It's not getting big coverage but new information information could lead the military court to believe, as we suggested earlier, that the Haditha incident was manufactured by an anti-American writer for Time magazine, some "human rights" groups and the enemy. Rick Rogers of the San Diego Union Tribune reports:
Eight of the 24 people whom Marines are accused of killing in Haditha, Iraq, were described yesterday as insurgents by a defense attorney and a Marine liaison officer during a pretrial hearing. Defense attorney Charles Gittins said the eight were identified by human and electronic intelligence. They were not mentioned by name.
The eight were among five men ordered from a car and shot to death and four men killed in a home cleared by Marines of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, said Gittins, who is representing Capt. Randy Stone at a pretrial hearing at Camp Pendleton. Stone is charged with failing to investigate and properly report the killings.
Last week, Capt. Jeffrey Dinsmore, the intelligence officer for the battalion, testified that "it's fairly well established through the (unmanned aerial vehicle) coverage that there were insurgents in those homes," referring to the homes where civilians were killed.
Gittins' comments outside court were supported by Maj. Dana Hyatt, a Marine liaison officer in Haditha, who testified yesterday under a grant of immunity that four men that Marines killed inside one of three houses that the Marines cleared were insurgents. If proved, the developments could complicate the prosecution of three Marines charged with murder in the November 2005 incident.