How does this happen?

Hamilton, UK

#1 Jul 8, 2013
Accounts vary as to what exactly happened.

The military contends that "an armed terrorist group" affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood tried to storm the Republican Guard headquarters, where Morsi is believed to be held, with live ammunition and firebombs shortly after dawn.

Here's what Mohamed Saber el-Sebaei, who was praying outside the Republican Guard facility before suffering a head wound, told Patrick Kingsley of The Guardian:

There were dawn prayers and then I heard someone calling for help, so the imam finished the prayers quickly. Just before we finished, the shooting started. The army units that were standing in front of the Republican Guards' headquarters first started shooting tear gas, then live ammunition above people's heads.

Why would a soldier fire at peaceful supporters? Whether at Kent University or in Egypt?

The guardsmen claimed to have fired in self-defense, a claim that was generally accepted by the criminal justice system. In 1974 U.S. District Judge Frank Battisti dismissed charges against all eight on the basis that the prosecution's case was too weak to warrant a trial..

Another example..
Some SA police officers may have felt that they could hold their nerve (and therefore hold their fire) no longer.

Soldiers or armed police shooting innocent civilians seems a frequent consequence of using armed military-like groups to control peaceful civilians. Perhaps it only takes one nutcase to shoot at the military, or for one soldier to get the impression that they have been fired at and a tragic event may ensue.

The Army intervention in Egypt has now created three warring groups who feel the other two might be violent, or have been violent. There is the Muslim Brotherhood, the divided opposition and the Army. I hope Egyptians aren't drawn further into violence and instability. One lesson might seem to be that the Army cannot 'move-on' demonstrations where unarmed police cannot achieve that result.

Gloucester, MA

#2 Jul 22, 2013
Soldiers are trained to follow orders without question. Human nature is to do what everyone around you is doing. Put the two together and you have all you need to get the soldiers to follow any order by a panicked officer, even if, with time to reflect, the soldier would agree the order may be illegal.

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