The first of three Navy SEALs facing courts-martial for the alleged “abuse” of a prisoner has been found not guilty. This is a good thing.
I was livid when I first heard about this. The back story stems from the SEAL unit tracking down and capturing Ahmed Hashim Abed, the suspected mastermind of the attack on Blackwater contractors in Falluja in 2004. As you may remember, this was the ones who were hung from a bridge and dragged through the streets.
The SEALs were accused of beating Abed after taking him into custody. The command reprimanded them with Non-Judicial Punishment, also known as “Captain’s Mast.” While there was no jail time or other significant penalties, that judgement is put in their record. The SEALs refused, insisted on having a trail. This was risky on their part, as a guilty verdict could bring prison time.
While we don’t want our elite units to run rampant and dish out their own style of self-imposed justice, or have any of our troops do things like that, I think nearly all reasonable Americans would agree that our troops, especially ones as highly trained and disciplined as the SEALs, should be given a good benefit of the doubt over the words and accusations of known dirtbag terrorists.