I don’t know what is in the water today, but first I agree with Kevin Drum, now I find myself at odds with Bill Quick (although not completely). Bill, in reaction to the CBS reports about American soldiers torturing GI’s, states:
This sort of thing may be deplorable, but would anybody want to bet me that Rather won’t try to make the case that forcing a man to stand on a box while lying to him about the effects of some wires he’s holding are precisely equivalent to “torturing beyond imagining and executions without reason?”
I know Bill well enough and respect him enough to understand that he is responding more to Dan Rather’s
dubious complete lack of impartiality, and not dismissing the abhorrent acts alleged to have been committed by our troops. However, this is one issue in which Rather’s comments don’t need to be exaggerated.
Gary Farber (who should be given credit for pointing this out to me- I missed it)points to this website, who has posted the pictures. In order to save her bandwifth, I have copied some of the pictures and posted them here, but by all means, I recommend you go to there to view all the pictures and her commentary. And no, I don’t know who she is or what her politics are, but she is spot on when she states this:
You need to face what is happening in Iraq, and I don’t give a shit if those images are too graphic or shocking for you because this is reality. While you’re sitting on your couches watching American Idol, these kind of war atrocities are happening which violates the Geneva Convention. So much for us being there to liberate the Iraqis. We’re no better than Saddam when we do this kind of crap.
Take a look for yourself (the commentary is hers, not mine):
This Iraqi prisoner had electrical wires wrapped around his arms, his legs, and his testicles. He was told that if he stepped off the box, that he would be electrocuted.
They were forced to do oral sex on each other at gunpoint.
Look at the big, wide smile on the woman’s face as she does a thumbs-up and points at the exposed genitals of the Iraq man with his two other prisoners sitting on the ground with bags over their heads.
This is the body of an Iraqi man who died of beatings at the hands of the American soldiers. This is the “freedom” that we brought to Iraqis like this one. Isn’t freedom so wonderful this way?
Again, there is more of this, and I recommend that you view it. Yes, it is painful to look at- I was initially horrified, and that turned to a deep shame, and then to a seething anger. This is torture, and the people who did this are no better than Saddam and his fascists or ttheir Nazi rolemodels from a half century ago.
Several commenters have noted in previous posts that at least it appears the military is taking this seriously and reacting appropriately. That is scant solace.
Do these soldiers understand how many of their brothers-in-arms they have just executed?
Do they understand how many Improved Explosive Devices they just built?
Do the recognize how many random grenade attacks they have just initiated?
And on a simply human level- Have they no sense of fundamental decency?
I am so ashamed. That is my uniform they are wearing.
*** Update ***
Jim Henley comments– I don’t agree with everything hesays, but your should read it.