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Good heavens.  That was my partner Ron's response when I read him the headline of the NY Times report on the alleged murder, burning of bodies and use of those murdered and burned corpses for propaganda purposes by US forces in Afghanistan.

The Pentagon announced Wednesday night that the Army had started a criminal investigation into allegations that American soldiers in Afghanistan had burned the bodies of two dead Taliban fighters and then used the charred and smoking corpses in a propaganda campaign against the insurgents.Source: New York Times

Cross posted at Political Porn

The United States is responsible for the conduct and the supervision of its soldiers.  And it looks like the culture of the war, and the conduct of our soldiers, is a disgrace.  Here is a photo from the burning of killed "enemy combatants" for public display.

From transcripts of the original Australian broadcast:

Reporter: At the top of the hills above the village the soldiers have taken the tactics of psychological warfare to a grotesque and disturbing extreme. US soldiers have set fire to the bodies of the two Taliban killed the night before. The burning of the corpses and the fact that they've been laid out facing Mecca is a deliberate desecration of Muslim beliefs.

Soldier: Wow, look at the blood coming out of the mouth on that one, fucking straight death metal.

Reporter: PsyOps specialist Sergeant Jim Baker then broadcast an inflammatory message over the loudspeakers in order to taunt and bait the enemy. Source

We are either bound by the rule of civilized law or we are not.  When we invade other countries we have the absolute responsbility to do so (yes, I know that there's a paradox here) in a civilized and lawful manner.  

Tiphat: Magpie

What's going on with America? We are not supposed to be the bad guys.  This is madness that must be ended.  It is not only wrong for America to project itself in this way, it is plain stupid.  All that can come from this is harm to the US, harm to the people in the countries we occupy, and harm to the very ideals of liberalism and democracy.  What a terrible shame.

Things just keep getting worse. With global warming brewing up another category 5 storm, with CNN's Aaron Brown talking about a White House crippled by the Rove-Plame-Cheney scandal, with DeLay about to get arrested and booked for the charges against him, and with the virgin lawyer Harriet Miers getting an "incomplete" on her homework to the Senate - Bush must be wanting to get back to the good old days of the Katrina crisis.

Cross posted at Political Porn

Originally posted to Tom Kertes on Thu Oct 20, 2005 at 12:00 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Rotten From the Top... (4.00)
    "All that can come from this is harm to the US, harm to the people in the countries we occupy, and harm to the very ideals of liberalism and democracy.  What a terrible shame."

    That's what the Filthy Rotten Traitorous Criminals who control the Executive Branch intend to accomplish. They wish to destroy the very ideas that gave birth to this country- liberalism. In doing so they could destroy American democracy. They might preach about spreading democracy around the world, but its one thing to preach, but a whole other thing to practice. Do these thugs practice what they preach? Hell motherfucking no!

    Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Gonzalez, John Yoo, etc. are all responsible for what American soldiers do abroad in our name and with our tax dollars.

    Maybe things will change?

    For the moment, our hopes rest on the efforts of U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald and the federal grand jury. When history is written, they will be hailed as the patriots who saved this nation from its most vile elements. But they alone cannot undo the damage the criminals in the White House have done. Most importantly, our hopes lay on the rise of a new generation Democratic Party leaders- some of which you see here today on the front page of Daily Kos, and some of which have yet to be discovered.    

    (End Rant)

    "On résiste à l'invasion des armées; on ne résiste pas à l'invasion des idées." -Victor Hugo

    by Darksyde888 on Thu Oct 20, 2005 at 12:47:50 AM PDT

  •  What's going on with America? Not the bad guys? (4.00)
    "What's going on with America? We are not supposed to be the bad guys."

    er cough*bullshit*cough.

    Listen, my granddad was in the Pacific in WW2, with the Aussies, but he fought along side Yanks and knew them well, was friends with many. He described many of the same sorts of things. Trophy taking of Japanese skulls, mutilation of corpses.

    You've done the same fucking things in every war you've been in, as has every other nation. Stop deluding yourself that America is some wonderful nation full of angels who wouldn't do anything dishonorable: read a history book.

    War, unfortunately, is hell, and turns those who fight it into monsters. As my Granddad told me, he never got over it; he saw some awful shit. He was lucky, he just had shell-shock. Some blokes remain broken and can never fit back into society again.

    •  That said, and said well, (4.00)
      we still need to hear the voice of outrage, and the voice that says we cannot and will not stand for this.  

      We don't need to re-write history to ask now if this is what we stand for.  We need to ask this now.

  •  US terrorism never makes US news. (4.00)
    It ain't "psychological warfare" as the report says, it's terrorism (by ANY definition).  But let's face it, war consists of unimaginable horrors like this, and torture, and thousands of other atrocities.  Anyone who decides to take a nation to war is automatically guilty of each of these atrocities.  The only question is whether the convergence of individual horrors we call war is somehow justified by the necessity of defeating the greater menace of a perceived enemy.  The answer is often no, but at times it's a gut-wrenching yes.

    The current POTUS's indifference to the shit he called into being makes him, of course, doubly odious and doubly guilty.

    Democrats build; Republicans gut. It's that simple.

    by Bob Love on Thu Oct 20, 2005 at 01:33:00 AM PDT

  •  "Inflammatory Message" (4.00)
    SGT JIM BAKER: Attention, Taliban, you are all cowardly dogs. You allowed your fighters to be laid down facing west and burned. You are too scared to come down and retrieve their bodies. This just proves you are the lady boys we always believed you to be.

    Link goes to the transcript of the Australian show.

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