T Nation

More Torture Pictures



I don't know whether you have seen these pictures or want to see them at all but I've heard they are not being published in the USA.

Have you seen them?

What do the American news say about them?

Although it's obvious that these are exceptions (I have some faith in the human kind) it hits me hard whenever I see that. I find it difficult to maintain a psychologically neutral position towards America with the kind of shit that is obviusly going on.

I'm just trying to figure out what it's like for Americans to basically be American. There are so many great things in and about America but then there are others that disgust me.

I've got people in my school whose parents are in the British Army and they themselves don't seem to support the war effort. How does that work?

I'm really sorry for the soldiers that die and particularly for the wounded coz they are the ones that really suffer but how is there so much abuse going on?

I don't mean to offend anybody I'm just looking for answers nobody seems to be able to give me here so I'm turning to you.

Btw, I'm German and I find it awkward to have the historical backround attached to the country and somehow my identity. I've just had an history exam today and that made me think about the "business" of history and politics even more.


Out of fairness, each picture should have a picture from 9/11 next to it. Or, perhaps pictures from Saddam's victims -- mothers crying while Saddam's minions torture her children with power drills. Out of fairness, mind you.

I don't want those guys at Gitmo tortured anymore than you do. They should each be humanely shot in the head.

Then, the Iranians, who unleashed these vermin on the planet, should be bombed into the Stone Age. Make Iran a prarie and let the buffalo roam...



I would argue that these are still isolated incidents - but they show how fear can create a political climate in which abuse can develop and thrive. It is dangerous to create "exceptions" in the status of prisoners (and thus de facto creating second class prisoners). That's the time when fuckwits crawl out of their caves and excert what little power they normally have - on to helpless people without rights. Unfortunately some posters here give a good example of that attitude, and I'm often disgusted with some of the vocabulary they use. But the mechanisms are well researched - you may want to read Zimbardo, Adorno and Zygmunt Bauman on that.

Are the detainees in Guantanamo or Abu Ghuraib all innocent? No, in fact many of them might be pretty bad people (and it would be great to see more proper court proceedings here) - but our societies (and due to its history German society is luckily among them) have agreed on a certain code of conduct, and certain inalienable rights. One of them, is to consider people innocent until proven guilty, another is to give anyone fair representation, a third is not to abuse them - Guantanamo, extraordinary renditions and manoeuvering around what constitues are only examples of how a society reacts if it struggles with these ideals. US soldiers commit these things not because they are evil, but because they think they can and should act out on behalf of a higher purpose. So even without further pictures of abuse, there is work to be done in bringing back the current US administration into the fold, as it seems to have lost its path on some of its own ideals. It is not directly, but IMO systemically responsible for those phenomena, as it has created the environment that allows this abuse to develop.

As for the abuse at hand, the US military has stomped on it so far - people have been discharged and heavily punished. But I doubt that they will be able to really end it, if the underlying cause (the dehumanisation of certain classes of prisoners) is not put aside.

Every German who has confronted his/her country's history will be wary of this kind of exeptions to what is good and right treatment - and to any call for collective punishment of people. But again, this is the exception, and most personnel deployed in Iraq is there to help a destroyed country back on its feet. Whether they should be there in the first place is another matter.



Actually, that's not really true. Look at how low down the ladder the prosecutions stop, and how people like General Miller, who ordered that detainees be treated like "dogs", have gotten off scot-free. But you're right that until this administration is over, the torture will probably continue.


You really are an idiot aren't you? Because lunatics attacked our country and killed thousands of innocents, we can justify torturing and murdering our enemies? And did it ever occur to you that some of the people in Guantanamo are innocents, who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time?

There are plenty of men there who would love to fly a plane into a skyscraper, but there are also tons who were not "caught on the battlefield", contrary to what Rumsfeld said. Try actually READING for a change, a couple of Afghans who were tortured and then murdered at Bagram were completely innocent.


Intresting pictures. One of them especially amused me, the one where the soldier is holding the detainee up kind of a hunter's trophy.


nobody in those pics looked to bad to me. ohh nooo they got a bag on thier head, or they are naked and handcuffed, big deal. thats not torture. having your head cut off with a fukin steak knife is torture. bamboo under the finger nails is torture.

these guys have just benn hazed if anything. what passes for torture is hilarious. see what other countries do then call this torture. care to give it a whirl? check out www.ogrish.com but be careful, if you think naked dudes with a bag on their heads is bad, prepare to vomit. pussies.


There are at least six bodies so far. Maybe know what you're talking about before spouting off, huh?


Great...the country that gave us Nazis is now publishing so-called atrocities about us?

You got to be kidding me!


Absolutely great post Mazilla. Couldn't have said it better myself.


I am glad to hear there are more people who dissagree with his point of view than others. I find it hilarious that the German is going to shake his finger in disgust at the Americans. (and I think my grandfather who stormed Normandy would have something to say as well)

Torture? This is not torture, standing naked is not torture, with a hood over your head, while a dog is barking at you. Talk to the veterans who survived in the POW camps in Vietnam, why dont you do some searches on that?

Do not sit here and rant and rave about this and show me these pictures that mean shit to me. Why dont you google search some decapitations that the Iraqis have been doing to innocent people, since you are so big on moral issues and not wanting the innocent ones to be harmed.

I know you have your opinions and as an American we are allowed to do this. But dont patronize something that you have not fully grasped. Dont be so narrow minded about this issue. Quit jumping on the band wagon and hating our country just because. You rely so much on our country, yet you still do this? Instead of listening to your biased news casts. Get a plane ticket and go over there and see what good we are actually doing. My money says you wont, your ass will stay where you are, and will continue to talk shit, under the thrown we have given you.


P.S. Do not come at me with the response of, have you seen it, have you been there, because that will piss me off. Yes I have, I am in the Air Force.



And thanks to your grandfather Germany is a free country now - again, this is what the Germans are thankful for. On the other hand - I am not responsible for my grandparents' generation's wrongdoings, neither are you for slavery or killing indians. So cut the nazi crap.

As opposed to the terrorists, who commit horrendous (no one is trying to not at all to legitimise this) crimes and torture, the US's administration is sworn in to spread freedom and democracy. They put themselves into a bigger league - and on this point they seem to be having trouble.

I guess I won't be able to take away the impression that I hate your country - for the record, I don't - actually, I see it as a sign of respect to exercise the rights given to us (partly because of the US). If your point is that because "we Germans" are indebted to the US, and should therefore shut up, I would argue that the spread of freedom and democracy seems not have been successful. I assume that it isn't, because it would show a poor understanding of the basic rights that keep our democracies afloat.

Oh my. What can I say to that? As Milton Bennet said, just having been present does not mean that automatically a learning experience ensues. I would have hoped from someone who has "been there" (I hope you haven't seen any abuse, because you would have had to report this), your view would be a bit more differentiated than just "be thankful Germans, and shut up".



hey makkun,

I understand completely what you said. I apologize for that thread earlier, peoples opinions just get to me sometimes. I really didnt read my thread before I sent it so I understand if there are contradictions and if the thing can be ripped to shreds with critiques. Didn't mean to rip on anyone or affend any other country. (Germany)

When the testosterone gets flowing, things tend to get out of hand!



Well said, very, very, very well said!!



There is no offense where none is taken. Thanks for that, cool move!



Hi Steve,

So, a foreign kid has some questions and asks them in a polite manner in the appropriate forum. And what do you answer him?
It's always sad to see how those pretending to be caring christians are the worst assholes.
The boy is by no means a nazi, you ignorant. But he certainly could develop a real nice picture of America, thanks to comments like yours.


Personally, I don't care for these pictures.
They don't shock me in the least.

Also, printing them AGAIN is witless and untimely.

Things like this happen in a war. I don't like it, I wish America wouldn't have waged this war, but newspapers presenting these pictures as some kind of major atrocity is ridiculous. If this is really the most embarrassing thing US Army has done in Iraq, then hats off to ya! What a nice and clean war.


Gotta call BS on this one dude! Did these vermin EVER consider innocents in all that they do? They do not think like I do (I was going to say 'like you and I do' but you know...), they simply consider anyone western or American evil. They think of us as I think of cockroaches, to be wiped out. They'll walk onto crowded busses with little children on board and smile as they kill them all.

I am sorry if innocents get killed in a war. I'm not God and that IS a tragedy of war. But note that I am sorry -- are they? Do you think the scum that want to do suicide bombs over a few cartoons have any concern for innocents?

You need to rethink your position, quit listening to BS bleeding-heart libs, whose goal is to bring down this country by corrupting our minds. Start thinking like an American. Ignore the BS from the looters' culture on the looters'continents.



Don't apologize; you were dead on. People in Europe are basically taught to hate America from day one -- something neurotic like 'You freed me, so I hate you'. England would've caved to Hitler if they had known the USA wouldn't cover their asses. Chamberlain sent most of his forces into a trap and the USA had to bail 'em out.

My old man was at Omaha, watched most of his friends die. Went all the way to Pilzner, Czech before war's end -- and for what? So a bunch of pussies can whine at us!! Goddammit, this is war!! You don't win by being lovey-dovey!! Kill 'em all!!


The kid is intimating that we are Nazis. Steve calls him out and you call him an asshole. WTF?

Go back to singing a little Deutchland Uber Alles, or maybe Horst Wessel. Americans, the greatest liberators in the history of this sorry planet, Nazis...shame on you.