July 13, 2024 | 6:49

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The light of death in the Spanish army

The light of death in the Spanish army

Jeickson Sulbaran

May 22, 2024 | 1:03 p.m.

Rafael García Cambrón denounces humiliating treatment and abuse of power in Cerro Muriano

Rafael García Cambrón, former soldier of the La Reina 2 Regiment, was expelled from the army after denouncing his sergeant for abuse and humiliating treatment at the Córdoba base Muriano Hill. The young man suffered an accident that left him with a 45% disability, but his complaint was dismissed by a military court that acquitted the non-commissioned officer accused.

An environment of constant abuse and harassment in Cerro Muriano

Rafael, 26, described an environment of constant abuse from the beginning of the maneuvers. He says that his sergeant, known as "bipo" or "bipolar" for his erratic behavior, did not respect the superior orders and subjected soldiers to inhuman treatment. «The blows were constant. "He shouted in my ear and hit me in the chest while forcing me to follow absurd and dangerous orders," García recalls.

During an exercise in Chinchilla, the lieutenant ordered rest, but the sergeant, against his judgment, established one-hour guard shifts for the soldiers. "He woke us up at five in the morning, took us to the lobby and assigned us a 1270 machine gun for a forty-minute march," explains Rafael. "A corporal was surprised to see what we had done, because it was not what the lieutenant had ordered."

The light of death in the Spanish army

The abuse continued during a shooting exercise, when the sergeant positioned himself next to Rafael, dropping the hot pods on his head and neck. «He ordered us to crawl from the targets to the firing line and then back. I couldn't continue and he yelled at me that if he was tired, I should go wash dishes," says the former soldier.

Humiliation as the norm

El sergeant "bipo" not only abused his subordinates during maneuvers. Rafael also suffered humiliation during the break. «He forced me to cut sausage so that he and my companions could eat. Once, he made me cut loin just for him,” says García. This behavior was not only annoying and ridiculous, but it also left Rafael with no time to eat.

Rafael decided to report the abuse after an accident during a combat simulation. The sergeant unbalanced him by hitting his helmet and vest, and forced him to perform strenuous tasks while he shouted: «García, do you see the light of death?» Rafael, exhausted and unbalanced, could not keep up, but his superior insisted that he was slowing down his colleagues.

A rigged trial and a controversial acquittal

Despite the seriousness of the accusations, the military court acquitted the sergeant. The sentence describes him as "meticulous and strict", stating that his behavior did not exceed what is normal in military maneuvers. "Grabbing the arm to correct shooting postures or destabilize a soldier's position does not constitute physical violence," the court ruled.

Rafael and another soldier who also reported abuse took the sergeant to trial for abuse of authority and negligence. However, the trial, according to Rafael, was manipulated by the Defense. "The sergeant's physical contact did not affect the physical integrity or dignity of the soldier", concluded the sentence, justifying the blows and pulls as part of the training.

La Rafael García Cambrón's story reveals a dark side of military training in Spain, where the lines between rigor and abuse can blur. His case raises serious questions about military justice and the handling of allegations of abuse within the military.

La complaint by Rafael García Cambrón exposes a serious problem in the Spanish army, where abuse and negligence can go unpunished under the pretext of military discipline. Despite the sergeant's acquittal, Rafael's testimony is a wake-up call for the need to review and reform training practices and the response to allegations of abuse within the military.

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