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Analysis: War crimes allegations stain Australia's reputation

'Disgraceful' conduct raises disturbing question of why brass failed to act earlier

SYDNEY -- Shocking allegations of war crimes by Australian soldiers serving in Afghanistan between 2006 and 2013 have left an indelible stain on Australia's armed forces and the country's international reputation.

A report released by the Chief of the Australian Defence Force, Gen. Angus Campbell, last Thursday found "credible information" on the unlawful killing of 39 Afghans, and cruel treatment of two more. The incidents involved 25 current or former soldiers from Australia's elite special forces, 19 of whom were recommended for referral to the Australian Federal Police for criminal investigation.

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