What with the recent unrest following the burning of Korans in Afghanistan, I decided to ask the opinion (as one does) of a friend who is a member of one of London's leading chambers of barristers, is one of Europe's leading experts on Sharia law, and is a descendent of a Sufi saint. My friend wrote me via email that the prescribed method for disposing of a Koran that can no longer be used is to burn it.
I would add that one should make a distinction here between burning as an act of disrespect and burning to end the existence of a copy that, for whatever reason, can no longer be used. Americans should easily be able to understand the distinction between the burning of a flag in protest or anger and the burning of a flag that is already damaged and can no longer be displayed. In the later case, that is, indeed, the prescribed way for handling an official flag, or a flag of a certain size if it has been damaged, soiled or even touched the ground.
It seems very odd, then, that these soldiers should be under threat of prosecution.