Letter: Lessons learnt

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The Independent Online
IT SEEMS from Lucy Hannan's account of the USA's "forgotten" military involvement in Mogadishu that some things really have been erased from memory ("Haunted by the ghost of a forgotten city", 16 May).

During the battle which killed 18 Americans, 50,000 rockets from US helicopters killed hundreds of Somalis. US helicopters were also responsible for several blatant war crimes, killing 54 civilians at a political meeting, opening fire on a crowd around a US tank (60 killed), and, together with other UN troops, deliberately shelling Digfer hospital. Although nobody has been brought to book for these crimes, Appendix B of the Rambouillet "agreement" - granting Nato occupying troops immunity from prosecution in Kosovo - would indicate that some lessons have indeed been learnt from Somalia.