During times of war, we donâ€™t expect our soldiers to commit crimes. It happens, we know it does, we saw it in Vietnam, yet we hope and pray that our men will go overseas, obey orders, fight for the just cause, and return home. Thatâ€™s it, clear and simple. We donâ€™t want anything to go wrong, and we always expect our soldiers to perform their duties honorably, to the best of their abilities, and as a credit to themselves and their country. That doesnâ€™t always happen.
Unfortunately, our soldiers are not always honorable men. Though our government does its best to screen out those who may have murderous or psychotic tendencies, there is no doubt that many people who are not deemed â€œfitâ€ to serve in war serve anyway. It may be due to underlying psychological issues that went unnoticed, possibly soldiers were healthy individuals and the pressures and horrors of war caused them to go over the edge, or maybe some people are just bent on hurting other people without lack or feelings of empathy, maybe some soldiers do not know how to separate war from murder and are bound with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and just lose it, whatever the reason, it happens. To the shame of our nation, our country, and fellow servicemen, it not only happens, but it happened again.
On August 4, 2007 a 23 year old Army Private named, Jesse Spielman was sentenced to 110 years for the rape and murder of an Iraqi girl and her relatives for a crime that occurred in 2006. Along with Jesse Spielman, Sgt. Paul E. Cortez, 24 years old, Specialist James P. Barker, and Steven. D. Green were also charged in the attack. Both Specialist Barker and Sergeant Cortez pleaded guilty and received 100 years and are currently serving time in Fort Leavenworth. Steven D. Green is currently awaiting trial.
Now here is where the case gets interesting. Apparently, Jesse Spielman has been declaring his innocence from the beginning. Specialist Barker, and Sergeant Cortez both plead guilty, but also attested to the fact that Private Jesse Spielman was an unwilling observer who never participated in anything. He did not plead guilty, because he believed that the facts would prove his innocence and he would be cleared of all wrong doing- not so. In fact, Jesse Spielman received 110 years, where the two who admitted their wrongdoing received 100 years with the possibility of parole in 10. As you can tell, many people are scratching their heads trying to determine what is going on.
If this sounds like the Tom Cruise hit, â€œA Few Good Menâ€ to you, youâ€™re not alone. This story has Hollywood production written all over it, and the fact of the matter remains that Jesse Spielman was found guilty and convicted for what apparently seems to be Army orders. He was ordered to go with his superior to meet a terrible fate. The crimes committed were atrocious, but if Jesse Spielman did not participate, does he deserve 110 years in a federal penitentiary?