U.S. strike kills 40 at Iraqi wedding party

Big news of the day is that U.S. gunships fired on an Iraqi wedding after seeing gunshots from celebratory gunfire:

A U.S. helicopter fired on a wedding party early Wednesday in western Iraq, killing more than 40 people, Iraqi officials said. The U.S. military said it could not confirm the report and was investigating.

[…]

Al-Ani said people at the wedding fired weapons in the air, and that American troops came to investigate and left. However, al-Ani said, helicopters attacked the area at about 3 a.m. Two houses were destroyed, he said.

First of all, I’m not going to join the hordes of people who are going to condemn the military for shooting. It’s irresponsible and stupid to be shooting in the air; what is merely a lapse of judgment in peacetime becomes an incredulous act in the midst of an urban guerilla war. What idiot doesn’t realize that gravity is still going to bring those bullets back down? It takes a bigger idiot than that to be doing the same thing when helicopter pilots are twitchy and ready to fire at anything that flashes from the ground.

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