Just wanted to add two things to the events unfolding in regard to Haditha.
#1: As bad as the killings of civilians is as long as we are not talking about an army directive to kill these people (as apparerently was the case in Korea) then Abu Ghraib was worse. Simply, because it seems clear that officers (or the secretary of defense) in the upper ranks were responsible for issueing commands that were and are not compatible with any laws and (more importantly to a lot of people maybe) the defined goals of the US in Iraq (one of which is trying to win over the people as the only chance to ever get out of there with any kind of idea remaining intact for the US). The marines running amok in Haditha on the other hand are just what happens when you give young (and not that greatly educated) guys guns and the power that comes with those (guns). Sad, but in a way an expected result of the corruption that guns bring with them.
#2: In Europe (Germany at least) this does not seem to be such a big piece of news and the reason for that lies in a very sad fact I believe: NO ONE IS SURPRISED. Sorry for the caps, but if you think about it, it's crazy. The single oldest democracy in the world, that has defended the free world in two world wars and against a totalitarian communist threat after that (going a little overboard during the latter defence maybe, but hey...) and yet, no one here is surprised that American soldiers massacred a 76-year old man in his wheel-chair and his grand-children (and I don't know how many other people). The most important front in this war (if that's what you want to call it) is the propaganda one and the US is doing so badly on that one, it's not even funny. If people here are not even shocked by American soldiers committing atrocious war crimes like this and higher ranks covering it up, what is the rest of the world thinking?
I close with a new Neil Young song referring to the worst American president of the 20th (and 21st, but then that is not that difficult) century:
Let's Impeach The President
Seriously, has any president ever done a poorer job? Ruther B Hayes maybe, but apart from him? The worst attack on American soil ever and Bush responds by starting the biggest anti-American initiative including terrorist rallying cry ever. What a moron, what a loser. This gets me so fucking mad.
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