Spain Seeks Extradition Of US Killers

Jose Couso
Jose Couso

A Spanish judge issued international arrest warrants yesterday for three US soldiers who face being put on trial in Madrid for the killing of a Spanish television cameraman during the Iraq war.

Lieutenant Colonel Philip de Camp, Captain Philip Wolford and Sergeant Shawn Gibson of the US Army’s 3rd Infantry Division were wanted for questioning as suspects in the killing of José Couso, from Spain’s Telecinco channel, according to the warrants.

“I order the … capture and arrest of the US soldiers, with a view to extradition,” said Judge Santiago Pedraz, an investigating magistrate at the National Court.
(Source: Common Dreams)

This is another news story you’re unlikely to see as the top headline on the evening news. It’s just one more life lost to the “shock and awe” of the US blitzkrieg on Iraq. An invasion so contemptuous of world opinion that its tanks shelled hotels full of journalists, citing the lie that it was “returning fire.”

But why has Spain had to issue warrants for arrest? Surely the US is the upholder of international law, the great protector of freedom and democracy?

Judge Pedraz said he had issued the warrant because the US government had not replied to his requests for help as he investigated Couso’s death.

It was “the only way of ensuring the suspects became available to Spanish judicial authorities, given the complete lack of cooperation,” from the US, the judge explained in a written document.

“Most of the international press was in the Hotel Palestine, where they had gone from the Hotel Rashid, following the Pentagon’s own recommendations,” the judge added.

A US State Department official told Reuters this year: “I just cannot imagine how any US soldier can be subject to some kind of foreign proceeding for criminal liability when he is in a tank in a war zone as part of an international coalition.”
(Source: Common Dreams)

How arrogant is the US? It won’t even deign to co-operate with due legal process in Spain, one of its former coalition partners.

Once again, the US is ignoring countries that are demanding justice for their murdered citizens, writing them off as unfortunate casualties of war against an evil enemy who must be defeated. Whatever the cost in innocent human lives.

Sounds a lot like something Al-Quaeda would say, doesn’t it?