All four United States Marines caught on video urinating on the corpses of dead Taliban fighters in Afghanistan have been identified.
The military has not revealed the names of the soldiers, but they are thought to be snipers from the Camp Lejeune, North Carolina-based 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment who were serving in the Helmand province in southern Afghanistan when the video was shot, according to CBS News.
Two of the Marines have already been interviewed by military officials and the remainder are expected to be questioned on Friday. None of the Marines have been detained but all could face prosecution for desecrating the bodies, which has not only brought shame to the military but heightened tensions with the Afghan government.
Marine Corps Commandant General James Amos has asked the Naval Criminal Investigative Service to investigate the incident and Afghan President Hamid Karzai has urged the military to prosecute with the most severe punishment if the Marines are found guilty.
Rest assured that the institution of the Marine Corps will not rest until the allegations and the events surrounding them have been resolved, Amos said yesterday in a written statement.
I think if we move quickly -- if we conduct this investigation and hold these people accountable -- we send a clear signal to the world that the U.S. is not going to tolerate that kind of behavior and it doesn’t represent the United States as a whole,” added Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta.