Tuesday, February 06, 2007

We’re going to jail, dude

I implore, nay command, my readers in the state of Washington to sign petitions for 957, the Defense of Marriage Initiative, which would annul marriages that don’t produce children within three years. It’s just common sense.

The British tabloid The Sun has video of cockpit footage from a US plane that shot up a British convoy in March 2003. It has the pilots laughing as they saw wounded soldiers being dragged out of burning vehicles and then not so much when they finally figure out who they’ve been shooting at. “Fuck. God fucking shit,” says one. “Fuck me dead,” says another. “This sucks.” “We’re going to jail, dude,” says one pilot, with a touching naivete.

The pilots (who were not court-martialed, and have not been identified) did everything wrong, and recklessly: when checking on whether there were friendly forces in the area they gave the wrong grid references; they were talking amongst themselves while on another frequency the convoy was trying to tell them to stop shooting; they saw the orange panels identifying the vehicles as coalition but decided they were orange rocket launchers; they attacked without permission.

The inquest into the death of a British soldier killed in the incident is going on now, with absolutely no cooperation from the US military (they refused, for example, to turn over this video, and the British Ministry of Defence won’t release it because “this recording is the property of the United States government”). Big story there, not so big here. Arguably, that sentence explains America’s image throughout the world: big story there, not so big here.

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