According to a diplomatic cable published by WikiLeaks, U.S. troops massacred an Iraqi family in the town of Ishaqi in 2006, handcuffing and then shooting 11 people in the head including a woman in her 70s and five children ages five and under.
McClatchy later reported that the soldiers then called in an air strike on the house to cover up evidence of the killings.
The latest account differs sharply from an official version of the 2006 incident, which indicated that coalition forces captured an al Qaeda in Iraq operative in the house, which was destroyed in a firefight.
The WikiLeaks cable, however, corroborates accounts by Ishaqi townspeople and includes questions about the incident by Philip Alston, the U.N.’s special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions.
It adds that autopsies performed in Tikrit on bodies pulled from the wreckage of the farmhouse indicated that all of the dead had been handcuffed and shot in the head.
The Pentagon has since said that none of the soldiers did anything wrong.
David Ferguson contributed to this report.
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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