Chinese artist behind doctored image of Australian soldier says he’s ready to make more


The Chinese artist behind a doctored image of an Australian soldier holding a knife to the throat of an Afghan child has taunted the Australian Prime Minister, saying that he would make another artwork in response to being “scolded”.

The image — created to criticise Australia over the damning Brereton war crimes inquiry — was posted on Twitter by China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian on Monday.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison labelled the post “repugnant”, demanding it be removed and Beijing issue an apology.

Fu Yu — the political computer graphic artist behind the image, who is also known online as Qilin — responded to Mr Morrison’s reactions in a video shared by Chinese media on Weibo.

“I get scolded by this Australian person called Morrison, and he demands my apology,” said Mr Fu, who in the video identifies as also the owner of Beijing Wuhe Culture and Creativity Company.

“I feel sympathetic for him and fully understand Morrison’s feelings right now.

Mr Fu’s artwork has echoed China’s aggressive diplomacy style in recent years.(Weibo: Wuheqilin)

The Brereton investigation into alleged war crimes committed by Australian SAS forces found there was “credible information” to suggest they had murdered at least 39 Afghan civilians and prisoners.

Mr Fu has called himself a “wolf-warrior artist”, echoing China’s aggressive diplomacy style in recent years.

His posts on Monday received over 1 million views by over 700,000 followers on Weibo.

Mr Fu urged Mr Morrison to “make sure his Government’s military force becomes more disciplined to avoid any similar international tragedy”, and described his work as an “effort to protect mankind”.

“He should put less effort on pressuring and condemning a fact-based artwork and an artist who is ordinary and from a foreign country,” he said.

“If I have energy tonight, I can make another artwork as my response.”

The ABC has approached Mr Fu for comment.

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The artist Fu Yu said the Australian Prime Minister “scolded” him over his fake image of an Australian soldier.

What we know about the image

Mr Fu created the controversial computer graphic on the evening of November 22, according to China’s state-owned media Global Times.

He said he had a sense of “fury and trembling” after reading news articles about Australian soldiers’ “brutal killing of 39 civilians” in Afghanistan, including an unsubstantiated account that described how “soldiers cut the throat of two 14-year-old Afghan teenagers with knives”.

The rumoured death of the two boys, allegedly suspected of being Taliban sympathisers, was not substantiated in the findings of the four-year-long Brereton inquiry.

“I created this CG illustration based on my anger and shuddering. The artwork was simply created out of a sense of humanitarianism,” Mr Fu wrote for Global Times.

Mr Fu said he used an Australian flag to cover some bodies of the Afghanistan civilians behind the soldier, which contrasted with the little sheep in the boy’s arms.

“I hope that more people will see this painting and pay attention to this real tragedy.”

No stranger to political controversy

A jester holding a bloodied knife kneels before a man in an army uniform sitting on a throne.
Many netizens believed the Mr Fu’s jester was a portrayal of Chinese writer Fang Fang.(Weibo: Wuheqilin)

This is not the first time Mr Fu has been involved in a political controversy.

Earlier this year, he published his artwork Crown a Jester on Weibo, satirising Chinese writer Fang Fang, who diarised 60 daily entries about life and death in her hometown Wuhan since the unprecedented coronavirus lockdown began.

The artwork, which many netizens believed was a portrayal of Fang Fang, painted a jester kneeling to accept a crown from a foreign commander.

Mr Fu was reportedly subject to mass trolling and doxing by netizens who disagreed with the opinion reflected in the artwork, while many nationalists welcomed his works.

Elderly patients lay on the ground in an arena as men dressed as gladiators hold weapons above them.
Mr Fu’s work often challenges different opinions about China and Chinese policy.(Weibo: Wuheqilin)

Chinese-Australian artist Badiucao, who is known for his political cartoons, said he was familiar with Mr Fu’s artwork.

Badiucao said Mr Fu was regarded as a “semi-official propaganda artist”, whose works were used to attack different opinions about China and welcomed by the publicity machines of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

“His work is a collage of stock photos with computer processing such as the light and shadow effects in computer games,” Badiucao told the ABC.

“Beijing brought fame to him after he attacked Chinese writer Fang Fang, who documented Wuhan during the early stage of COVID-19.

“Compared to other CCP propaganda, his work clearly showed Beijing’s attempt to use a modern-aesthetic approach to upgrade its propaganda.”

Social media used to attack government

Mr Fu, who was upfront about his identity as a “patriotic artist”, made his most known works copyright-free in June, and encouraged netizens to use them on any occasion.

A group wearing masks take a photo around a young man sitting behind a desk.
Mr Fu has over 700,000 followers on Weibo.(Weibo: Wuheqilin)

He wrote on Weibo that he “would do everything” to “rip out some space for more patriotic youths to openly express” their political opinions.

Tens of thousands of comments were made under the post of the official Weibo account for the Australian Embassy and Consulates, right after the official account released a bilingual transcript of Mr Morrison’s speech last night.

“Your Prime Minister is shameless. Your Government should apologise and compensate for Afghanistan!” Weibo user Lansuanshuying commented, receiving nearly 10,000 likes.

Mr Morrison called the Afghanistan President to express sorrow ahead of the release of the war crimes report.

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Scott Morrison says the tweet from a Chinese Government spokesman was “repugnant”.

“[Australia] is at the outskirts of the western civilisation … it’s not about Australian people, but the Government,” said Hu Xijin, editor of the CCP’s tabloid Global Times.

Badiucao said Mr Zhao’s Twitter post was part of Beijing’s propaganda campaign on social media.

“Canberra must deal with its war crimes honestly, and refuse to be silent on Beijing’s abuse of human rights.”



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China refuses to apologise for graphic image of Australian soldier tweeted by government official


China has refused to apologise for one of its officials posting a graphic image Prime Minister Scott Morrison has labelled as “repugnant”, demanding instead that Australia do some “soul searching” in the wake of a damning war crimes investigation.

On Monday, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) spokesman Zhao Lijian tweeted the picture created by a Chinese artist, depicting an Australian soldier holding a bloody knife to the throat of an Afghan child.

The post was in response to the findings of the long-running Brereton inquiry, which recommended 19 current and serving special forces soldiers face criminal investigation for the murder of at least 39 Afghan civilians and prisoners.

Shortly after the post, Prime Minister Scott Morrison described it as “outrageous”, demanding it be removed and an apology be issued by the Chinese Government.

Such a response was not forthcoming.

This image was tweeted by Chinese Government spokesman Zhao Lijian. It has been blurred by the ABC.(Twitter: Lijian Zhao)

“The Australian Government should do some soul searching and bring the culprits to justice, and offer an official apology to the Afghan people and make the solemn pledge that they will never repeat such crimes,” Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said.

“Shouldn’t the Australian Government feel ashamed? Shouldn’t they feel ashamed for their soldiers killing innocent Afghan civilians?”

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Scott Morrison says the tweet from a Chinese Government spokesman was “repugnant”.

In releasing the findings of the war crimes investigation earlier this month, Australian Defence Force (ADF) Chief Angus Campbell “sincerely and unreservedly” apologised to the Afghan people for the “wrongdoing” of special forces.

“The Australian side is reacting so strongly to my colleague’s Twitter — does that mean that they think the cold-blooded murder of Afghan innocent civilians is justified while other people’s condemnation of such crimes are not justified?” Ms Hua said.

“Afghan lives matter.”

The criticism of Mr Zhao’s post came quickly, with allegations of hypocrisy by Beijing for seizing upon the findings of the Brereton inquiry.

China has been accused of gross human rights violations against the ethnic Uyghur minority in Xinjiang province, characterised as “ethnic cleansing” and “genocide”.

The irony of a senior official using Twitter to launch such a political attack was also raised, given the censorship of the social media platform by the Chinese Government.



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Russian Soldier Suspected of Killing 3 at Base Detained


A Russian soldier suspected of killing three of his colleagues using an axe and a gun at a military base has been detained after a huge manhunt, officials said.

The suspect “has been detained by law enforcement agencies,” the military said in a statement carried by the state news agency TASS.

He was now being interrogated, it added.

The 20-year-old soldier identified as private Anton Makarov was detained following a massive manhunt.

More than 100 members of the National Guard as well as drones had taken part in the search operation, a spokesman said.

Investigators said Makarov attacked an officer at the Baltimore military airfield near the city of Voronezh at 5:30 a.m. (01:30 GMT).

Voronezh is located more than 500 kilometers (310 miles) south of Moscow.

“In order to get hold of a service weapon Makarov killed an officer with an axe,” the Investigative Committee, which probes serious crimes, said in a statement. 

He then started shooting his fellow servicemen, killing two and wounding one, the statement said.

An unidentified source told the Interfax news agency that the shooting started when an altercation broke out between the soldier and an officer during an inspection.

The soldier “grabbed a handgun” from the officer’s holster and fired, Interfax reported.

Russia’s Western Military District however denied that a conflict had taken place.

Shootings at military bases in Russia are not uncommon and rights groups have sounded the alarm over brutal hazing rituals that were routine in the 1990s but have improved in recent years.



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Union or Rebel soldier, they agreed on slang



War is a crucible for the creation of slang. People from different regions are thrown together under intense circumstances, and “this mixing of people from diverse backgrounds spurs linguistic innovation,” according to rhetoric expert William FitzGerald. Lately, I’ve been thinking about the slang that developed during the most polarized period in American history: the Civil War.    

Some of the words and idioms are still common in English, while others have gone AWOL (“absent without leave” or, more broadly, “missing” – first used circa 1863). Shebang is perhaps the most familiar today. During the war, it referred to “a crude shelter, a shanty,” but by 1869 it was commonly paired with whole and used to mean “thing, business,” as in “I’m tired of the whole shebang.”

Dictionaries won’t even hazard a guess about where shebang came from – Merriam-Webster notes simply “origin unknown.” But speculation is rampant about skedaddle. This word means “to run away, flee, make a hasty retreat,” and letters from both sides of the war are full of it: Union soldiers reported that “the rebs skedaddled,” while Confederates wrote home about how “the yanks skedaddle.” By 1867, the word was popular even in England – a character in one of Anthony Trollope’s novels describes how her friend’s suitor has left in a hurry: “Mamma, Major Grantly has – skedaddled.” (Her mother replies, “Oh, Lily, what a word!”)

Like Lily’s mother, many officers disdained the slang of the troops. A military journalist summed up this attitude when he called their slang “a gross perversion” of language. He made an exception for skedaddle, though, because it came from “good Hellenic stock.” Another amateur etymologist thought the word could be attributed to a “Harvard student in the army of the Potomac” who knew that the Greek skedannumi means “to scatter.”

Shoddy now means “cheaply imitative” or “hastily or poorly done,” according to Merriam-Webster. During the war it referred to the cloth from which Union uniforms were sewn. This shoddy was made of old wool fibers, sometimes with a little glue added to strengthen the weave; it was described as “poor sleazy stuff” that often dissolved in the rain.

The Civil War also produced several new words for money. Greenbacks were paper notes not backed by gold or silver, and which were printed in green ink. This term is still used today. Spondulix, also spelled spondulicks, however, is less common. This would seem to be another “Harvard student” word, derived from the Spondylus genus of mussels, whose shells resemble coins. It was used by people across the country: A soldier wrote that he’d welcome “a little spondulix” from his folks.



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Turning 100, a Former Spanish Soldier Laments the Curse of His Birth Year


CARDEDEU, Spain — Andreu Canet turns 100 next month. And his birth year, as it turned out, was a curse.

Having been drafted into Spain’s Republican army at 17, he is now a rare survivor of a contingent of about 27,000 soldiers dubbed the “baby bottle conscription.” They were all born in 1920 and called up by the Republican government in 1938 to replenish the army’s ranks as it prepared a last-ditch attempt to stop Gen. Francisco Franco from winning the country’s civil war.

This July, as he has done every year for the past three decades, Mr. Canet made his annual journey to a peace monument built on hilltops near the Ebro river — the site of a major counterattack launched by Republican troops in July 1938. The already difficult pilgrimage was made even harder by the pandemic. And for the first time, he said, he was the only one who turned up on the day of the commemoration.

“Perhaps I’m in fact the only one left alive by now,” he said wistfully.

Mr. Canet’s story is just one chapter in a civil war legacy that Spain is still trying to come to terms with.

In September, the government led by Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez presented a draft bill aimed at reviving and extending a 2007 law to facilitate the opening of more than 2,000 mass graves scattered across Spain and to identify the remains of those inside. Most are believed to have died during or just after the war, which took place from 1936 to 1939.

The government also wants to close down any venture or institution that glorifies Franco’s dictatorship, and to revamp the giant underground mausoleum from which his remains were exhumed last year and transferred to a cemetery where his family already had a crypt.

Looking back on the war, Mr. Canet said he was utterly unprepared for battle when he was drafted at 17.

“We had to bring our own clothing and a blanket, and I fought in my espadrilles because my family was simply too poor to afford shoes,” he recalled in a recent interview in his apartment in Cardedeu, about 25 miles northeast of Barcelona. “We got zero training and zero instructions about what we would be doing, and I, of course, had never seen the Ebro until I was told to get across it.”

Their crossing of the river, which slices across northwestern Spain, enabled the Republicans to regain some of the territory that Franco had conquered. But under heavy bombing by German and Italian planes flown by his fascist allies, the Republican advance soon ground to a halt, and the fighting turned into the war’s longest, largest and most deadly battle.

While historians have offered different numbers, most estimate a death toll of at least 20,000 soldiers from both sides during the nearly four months that the battle endured. Once the Republican forces were pushed back across the Ebro, Franco secured his victory, which then paved the way for a dictatorship that lasted until his death in 1975.

Mr. Canet, whose 100th birthday is Nov. 30, said he could still vividly remember both the trench warfare that followed the treacherous river crossing and the aftermath of the conflict. He spent the first part of the postwar period in a military hospital recovering from typhoid, which he probably caught while stationed on a rat-infested islet in the middle of the Ebro.

“The rats kept crawling over my face when I was trying to sleep,” he said.

He shunned any notion of heroism and said that his military promotion, eventually to the rank of sergeant, reflected more a shortage of officer candidates than his own merits.

“When we captured our first hill,” he recalled, “what I really remember is how tired and thirsty I was, being even forced to drink my own urine, and how little sense of pride there was when so many others had already died.”

He teared up when recalling the cruelty of some of his commanders, who once threatened to shoot him for falling asleep during a night watch.

After surrendering to Franco’s troops, Mr. Canet was conscripted again — but this time into military service in Franco’s army. His battalion, based in the northern city of Burgos, was filled with defeated Republicans.

“The war had been horrible,” Mr. Canet said, “but so then was my military service under officers who hated us, while suffering the humiliation of marching through villages where children spat at our feet.”

And although Mr. Canet was the only one who showed up for this year’s commemoration, Víctor Amela, a writer who recently published a book about the conscription, said the veteran was probably not the only surviving member of the “baby bottlers.” Mr. Amela estimates that there are about a dozen survivors left, most of them living in the Catalonia region.

He said that the monument near the Ebro, erected in 1989, had been financed by former soldiers and their families because “the Spanish state has sadly refused to look back and confront the legacy of our civil war, let alone offer an apology to a bunch of children who were forced to fight in it.”

The “baby bottle” conscription showed “the most miserable side of a very ugly war,” Mr. Amela said, as most of the enlisted teenagers came from poor families without the personal connections that allowed others to avoid the draft. “I feel that it is a crime that a government sent 17-year-olds to an almost certain death, in full knowledge of how superior Franco was by this late stage of the war.”

Once Mr. Canet finally returned to civilian life in late 1943, he worked in a factory that made fountain pens and then set up his own shop in the entrance hall of one of Barcelona’s subway stations, where he sold and repaired pens, lighters and watches.

Until he grew more frail, Mr. Canet said, he enjoyed visiting schools to tell children about the experiences of the “baby bottle conscription” in hopes of keeping the soldiers’ memory alive.

But he is unimpressed by the government’s latest attempts to set right the historical record of the war.

“It just all feels too late,” he said. “The current generation has no idea what the war was really like, and no government has actually ever done anything for us.”



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India-China dispute: India hands over soldier who crossed border


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India Returns Captured China Soldier in Sign of Easing Tensions


India on Wednesday released a Chinese soldier its forces had detained along the disputed mountainous border with China, signaling an easing of months of tensions that at times this summer had threatened to descend into a broader conflict.

The soldier, a corporal who has not been publicly identified, inadvertently crossed the border while helping local herdsmen search for missing yaks, according to the news agency of the People’s Liberation Army, which reported his return on Wednesday morning.

The statement offered no new details about the circumstances of his disappearance, including why he would have wandered off unaccompanied by other troops. He was the first Chinese soldier detained by the Indian military since tensions escalated this year.

The soldier stumbled into an Indian border post at the base of a hill around 2 a.m. on Monday, an Indian official said. He was wearing civilian clothes and unarmed, and Indian officials believe that he was either genuinely lost or sent on a mission to scout out Indian defenses.

Indian forces have surged to the frontier, high in the Himalayas, following a series of incursions by China that began in April into mountainous terrain that India claims as its own, escalating a border dispute that has simmered for decades.

Violence erupted in June, when Chinese and Indian soldiers fought with clubs and other makeshift weapons. Twenty Indian soldiers were killed, as well as an undisclosed number of Chinese. Soldiers have repeatedly confronted each other since then, and at least one other soldier died after stepping on a land mine.

Both sides have sent reinforcements to the border, settling in for the winter dangerously close to each other, in many places only a few hundred yards apart. In September, a few shots were fired for the first time in decades, breaking a longstanding agreement not to use firearms during border confrontations.

The clash has whipped up nationalist fervor on both sides of the border and derailed relations that had in recent years shown signs of warming, leaving little room for the countries’ leaders, Xi Jinping and Narendra Modi, to make concessions.

In September, though, the foreign ministers of the two countries announced a five-point agreement to defuse the immediate standoff, if not the underlying territorial disputes. Since then, Indian and Chinese military officials have held a series of discussions that appear to have made some progress in avoiding new violence. An eighth round of talks is scheduled this week.

The Indian Army, in disclosing the soldier’s detention on Monday, said that it had given him food, warm clothes, oxygen and medical care to “protect him from the vagaries of extreme altitude and harsh climatic conditions.” Conditions along the frontier — where the elevation exceeds 14,000 feet — have become even more forbidding with the onset of winter.

The Global Times, a newspaper controlled by the Communist Party of China that often assumes a nationalist tone, welcomed the soldier’s release on Wednesday, calling it a “positive sign” ahead of the next round of talks.

Jeffrey Gettleman contributed reporting from New Delhi.



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Soldier who killed Vanessa Guillen was ‘tipped’ off by news reports to escape and take his own life


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The Fort Hood soldier accused of killing Vanessa Guillen escaped a guard when he read news reports that her remains were found, got a gun, and killed himself in a police chase, it has been revealed.  

The embattled Killeen, Texas Army base fell into the national spotlight in April with the disappearance of 20-year-old Guillen, who told her family she was being sexually assaulted at the base by a superior.

She was allegedly killed in an arms room by fellow soldier Spc. Aaron Robinson on April 22, who was ranked above her at the time.

He allegedly killed Guillen with a hammer, picked up his girlfriend Cecily Aguilar and they dismembered and buried her remains near the Leon River in Belton.

Officials say excessive news coverage of the discovery of Guillen’s remains ‘tipped’ Robinson off to flee as read the updates on his phone.

Vanessa Guillen

Vanessa Guillen’s (right) accused killer Spc. Aaron Robinson, 20, (left) escaped a guard when he read news reports that her remains were found, got a gun, and killed himself in a police chase, Army officials reveal

The drawn out investigation into Guillen took so long because Robinson, at first, had an alibi.

Though he was the last person to see her alive, three soldiers saw Guillen when they smoked outside the arms room by a nearby tree the day she vanished.

The testimony of those three soldiers threw off the investigation for an entire month, Maj. Gen. Donna Martin, the Army’s provost marshal, who leads the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, said to ABC’s 20/20 in a new special that will air Friday.

They said they saw her leave at ‘a time that would’ve indicated she had left Spc. Robinson’s arms room.’

There were no cameras near the parking lot of the arms room and the investigation centered around the parking lot.

‘They filled out affidavits that said they had seen Vanessa at a different time from when she had actually departed the other arms room,’ Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said to the show.

‘So that gave … essentially an instant alibi for Spc. Robinson, even though they had not really known the correct time of when she had actually departed and headed to the parking lot,’ McCarthy said.. 

‘The trail went cold for about a month,’ he added.

Robinson spoke with investigators several times and they found he had called his girlfriend Aguilar multiple times the night Guillen disappeared.

This raised suspicion because he initially told investigators he had been with Aguilar all night.

Aguilar also changed her story, claiming she and Robinson went on a drive to look at the stars that night, according to court documents.

On June 30 investigators found remains near the Leon River that were later identified as Guillen.

That same day Robinson was placed in a room under the watch of an unarmed escort, as investigators grew suspicious of his involvement in Guillen’s death.

His phone pinged late at night in the same area where Guillen’s remains and his alibi unraveled.

'The media broadcast was really kind of what we believe to be the tipping point for Spc. Robinson to flee,' Maj. Gen. Donna Martin, the Army’s provost marshal, who leads the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, said. She added an investigation found Robinson did not sexually harass Guillen

‘The media broadcast was really kind of what we believe to be the tipping point for Spc. Robinson to flee,’ Maj. Gen. Donna Martin, the Army’s provost marshal, who leads the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, said. She added an investigation found Robinson did not sexually harass Guillen

Army Secretary McCarthy says he doesn't know if there will ever be justice for Guillen, but 'it's clear' the Army let Guillen's family down. 'We have to find answers and we will hold people accountable,' he said to 20/20

Army Secretary McCarthy says he doesn’t know if there will ever be justice for Guillen, but ‘it’s clear’ the Army let Guillen’s family down. ‘We have to find answers and we will hold people accountable,’ he said to 20/20

He wasn’t officially detained but was under the watch of a guard, Army officials say, and was able to get away.

‘He was not in police custody because of [how] the legal process works,’ Martin explained.

He managed to escape and his escort chased him as he ran from the base.

‘He gets in a vehicle and he flees and he leaves Fort Hood,’ Martin said, though it’s not clear how he was able to access a car.

Local law enforcement chased Robinson and stopped his car. 

As they closed in he shot himself.

Army officials are not revealing when or where he got the gun but Martin said the ‘firearm, I can tell you, was not a government weapon. So he did not get it from his arms room.’

Martin blamed his escape on news coverage of Guillen’s remains for ‘tipping’ him off, as he read about the investigation’s developments on his phone.

‘All of this is unfolding at the same exact time… What we didn’t maybe expect was the media broadcast,’ Martin said.

‘The media broadcast was really kind of what we believe to be the tipping point for Spc. Robinson to flee,’ she added.

Vanessa Guillen, a Houston, Texas native, disappeared from Fort Hood on April 22. Her remains were found on June 30

Guillen pictured above

Vanessa Guillen, a Houston, Texas native, disappeared from Fort Hood on April 22. Her remains were found on June 30

The base in Killeen, Texas has reported 28 soldier deaths this year alone

The base in Killeen, Texas has reported 28 soldier deaths this year alone 

Guillen reported that she was sexually harassed at the base by a superior, but didn’t say who was behind it.

Robinson, a 20-year-old soldier from Calumet City, Illinois who was deployed to Iraq for seven months in 2018, was a specialist ranked above Guillen, a private first class, at the time.

‘My daughter didn’t give me a name. But I begged Vanessa’s friend so much…and she said, “Yes, yes, there is a man: Robinson,”‘ Gloria Guillen, Guillen’s mother, said to 20/20.

‘I was told that he followed her into a shower. And there was another person that also harassed her, used vulgar words,’ Natalie Khawam, the Guillens’ family attorney said.

However, Martin says that there’s no proof Robinson harassed Guillen.

‘In our criminal investigation, we found no evidence of sexual harassment between Vanessa and Spc. Robinson…That was ruled out very early,’ she said.

'My daughter didn’t give me a name. But I begged Vanessa’s friend so much…and she said, "Yes, yes, there is a man: Robinson,"' Gloria Guillen, Guillen’s mother, said to 20/20. Glorida pictured center at her daughter's memorial service on August 14 in her hometown of Houston, Texas

‘My daughter didn’t give me a name. But I begged Vanessa’s friend so much…and she said, “Yes, yes, there is a man: Robinson,”‘ Gloria Guillen, Guillen’s mother, said to 20/20. Glorida pictured center at her daughter’s memorial service on August 14 in her hometown of Houston, Texas 

She believes the shower incident was a misunderstanding with a completely separate soldier rather than Robinson.

Martin said during field exercises soldiers use baby wipes to clean themselves and referred to it as a ‘hygiene shower’.

‘She was actually behind a bush and she was conducting field sanitation,’ Martin said.

‘Her platoon sergeant may have walked by and heard some noise… He called out and said, “Is there someone there?” She identified herself. And he said, “What are you doing?” And she says, “I’m conducting personal hygiene.” And that was the encounter,’ Martin explained.

Army Secretary McCarthy says he doesn’t know if there will ever be justice for Guillen, but ‘it’s clear’ the Army let Guillen’s family down. 

‘We have to find answers and we will hold people accountable,’ he said to 20/20. 

But Fort Hood’s scandals are far from over. 

The base has reported 28 soldier deaths this year alone, at least five of them deemed suspicious. 

On Tuesday it was announced Congress will investigate the sexual assault, disappearances and death going on at the base. 

20/20 airs on Friday, September 11  at 9pm – 11pm EST on ABC

Timeline of Fort Hood disappearances/deaths

February 1, 2020: PVT Eric Christopher Hogan and PFC Anthony Nevelle Peak Jr. die in a car crash 

March 1, 2020: SPC Shelby Tyler Jones is shot dead at a convenience store in Killeen 

March 5, 2020: Spc. Christopher Wayne Sawyer found dead at his home. Foul play is not suspected.  

March 14, 2020: SPC Freddy Beningo Delacruz Jr. is killed in a triple murder

March 23, 2020: Fort Hood soldier Spc. Jovino Jamel Roy, 22, was charged with murder after allegedly shooting former Fort Hood soldier Michael Steven Wardrobe, 22 

April 22, 2020: Vanessa Guillen goes missing and is last seen in the parking lot of the base. She disappeared after telling her family she was being sexually harassed by a sergeant on the base.

May 18, 2020: Body of Army Pfc. Brandon S. Rosecrans, 27, was discovered with gunshot wounds and his Jeep was found three miles away engulfed in flames.

June 19, 2020: Search teams discover the corpse of missing soldier Pvt. Gregory Wedel-Morales following a tip to Army base investigators. Remains were found in a field in Killeen, just over 10 miles from Stillhouse Hollow Lake, five miles from Fort Hood.

July 1, 2020: First parts of Giullen’s remains found about 20 miles east of Fort Hood.

Spc. Aaron Robinson, 20, kills himself. Officials say he killed and dismembered Guillén and had the remains disposed of. 

July 17, 2020:  Pvt. Mejhor Morta, 26, of Pensacola, Florida was found dead July 17 in the vicinity of Stillhouse Hollow Lake, around 15 miles from the Fort Hood base.

August 2, 2020:  The body of Spc. Francisco Gilberto Hernandezvargas, 24, is recovered from Stillhouse Hollow Lake following boating incident not far from where Morta was found.

August 12, 2020: Spc. Cole Jakob Aton, 22, of Kentucky died after he was hit by a car as he was assisting a minor accident scene 

August 13, 2020: National Guard soldier, Sgt Bradley Moore dies during a training exercise at the base 

August 19, 2020: Sgt. Elder Fernandes, 23, is reported missing after he was last seen on August 17.

August 25, 2020: The body of Fernandes is believed to have been found about 30 miles from Fort Hood



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Hundreds gather in Texas to pay respects to slain soldier Vanessa Guillen


The casket of Army Spc. Vanessa Guillen arrives to Cesar Chavez High School on Friday, Aug. 14, 2020, in Houston, where she was a student before joining the U.S Army. (Marie D. De Jesus/Houston Chronicle via AP)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 10:30 AM PT – Saturday, August 15, 2020

U.S. and Mexico flags flew at half-staff in Texas this weekend as hundreds of people gathered to pay their respects to slain 20-year-old Army specialist Vanessa Guillen. The bilingual ceremony was held on Friday in Houston at Cesar Chavez High School, which Guillen once attended.

A white horse drawn carriage, which was covered in flowers and portraits of the Virgin Mary, brought her casket to the front of the school. Several ROTC soldiers then carried the casket inside, where friends and family members were waiting.

Among them was the victim’s youngest sister, who gave a tearful speech and said she had admired Guillen since “day one.”

“Vanessa Guillen is the definition of beauty, strength, a warrior and life,” stated Lupe Guillen.

Ladies from the Queen of Peace Church walk to the stage to pray the rosary during the memorial service of U.S. Army Specialist Vanessa Guillen at the Cesar Chavez High School on Friday, Aug. 14, 2020, in Houston. (Marie D. De Jesus/Houston Chronicle via AP, Pool)

Family attorney Natalie Khawam thanked the Trump administration for making sure Guillen’s remains were returned to relatives in time for the funeral.

Vanessa Guillen was just 20 years old when she disappeared from her post at the Fort Hood Army base in April. Authorities found her body 10 weeks later.

They believe she was assaulted and killed by a fellow soldier, who has since taken his own life.

Alma Garcia embraces Juan Cruz, the boyfriend of Army Spc. Vanessa Guillen at her memorial service on Friday, Aug. 14, 2020, in Houston. (Marie D. De Jesus/Houston Chronicle via AP, Pool)

While the investigation into Guillen’s death continues in Texas, members of Congress have renewed calls for systemic shifts in the way the military handles sexual abuse and harassment.

“The best way to honor the memory of Vanessa Guillen is not let this go in vain, but rather to continue to uplift the story, to share the story,” said Cesar Espinosa. “At the end of the day, we want there to be sweeping changes to the U.S. Army so that no other family has to go through this.”

RELATED: President Trump: Vanessa Guillen’s Story Will Not Be Swept Under The Rug





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British soldier found dead in Estonia, Ministry of Defence confirms


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MOD

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Fus Sam Brownridge had been serving in Estonia

A British soldier has been found dead in Estonia.

Fusilier Sam Brownridge, from the First Battalion, Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, died on Sunday. He was off duty at the time.

The Ministry of Defence said it brought “great sadness” to announce his death.

Fus Brownridge was among about 1,000 British troops deployed in Estonia as part of Nato’s increased military presence near the border with Russia.

The First Battalion Royal Regiment of Fusiliers is based in Tidworth in Wiltshire.

In a statement, the MoD said: “It is with great sadness that the Ministry of Defence must announce the death of a soldier from The First Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.

“Fusilier Sam Brownridge died of a non-battle injury while deployed on Operation Cabrit in Estonia on Sunday.

“Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this tragic time.

“A full investigation is under way and it would be inappropriate to comment further at this stage.”

Theresa Bubbear, the British ambassador to Estonia, shared a tweet expressing her “deepest condolences” to Fus Brownridge’s family, friends and colleagues.

The UK is playing a leading role in the alliance’s Baltic mission. Operation Cabrit is the name of the UK deployment.

Last December, Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited the Tapa military base near Estonia’s capital Tallinn, to serve Christmas lunch to the British soldiers based there.

He told the troops: “What you’re doing is incredibly important because the reason everybody in our country can have Christmas in peace and security is because of what you’re doing here.”





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