April 30, 2004

Stupid, Not Ignorant

With the pictures of the maltreatment of Iraqi prisoners flashed around the world, the handful of American soldiers involved have pled ignorance. Not ignorance of what was going on -- that would be hard, given that they are grinning in some of the photos -- but ignorance that it was wrong. I heard one soldier on BBC radio saying that he didn't know what they were doing was in violation of the Geneva Convention. He said his superiors hadn't trained him in the protocols of the Convention.

I am shocked that he needed a superior officer to tell him that it isn't appropriate to put a hood on a prisoner, stand him on a box, attach wires to him, and tell him he will be electrocuted if he steps off. Why would you have the rules of the Geneva Convention to realise that you shouldn't make prisoners simulate sex acts or stack them naked in a human pyramid.

Is this the best the US military can find? Is this how these soldiers prove they can be all that they can be?

Posted by david at April 30, 2004 08:16 PM | TrackBack