WASHINGTON, Jan. 13, 2012 – The commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan has joined other senior Defense Department officials in expressing outrage over a video posted on a public website that shows four Marines apparently urinating over three enemy corpses.
“These actions are in direct opposition to everything the military stands for," Marine Corps Gen. John R. Allen said after viewing the video. “Such acts in no way reflect the high moral standards and values we expect of our armed forces on a daily basis."
Allen, who is traveling in the United States, echoed comments made yesterday by Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, who discussed the video over the telephone yesterday with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.
"I assure the people of Afghanistan and the members of the coalition that there will be a thorough investigation and a full accounting of what occurred," Allen said.
"Such acts violate the sanctity of the dead and are deplorable and must be condemned in the strongest manner possible. We will support the investigation of these acts in every way for a swift determination of the facts,” Allen added. “If the investigation confirms the egregious acts depicted on the video, we support the appropriate administration of justice to hold accountable those who committed them.”
In other Afghanistan news today:
-- In the Now Zad district of Helmand province, a combined Afghan and coalition security force detained a suspected insurgent during a search for a Taliban leader who commands attack cells and plans bomb and small-arms attacks against Afghan officials.
-- A combined force detained several suspects while searching for a Haqqani network leader in the Nerkh district of Wardak province. The leader plans suicide-bomb attacks and other insurgent actions.
Elsewhere in Afghanistan, a combined force killed several insurgents Jan. 11 during a search for a Taliban leader in the Almar district of Faryab province.
The targeted leader is an explosives expert with ties to suicide-attack networks. He is suspected of planning a suicide-bomb attack that killed an Afghan security official in October. The force also seized multiple weapons, chest racks, grenades, rocket-propelled grenades and explosives.