This is very disturbing and, of course, not getting any coverage in any major news media outlet.

More than five years have passed since the invasion of Iraq, since President Bush stood under the “Mission Accomplished” banner on that aircraft carrier. While these fifth anniversaries got some notice, another did not: the shelling of the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad by a U.S. Army tank on April 8, 2003. The tank attack killed two unembedded journalists, Reuters cameraman Taras Protsyuk and José Couso, a cameraman for the Spanish television network Telecinco. Couso recorded his own death. He was filming from the balcony and caught on tape the distant tank as it rotated its turret and fired on the hotel. A Spanish court has charged three U.S. servicemen with murder, but the U.S. government refuses to hand over the accused soldiers. The story might have ended there, just another day of violence and death in Iraq, were it not for a young U.S. military intelligence veteran who has just decided to blow the whistle.

Said Kinne: “[W]e were listening to journalists who were staying in the Palestine Hotel. And I remember that, specifically because during the buildup to ‘shock and awe’ … we were given a list of potential targets in Baghdad, and the Palestine Hotel was listed. [P]utting one and one together, I went to my officer in charge, and I told him that there are journalists staying at this hotel who think they’re safe, and yet we have this hotel listed as a potential target, and somehow the dots are not being connected here, and shouldn’t we make an effort to make sure that the right people know the situation? And unfortunately, my officer in charge … basically told me that it was not my job to analyze … someone somewhere higher up the chain knew what they were doing.”

She said the officer in charge was Warrant Officer John Berry.

Kinne’s account directly contradicts the official line of the U.S. government. On May 2, 2003, Colin Powell, then secretary of state and a former general in the Army, visited Spain. He said of the Palestine Hotel: “We knew about the hotel. We knew that it was a hotel where journalists were located, and others, and it is for that reason it was not attacked during any phase of the aerial campaign.”

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