Saturday, April 21, 2012

Playing with the Dead, Chapter II

Following up from yesterday, and the what-I-consider-absurd statement by Leon Pinetta, that "that's not who we are" in regards to American soldiers dishonoring the bodies of killed enemies in Afghanistan . . . here's a take on the reason why the military and the White House is so intent on keeping the American people from finding out about stuff like this. There was an intense effort by the administration to keep the LA Times from printing the pictures. Easy to understand why the government doesn't really want us to know what's going on, but get a load of the bullshit we're being told as to why the American people should not know the kind of behavior they're paying for in our lovely little Middle East war. Does anybody think anybody really believes this stuff?

After they appeared, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told the media that he did "not want these images to bring further injury to our people or to our relationship with the Afghan people." White House Press Secretary Jay Carney chimed in: "We're also very disappointed ... about the decision made to publish these photographs two years after the incident."  
This refrain, that the overriding concern in Washington was that publication of the photos would inflame Afghan public opinion and provoke an intensification of attacks on US troops in Afghanistan, is based on a lie. 
The Afghans do not need to see a picture on the front page of the LA Times to hate the foreign occupation of their country, which has lasted for over 10 years and inflicted hundreds of thousands of casualties together with daily humiliation and oppression. The Afghans are living it, not merely reading it in a newspaper. 
The real concern in Washington is the impact that the latest photographs, together with the unending succession of atrocities in Afghanistan, will have upon American and world public opinion. In the United States, opposition to the war is at record levels, with barely 30 percent of the population believing that it is worth fighting. 
Internationally, people who are incessantly told that the US is engaged in a global crusade for "human rights" can see through these photos what American soldiers and their commanders in Afghanistan are really up to: murder and brutality on a massive scale.
To counter antiwar sentiment, the government and the military have done their best to control the reporting on the war and, above all, the photographic images that are accessible to the American public. (Source)
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