April 21, 2005

Sgt. Akbar found guilty; could face death penalty

A military jury at Ft. Bragg, NC, has convicted 34 year-old US Army Sgt. Hasan Akbar of premeditated murder in a grenade and rifle attack on his fellow soldiers two years ago in Kuwait.

Akbar tossed a grenade into a tent where GIs were sleeping and opened fire on the tent, killing Army Capt. Christopher Seifert and Air Force Maj. Gregory Stone.

Prosecutors say Hasan Akbar, 33, told investigators he launched the attack because he was concerned U.S. troops would kill fellow Muslims in Iraq. They said he coolly carried out the attack to achieve "maximum carnage" on his comrades in the 101st Airborne Division.

The verdict came after 2 1/2 hours of deliberations following seven days of testimony in a court-martial -- the first time since the Vietnam era that an American has been prosecuted on charges of murdering a fellow soldier during wartime.

Defense attorneys acknowledged that Akbar carried out the attack, but argued he was too mentally ill to have premeditated it and was fueled by emotion.

"Sgt. Akbar executed that attack with a cool mind," prosecutor Capt. Robert McGovern said during closing arguments, cocking Akbar's unloaded M-4 rifle and pulling the trigger twice for emphasis. "He sought maximum carnage."

The prosecutor said Akbar planned carefully and stole grenades that would achieve maximum destruction in the brigade command section of Camp Pennsylvania in Kuwait.

Defense attorney Maj. Dan Brookhart countered that Akbar was concerned the invasion of Iraq would result in the deaths of Muslims and that U.S. soldiers would rape Iraqi women.

The 15 member jury will now consider the death penalty for Akbar. They will reconvene Monday to make that consideration.
(More coverage from The Jawa Report, Michelle Malkin & others)

Posted by mhking at April 21, 2005 05:47 PM

This type of thing was first prevalent in Viet
Nam. Soldiers (drafted) felt that officers
were causing them to be killed. This case is
where Muslin convert (early life not Muslin)
who fragged officers for starting offensive to
overthrow muslin leader. The military has less problem with those born Muslin and raised in the USA.
Because of Political Correctness we cannot
profile Muslins to identify problems at home
and in the military. The Japenese Americans who
fought so bravely in WWII did so in Europe
James M. Barber

Posted by: James M. Barber at April 21, 2005 09:00 PM

I still can't believe this happened...Akbar should be executed for his crime.

Posted by: david at April 22, 2005 12:16 AM
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