On the 10th anniversary of the US military airstrike on Baghdad which killed at least a dozen people, RT looks back at the indiscriminate attack brought to light by WikiLeaks in ‘Collateral Murder.’
Whistleblower and former US Army soldier Chelsea Manning leaked the damning footage. She was released in May after serving nearly seven years of confinement from the date of her arrest.
US Apache helicopters launched an aerial attack in East Baghdad on July 12, 2007, killing at least 12 people. Among them were Reuters photojournalist Namir Noor-Eldeen and camera assistant Saeed Chmagh.
Saleh Matasher Tomal, a driver who tried to help those wounded was also killed, while his two children were injured. A 2007 military investigation cleared everyone involved of wrongdoing, and claimed to find no information of how the two children were hurt.
Reuters requested footage of the airstrikes under the Freedom of Information Act in 2007 but was unsuccessful.
WikiLeaks published the footage in 2010 after it was leaked to them by intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning, then known as Bradley Manning.
Manning was subsequently charged under the Espionage Act and sentenced to 35 years in military prison. Her sentence was commuted by President Barack Obama in 2017, with Manning released in May 2017 having served seven years.
Dean Yates, Reuters bureau chief in Iraq at the time of the attack, told ABC last month that the news agency was not aware of the US military’s rules of engagement.
“What we didn’t realise at that time was that the US military had decided that anyone seen in the streets of Baghdad with a weapon was considered hostile, and could, therefore, be engaged, they could be shot at and we just didn’t know this.”