War Transforms Humans

Five American soldiers who fought in Afghanistan were convicted of planning the murder of three Afghan civilians. Staff Sergeant Calvin Gibbs, ranking member of the group was sentenced to life imprisonment and  charged with organizing the conspiracy which entailed dropping weapons next to the bodies of the unarmed civilians in order to present the appearance there was a fire fight. Three men pleaded guilty and two testified against Gibbs. They portrayed him as a man who enjoyed brutality and thirsted for violence.

The men were part of the 5th Stryker Brigade which has gained a reputation for cannabis, mutilation of Afghan bodies and even attacking those who reported criminal actions. Is there something amiss when privates, sergeants and those in lower ranks of the military are court martialed, but those who ordered them into battle walk away with celebrity status and millions of dollars?

The five were five normal Americans until thrust into a terrible situation. I am not excusing their actions, but it is time those who sent them into that situation also were judged.