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May 18, 2007

Exhibit #1 Why The Military Wants To Keep Our Boys Off YouTube



Can't decide what's more "striking," the audio or the video.

(Clip title: Mosque Vs F-18.  uploaded: May 16 2007 by max. location: Iraq.  Possibly Tajii.  Via liveleak

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Yep. Hearts and minds, sweets and flowers.

Stunned!
Even after Abu Graib, even after Fallujah, ...
Every time the horrors of the occupation forces' work on Iraqi population are shown, I am suprised how far down to the bottomless depth imperial army can go to...
This is criminal evidence.
No leaders, no hearts, just evil.

This makes me sick... what they did and how they laughed about it. My kids saw it and I'm not able to explain to them why they would have done that, much less why they felt so happy and proud of themselves.

Does anyone really still claim that morons like these are in Iraq to HELP the Iraqis?

I'm sure this video will be a big plus for the insurgents and the mujahideen. So yes, this is certainly a striking example of why the military needs to keep these guys from posting their videos. In their eyes, destroying the mosque is probably not a problem. Publicizing it is.

Just for the record, contrary to what many people think, there are many churches and Christian communities throughout the Arab world (except for Saudi Arabia, which is a special case). According to Islamic law, churches and synagogues are considered to be houses of God and are not to be touched.

jeez, we really suck.

To put some more perspective on this: Google Earth search for "Al Taji, Iraq" leads to an American airbase operated by the 1st Cavalry Division. There is a large 1st Cav insignia painted on the tarmac of the base and dozens of helicopters are visible. (In case you don't remember, this was the group lead by Robert Duvall in Apocalypse Now.)

Camp Taji is one of "14 enduring bases" of Iraq, slated to be combined into four "mega bases". Check the Wikipedia entry [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taji] -- this base is known for its fast food restaurants and for the fact that just north is a road leading to Balad "now referred to "ambush alley" or "Sudden Death". IED attacks, small arms fire and complex attacks on convoys and patrols remain an almost nightly occurrence." [from Wikipedia] Sounds like an updated version of Apocalypse Now.

To update Sherman: "War is hell run by senile politicians." The troops in this video are in the meat grinder. I wonder if that laughter combines equal parts of anger, fear, relief, and insanity, and some other ingredients I just can't decipher. Whatever, we are destroying Iraq, bit by bit, and will be there for years. God help us.

I just read through the first page of comments at liveleak. We have some really sick people in our society. The commentators sound like they are watching a made for tv movie, or a video game.
I dont know what to say...censorship is not the answer thats for sure.
we need a whole new fresh start as a civilizaton.

You're right. And the problem is, war porn like this changes nothing. Not at this point in the discussion. The 28% get something close to sexual excitement at stuff like this and the rest of us are just repelled. Nothing changes.

In a century people will still be debating the depth of the harm george bush and the republican party did to this country.

definitely the audio. it's just a game to these guys, and it's hard to hear...

I find this fascinating -- I think there really is a few very strong books or documentaries to be done about War as recorded by the Warriors in Iraq, and not just the US. We don't see much of what the insurgents or other Iraqis are recording and saving... and when we do, we're usually angry.

This isn't even the worst of these sort of videos. But I do think most Americans are disgusted -- there certainly is maybe the 18% who still "strongly agree" with Bush's Iraq policy who enjoy it -- but a good number of the Bush/War supporters are still those who Just. Can't. Bring. Themselves. To. Disagree. with a war during wartime. Or a president during same. It's hard to muster, but patriotism is tied to religion and family and values for so many Americans, it must be hard to shake. And it makes the current bottom-scraping poll numbers all the more remarkable.

History will not look kindly on these videos. I can't imagine how a future Iraq will reconcile them. (And imagine if there was similar tech in Vietnam! I can't imagine there would be the good relations with that country we enjoy today.) But I also wonder what happens to these kids in our services when they come home. What kind of young mind can turn back after these months and years of indifference, fear, inundation with violence and, for many, guilt -- and go back to being everyday Americans shopping at Walmart and voting for American Idol?

The country has always played down the difficulty for soldiers to return from war. The last time we hard sustained urban warfare was WWII, and we still haven't yet gotten a real picture of what happened to "The Greatest Generation" when they came home. In my family, the ex-soldiers came back changed, one great Uncle became obsessed with rebuilding family. The other pushed away and became, as my Great Aunt says, "mean and raw." We never knew the extent until he passed away, and still we'll likely never know how "mean."

I guess what I'm saying is that there are many ways we will view the war in Iraq, even after it is "over." The army can ban YouTube all they want. The images will get out. And similar videos will continue to be made no matter what country these amateur filmmakers reside in, for years and years to come.

But you know, the real reason they hate us is for our freedoms.

also, quick note re ignorance...the voice mentions the whole 'mosque' went down indicating a lack of knowledge that this was a minaret presumably and the place from which the call to prayer emanates...sad...

What are some possibilities here?

We know the rules of engagement prohibit firing on a mosque unless its being used for military purposes. What are the odds these solders aren't the callous jokers people here are suggesting, and instead maybe there were snipers in the tower?

The irony is, a lot of folks on the right are calling for far less restraint.

The Jihadi's use Mosques as Weapons Caches and Headquarters for attacks on our troops...under the Law of Armend Conflict a Church or Mosque is a sanctuary until somebody shoots at you from it...I'm a Catyholic but if the Pope was sniping at us from St. Peters Basilica I would call in the Arty...they are laughing because the enemy thought he could safely shoot from there...silly him

shock and awe
another day in indian country
boys will be boys

"..after all we aren't savages really."
- Lord Of The Flies - Willian Golding

Ich folgte Aufträgen

hysterica

Following up to comments above, it's the same attitude exhibited at the last publican political campaign extravaganza in So. Carolina, was it only Tuesday? When one of the candidates said Gitmo should be doubled in size there was uproarious cheering. Yet when Paul dared to say that we must look to our own actions and how we would react if another country occupied our land, he was met with dead silence and the very vocal faux outrage of Guilie, the 9-11 hero!

On TV last night a man was admitted to the ER who apparently wanted drugs, period, and took some violent action to procure same from hospital coffers. As the story developed, he had been an Arabic translator at a prison during torture of prisoners. Just one writer's view, no doubt, but we are seeing more of this type of scenario pop up in dramas: what happens after...... One wonders when the sponsors will put their foot down: war is good for business.

Theres a ton of difference between "coercive interrogation" and torture...I suppose you wouldn't want anything beyond "pretty please" during questioning...newsflash...terrorists are not soldiers...geneva doesn't apply...we adhere to humanitarian standards in the treatment of prisoners ...loud music...extremes in temperature and even waterboarding (which I have experienced firsthand and I'm fine today) do not qualify as torture

The thing that is most disturbing to me is Bushco's persistent belief that the real problem is that videos are being made, not the actions and attitudes recorded in those videos, not the fact that American soldiers are fighting in Iraq at all. These are young soldiers, far from home, risking their lives in a conflict they know is meaningless.

My father, who fought on the front lines in Germany in WW2, had some war stories that made us howl with laughter. If the reality had been filmed, I suspect those incidents might have come across as just as callous as this one. He was a young man, it was an intense time, they were trained to kill and they were trying to stay alive. We laughed at his stories because Hitler was defeated, he was still alive, after great peril, and we loved him.

The difference is the war. The Iraq war is immoral. George Bush should be tried as a war criminal.

The thing that is most disturbing to me is Bushco's persistent belief that the real problem is that videos are being made, not the actions and attitudes recorded in those videos, not the fact that American soldiers are fighting in Iraq at all. These are young soldiers, far from home, risking their lives in a conflict they know is meaningless.

My father, who fought on the front lines in Germany in WW2, had some war stories that made us howl with laughter. If the reality had been filmed, I suspect those incidents might have come across as just as callous as this one. He was a young man, it was an intense time, they were trained to kill and they were trying to stay alive. We laughed at his stories because Hitler was defeated, he was still alive, after great peril, and we loved him.

The difference is the war. The Iraq war is immoral. George Bush should be tried as a war criminal.

As a retired combat arms NCO with 20 years experience in combat and counter insurgency operations I am 100% against this war. Its exactly what Bin Laden wants and is only sering to weaken our military and recruit and train more terrorists.

But consider this:

You yourself get dropped into a meat grinder of an impossible situation. You are taking hits every day, driving around and doing little more than providing targets for snipers and IED's. Very often the pattern is that the insurgents, who routinely hide behind women and children, take shelter in a mosque and shoot at you from that mosque. Last week an RPG fired by some insurgent in a mosque killed 4 of your friends and you had to wipe their brains off your flak jacket.

Today you take more fire from that same mosque. You call in fire and the mission gets approved. So this mosque is leveled.

And you think this is an atrocity???

You truly do not have a clue what you are talking about and are just as ignorant of the realities of war and this situation in particular as the mouth breathing living room commandos who support this war.

Pretty easy to knock the troops as you sip on your Starbucks latte in your air conditioned condo huh?

I don't in anyway support unprofessional conduct on the part of ANY soldier or Marine (I served in both). But the reaction of the soldiers to this event is entirely predictable and arguably even justified.

Get a clue.

and tell it to Jim Webb.

As a retired combat arms NCO with 20 years experience in combat and counter insurgency operations I am 100% against this war. Its exactly what Bin Laden wants and is only sering to weaken our military and recruit and train more terrorists.

But consider this:

You yourself get dropped into a meat grinder of an impossible situation. You are taking hits every day, driving around and doing little more than providing targets for snipers and IED's. Very often the pattern is that the insurgents, who routinely hide behind women and children, take shelter in a mosque and shoot at you from that mosque. Last week an RPG fired by some insurgent in a mosque killed 4 of your friends and you had to wipe their brains off your flak jacket.

Today you take more fire from that same mosque. You call in fire and the mission gets approved. So this mosque is leveled.

And you think this is an atrocity???

You truly do not have a clue what you are talking about and are just as ignorant of the realities of war and this situation in particular as the mouth breathing living room commandos who support this war.

Pretty easy to be morally superior and knock the troops as you sip on your Starbucks latte in your air conditioned condo huh?

I don't in anyway support unprofessional conduct on the part of ANY soldier or Marine (I served in both). But the reaction of the soldiers to this event is entirely predictable and arguably even justified.

Get a clue.

and tell it to Jim Webb.

Sarge, I don't give a shit if you are General Patton come back from the grave. How professional is whining on a blog? Get a clue yourself. If you want to contribute to the thread, then pay some respect.

A lot of 'the troops' in Iraq think they're just avenging 9/11. In this mindset, atrocities are just part of the fun.

War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.-John Stuart Mill

Sort of sums up the American left IMHO

Thank you for your service "Sarge"

“Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence to those who would do them harm."
-- George Orwell

"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse."

I couldn't care less about "patriotism", but I think there are things worth fighting for. I think that if a foreign invader attacks your country; occupies your land; takes control of your natural resources; creates chaos; dictates your form of government; humiliates, shoots, rapes, tortures and kills your citizens; destroys your places of worship... well, a lot of people would think that fighting them is justified, wouldn't they? What do you think, Sarge? Where was your experience with insurgents?

I was reminded, as I watched and listened, to the way little boys sound when they fire off potato rockets. It's easy to get abstracted about destruction when you've experienced it as a mock exercise as a child, and then go into a battle where life is so fragile. And, there lies the problem.
How can we teach little boys the difference between a potato rocket and a real one, and how a real one is so devastating in a culture which thinks it's okay to kill people in foreign countries for made up reasons. Foreign policy games from childhood games.

Gee Margaret...I'll bet you are gonna miss Rosie when she leaves the view huh?

there were no made up reasons...Saddam was a Terrorist Enabler...and taking him out of power was a noble cause...unfortunately Iran and Syria are now funding and supplying this insurgency...and I'm afraid that this war is just beginning...I believe Bush thought taking out Saddam would be like removing Hitler in 1936...and WWII wouldn't have happened...Unfortunately, Islam is too radicalized and too bent on world domination...this war will only get bigger...and I'd rather we finished it now then have to have my grandkids fight it

Well I don't like what I see. But if I were on the ground and the mosques minaret were a snipers observation post; it's gone.

Sure the the men are laughing-what would you do in there situation?

I do hate this war though-and what it does to people.

I think that water boarding did leave its mark SnowWolf.

I can understand taking down such a building if fire is coming from it, the problem is that current American doctrine relies to much on firepower and little getting up close and personal (which is understandable considering that if I was in their place I would let a bomb or shell do the job instead of me bullets fucking hurt!) But you also have to understand that this is a celebration of war and as such is war porn pure and simple. We get to see how spiffy weapons systems work but not the results especially when it is Americans getting hurt or killed.

Show it all or not at all.....

Recalling Powell's charade at the UN few describe his performance better than George Orwell.

"Every war when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as a war but as an act of self-defense against a homicidal maniac"-George Orwell

"Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are conservative." John Stuart Mills

Sort of sums up preemptive illegal aggression and the American Right with a special hat tip to the neoconservatives who have resigned or are jumping ship like rats, IMHO.

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