September 27th, 2010
10:57 AM ET

Tapes describe U.S. servicemen killing for sport in Afghanistan

From Drew Griffin, CNN Correspondent

Tapes obtained by CNN of interrogations of a group of U.S. servicemen charged with the unprovoked killings of Afghan civilians describe gruesome scenes of cold-blooded murder carried out under the influence of illegal drugs.

The following is a partial transcript of those tapes, between a military investigator and Cpl. Jeremy Morlock, one of the five U.S. soldier charged with the premeditated murder of three Afghan civilians.

"So we met this guy by his compound, so Gibbs walked him out, set him in place, was like standing here," said Morlock, detailing how, on patrol earlier this year and under the command of his sergeant, Calvin R. Gibbs, he and others took an Afghan man from his home, stood him up and killed him.

"So, he was fully cooperating?" the military investigator asks on the tapes.

"Yeah," Morlock responds.

Investigator: "Was he armed?"

Morlock: "No, not that we were aware of."

Investigator: "So, you pulled him out of his place?"

Morlock: "I don't think he was inside. He was by his little hut area ... and Gibbs sent in a couple of people. He sent Rodriguez off a little ways, far side security. As I said, I'm not even sure Rodriguez knew what was going on and them."

Investigator: "Where did they stand him, next to a wall?"

Morlock: "Yeah, he was kinda next to a wall, so where Gibbs could get behind a wall when the grenade went off and then he kind of placed me and Winfield off over here so we had a clean line of sight for this guy and, you know, he pulled out one of his grenades, an American grenade, popped it, throws the grenade and tells me and Winfield, 'Alright, wax this guy. Kill this guy, kill this guy.' "

Investigator: "Did you see him present any weapons? Was he aggressive toward you at all?"

Morlock: "No, not at all. Nothing, he wasn't a threat."

The Army alleges that three Afghan civilians were killed between January and May of this year.

Morlock's civilian attorney, Michael Waddington, did not deny that his client killed for sport. "That's what it sounds like," he told CNN.

Waddington said his 22-year-old client was brain-damaged from prior IED attacks, was using prescription drugs and smoking hashish and was under the influence of and in fear of his commanding officer, who is also charged.

A hearing is set for Monday for Morlock, the first of five soldiers charged with the premeditated murder of three Afghan civilians.  The hearing at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington will determine whether the military has enough evidence against him to proceed with a court-martial.

Some background on the case:
Over this summer, 12 U.S. soldiers were charged for a variety of crimes in what military authorities believe was a conspiracy to murder Afghan civilians and cover it up, along with charges they used hashish, mutilated corpses and kept grisly souvenirs.

Five soldiers face murder charges, while seven others are charged with participating in a coverup. All of the men were members of a 2nd Infantry Division brigade operating near Kandahar in southern Afghanistan in 2009 and 2010.

According to the military documents, Staff Sgt. Calvin Gibbs and four other soldiers were involved in throwing grenades at civilians and then shooting them in separate incidents. Three Afghan men died.

Authorities allege Gibbs kept finger bones, leg bones and a tooth from Afghan corpses. Another soldier, Spc. Michael Gagnon II, allegedly kept a skull from a corpse, according to charging documents. Several soldiers are charged with taking pictures of the corpses, and one – Spc. Corey Moore – with stabbing a corpse.

Five soldiers were originally arrested in June and seven others were charged last month.

The five facing murder charges are Gibbs, of Billings, Montana; Pfc. Andrew Holmes of Boise, Idaho; Winfield, of Cape Coral, Florida; Spc. Michael Wagnon, of Las Vegas, Nevada; and Spc. Jeremy Morlock of Wasilla, Alaska.

The five are from the 5th Stryker Brigade of the 2ID, based out of Fort Lewis, Washington.

In May, CNN reported that the Fort Lewis Stryker Brigade, known as the "5-2," had been the subject of controversy for months inside Army circles. The unit has suffered some of the highest casualty rates of the war. Several senior U.S. Army officials had told CNN there has been a growing belief inside Army circles the brigade was not embracing McChrystal's counter-insurgency strategy and was too heavily focused instead on combat operations.

In one of the most comprehensive analyses of the 5-2's troubled tour in southern Afghanistan, the Army Times reported in January that the brigade commander Col. Harry Tunnell replaced one of his company commanders whose group had suffered high casualties.

But the Army Times, a privately-published newspaper, quoted several soldiers who said that company commander was very popular with the troops, and that the unit's deep-set troubles and casualties resulted from a lack of training for the type of counter-insurgency warfare now being called for.

"What we're doing is not working, and we need to go on a different tack," the Army Times quoted one soldier as saying.

A senior U.S. Army official directly familiar with Stryker operations said the command of the 5-2 has been a concern to the Army for months.

MORE
• May 24, 2010: Sources: U.S. soldiers focus of criminal investigation
• June 16, 2010: Army charges 3 more in Afghan civilian killings
• August 26, 2010: U.S. soldiers charged with conspiracy in killings
• September 9, 2010: Army: 12 soldiers killed Afghans, mutiliated corpses

soundoff (1,099 Responses)
  1. Hoofleau

    I hope that none of you people are my neighbors. You are sad , pathetic people always pointing fingers instead of addressing the real problem. Please go back into your mother's womb.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Veteran

    In war there is always a difference in the motives of the soldiers and the motives of the political leaders that send them into battle.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Sam

    This goes on everyday on the front lines, nothing new here.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  4. BudMan

    this sounds like a scene from "Schindler's List". . they should let Cheney water-board them

    September 27, 2010 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Sludge

    When this happened in Iraq – it was george bush's fault. now that it happens under Obama's watch, nobody links his administration at all. What a friggin' double standard we have.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob Griffin

      Many of the left are holding Obama accountable for the ongoing situation in Afghanistan. It is still important to remember however that this WAS Bush's war, and was the one for which he had strong congressional approval, unlike Iraq. Perhaps had Bush not invaded Iraq, but focused on Afghanistan, Al Qaeda might have been put out of business already?

      September 28, 2010 at 7:04 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Michael

    Although I don't agree with some of the reasons for this war and this occupation, I have an incredible amount of respect for any serviceman or woman who does their job honorably, the way it should be done. I'm confident that this can be said for the vast majority of the men and women in our armed forces. However, the accused men in this report are murderers, and it makes me lose faith in my peers to see their actions defended or justified based on the nature of the job they are performing or because these are simply the "facts of war." I think this behavior morally reprehensible and believe it speaks of values and ideals that are acceptable to only an extreme fringe of America's population. Therefore, I think that I comment on behalf of every moderate American who believes killing unarmed civilians, whether it be at home during peacetime or abroad during wartime, is wrong and punishable.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoeJoe

      So what about the dope? What does this have to do with the story? It obscures the main point and dilutes the pertinent facts. These guys are murderers, not soldiers, and toking didn't have a thing to do with that.

      September 27, 2010 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Dogtags

    Just a friendly reminder...before there was a 9/11, there was Beirut, Lebanon. October 23, 1983, Killing 220 Marines, 18 Sailors and 3 Soldiers as they slept.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  8. oneguy

    Isn't it time to raise the standards for enlisting in the armed service. Hash didn't do this to these guys. We need to bring back the pride of being a member of the US military. The military (for some) is the dumping ground for misfits. The great majority are men & women who are rightfully proud to serve and represent the US. Unhappily, they now represent the worst factions of the US, the Hallbertons, Exxons, Republicans; everything but an honorable democracy. I'm so sad for us as a nation, couldn't even last as long as Rome.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • 2nd Lt. D

      Hello, just to tell you, the military was raised the bar for a long time, in fact, right now you need Highschool degree plus pass ASVAB with a high enough score. Officers need even higher GPA plus gigantic ASVAB score and 4+ year college and/or degree

      September 27, 2010 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Brian

    Even calling this war is flawed. We have invaded unsophisticated and people who are barely even aware of us. This is just a slaughter for Amaerican political gain of some kind, although the reason for this slaughter is not really clear to anyone. Considering that everyone who has died has done so for no reason, I am not really surprised this is happening... Americans are fighting without honor, and every death is a murder, so why not pull people from their houses and kill them... what difference does it make? The crime is worse when it is face to face instead of from a drone piloted from hundreds of miles away?
    Like I say, this is not even a war. If some unamrmed person tries to defend themselves they are considered a war criminal in their own home, while being shot at and blown up. This is a joke to begin with, and no one should be surprised that this happens... This is why some people sign up...

    September 27, 2010 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Ray

    This is why "they" hate "you."

    September 27, 2010 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • MOBADTHANGOOD

      Probably why they hate you coward.

      September 27, 2010 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  11. dindy Sri lanka

    first of all ..every one should understand how difficult is to fight an enemy in a foreign land because No one knows who is the real enemy and who is the innocent civilian. The other important thing is a soldier in uniform should not be under drugs if it is true.Drugs can put you in a terrible state of mind and there one can loose self respect. In my point of view US government should not keep soldiers in this terrible country for so long. Soldier too is a human being and they too get stressed out. I dont know what else to say.....I cant..judge ....I wish if it never happened. war should end.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Poolchick

    People wonder why other countries do not like Americans??? These jerks should be sent to jail for a long time. What right do they have killing innocent people? I'm not a big fan of the East however, innocent is innocent. That man was not even armed. This is a sick story and ashamed of the US.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Active Enlisted

    When Soldiers, Sailors, Airman and Marines start wondering about the political motivations of our Commander in Chief, it's time to turn in our boots. It's not our job. Whether the POTUS is a Dem or Rep, black or white, our job is to follow all 'LAWFUL' orders. Any unlawful order can and should be disobeyed and the 'I was just following orders' defense was long ago defeated. Bottom line we know right from wrong. I go where I'm sent, do my job to the best of my ability for as long as I'm needed there and hopefully come home with my mind as well as my body intact. Any 'opinion' I have of why we are over there will remain between me and myself until I am no longer a service member.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
  14. tim snead

    This is not a big surprise to anybody reading or watching lefty media. Some of the videos of soldiers in hummers taking out Iraqi cars full of people driving down the road minding their own business even made it onto CNN for a few minutes. Now it can be looked into. There's been a change at the top and a nice fluffy cushion of time has gone by during which the stories got fuzzy and responsibility floated away like a puff of smoke from a gun barrel. Which stupid schmucks will pay this time while the people truly responsible plot their next political campaigns?

    September 27, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  15. AA81

    We send a bunch of 18 year old kids to war, what do you expect? and people get so shocked when this happens.....this is reality!

    September 27, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Carl Sullivan

    Agreed that this is tragic, but before we judge too harshly, mind you we SHOULD judge harshly, think about war and what it would be like if you were in it. I was just at the beaches of Normandy yesterday. WAR is a time of horrible things, and I think we owe it to our country to support our military, not because we agree or disagree with where they are and what we are doing there, but because until its all over, we all lose on both sides. Both sides lose men and women, both sides suffer, and if you think war is as easy as white and black, go back and watch some good war films, read a book, or talk to a vet. I recommend watching Saving Private Ryan, and then post, judge, barade, whatever you want. But understand that WE ARE AT WAR, not simply occupying a country. There is no excuse for killing anyone, especially something as sick as making it a sport. But what do I know, I have never been at war. May God forgive these men, and hopefully the one thing about America that is great is, well we should figure out whats going on, stop it, and focus on ending this war, all while being the great nation that was made possible by rivers of bloodshed over many years. Think before you write, and by all means write what you think, we were founded on that principle as well. But as for me I have never been at war, never been shot at, killed someone, had my friends die in front of me. I live a great life in America, and its because of the US military that this is true. I challenge everyone to go deeper, and dont just write in anger, but in helping each other, to become one nation, the greatest nation in the world...The United States of America

    September 27, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  17. 2nd Lt. D

    First thank you all for your comments about the war. It is true, war is a nasty business, but as immigrants do the work that certain people do not want to do, soldiers do the job that nobody wants to do. We fight in order to have people to have the right to comment about us. So we die in order for you to sit in your house worried only about your kid missing a soccer game. Please do watch your comments. I believe in the ideals that we earn what we have and as a proud republican say to all of you commenting negatively about this land to leave. I invite you to go the place i was born in, Venezuela, where people die everyday for no reason. Im really tired of people looking at me funny when i walk in uniform. Go somewhere else you ungrateful rats.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  18. uneducated

    Anyone who thinks that the war is a corporate propaganda machine is correct. unfortunatley without it our economy would be worse off than it is right now. these so called evil corporate defense contracts and weapons contractors are a large part of the thin thread holding our economy together. that being said im not saying there isnt a large part of that money going to profit for certain right winged induviduals, but look at world war 2; what brought the country out of depression wasnt a miracle economic model, it was a war. so please continue with your random banter and remember that those evil dollars are helping to ensure you have a place to go to work tomorrow. how selfish of them.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Uncjohnny

      Great, so we should continue war and sending our soldiers onto the battlefield to "ensure our economic" prosperity? You're a thinker aren't you? Yes, it's true that WWII provided this country with the economic boost to propell it out of a great depression, but the defense spending has not gone down since that time. This war has not provided this country with a great many more jobs, the DoD was already buying the products that the Defense Contractors are selling. Re-think your ideals.

      V/r

      US Veteran

      September 27, 2010 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Joe Mahma

    .

    News?

    September 27, 2010 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Dave

    What's the saying? "Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster."

    September 27, 2010 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
  21. AlexJones

    Al Qaeda is a CIA frnt
    it means the database
    please do your own independant rresearch
    these people are innocents

    September 27, 2010 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
  22. HUFFYONE

    GIVE EVERYONE OF THESE SOLDERS METALS OF HONOR!!! THEY ARE HEROES!!

    GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!

    September 27, 2010 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  23. AllahAkbar

    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Uh-huh
    War, huh, yeah
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Say it again, y'all

    September 27, 2010 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Brian

    I happen to be a veteran. I was drafted in '67 and served for two years. All kinds of things like this happen during a war and most of it never gets into the history books. This is just the tip of the ice berg. Civilians have an idealized concept of what a soldier is but the reality is something far different.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Jack

    It sounds like these guys should be hung for war crimes. Firing squad is for things like desertion. The proper penalty in this case is hanging.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Peter Pan

    America at is best!I read soooo many stupid comments here,omg!Glad to be European and away from your country and your soldiers!U.S.A never won a war and they will never won!

    September 27, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kassi

      you are pathetic

      September 29, 2010 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
  27. taget dummy

    I love how we train kids to be killers and then be shocked they are.
    Yes i know there to kill when told to.And were suppose to not run red lights but we do.
    After 1 kill they become numb.DUH.just nuke the enemies be done.The rules of engagement is bull crap.
    Let the the killers do there job.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  28. AlexJones

    This is what you get when you have young mean desensitized to think that war is just playing
    Call of Duty. These people are real and mostly innocent
    Al Qaeda is a CIA fron it means the Database as in CIA database of operatives
    our operatives

    September 27, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Michael W

    @ Freedom for who? – Listen pal, nobody cares about your brats ... if you can't provide for them then you shouldn't have any! Got it? Be a man – don't blame someone else for your sorry ways!

    September 27, 2010 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  30. what goes around comes around

    what does around comes around

    September 27, 2010 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Matt

    Were the end of the interogation. CNN only reports what they want you to hear. The thing that makes me angry. CNN has only reported that bad things that are going on. Making people in america hate our troops. We are in WAR people die..... It happens. Problem with over they're one day . Theres a nice man and the next the guy trying to kill ya. I see so many negative comment.... Time to move to canada.

    September 27, 2010 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
  32. HUFFYONE

    OBAMA WOULD BE A HERO THEN AND WIN RE ELECTION

    September 27, 2010 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
  33. JustCameBackFromTheWar

    Can we please do away with the "Corporate America" comments? Half of the companies that people name aren't even AMERICAN!!! There is no oil in Afghanistan! Period. As for Iraq, suppose for a moment that the reason we invaded was for oil. Haven't wars been fought since the beginning of time over limited resources? So how is oil suddenly a bad word?

    September 27, 2010 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
  34. HUFFYONE

    NUKE THE ENTIRE COUNTRY AND THEN PAKISTAN TOO!! AND THEN IRAN!!

    September 27, 2010 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  35. kyle

    The wars in the middle east are bigger than most people realize. There were many factors leading us into those countries. I do not think the evil oil corperations really had very much influence into the decision at all. The big reason we are there, is because of what happened on September 11th, and where the guys that planned that attack resided. They were in the middle east. Iraq may have not had WMD's. Lack of evidence of WMD's ir not evidence of a lack of WMD's if you can understand that. Regardless, Iraq had had many many terrorists there, we fight and kill them. Afghanistan has many villiages under control of terrorists, we fight and kill them as well.

    50% of people are below average intelligence. Fighting terrorists in their homeland, keeps the terrorists dieing in their homeland and keeps most of them out of the United States. They do not necessarily want to kill Americans, so much as they want to fight a holy war against the big bad United States Government. We are fighting for your freedom, regardless if you understand it, or can even comprehend what that truely means.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob Griffin

      We are killing our potential allies over there so some terrorist doesn't have to do it for us. Oh yeah, we are also killing terrorists and potential terrorists as well.

      September 28, 2010 at 6:53 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Michael W

    All t-ball games should end in ties so nobody has their feelings hurt ...

    September 27, 2010 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  37. HUFFYONE

    WAR IS HELL

    September 27, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Tom

    The Russians had the same problem when they were in Afghanistan in the 80s. They now have a generation of heroin addicted individuals to deal with. Afghanistan is a waste of lives and money!

    September 27, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Mike

    War is never fought over anything but resources. Never anything else. If someone claims that any war in history was fought for a reason other than resources, that person is incorrect.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Duffey

    I'm skeptical of all of this. Why would these be released to CNN by the military if they didn't want to taint these poor guys.

    Keep in mind these kids were in a very bad situtaion and errors of judment may have occured, leading to the death of innocent civilains; however maybe they wern't so innocent????

    September 27, 2010 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Dwight

    The Republicans say this is normal and okay.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  42. whatever

    Noone should be upset by this..............we have already killed a quarter of a million civilians in these conflicts..........thousands upon thousands of women and children. Our govt is responsible and the blood is on the hands of the politicians and corporate monsters who make war part of their bottom line. We shouldn't be there..................almosty all nineteen were from saudi. Two hundred thousand civilians are not worth the life of three thousand.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  43. BackfromAWar

    The beliefs that we are in Afghanistan for "corporate America" is a complete joke. Can we please forget that nonsense? And as for Iraq and oil, haven't wars been fought since the beginning of time over limited resources? How is oil suddenly a dirty word?

    September 27, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  44. doogie

    STOP sending kids to war. No matter what age someone enlists, they should not be allowed to go fight in any war until 21. It will allow them a little more time to mature. I have had two sons over there but thankfully they did not go over until after they were in a few years.
    Some of these boys/men just aren't mature enough to be running around with a gun in their hands. I'm sure there are many places in this world to send our troops for a year or two before they head to war.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  45. aleksandrvin

    Does nobody remember not too long ago when recruitment was down and the Army decided to lower their standards, even to including men with past criminal records? And now we're surprised that something like this could happen? Give me a break. You reap what you sow.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  46. jack

    If there is physical evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, hang them in front of the Afghan people. It will serve your purpose in Afghanistan much better.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  47. Trained to Kill

    Is it really that surprising that when trained to kill, they do just that? Especially today when the line between civilian and insurgent is thin, and often hard to tell. I am in no way trying to justify what these men did, but really, it doesn't surprise me.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Not American and proud of it :)

    ...and the US doesn't know why people hate them.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • MOBADTHANGOOD

      Well we certainly know why they ALL hate you duh-boy.

      September 27, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Lone

    If true this is not a surprise in the least. The military is a survey of much of the population, from top to bottom and everything in between. And in any prolonged conflict the worst is bound to come out of even the most well-meaning individuals. It's the nature of the beast, one of our basest experiences. Both sides of the story rarely get told in these cases but its not much of a stretch to imagine what can occur in such a warped environment when borderline / criminals or the mentally sideways finds their way in (and I've encountered both). You can argue about religion, cultures, or creed all you want but somewhere, sometime every people has committed these crimes or worse. And if everyone has the potential then that is more than enough reason to develop some compassion for those pushed around on the game board.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Poppy

    If this is indeed true, these troops should not be allowed back onto American soil.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Rooster

    Getting hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys! I think these guys are just the tip of the iceberg. No wonder the world is out to eradicate us!
    I'm glad I stayed in college during the draft.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Alv88

    This is really an embarrassing moment for our nation.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  53. As Well

    Its ironic that CNN practically editorialized how the Pastor in FL burning Korans would get troops killed. What does airing this story do?

    September 27, 2010 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  54. A.T.

    I don't care if you are liberal or conservative or if you are for or against the war, this is just wrong. If soldiers are killing innocent people for "game" then they should be punished. There is NO excuse for soldiers to behave like this. This makes them no better than the Taliban. Thankfully there are very few soldiers doing this, but instead of trying to cover this up, the government should take open action against these people.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Becky S.

    Sadly people always say,"I'm not responsible. The drugs MADE me do it,'.
    Well, unless you were held down and FORCED to USE the drugs.....YOU made the bonehead choice. The entire WORLD knows that "recreational drugs" mess your life up and those unlucky enough to be IN your life. Weren't you paying attention when this was mentioned in school, on TV, in religion, by your parents, on the internet, in advertisements..........there's NO EXCUSE???!!!!

    September 27, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Big_D

    This is a sad reality of war. If you don't want to hear stories of depravation and escape using drugs. Don't send kids to fight wars for countries they don't live in. I believe the story that if we made all service mandatory and we only allowed people above 30 to serve that all these unnecessary wars would end. We could cap Bin Laden with a hit squad and the terrorists would be terrified. They wanted us to go to war in Afghanistan; we are letting them win by dictating our actions. We need an agency like Mossad that hunts down our war criminals and kills them.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Rick

    there was a time when i thought that we should bring the troops home – but not these guys, not ever

    September 27, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  58. Autonomous

    @ Ginger We need to know that war is brutal, no need to whitewash it. Of course we have heroes, we also have a lot of broken people coming home after the nightmare experience that is war, the more these people are also kept in the limelight, the more we are aware & the more that we are aware – the more we can do together as a Nation to assist them for their service to us. I have 2 immediate family members serving active duty atm, please America... do not forget them when they come home broken.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  59. ....whatever

    It's so sad that people are missing the obvious. We will never agree that we should go to war. But, these are our soldiers,our children, brother/sisters, etc. and they have been through a lot. They have watched their brothers and sisters fall. They (most likely) developed post traumatic stress disorder. They are on prescription medications for their mental health. And, they are abusing illegal drugs. In no way does this excuse what they have done. But, obviously they needed help a long time before their most recent deployment. It is a shame the doctors and the government did not pick up on it before they were re-deployed.....And while I do not agree with what they did, and do believe there needs to be punishment, I believe the punishment should also go up the ladder...The system and our soldiers need help or out of Afghanistan.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  60. ashishaw`

    idiots.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  61. cobra

    What these guys did was completely wrong, putting our soldiers downrange more in danger. How can we now gain the"winning the hearts and mind" of the afghans if we do crazy things like such. Every soldier is combat train and professionally aware of the soldier's rule (law of war) before they head out there. These guys don't understand that we lost thousands of brothers for sacrificing their lives for the cause of soldiership and intigrity. Failure of these soldiers is a failure of everybody in the chain.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  62. David

    Idaho.......It figures.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
  63. Mike

    What a bunch of bull blaming this atrocity on drug usage.. These soldiers are trained by the government to become killing machines and this group of soldiers unfortunately went crazy and killed civilians for fun.. This is what happens to weak minded people who's moral values are stripped away from them while being trained to kill.. God bless our troops but there is no reason we should be in Afghanistan in the first place.. A lot of good men and women are dying for a war that has no end.. It's very sad to read about young kids who can't handle the stress of war and do something horrible like this that makes our country look like a bunch of bloodthirsty rednecks

    September 27, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
  64. RobW

    Give them a date in front of a Tribunal and if found guilty, execute them. I'm a huge supported of the armed forces, but this stuff cannot be allowed to stand. It's a stain on the military and the country.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
  65. Ryan

    The burden falls on the army for not keeping our soldiers mentally ready for combat. I think one thing everyone is forgetting here is that most of these guys have more than likely served on multiple tours in combat with little or no mental treatment after they come home. As a result this is what you will see and it will continue to see so long as the army continues to not focus on treating it's soldiers after returning home. The army is failing at providing a place for soldiers to deal with mental disorders. The soultion is to load the person up on anti depression pills and then send you right back out the wire to carry on with the mission. Combine this with the culture within the army of ptsd is a weakness it's a recipe for disaster. Yet when stuff like this happens the army
    shifts responsibility from the organization to a "small group of soldiers ". People fail to recognize is the army is no different than a civilian company at the end of the day your just a number.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  66. julia

    As a wife whose husband is currently deployed to Afganistan I have 2 trains of thought on this. The 1st is if this truely is the way it went down the people who did it should be punished, and I say if because I can't trust anything the media right or left has to say about the war. A second stronger feeling is that I don't care how many people our troops kill. Everyday they are being shot at and killed. No mercy is given to them so why must we always show mercy. I know that is very unamerican but everyday I live in fear that someone will knock on my door and tell me my husband and father or our three girls is dead. Pray for our military!

    September 27, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  67. FNK

    No wonder, there are several outcries among the local(both Afghan and Iraq) against US and other forces presense. No matter how much US tries to change their image by doing good in front of others, these kind of incidents just does the opposite. This just does not help and brings shame to the country. Imagine the outrage that would occur in Afghnistan after this reaches there, the soldiers would be more in danger.
    There could be several other incidences which nver gets reported. The number of US servicemen committing suicide is high in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Pentagon is already worried about it. Also the number of returning soldiers suffering from PTSD is unbelievably high. God knows what they have done or faced in those countries.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Jules

    Amazing how these psychos can serve, and murder innocent civiians, yet the government has a problem letting openly gay people enlist. What a twisted sense of national pride.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  69. Brianw

    I think there is one very important point that a lot of people are missing: our military does NOT support the killing of innocent civilians. That's why these guys are in deep trouble. The Taliban, Al Queda, etc. DO support the killing of innocents. 99.9% of our military men and women and brave, mature people that would never do this. 99.9% of the Taliban WOULD do this.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
  70. JJ

    I think bush, cheney and rumsfeld all should be tried as an "accessory to murder" in this case.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
  71. iJoeCooper

    The punk in the video is clearly lying, or downplaying the activities of himself and these servicemen. Slouching, resting your arm on the chair and rocking it back and forth are the biggest displays of dishonest nonverbal communication.

    Try these guys in a televised military court so everyone can see that this will not be tolerated. The actions of these bozos prove that America is no better than the country's regimes we are trying to "liberate" them from. That's some good P.R.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
  72. deforge

    sooo.. how long till Drew Griffin gets accused of RAEP and putting our soldiers lives and national security at risk?

    September 27, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Danram

    If they're found to be guilty, they ought to line up all of these miserable S.O.B.'s up in front of a firing squad. They're a disgrace to their country and they've put all of the brave men and women with whom they serve in greater danger by their actions.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Brandon

    The very reason these things are likely to happen is why war is to be so rarely considered in the FIRST place. Either one is anti-war from the beginning because they know this will happen, or one supports the war and is shocked by this sort of thing and wants a full prosecution for what took place.

    Anything beyond that is someone doing thier part to aid and abet war crimes, and are no better than those who would stand by and do nothing in an autocratic state.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Paul

    These tapes will put our troops in danger..shame on CNN

    September 27, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob Griffin

      I had no idea that CNN was popular in Afghanistan. I kinda thought the locals would get their news from Afghan sources, not American TV or internet

      September 28, 2010 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
  76. lefty avenger

    Bush and Obama sent these guys over there to kill as many afghans and iraqis as possible so we could get that oil out for the petroleum barons. So these soldiers killed everything in sight and BP and Exxon got their oil. What's so hard to understand about this. You either condone killing or you don't. War is killing people for profit.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Johnny

    Killing isn't God Given, its man's choice to rid himself of his own short comings / inadequacies through the suffering of others. The Indians had much to offer, so did the enslaved black people, yet man has no common sense as to the big picture. The big picture you ask, just turn to Jesus and let go of your shortcomiing and offer the battle to God!!!

    September 27, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Kreczk

    Let them go. Has anyone been arrested for IED's ? Nope.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • iJoeCooper

      Great point.

      September 27, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Steve

    They should be hung for war crimes.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
  80. Eric

    what else can you expect? They're young...that is what happens when you put a gun, some authority into a young persons hands and into a war environment.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  81. stinkybooty

    am I correct in reading this that his blackque commanding officer, Calvin Gibbs ordered Morlock to kill the Afghan...if so , the blackque is the guilty one...what tha 'ell is going on here???

    September 27, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  82. RabiaDiluvio

    Acts of violence perpetrated during a war–who would have thought??!?

    September 27, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  83. joe

    If we would pull our troops out of there and start spending our money on growing alge for bio diesel, we would not need oil anymore. Our car can run on electic with back up bio fuel ...but no...we have to pander to the big oil company. You remember Standard oil? The government broke them up, now they have reorganized globally under Exxon/Mobile. That is who is running the show. There are more people in the US (VOTES) to turn away from oil than there are people affiliated with EXXON/MOBILE. Demand to your congressman that we take the path of bio fuel and lets get out of this mess. If your congressman does not want to take a stand..VOTE HIM OUT. There are people who would try to discourage bio fuels, saying FUEL OR FOOD. Thats propaganda from oil companies. We can do this people. TAKE A STAND

    September 27, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
  84. Kyle D

    If you have never been deployed then you all should shut your stupid mouths because you have no idea what it feels like. You have no idea what true freedom is as you relax in your comfy chair and point accusations. War is terrible, I agree but until you’re actually getting shot and blown up on a daily basis you will never be able to understand. Most people never earned the freedom they take advantage of everyday so don’t act like you have. You people drag our flag into the dirt along with the soldiers who fight. Shame on you, who ever said war is pretty.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • iJoeCooper

      "you people", way to generalize.

      I don't think anyone takes freedom for granted but please tell me where you live because I don't want to be backed into a corner and have a grenade thrown at me.

      September 27, 2010 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  85. Floyd

    When you train men to kill it's not easy to just turn it on and off. We all should not be complacent once these young men come back to the US. Once a killer, always a killer. Some games being played during this war have not come to the surface. We all can expect more backlash and other unheard of atrocities to come to the surface in the next few years. The best is yet to come........

    September 27, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
  86. K

    I wish the world would evolve and people would stop killing each other.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Report abuse |
  87. Cindy

    You people are ignorant.

    The WAR did not cuase these people to commit murder. If these people had it in them to murder they would have done the same thing to different people right here in America. WAR doesn't make people murder innocent people. Murder happens everyday in America by people who make bad decisions or are mentally unstable.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  88. Floyd

    You all must know by now that the US should never of been sent over there. Just think of all the money wasted that has fueled our bad economy. It's no coincidence that our economy has been in limbo since the war started. Have we not learned this lesson from the past? Why hold another nation and their people accountable for the actions of a few? What if another nation came into the US and did what we are doing in Afghanistan? Would it be justifiable? We got played by our politicians as usual. What else is new?

    September 27, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  89. gary

    There should be NO secrets what-so-ever, scerets are just a way for the gov to keep things from us like right now! Check out the BAR oath and the Doctors oath to never go against the Gov! Hummmmm, the truth is all coming out and will. I am anxious to see who all is involved with the entire operation.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
  90. Annexian

    G.I. Jokes. Real American ZEROS....

    But what do you expect from a fake war that's being waged purely so the elites profit a dime for every dollar borrowed in our names to pretend to fight it?

    September 27, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
  91. nd nd

    How can this happen? American hubris...that's how this can happen!

    September 27, 2010 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
  92. Dave

    "Waddington said his 22-year-old client was brain-damaged from prior IED attacks, was using prescription drugs and smoking hashish and was under the influence of and in fear of his commanding officer, who is also charged."

    I'm not sure what kind of absurd case they are trying to turn this into - I'm still in utter awe at what the families of these victims are getting from their government (just trying to even fathom what would be going on in the U.S. if U.S. citizens were murdered in a similar fashion and the perpetrators weren't taken into custody by the U.S. government), but they sure do try and bring up the smoking of hashish in tandem with words like "under the influence", when in fact what they're saying is he was "under the influence and fear of his commanding officer, not hashish.

    These were carried out as a ritual or plan over several months. Completely psychotic.

    Looking FORWARD to seeing the OUTRAGEOUS mis-carraige of justice on this one. Wow, can you imagine claiming to believe and respect a Christian God after letting these viscous killers go on a bizarre claim of lack of evidence or something, AND then further denying due process through the courts of Afghanistan to the families of these victims? Can you even IMAGINE a Christian God having to put up with that kind of hypocrisy and mockery?

    All I know, if after letting these sick killers walk, the entire WORLD doesn't lose it and get the justice these Afghanistan families deserve, then there really is no God.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  93. Johnn

    In Terminator Salvation they were going to kill a whole group of civilians to destroy SkyNEt. That's what the soldiers are hired to do is kill people. HALO, same thing you can't get to the advanced level without shooting people.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  94. Phil

    That's what those damn Iraqis get for defending their oil so vigorously

    September 27, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  95. marcia

    YES, OUR SLIMY PRESS HAS TOO TOO MUCH FREEDOM.
    THEY ARE THE CAUSE OF A LOT OF PAIN FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE!

    September 27, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  96. Carl

    Although I think this situation is totally horrible and that these folks need to be punished to the fullest extent, I also believe CNN is making a major mistake in judgment to publish such an article publicly; All this publicity will do will be to incent other Afghan's and/or other Muslims to inflict harm to other Americans & Afghans for retaliation and revenge; Worse yet, provides the Taliban and Al Queda with more ammunition to justify them increasing their terrorist's activities and propaganda; Criminals, such as these soldiers, for whatever reasons that they cite for doing what they did, should be prosecuted to the hilt; but publicising the situation only increases the risk of harm to other soldiers and civilians

    September 27, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  97. George

    It is a sad, unfortunate reality that war brings out the darkest side of human nature. It always has and it always will. People who have not had to participate in the more direct, gruesome parts of it, have always been shocked and offfended when they come face to face with it. However, soldiers who have had this aweful experience know that it can bring out the best or the worst side of a person's nature. A year in Vietnam taught me that.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  98. Galoux

    Frank said: "This is what happens when we get an 'all volunteer' army. " Really? What about My Lai? And that was only the most visible of actions like that. I have some Nam-vet friends, and a few have told me of their experiences–which included witnessing murder of civilian friendlies.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  99. marcia

    What do people expect from soldiers that are killing machines????
    The military trained them...THEY are responsible!

    September 27, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  100. Peace

    It's the sad state of the continuing human mentality of war. Train young men and women to become emotionless killing machines, and should a cog or spring come loose in the machine, we end up with stories like this. We, like our enemies, train people how to be efficient and effective human killers, hunters of humans, not unlike training the hunters of deer and duck, yet there is nothing that shouldn't be further apart from each other, than a man and a beast.

    If we all don't end war, war will end us all.

    September 27, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
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