Stephen Tatum’s civilian attorney, Jack Zimmerman, has suggested that the charges against LCpl. Tatum wouldn’t have been brought if not for John Murtha’s accusation that the Haditha Marines had “killed innocent civilians in cold blood.” That’s why, according to this article, he’s asking that John Murtha and then Marine Commandant Gen. Michael Hagee to submit to interviews to find out what they know:

A lance corporal charged with killing Iraqi civilians, including children, in Haditha in 2005 wants a military court to order U.S. Rep. John Murtha to submit to interviews about comments Murtha made accusing Marines of murder.

Attorneys for Lance Cpl. Stephen Tatum also want to force an interview with retired Marine Corps Commandant Michael Hagee about what Hagee may have said to Murtha or others about the Haditha killings.

Defense attorney Jack Zimmerman argued in a Camp Pendleton courtroom Wednesday that the charges Tatum faces may have come not because they were warranted, but rather as a result of pressure from top Marine Corps brass.

The slayings in Haditha on Nov. 19, 2005, triggered an international uproar and condemnation. Murtha, D-Pa., a former Marine, asserted publicly that he had learned from Marine Corps officials, including Hagee, that innocent Iraqis had been killed “in cold blood.”

“We need to know if the commandant really said that,” Zimmerman told the judge, Lt. Col. Eugene Robinson.

John Murtha’s irresponsible statements haven’t been substantiated thus far. I doubt they ever will. Now Rep. Murtha is having the federal government argue that he can’t be sued in civil court for his statements, arguing that his statements are covered by the Speech and Debate Clause of the Constitution.

Simply put, Rep. Murtha is a disgusting, corrupt person who should be expelled from the House of Representatives for accusing the Haditha Marines before he’d even been briefed on the matter. When he accused these American heroes, Rep. Murtha ignored these Marines’ Constitutional right to the presumption of innocence. It’s quite possible that he violated LCpl. Tatum’s due process rights by making these accusations before the investigation had finished.

Zimmerman said he plans to ask Robinson to dismiss the case, based on his contention that Tatum will not get a fair trial.

The defense attorney raised concerns that potential jury members may have been unduly influenced by comments from commanders suggesting the accused Marines are guilty.

Let’s hope that Lt. Col. Robinson realizes that Tatum doesn’t have a chance of getting a fair trial. What chance does LCpl. Tatum have for a fair trial after he’s been accused by Murtha, the man who appropriates the money for the Pentagon’s budget? Does anyone think that the Pentagon will ever go against Rep. Murtha?

This process has been tainted from the outset. Americans everywhere should be outraged that our military heroes have been treated in such a shoddy manner, especially by a vindictive, power-hungry politician like John Murtha.

It’s time for patriotic Americans everywhere to tell corruption magnets like John Murtha that they can’t railroad American heroes anymore without suffering the wrath of We The People.

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Cross-posted at California Conservative

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