was no warning.
* Pier Scolari, Sgrena's partner, put an even more sinister construction on the events, suggesting in a television interview that Sgrena was the victim of a deliberate ambush. 'Giuliana may have received information which led to the soldiers not wanting her to leave Iraq alive,' he claimed.
*Coalition forces say they believe standards rules of engagement for vehicles that refuse to stop were followed. However, an investigation into the shooting is being initiated.

There are only a couple things I can say with any certainty.
First off, if it was a deliberate ambush, as her idiot boyfriend alleges, she would be dead. 300 to 400 shots were not fired into the car. If we want to kill someone we could handle it much more efficiently than that.
Secondly, it was NOT a deliberate ambush. If our military wasted time hunting down journalists writing negative stories they wouldn't have any time left for hunting down and killing terrorists. Classic time management issue. Deal with the serious problem before the nuisance.

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has been a staunch ally in the War on Terrorism at considerable political risk and we need to ensure this doesn't damage our relationship with his government. We need to conduct an extremely thorough and transparent investigation. I'd go a step further and recommend we extend an invitation to the Italians to assign a liaison to the investigating officer with full access.

By my nature I'm skeptical of conspiracy theories. Based on that, I'm inclined to believe the initial reports that it was a communications problem as much as anything else.

Here are some links to related stories:
Guardian of UK (find all your conspiracy theories covered here)
Little Green Footballs
Captain's Quarters
Washington Times

UPDATE: Right Wing News has a link to a story from the Christian Science Monitor about the check points. Pretty interesting and educational reading.

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