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View Diary: BREAKING UPDATE: How the Defense Department Inspectors Failed Bradley Manning (94 comments)

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  •  The problem is that what Manning revealed is (1+ / 0-)
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    Don midwest

    the tip of a gigantic iceberg. The Pentagon made a serious mistake when, in the interest of efficient record keeping, it decided to record all military actions electronically. All incidents were recorded, presumably to make after-incident reports more timely and accurate. I suspect it didn't occur to the generals that all these "reports" would eventually become public records, available to support indictments for war crimes. What the troops did at Abu Ghraib was simply an extension of what was being done officially and the reason they were so severely punished was to "shut it down" -- not the practice of recording events, but of having it made public.
    How do the various detainees know there are pictures of their humiliation? Because they saw the cameras? Why have judges agreed to sequester the images as long as there were troops in harms way? Because the public viewing of the images would likely incite revenge. Will the images ever see the light of day? Probably. It's likely that the trial of Manning is a trial run to see how low key distressing images can be kept. If the tapes of Manning aren't sensationalized, then perhaps the images of the other detainees won't be either.
    We have had quite a few "terrorists" tried without getting a lot of sensational media coverage.
    I'm not sure that sensationalizing the outrageous behavior of our military would do much good. We like to think that one man's bad experience will serve to deter bad behavior by others, but it doesn't work that way. People don't learn from other people's bad experience. Some don't even learn from their own. That's why we have recidivists. Indeed, the majority of crimes are caused by habitual offenders, people who don't learn from their mistakes.

    We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Fri Dec 07, 2012 at 05:53:22 AM PST

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