To the left is a diagram of the Chain of Command for the marines involved in the killings in Haditha. It is part of a three page article that appeared yesterday in the NY Times. As expected, everyone involved has an attorney. As expected, the chain of events differs greatly depending on who you talk to..the soldiers attorneys or the residents of Haditha. The passage of 7 months since the Massacre happened doesnt help the investigation process. The 5 men killed in or near a taxi is the most contentious part of the investigation. The investigators state that the deaths of these men and the evidence of how they were killed directly contradicts the marine's version of what happened. The marines involved don't even agree on how they entered the first house,some saying they were let in, other's saying they forced their way in. Even the marines that were dispatched to the death scene after the roadside bombed went off have differing recollections of what happened.
What is known for sure is the the lead senior enlisted man, Sargent Wuterich, had no combat experience. What else is known is that their previous tour of duty was in an area that was vastly different than Haditha. The rules of engagement were significantly different from their prior tour to the one in Haditha. The other fact not being disputed is how many Iraqi's died: 24 civilians which included 10 women and children, an elderly man walking with a cane and an elderly man that was wheelchair bound.
About a dozen enlisted marines, including Sergeant Wuterich and Sergeant Wolf, who engaged in or witnessed the shootings are under investigation for possible charges ranging from dereliction of duty to murder. A number of their superiors, up to the division level, are also under scrutiny for failing to report the events accurately and respond appropriately.
Two mid-level officers,one a Lt. Colonel, the other a Captain, have already been relieved, for reasons not made public as of the printing of the story by the NY Times.
The Time article interviewed every soldiers attorney and one soldier who agreed to talk to them. The Times reporters also interviewed the investigators on the case and Iraqi residents who witnessed the killings.
The diagram can be clicked on and enlarged.