Iraq: Rape, Murder & cover-up
"AN Iraqi army doctor told today of his horror at coming upon a dead teenager "naked with her legs spread" after the alleged murder of her family by a group of US soldiers.
Testifying on the first day of a US military hearing to decide whether there is enough evidence to court martial four of the soldiers, the doctor described how he was called to the 14-year-old's home in Mahmudiyah, south of Baghdad.
It has been alleged that on March 12 five US soldiers left their post and headed to the nearby home of a Iraqi.
Her five-year-old sister was found in an adjacent room, where a bullet had blown the back of her head out.
The girls' father and mother had also been shot dead.
The mother was riddled with bullets in her chest and abdomen. The doctor told the prosecutors that he was ill for weeks after witnessing the crime scene.
Reporters were barred from the hearing during the testimony, and the medic's name was not released, but a recording of his testimony was made available.
Two other Iraqis also testified but the media was not allowed to listen.
The "Article 32" hearing began overnight behind closed doors, to allow Iraqi witnesses to testify without the risk of being identified in their community, where there is strong anti-American sentiment.
Military lawyers ordered that the identity of the witnesses be protected, for fear that they could face threats from insurgents for collaborating with the US troops, despite their testimony against the accused servicemen.
A fifth suspect, Steven Green was discharged from the army because of a "personality disorder" and will be tried separately in the United States in a civilian federal court."
G.I.'s Investigated in Slayings of 4 and Rape in Iraq