I spoke to the PAO at MCAS Cherry Point where CPL Bellile is stationed and got the following press release from them:
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT, N.C. (June 14, 2006) – The 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing is conducting a preliminary inquiry into a video that was recently posted on the Internet showing a Marine singing an insensitive song about Iraqi citizens.
The video, which was posted anonymously, is clearly inappropriate and contrary to the high standards expected of all Marines. The video is not reflective of the tremendous sacrifices and dedication demonstrated, on a daily basis, by tens of thousands of Marines who have assisted the Iraqi people in gaining their freedom. We agree with the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations that the inappropriate actions of a few individuals should not tarnish the reputation of all American military personnel.
I asked the PAO Mike Barton a few questions:
Had he seen the video? Yes
Did he think it was funny? Can't comment, and he didn't chuckle or anything, guy's a real pro.
What part of the video did he consider clearly inappropriate? Can't comment
What type of inquiry is being conducted and what sections of the UCMJ are in play? This is a quick and informal inquiry, an investigative tool that will determine if there were any violations. Just a fact-finding mission
I would like to believe that this inquiry would conclude that he did nothing wrong and USMC HQ was shameful for kow towing to CAIR, but they have showed zero spine thus far.......so. I'm back corresponding again. This time to:
Robert E. Milstead, Jr.
Brigadier General, U.S. Marine Corps
Commanding General, 2D MAW
I believe he is the top dawg in CPL Bellile's chain of command and the decider on whether they will throw his scalp to the mob.
Dear Gen. Milstead,There is currently a preliminary inquiry underway regarding CPL Joshua Bellile and his performance of the song Hadji Girl while in Iraq. As a former military man and as an American I ask you to think long and hard before taking disciplinary action against him. It would be a travesty for someone who risked his life for the freedoms of others to have something as precious as his own free speech revoked, let alone for the US Marine Corps he serves faithfully to be the one doing it.Your press release stated that the video was clearly inappropriate. What exactly did the USMC find that was clearly inappropriate? I watched the video and laughed out loud. I understand the difficulty that something such as this can cause in relations with the Iraqis, but in taking the complaints from CAIR to heart you have actually made things worse. You validated the lies they have told about the song and have given ammunition to anti-American media and messengers worldwide.Read the lyrics sir, and tell me this is clearly inappropriate. This is not the first correspondence I have sent on this matter and I will continue to write and publish until you stand by your Marine. Semper Fi Do or Die right General? Well you need to show your man some good faith.Cordially,Jim Hanson
I just got off the phone with [a source in the Pentagon]. The Cpl. reported to me that they were all VERY appreciative of the support and that this was a “Brass” decision… He said they were already getting calls and that it was helping, but they needed to get a lot more to make a difference. It really is helping the Marines to know that they are not alone and that not everyone hates them… He said these calls were making everyone’s day.