The Marine in charge of the squad caught urinating on dead members of the Taliban last year — on video — has been sentenced, and, well, all he's getting is a $500 fine and a demotion. "Staff Sergeant Joseph Chamblin pleaded guilty at a special court martial at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, to dereliction of duty for failing to properly supervise junior Marines. He also pleaded guilty to wrongfully urinating on a deceased enemy martialed combatant," reported Reuters.
Chamblin was in charge of the Marine unit that appeared in a viral video that surfaced in January of this year — four Marines appear to be laughing and urinating on the dead bodies of men who we later found out to be Taliban insurgents. The video did not make Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta happy, nor did it help the way Americans were viewed in Afghanistan and in the Middle East. On the contrary, commentators on the right defended the actions of Chamblin and his troops: "I'd drop trou and do it too. That's me, though. I want a million cool points for these guys," Dana Loesch had said at the time.
The military court didn't take so kindly, as a "judge levied a penalty that including 30 days in jail and a $2,000 fine, but because of a pretrial agreement Chamblin received a lesser sentence," according to Reuters. In August punishments were handed to three unnamed marines, and according to the Marine Corps Times there are pending legal actions against several others, although the investigation is ongoing. The other Marine in charge, Staff Sgt. Edward W. Deptola, like Chamblin, was court-martialed. Deptola's case is also currently pending.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.