The news that an U.S. soldier broke into several Afghan homes last Sunday night and killed 16 civilians has generated mass scrutiny and controversy. This Friday, officials have published the name of the soldier that caused the massacre. Staff Sgt. Robert Bales is to be charged for the Afghan civilian massacre that shook the nation.
To this point all the evidence and people who know staff Sgt. Robert Bales don’t point him out as the kind of person that would do such a thing. Bales own statement about a firefight he took part in five years ago and published on the U.S. army website gives no hint he’d be so close to losing control.
His statement reads about his pride to be part of the Afghan fighting unit “for the simple fact that we discriminated between the bad guys and the noncombatants and then afterward we ended up helping the people that three or four hours before were trying to kill us”. He added: “I think that’s the real difference between being an American as opposed to being a bad guy, someone who puts his family in harm’s way like that.”
Kassie Holland was Robert Bales neighbor back in Late Tapp, Washington where the soldier lived with his family. She said: “My reaction is that I’m shocked. I can’t believe it was him. There were no signs. He always had a good attitude about being in the service. He was never really angry about it”.
The details of Bales’ attack on the Afghan civilians have stir up a lot of discontent in Afghanistan, where there government is firmly asking for him to be put on trial on their territory. At the moment, staff Sgt. Robert Bales is kept at a secret facility.
Although nobody saw it coming, his lawyer points out to the fact that Robert Bales might have hit his boiling point. When he was once again required to present for service in Afghanistan in December 2011 he was reluctant. Plus, just one day before committing the killings he watched his comrade’s leg being blown off. Allegedly, Robert Bales and other soldiers have been drinking during the day of the massacre, but the toxicology report will have to confirm whether or not alcohol was a factor.