Five U.S. Army soldiers are being investigated for allegedly raping a young woman, then killing her and three members of her family in Iraq.
The killings appeared to have been a ''crime of opportunity,'' the official said. The soldiers had not been attacked by insurgents but had noticed the woman on previous patrols. One of the troopers apparently has admitted his role and been arrested.The U.S. command has ordered a criminal investigation into the alleged killing of a family of four in Mahmoudiyah, south of Baghdad.
The case represents the latest allegations against U.S. soldiers stemming from the deaths of Iraqis. At least 14 U.S. troops have been convicted.
Meanwhile, the U.S. is continuing to investigate allegations that two dozen unarmed Iraqi civilians were killed by U.S. Marines in the western town of Haditha on Nov. 19 in a revenge attack after one of their own died in a roadside bombing.
For my take on that incident, The Ten Lessons of the Haditha Massacre, go here.