SEATTLE (AP) — A former platoon leader for the soldier accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians says the allegations are “100 percent out of character” for the man, whom he described as a model soldier who saved other soldiers’ lives.
Army Capt. Chris Alexander, 32, said Robert Bales worked as a stock trader before the Sept. 11 attacks motivated him to enlist in the Army.
“I’ve always admired him for that — he had a good thing going, and he dropped it to serve his country,” Alexander said Saturday in a phone interview.
Bales enlisted about two months after 9/11 and had served with the 3rd Stryker Brigade based at Joint Base Lewis-McChord since Sept 11, 2002.
He became a staff sergeant in April 2008, following his second deployment in Iraq. He went to Iraq one more time before his fourth deployment, to Afghanistan.
You can read more of the AP article HERE.
The New York Times reports that a blog kept by Bale’s wife detailed her disappointment when he didn’t get a promotion and her loneliness when he was away on deployment:
Karilyn Bales — the wife of Staff Sgt. Robert Bales, the soldier accused of killing16 Afghan villagers last week — relayed the simple anguish of life as a military spouse, tending to a home with two young children, with a husband summoned for repeated deployments.
“Bob left for Iraq this morning,” she wrote in her family blog on Aug. 9, 2009. “Quincy slept in our bed last night.”
Though much of the family’s online presence appears to have been removed in recent days, the fragments that remain capture the daily travails typical of any family with a loved one stationed abroad.
Bloomberg News reports that the U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Robert Bales, the suspect in the killings of at least 16 Afghan civilians, arrived yesterday (Friday) at the U.S. military’s prison in Kansas, the Army said. After being held in Afghanistan and then Kuwait, Bales was flown to Fort Leavenworth in Kansas, where he will be placed in special housing in his own cell, according to an e-mailed Army statement.