This is another comment of such import that I am making it a post in itself. The possibility of a "cover-up" at platoon, company, battalion and higher seems more and more likely for all the reasons that "Chris" gives below.
"For what its worth and taken with some reservation of judgement, some eyewitness descriptions in the islamic press include many more US soldiers involved…from 10 up to 15.
Many, many other questions here. Why is Green the only soldier named and in theory facing justice? at least one other rapist and several accomplices in the officially sanctioned version.
"Another soldier, referred to as KP1, also allegedly raped the girl.
According to accounts provided to investigators by other soldiers, Green and took several other soldiers with him to a nearby house intending to rape the woman. Green, according to an affidavit submitted by FBI Special Agent Gregor J. Ahlers in support of the arrest warrant, killed the woman’s parents and young sister, raped the woman along with another soldier, then shot her in the head and set her body on fire.
There were four soldiers who went to the residence, knowing that the plan was for the girl to be raped. They are referred to in the affidavit as SO12, SO13, Green and KP1. You can read the affidavit for Green’s arrest here. Page 6 lays out the events and players.
Amid the more disgusting details, provided by S012 and SO13 who have cooperated with authorities: They go to the house, SO13 stays in front on guard, the other three go in the house. K1 smacks the girl down in the living room, Green goes in the bedroom, shoots and kills her three family members. SO13, hearing the shots, comes in the house. Green comes back out to the living room where Green and KP1 rape the girl, after which, Green shoots her and kills her. SO12 tells SO13 to get rid of the AK-47 Green used to kill them all.
No NCO or officer above these privates named? How can privates change into civilian clothes and go on a local raid without a superior’s knowledge?
("he criminal complaint [FindLaw image] alleges that Green was the ringleader of the four soldiers who took part in the violence while a fifth soldier remained in a humvee to stand guard. The complaint also alleges that the soldiers had been drinking alcohol beforehand and had changed into civilian clothes, indicating that the alleged acts were not spontaneous).
What about his chain of command?
This guy and his pals were planning this attack for at least a week, and the woman’s family felt threatened enough beforehand to try to take preventative action.
Plus unit discipline obviously broke down to allow the capture of single paratroopers on guard/checkpoint duty, which should be very difficult under normal circumstances.
I’ll take the liberty of copying a comment from Rick at Talkleft.com….
"Green had been in the Army eleven months by the time he was discharged for an unspecified personality disorder. The discharge occurred after the rape/murder. He was a problem for the command at platoon and company levels, and they got rid of him. Quietly, so as to not disturb the higher commanders. To discharge him it had to go through battalion S1 (Personnel.)
The three soldiers at the traffic control point were set up. Someone attacked the group and ran. Part of the group left to chase them, leaving the three troops at the traffic control point. One was killed, two were captured, tortured, beheaded and left to be found. These three soldiers were ~in the same platoon~ as Green had been. For purposes of payback, being in the same platoon as the rapist/murderers is the same as being in the extended family, so they were responsible to the extended family four Green killed.
The rape/murder very probably led to Green’s discharge, and was almost certainly known to everyone in his platoon, his company commander and first sergeant, the battalion commander and XO, and the Battalion Personnel section. This is at a minimum.
The hullabaloo caused by the capture of the two soldiers brought the entire U.S Army in the Iraq command out in force, and included – what was it? – some 6,000 soldiers searching for them over the weekend until the bodies were found? That tore to top off the cover up within the 502d bn. It was exposed in the debriefings after the deaths of the three soldiers.
I can understand your genteel use of the term "~may have caused~ the soldier’s kidnappings, beheadings." but for this to all happen in the same single platoon is just to unlikely to be a reasonable coincidence. Especially when connected to the discharge of the prime suspect for some unspecified "personality disorder" after he has only been in the Army for a total of eleven months. Gimme a break. Every bit of this stuff is connected. That discharge itself is very unlikely to have occurred to anyone. That it happened to the person identified as the prime suspect in a rape/murder shortly after the crime happened is too unreasonable to be a coincidence.
By the way, notice that Green was a high school dropout with a GED. Prior to the invasion of Iraq, he would not even have been allowed into the Army. The standards had to be lowered a lot just to get him in, and look what happened as a result. High school graduates are a lot less likely to be this kind of discipline problem. But the Army wasn’t making the enlistment quotas, remember?
I’d really like to know Green’s training and discipline record prior to March."
And another commenter, Tom, gives the FBI document a close read, noting that "Seeing a couple of comments about the possibility of an initial cover-up of the horrible incident in Mahmoudiya, I would note the following issues seem to be raised by a careful reading of the FBI Affidavit supporting the warrant for Steven Green’s arrest:
(1) para. 13 of the Affidavit indicates that "fifteen crime scene photos" had been provided to the Affiant by the Army’s CID, and further indicates that bodies appeared in the photos.
(2) since the actual rape and murder occurred during the evening of March 11, 2006 (paras. 8, 9 and 12) bodies would clearly have been removed from the scene of the crime before the "combat stress debriefing" of "on/about 06/20/2006" when the crime was "discovered (para. 6). If the crime scene photos predate the 6/20/06 debriefing, why were they taken, and if as part of an investigation, what did it conclude? Is anyone following up with a FOIA Request to get all relevant CID files?
(3) the references in the FBI Affidavit as to the initial US awareness of the incident are a little bit contradictory – – para. 5 states the incident was brought to the attention of US forces "about 1730, 03/12/2006" by "three unknown Iraqi males" while para. 12 indicates that notification was received from "an Iraqi National on 03/11/2006." If the incident indeed came to light on March 11, 2006, the very day of the alleged incident, what kind of follow-up was there?
(3) since the FBI affidavit para. 5 reference to the three unknown Iraqi males, continues that the incident occurred "in their house," and since news accounts have mentioned that the girl who was raped had three brothers who were not at home when the incident occurred, was the initial report made by those three brothers? If so, what did they say, especially in light of news reports now indicating that the young girl’s family had expressed fears for the safety of the girl because of advances by US troops?"
It seems to me there’s at least the possibility of a company-level coverup attempt that’s failed here."