Unnamed sources in the Pentagon with their own agenda have been leaking false information about the killing of civilians in Haditha by Marines last November, NewsMax.com has learned.
A Marine intelligence agent who investigated last year's Nov. 19 shootings of civilians in Haditha in the immediate wake of the incident has stepped forward to defend the Kilo company Marines against charges that they massacred the victims.
In Thursday's Washington Post, Marine intelligence operative Sgt. J.M. Laughner is quoted as calling the shootings an appropriate response to a coordinated insurgent attack.
In a transcript of his interview with two investigating colonels, Laughner, described by The Post as a member of a Marine human-intelligence exploitation team that was hunting down insurgent bomb-makers, said his unit went from house to house in Haditha on Nov. 19, 2005, in the immediate aftermath of the incident. He acknowledges finding two dozen bodies, including some women and small children.
Laughner said the scenes of the slayings appeared to match the version of events the Marine squad provided that day and did not seem especially out of the ordinary, according to a transcript of his interview.
Laughner's account, The Post noted, supports the argument made by some Marines in Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 1st Marines � that they believed they were following their rules of engagement when they opened fire on groups of people inside at least three homes after a roadside bomb killed a member of their unit. Several Marines are under criminal investigation in connection with the civilian deaths that day, but no one has been charged.
Laughner's statement is further evidence that Marines who were on the ground that day viewed the civilian deaths as accidental rather than the result of a vengeful rampage.
According to one well-placed NewsMax source, the misleading statements by unnamed Pentagon sources are the result of the anxiety felt by high-ranking Marine Corps officers who, out of misplaced political correctness and fear of media reaction, have committed themselves to a conviction of some kind even though unwarranted by the facts.
"If there is complete exoneration, they will be severely embarrassed," our source said.
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Read More Here:Marine Called Haditha Shootings Appropriate