Saturday, November 26, 2005

Becoming More Like Your Enemy

This from Reuters:

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (Reuters) - The U.S. military admitted on Saturday that its soldiers in Afghanistan had burned the bodies of two dead Taliban guerrillas and taunted insurgents about it, but had not meant it as a desecration.

Huh? Had not meant it as a desecration? Is this one of those "creating reality" moments?

The U.S. military said an investigation into the incident concluded the soldiers had burned the bodies for "hygienic reasons" and said it would reprimand two non-commissioned officers for calling out taunts about it over a loudspeaker.

"Our investigation found there was no intent to desecrate the remains, but only to dispose them for hygienic reasons," U.S.-led forces operational commander, Major General Jason Kamiya said.

The investigation stems from footage shown on Australian television in a report which says the pictures show U.S. soldiers watching as flames lick two charred corpses in the hills above the village of Gondaz north of Kandahar.

It also shows two U.S. soldiers reading messages they said had been broadcast over loudspeakers as propaganda.

"You allowed your fighters to be laid down facing west and burned. You are too scared to retrieve their bodies. This just proves you are the lady boys we always believed you to be," read one soldier identified as psyops specialist Sgt. Jim Baker.

So...psyops decides to capitalise on the burning of two dead moslem terrorists by yelling taunts about how their laying out and burning contravenes moslem custom and ensures they don't get an afterlife - but its not meant as desecration.


The U.S. military said the soldiers implicated in the burning incident, would face disciplinary action and that the two junior officers who ordered the burning would be reprimanded for showing a lack of cultural and religious understanding.

You know, if it wasn't for those hordes of bad apples in the barrel the whole "hearts and minds" thing would be working juuuust fine.

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