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November 18th, 2009
09:44 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 11/18/09

We have breaking news from Capitol Hill. Senate Democrats have revealed their health care bill. Plus, Sarah Palin speaking out about the Ft. Hood massacre. And, we have part two of our special report "Killings at the Canal: The Army Tapes."

Want to know what else we're covering? Read EVENING BUZZ

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)


Filed under: Live Blog • T1
soundoff (181 Responses)
  1. Heather - Spokane, WA

    I know Walmart has video cameras all over their store, I want to see what the videos say ......

    November 18, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  2. Lyn

    This is a very sad situation, my heart goes out to the soldiers however if you turn the situation around and our soldiers were shooting and captured by the enemy and shot because they were the guilty ones would we think they should have less of a sentence.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  3. "starr, formerly known as vincent

    @Emily, thank you for your comments. I truly hope you are right and these young men will gain furter clemency.
    I do not know Any of the facts as they relate to the interviewed sargent not having or refusing legal representation.
    I know the military can be harsh at times, but i trust them as more publicity is put on this story to do the "right thing" for All of the men involved.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  4. Dave

    Anderson- Very concerned that the contunued use of "battlefield justice" will put the thought in your viewers heads that this is something that exists in the military. It does not. What these three Soldiers did was a violation of the rules of engagement and the rules of war. Both of which we are taught prior to deployment and revisit multiple time during deployment. These Soldiers knew or should have known that the actions they were about to take violated both.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  5. James

    There is no way these young men should be locked up for any period of time. In war no one life is more important than the other and these men's lives where in danger every day. If they thought they where doing the right thing, civilians should ask no questions. There are thousands of American lives that have been taken with no reguard. If they want to give them a mark in there eval's fine, but not prison, this is a disgrace!

    November 18, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  6. Ryan

    Evening Anderson,

    The punishment for these soldiers certainly does not fit the crime. In the law we have something called "Totality of the Cicumstances". We look at all the factors. In civilian trials, juries are instructed to look at all the of the circumstances,

    November 18, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  7. Leann Thomson

    RE: the murders in the canal
    The U.S. Government put the soldiers in an impossible situation by requiring an unobtainable amount of proof prior to detaining the Iraq suspects. It is a wonder that more of this type of thing isn't happening. What is the point of putting your life on the line to go out and get the insurgents if they know it is a joke and they will be back on the streets in no time. What a terrible situation to put our soldiers in! The killings weren't right, but they certainly should have been expected as a probable outcome.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  8. Emily

    @ David, Indiana,

    re. Major Hasan ...I don't think that something like profiling was needed here! As you said, ALL the red flags were there, and Actions is what was needed!

    These "fears" need to be quashed!

    November 18, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  9. Casey Jones - Palm Springs, CA

    The list of disgusting stories surrounding human rights abuses at Wal-Mart stores all over the country. This Wal-Mart has been, and is currently, out of control.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  10. Aidan

    I know the soldiers confessed, but if the bodies were never found in the canal, nor was any evidence....other than their confessions, is there any other evidence?

    November 18, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  11. teresa, ohio

    no prison time for them: dishonorable discharge. war is war

    @Rose: thats what I was thinking, perhaps their bodies were found, ID'd and buried.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  12. rachel from new jersey

    i find the interrogation process extremely interesting and i would speculate that the process will be under scrutiny in the months to follow. the "rapport building" techniques of the interrogator seemed unprofessional, coercive, and aggressive. i wonder what protocol exist for this type of interview...

    November 18, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  13. Devna AC360°

    Stay tuned for Pres. Obama's question and answer with the traveling press!

    November 18, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  14. Nancy

    Anderson,

    I just finished looking at the piece you presented about the US soldiers sentenced to prison for killing Iraqi prisoners. I think the government is totally throwing these military men under the bus. They go to war - to kill and to kill an enemy that doesn't "play by any rules"– for this country in a setting that's insane but you want them to not react accordingly? This is nuts. I have a son that's on his third tour of battle for this country and am very proud of what he's doing, but I think he and his comrades in the military are totally unappreciated. Truthfully–we're at war folks and there aren't any real rules, now are there? P.S. Why didn't the government go after that nut that shot up the army base like they these guys out in the thick of battle?

    November 18, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  15. Steve

    I have no problem at all with what these soldier did. I believe they are HEROS! Do you think American soldiers captured would be treated any differently?

    November 18, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  16. Emma

    You know the real question here is ~ what the heck are we doing to these young soldiers ... what is going on that they would be driven to commit such callous acts? And by "we" I mean We the People, We the Government

    November 18, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  17. Evelyn

    No way should those soldiers be punished. They were sent to war and no one knows the mental and physical pressures they have endured. Reprimanded – discharged – perhaps.....punished – not on your life.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  18. Emily

    @ Casey Jones,
    It sure seems that's what they were doing! (minimizing exposure).

    How can they do their job, as a soldier, if they have to worry that this may occur?

    November 18, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  19. David, Indiana

    @Emily, yes, why doesn't he have a lawyer? And if the lawyer is in the room why does he or she not appear on the video. The lawyer shld appear on the video if present.

    So the Iraqis who were murdered were identified and their families are known but no one reported them missing?

    Very sad to see those pictures of Sgt Leehy and his wife in happier times.

    How did these events come to be discovered?

    It's a very important pt, that thousands of other soldiers in the heat of the moment did not commit such a crime.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  20. Mike, formerly from Syracuse

    These 'detainees' were captured with weapons and admitted to killing Americans. It's sad the the rights of terrorists take priority over the lives of our troops.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  21. Stephen Wilkerson (Maryland)

    Anderson,

    It happens in every war. It shouldn't be condoned. They should be washed out of the Army and that should be the end of it. There's no way we can pass judgement on them not knowing what they are going through.

    Drew

    November 18, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  22. "starr, formerly known as vincent

    Anderson, Excellent panel discussion and excellent questions by you too.

    Thank you so much for bring this story into the light. Am very much looking for your follow up with this story for the next one or two nights.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  23. Rose

    Hello Anderson,

    I appreciate your "canal" piece; however, as a Muslim American it upsets me to here your representation of the Iraqi men killed in cold blood. I justify my statement because they are not alive to tell their side of the story, and they too had wives and small children that are now windowed and fatherless. I have heard who these men were, and they were buried because Muslims must be buried within 24 hours of their deaths.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:38 pm |
  24. Joey P

    The military law, the way it is looked at is guilty until proven innocent. you have thee right to face your accuser. and as far as Doc Leahy goes, I honestly could not tell you why he waived his rights to a lawyer. that was a decision he made

    November 18, 2009 at 10:38 pm |
  25. Lori

    This story is making me feel sick.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:37 pm |
  26. Casey Jones - Palm Springs, CA

    The three soldiers were minimizing their exposure (and their fellow soldiers exposure) to danger.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:36 pm |
  27. Emily

    Did anyone hear how Abbie Boudreau discovered this story?

    I had never heard about it anywhere!

    November 18, 2009 at 10:35 pm |
  28. Ryan

    Anderson, that interrogation was *Nothing*. Interrogation techniques in civilian interrogations are much more ruthless and people are usually questioned for up to 40 hours. Naive people that do not know their rights often fall prey to the hands of interrogators. This is their JOB Anderson, interrogators know how to extract confessions.

    I don't believe that their their sentence should be anywhere close to 20 years. It should be 2-5 years. That is plenty of time.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:35 pm |
  29. Craig D Harrisburg,Pa

    I believe that these military men should not serve 1 day in jail. These iraqi men shot at them. This is war it is not pretty. These soldiers are under a lot of pressure mentally. Let them go !!!

    November 18, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  30. Emily

    @ "starr, formerly known as vincent,

    "Maybe more clemency can be applied as any further facts are found."

    This seems like quite a possibility! I don't think that the 3 of them should at all be in Jail!

    I wonder if it would have been different for Leahy if he did not wave his rights to a lawyer, assuming he did! I heard Anderson say that interrogation went on for hours!

    November 18, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  31. gary

    Sad commentary on our society, but if Sarah Palin was not that attractive looking, she would have politically come and gone like a big cold wind passing through.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  32. Lori

    It seems that soldiers should get more support in these situations.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  33. gail

    I feel bad for the families of these men. It really looks like the investigator is leading the man to make statements.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  34. Matt Smith, Los Angeles

    Compelling piece. We haven't seen anything like this in the mainstream media. Thank you for doing your job. Mixed feelings on this one.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  35. Monica M. Williams

    Sarah Palin milks the press this week: From controversy over the Newsweek cover to opinions on Fort Hood to the President; clearly she is opinionated. However what do you have after you strip the opinions away?

    I trust a majority of the public can spot an opportunist from a politician.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  36. Dave

    the men should be let go but put on house arrest

    November 18, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  37. Paola K.

    I'm a military spouse and former 1-18th 1id FRG member. I feel what they did is not ethical but due to the circumstances they should be treated with respect and dignity. after all they serve our country with passion and dedication.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  38. Steve - southern Illinois

    The prisoners who were executed likely had wives and children also.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  39. Emily

    @ Joey P,

    thanks for sharing that with us!

    "The Law system is screwed up" ...why didn't Leahy have a lawyer?
    Perhaps you can answer this?!

    An awful 'law system' if the detainees are going to get them when they are in NYC, and these American soldiers did not!?

    November 18, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  40. lisal .canada

    It seems harsh when they live in a kill-or-be-killed environment - but yet there are laws and rules and chains of command that exist. That is a really tough situation for a lot of people.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  41. Mike, formerly from Syracuse

    @Emily, yes he could have requested a lawyer. He must have waved that right.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:27 pm |
  42. "starr, formerly known as vincent

    This is Not 1st degree murder!
    I grew up in the military and heard many stories from my dad and his friends about WW2 and Korea. I also had many friends in Vietnam.
    Actions on the battle field are Not "normal". It is kill or be killed!

    I would not call these young men heros, but i would not have them confined for the rest of their lives either!Clearly, from what the detainee who spoke English said, these detainees (would likely be released within wks) And would go out to kill more of our soldiers again.
    War is Hell...and this is just a small glimpse of that hell!
    God bless them and their families and friends, we are all so lucky to have them fighting for us.
    I truly hope that "justice" will be fair in each case.

    Excellent reportin by Abbie and Thank You Anderson for bringing this story into the light. Maybe more clemency can be applied as any further facts are found.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:27 pm |
  43. Sharon Hastings

    This story is so sad on so many levels. I don't know how to think about it. I hate war.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  44. Heather - Spokane, WA

    Shooting someone when they are shooting at you is justifiable, killing someone execution style when their hands are bound behind their backs and they are blindfolded is murder. If the tables were turned and it was four Americans that were killed it would be murder too.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  45. D. A. Gordon

    I would like to suggest the Army, like all jobs, base their operations on what was done in the past. If you are going to push a soldier who fought in Iraq...then when are you going to push the soldier who "Quote" "Unquote" TORTURED a soldier during WWII. When will we see the 90 year old WWII vet on trial for "Warcrimes?"

    It's either ALL ok...or it's NEVER ok. The Time and Place means nothing.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  46. Lori

    I think that the soldier should have someone on his side representing him. I do not think the interrogation is a fair situation.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  47. Bret Moore

    As a former Army psychologist that served in Iraq, it's easy to look at things in black and white with regard to the detainees being shot. In a combat zone, things are not so clear.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  48. Emily

    @ Mike, formerly from Syracuse,
    Are they not allowed to have lawyers in a Military investigation?

    This Investigator is awful on Leahy, looking at it here!

    November 18, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  49. Nathan

    The man may have done something wrong, but why should he get in trouble when U.S. forces have killed thousands of civilians without any form of outrage or punishment?

    November 18, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  50. Gloria, Brooklyn, NY

    Isn't he leading the witness?

    November 18, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
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