- Mystery sign poster hits Washington state town: ‘It’s OK to say Merry Christmas’
- Pope Francis forms commission to advise on sex abuse
- Anthony Weiner on radio? Cumulus says, ‘Never, ever’
- Executive order: Obama ups green-energy mandate on feds to 20 percent
- GOP launches candidate training: How to talk to women
- N.Y.’s Rockefeller Center lights up, as Bloomberg flicks on 76-foot Christmas tree
- Northern Ireland turns to ‘Game of Thrones’ to draw in tourists
- Washington woman live-tweets husband’s horrific car death
- China City of America mulled for New York — with $65M tax dollars
- Yemen defense ministry rocked by suicide bomber, gunfire
Wife defends soldier accused in Afghan rampage
SEATAC, Wash. (AP) — The wife of a U.S. soldier accused of killing 17 Afghan civilians says that her husband showed no signs of PTSD before he deployed, and she doesn’t feel as if she’ll ever believe he was involved in the killings.
She defended her husband, Staff Sgt. RobertBales, in a weekend interview with Matt Lauer that aired on Monday. Officials say Sgt. Bales left his base March 11 in southern Afghanistan and killed eight Afghan adults and nine children.
The wife of the Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldier said the accusations are “unbelievable to me.”
“He loves children; he’s like a big kid himself,” she said. “I have no idea what happened, but he would not … he loves children, and he would not do that.”
He was formally charged Friday with 17 counts of premeditated murder and other crimes and is being held at a U.S. military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
Mrs. Bales was in a grocery store when she first heard of the rampage in a phone call from her parents.
“They said, well, it looks like a U.S. soldier, some Afghan civilians were killed by a soldier,” she said.
She learned more when she got home.
“I saw 38-year-old staff sergeant, and I don’t think there are very many of those, and I probably prayed and prayed that my husband wasn’t involved,” she said. “And then, I received a phone call from the Army saying that they would like to come out and talk to me. And I was relieved, because when you get a phone call, you know that your soldier is not deceased.”
She was told about the shootings.
“They held my hand, and they just said that perhaps, you know, they thought that he had left the base and gone out and perhaps killed the Afghan civilians, and that was really the only sentence, and I just started crying,” she said.
The deaths of the nine Afghan children are especially difficult.
“It’s heartbreaking. I can’t imagine losing my children, so my heart definitely goes out to them for losing all of their children.”
Sgt. Bales was on his fourth tour of duty in a war zone, having served three tours in Iraq, where he suffered a head injury and a foot injury. His civilian attorney, John Henry Browne, had said the soldier and his family had thought he was done fighting.
- CURL: 'Mission Accomplished' for Obamacare
- American teacher shot and killed at Benghazi international school
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality
- NAPOLITANO: Liberty, the wellspring of capitalism and charity
- Pentagon may give recruits 'a shot to start over' after shameful social media posts
- Democratic infighting erupts over 'we can have it all' fantasy on entitlements
- Obama returns to class warfare as poll numbers plunge
- Young millennials shun Obamacare, creating risky imbalance
- Hack attack: 2 million Facebook, Twitter passwords stolen
- HARPER: 'Knockout game' not a myth to liberal Sharpton
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Television commentary, reviews, news and nonstop DVR catch-up by Lisa King Dolloff and friends.
The Constitution: Every issue, every time. No exceptions, no excuses. And how to get from here to there.
A libertarian look at breaking news and political trends by author Tom Mullen.
A stat-head’s outlook, direct from his worn in couch cushion.