US ex Iraq occupier murders fellow veteran

This video from the USA says about itself:

Voice of the Veteran: IVAW Veterans Speak

Iraq Veterans Against The War

Military Families Speak Out

Related Free Speech Websites:

Free Speech TV:

Link TV:

Democracy Now!

By James Cogan in the USA:

Iraq veteran convicted in Colorado murder of fellow soldier

26 November 2008

On November 19, a Colorado jury found 25-year-old Iraq war veteran Louis Bressler guilty of conspiracy to commit murder. Bressler and two other former members of the Fort Carson-based 4th Brigade, 4th Division, Bruce Bastien and Kenneth Eastridge, were charged over the brutal killing of fellow veteran Kevin Shields in Colorado Springs on December 1, 2007.

The revelations since Shields’s murder and the arrest of Bressler, Bastien and Eastridge are terrible. They point to the devastating impact that serving in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq has had on the mental and physical well-being of young soldiers and which will plague American society for years to come.

The 4th Brigade was formed in December 2004 and its ranks included men who had already completed tours of Iraq or took part in the invasion. It was deployed at the beginning of 2006 and operated in the Baghdad area during some of the bloodiest fighting of the war. Its tour was extended from 12 to 15 months as part of the “surge”.

Bressler, Bastien and Eastridge all returned from Iraq with serious problems. Like tens of thousands of Afghanistan and Iraq veterans, Bressler was diagnosed while on duty with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). He had been sent back to the US, where he received an honourable medical discharge and was being treated with anti-depressants.

Bastien, 21, while not diagnosed with PTSD and still in the military, exhibited violent behaviour and psychologically unstable tendencies. He was arrested twice during 2007 for assaulting his wife, including burning her with cigarettes.

Like so many veterans, he was not receiving treatment. His court-appointed lawyer told National Public Radio: “I think the military is sending kids over to fight a war, and then coming back and not giving them the right treatment in order to get them to relate back to real life, rather than life back in Iraq.”

Happy Holidays: Military Divorce Numbers On the Rise: here.

Britain: Lord Bingham says Iraq invasion was a violation of international law: here.

14 thoughts on “US ex Iraq occupier murders fellow veteran

  1. Posted by: “frankofbos”

    Wed Nov 26, 2008 10:58 pm (PST)

    Bush History: Give Thanks!: A Turkey in Iraq, A Dishonest Atty General,
    A Weakened Army 11/27

    Give thanks this Thanksgiving for the blessings of George: On this date
    Bush is in Iraq feeding troops turkey. Also, we can thank George for a
    bumbling liar of an Attorney General, and for an Army that is forced to
    lower standards across the board. Finally, Ben F’s thoughts on
    turkeys, and a related Bushism.

    Today’s category: Betraying Justice, Bushisms, Failing the Troops,
    Iraq, Revolt of the GOP & Insiders, Revolt of the Generals


  2. Posted by: “frankofbos”

    Sun Nov 30, 2008 11:29 pm (PST)

    Bush History-Military and Bush Insiders: Iraq War was “a strategic
    error … unnecessary” 12/1

    Today a tale of military insiders and a Bush insider who have come out
    against the Iraq war. On this date the U.S. Army War College releases
    a study that spells out in no uncertain terms a few of the reasons
    why. Also today, related Bushisms, including President Bush’s
    preferred term for the ‘war on terror’. It’s a mouthful; no wonder if
    never caught on!

    Today’s category: Bushisms, Encouraging Terrorism, Iraq, Losing Sight
    of the Real Enemy, Revolt of the GOP & Insiders, Revolt of the Generals


  3. Bases brace for surge in stress-related disorders
    The Associated Press

    Published: November 29, 2008

    FORT CAMPBELL, Ky.: Some 15,000 soldiers are heading home to this sprawling base after spending more than a year at war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and military health officials are bracing for a surge in brain injuries and psychological problems among those troops.

    Facing prospects that one in five of the 101st Airborne Division soldiers will suffer from stress-related disorders, the base has nearly doubled its psychological health staff. Army leaders are hoping to use the base’s experiences to assess the long-term impact of repeated deployments.

    The three 101st Airborne combat brigades, which have begun arriving home, have gone through at least three tours in Iraq. The 3rd Brigade also served seven months in Afghanistan, early in the war. Next spring, the 4th Brigade will return from a 15-month tour in Afghanistan. So far, roughly 10,000 soldiers have come back; the remainder are expected by the end of January.

    Army leaders say they will closely watch Fort Campbell to determine the proper medical staffing levels needed to aid soldiers who have endured repeated rotations in the two war zones.

    “I don’t know what to expect. I don’t think anybody knows,” said Gen. Peter Chiarelli, vice chief of staff of the Army, as he flew back to Washington from a recent tour of the base’s medical facilities. “That’s why I want to see numbers from the 101st’s third deployment.”
    Today in Americas
    Obama introduces his national security team
    U.S. entertainment increases worldwide appeal, even if U.S. image doesn’t
    Panel foresees unconventional terror threat

    What happens with the 101st Airborne, he said, will let the Army help other bases ready for similar homecomings in the next year or two, when multiple brigades from the 4th Infantry Division and the 1st Cavalry Division return.

    Noting that some soldiers in the 101st Airborne units have been to war four or five times, Chiarelli said he is most worried the military will not be able to find enough health care providers to deal effectively with the troops needing assistance.

    Many of the military bases are near small or remote communities that do not have access to the number of health professionals who might be needed as a great many soldiers return home.

    More than 63,600 active duty Army soldiers have done three or more tours in Iraq or Afghanistan. That is a nearly 12 percent of the total number of soldiers who have deployed at least once. Roughly four in 10 soldiers who have gone to war have served more than one deployment — and that number is growing steadily.

    One solution under discussion is the formation of mobile medical and psychological teams that can go to Army bases when they are expecting a surge in activity from returning units.

    At Fort Campbell, the director of health services, Col. Richard Thomas, has roughly doubled his authorized staff of psychologists and behavioral specialists to 55 and is trying to hire a few more.

    “I think we have enough staff to meet the demands of the soldiers here, but I could use more, and I’ll hire more if I can,” said Thomas. “I’ll hire them until they tell me to stop.”

    He said he expects the increased staffing levels to last at least through next year.

    For the first time, Thomas said, every soldier returning home will have an individual meeting with a behavioral health specialist and then go through a second such session 90 days to 120 days later.

    The second one is generally the time when indications of stress surface, after the initial euphoria of the homecoming wears off and sleeplessness, nightmares, and other symptoms show up.

    “We’re seeing a lot of soldiers with stress related issues,” he said. “They’re not bipolar or schizophrenic. But they’re deploying three and four times and the stress is tremendous. They’re having relationship issues, financial issues, marital problems — all stress related.”

    According to Dr. Bret Logan, deputy commander for managed care at the base, extended war zone stints that have lasted as long as 38 months over the course of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have taken a severe toll.

    More than 3,000 of the 15,000 troops returning home, Logan estimated, probably will experience headaches, sleep disorders, irritability, memory loss, relationship strains or other symptoms linked to stress disorder.

    Medical staff at Fort Campbell say they also worry that there will be a new surge of suicides — an escalating problem in recent years, largely related to the stresses of war.

    Jon Soltz, an Iraq war veteran and chairman of, said more soldiers will have stress-related problems, and the military must be vigilant in diagnosing and treating post-traumatic stress disorder to head off more serious issues.

    “The longer you are there (at war), the more PTSD you’re going to see. You wonder when it’s going to be your time,” he said.

    Each returning soldier is evaluated through a seven-day reintegration program. It includes medical checkups, tests, lectures on suicide prevention and relationships, and other sessions to help them transition back into life at the base and with their families.

    During his visit to Campbell, Chiarelli took a spin on one of the base’s simulators, which are used for soldiers having neurological or stress problems. The simulator can be used to test soldiers’ reflexes or as a way to work someone back into everyday situations.

    With occupational therapist Eileen Hayes watching over his shoulder, Chiarelli adeptly negotiated the city streets, sudden turns and other obstacles moving at him on the small screen.

    The simulators said Logan, put patients in high stress scenarios to test their decision-making ability while under duress.

    While soldiers have been routinely deploying for 15-month tours, most Marines serve about seven months and airmen deploy for about four months, although some may serve for tours of six months or longer.

    Late this past summer, Pentagon leaders ordered a change, saying any soldier who deployed in August or after would serve 12-month tours. Army leaders say they want to reduce that to nine months, but doing so will be difficult considering the strains of fighting two wars at once.

    Logan said that some 85 percent of those soldiers with stress disorder symptoms will recover with the help of some treatment or medication. But the other 15 percent will require more intensive help.


  4. I like to end with something funny. But not this week. My mind has been on Iraq. While we were feasting last week, they were dying – the people of Iraq, and our young men and women.

    This week, I will end with some videos about Iraq.

    Warning: A lot of the footage below is very graphic. If you can’t watch these videos, remember that this war is fought in your name, with your money.

    Unembedded journalists:

    Read more:

    Videos from Fallujah:

    In November of 2004, a few days after the general election, the US military launched an all-out offensive on the Iraqi city of Fallujah, with the aim of destroying a major center of the insurgency. Operation Phantom Fury succeeded in dealing a major blow to the insurgent forces. At the same time, the civilian death toll was immense, and the city was completely destroyed.

    National Geographic’s embedded coverage of the Battle of Fallujah:

    Embedded footage of street-to-street fighting in Fallujah. Warning: This video contains a very graphic scene.

    More fighting in Fallujah:

    A soldier’s take on the battle of Fallujah. The language is rough, and the images are very graphic. This video is either a very callous celebration of war, or it is a deeply sardonic treatment of it:

    An independent report on Fallujah, which questions whether the US military really succeeded in its stated objectives during the assault on the city:

    US Marines ambushed in Iraq. Why do we put our youth in harm’s way like this? Let’s support our troops by bringing them home!

    Close combat. The language gets pretty rough.

    The YouTube title of the video below claims “Marines killing iraqi civilians just For FUN.” I don’t buy that, because we don’t know the circumstances. The Marines in the video are obviously under fire. We don’t know why they open fire on the two cars. Nevertheless, I find the video very disturbing on a number of levels:

    Abu Ghraib. Very disturbing.

    The horror:

    If you have a teenage or preteen daughter (or if you’re just a movie buff), you have probably seen Twilight already. I saw it over Thanksgiving weekend. One thing that impressed me about the movie was how much respect for human life the good vampires show.

    So let’s ask ourselves this question: Do we have less respect for human life than the vampires of Twilight – or do we have more?

    Obama promised to end this war. He better keep his word.

    See you next week!

    Zoltan Abraham |


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