compulsory reading, Iraq, Political Theory

Patches of War.

I don’t know how many black sheep there are in the US army in Iraq today. But I suppose there are a lot who never imagined their fur would even feature a single black patch, because, probably, given normal circumstances, they’d likely have remained white all their lives.

Stress, anxiety, guys stewing in their own testosterone for extended periods of time. That’s one of the, sometimes intended, but always terrible consequences of war: it hardly ever creates heroes and almost always creates thugs.

It’s not the war per se, but the violence it inevitably brings wit it – think of the Stanford Prison Experiment, remember Liran Ron Furer’s “Checkpoint Syndrome” for just two chilling accounts of the effects violence on “white sheep”. And if some sheep are already black in disguise, war certainly attracts them, as it, at least partly, legalizes behaviour that is considered criminal in peacetime.

But there are limits, and the above argument can only serve as a reminder to those in power, that it’s not just Patriot Games they play, never as an excuse for the murder of an Iraqi family and the gang-rape of their 14year old daughter – BBC NEWS | Americas | US soldier admits murdering girl.

A couple of years ago, someone left some sick spam comments about amateur pornography featuring raped Iraqi women ( “The most disgusting porn spam ever“). In light of this story I can’t help but wonder if the offer wasn’t just the result of someone’s unfortunate experiments in role playing with a video camera.