Q Why do American forces in Iraq need retraining on core values, as the military puts it?
THE PRESIDENT: Our troops have been trained on core values throughout their training, but obviously there was an incident that took place in Iraq. It's now being investigated. And this is just a reminder for troops in Iraq, or throughout our military, that there are high standards expected of them and that there are strong rules of engagement. The Haditha incident is under investigation. Obviously, the allegations are very troubling for me and equally troubling for our military, especially the Marine Corps. I've spoken to General Pace about this issue quite a few times. And he's troubled by the allegations because he understands that the Marine Corps has got a proud tradition of upholding rules of engagement.
One of the things that happens in a transparent society like ours is that there is -- there will be a full and complete investigation. The world will see the full and complete investigation. It also is a reminder to our commanders that they must constantly enforce the proud tradition of our military, and that's what they're doing.
Q Have you gotten updates on the situation?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, I'm not involved with the investigation, and you shouldn't expect me to be. I expect this investigation to be conducted independent of the White House, with a full and thorough investigation. And I'm confident. Listen, the Marine Corps wants to get to the bottom of this. If anybody wants to make sure that they know the facts and to correct problems, if they do exist, it's the United States Marine Corps. They are run by -- the Marines are run by an incredibly proud group of men and women who understand the history and tradition of the Marines. And they'll get to the bottom of this.
And if there is wrongdoing, people will be held to account. And at the same time, what you're seeing is the Marine Corps reminding our troops about what it means to be a Marine, what it means to uphold the honor of that Corps, and what it means to adhere to the rules of engagement that we expect our soldiers to adhere to. The United States of America has got a willingness to deal with issues like this in an up-front way, in an open way, and correct problems. And that's what you're going to see unfold.
Friday, June 02, 2006
Let's Put W At The Proper End Of An Investigation
I agree with the President once more - he shouldn't be "involved" in any kind of investigation - but he should be the target of many, no? As the person who shoulders a large amount of responsibility for the troops being in Iraq, he should be held just as accountable as if he pulled the trigger in my book: