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Chris Maddison R.M. blue on blue.


Chris died in an horrific blue on blue whilst his boat group from 539ASRM were on a mission in the rivrines of southern Iraq, three other marines were badly wounded.

The M.O.D. have been less than honourable from day one, there have been two courts of enquiry and at last a civil coroners court, unrestrained by the confines of the M.O.D. the Coroner has been hearing evidence from Chris's fellow marines and those involved.

There is a feeling that the truth may at last come out, this will be a fitting tribute to the tenacity of his loving parents and to those marines on the ground who knew the truth then as they do now.

Our loyalty is to our marines, these are our mates, our family, not to the upper swathes of shiney arses who conspire without honour.

To borrow from our U.S.M.C. cousins... SEMPER FIDELIS

And for those that still think that courts of enquiry run by the M.O.D. are on our side in the persuit of truth click on the link.

Cheers for posting this and raising awareness again mate. Its diabolical that this has been covered up for so long and Im glad the truth is finally coming out

I remember watching footage shot around this time by reporters embedded with 539ASRM and the US Navy Seals.
The look on one of the Marines face as he spoke to a reporter after Chris died, will stay with me for the rest of my life. It really hits home just how much of a family the Corps is and as you said, the quote from the USMC captures this. Semper Fidelis - Always faithful.

RIP Chris - My thoughts remain with your family and the Marines there on that tragic day.



Coroner lists blunders that led to marine's death by 'friendly fire'

· Inquest told of bad planning, poor leadership
· MoD inquiry that blamed Iraqis a farce, says father

Matthew Taylor
Tuesday November 28, 2006
The Guardian

A Royal Marine commando who was initially thought to have been killed by Iraqi forces was the victim of friendly fire in an operation bedevilled by bad planning, poor leadership and inadequate communication, an inquest heard yesterday.
Twenty-four-year-old Christopher Maddison was killed in 2003 as he patrolled the Khawr Az Zubayr river in southern Iraq.

Oxfordshire coroner's court heard that his landing craft came under fire when Royal Engineers manning a crossing point upriver were told they were being approached by two enemy craft.

Article continues



Yesterday Mr Maddison's father, Les Towell, said the initial Ministry of Defence investigation - which had blamed his death on Iraqi forces - was a farce.
He said he had since been assured that steps had been taken to minimise the risk of a similar friendly fire incident happening again. He added: "We have our doubts about this, but if one small change results in one life being saved, then Chris's life will not have been in vain. Royal Marine Maddison can now stand easy. Chris, good night son, sleep well."

Assistant deputy coroner Andrew Walker, recording a narrative verdict, said that Mr Maddison, from Scarborough and based in Plymouth, died from shrapnel wounds inflicted by a Milan missile fired by British forces protecting the crossing point. He said there were failures in the chain of command at the crossing point, with no liaison officer to keep friendly forces updated of the patrol's identity and whereabouts, and inadequate communication between 3 Commando's headquarters, the crossing point and the two landing craft that made up Mr Maddison's patrol.

Mr Walker said: "I've had the privilege during the last few days to hear from men whose courage and bravery when they came under fire is truly remarkable and follows that tradition within our armed forces of heroism and self-sacrifice, of which all of us are rightly proud."

Mr Towell praised the coroner for his "thoughtfulness and thoroughness" and said the inquest had gone some way to ascertain what happened. "We were disappointed that even now, some of the witnesses did not accept their responsibility and accountability and in our opinion, embellished the truth to try and justify their actions."

The MoD was initially adamant that Mr Maddison was killed by Iraqi forces even after serious doubts were raised by a BBC reporting team. Suggestions of a cover-up provoked a furious row between the BBC and the government. The MoD subsequently set up a board of inquiry which confirmed that he had been killed by friendly fire.

Coroner's officer Geoff Webb read a statement from Mr Maddison's mother Julie who said the MoD had failed in its duty of care towards her son.

"If a senior officer or officers had ensured that all procedures and orders necessary, and usual, had been in place before the initial task force was sent out, the resultant confusion would not have taken place.

"This omission resulted in catastrophe and the creation of a dangerous situation which ultimately led to the death of our beloved son."

The inquest heard that those protecting the crossing point were not aware of the patrol's plan even though senior officers should have briefed them the night before. A liaison officer should have been stationed at the crossing point to ensure the patrol's safety.

Mrs Maddison said: "It was senior officers' responsibility and duty to ensure a foresight of risk. Leadership fell far below what could be reasonably expected in the circumstances."

An MoD spokeswoman said it was studying the inquest's findings. "We will be considering carefully all of the implications of the inquest findings and the coroner's recommendations as a matter of the utmost urgency."
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