Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

Given recent news of tortures, has your attitude changed about our troops?

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (Through 2005) Donate to DU
 
feistydem Donating Member (994 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:26 AM
Original message
Given recent news of tortures, has your attitude changed about our troops?
Assuming you have seen the images coming out of Iraq that detail abuses of Iraqi prisoners, what are your feeling about the US military, specifically Amercian troops right now?

Have they changed? If not, why not? If so, what caused them to change?


Are you...

very supportive? :D

generally supportive? :-)

unsupportive? :-(


Have you...

lost respect? :thumbsdown:

gained respect? :thumbsup:

feel the same? :think:


Thanks for your input!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
Mattforclark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:29 AM
Response to Original message
1. I am...
very supportive? :D

feel the same? :think:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cleita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:32 AM
Response to Original message
2. I think there is a real housecleaning needed in top command of
all the branches of the service. This is not my father's military anymore. It more resembles some despotic nation's militias these days.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
fearnobush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:33 AM
Response to Original message
3. Even more supportive now.
I believe the troops were convinced/forced to believe this was ok to do.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
icymist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:33 AM
Response to Original message
4. It seems that every war brings even greater atrocities.
I'm still in a state of shock about this. I'm glad that Congress has found some spine to investigate it. I fear that our returning troops may have to hear taunts of 'war criminal' in the manner that returning Vietnam troops were labeled 'baby killers'. Believe you me, not everybody in US uniform agrees with or performs in such inhumane ways.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:36 AM
Response to Original message
5. hasn't changed much either way
I knew there would be atrocities-- there always is, tis the nature of war.

While the humiliations of the prisoners is vile and contemptible our kids (this is so hard to express) who were raised in our video game MTV culture probably saw this as fairly "harmless" not realizing how devastating it would seem to the Iraqi's because they didn't get any good training on the culture before deployment.

Torture is never pretty and pysops is corrosive to the people who use it for their own ends. I am just grateful that (so far) there haven't been mass deaths in the MP prisons. It doesn't excuse the mass deaths in Falluja or from the bombings

Crap this is so hard to express, I want to believe that down deep our soldiers are the good guys even when in a bad situation, but I am torn by my natural optimism and the realities of war with all it's inherent ugliness soooo

:) and :think:

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DianeG5385 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:38 AM
Response to Original message
6. I don't blame the soldiers directly only by implication.
The leadership set the tone that abuse of non-Americans is "allowed"
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rumguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:38 AM
Response to Original message
7. What it does is make me question all the "official stories" that
Edited on Thu May-06-04 01:48 AM by rumguy
are coming out of Iraq or Afghanistan, or anywhere for that matter...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indiana_Dem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:58 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. Yeah I feel the same....
I almost don't watch TV news channels anymore. I feel like I can't believe any of them or hardly anything of what I hear. I take it with a grain of salt. How the WH responds to all of these accusations and lies they've told is ridiculous and then the low level of outrage is even more incredulous to me. I have needed to stop watching any of it because it just makes me so boiling mad. Until the media begins to rid itself of the spin, I will not be so inclined to watch it as closely.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
nothingshocksmeanymore Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:39 AM
Response to Original message
8. No because I try not to generalize
Edited on Thu May-06-04 01:40 AM by nothingshocksmeanymo
I am generally supportive of enlisted people and believe many to be good people.

I have NO IDEA how wide spread this treatment is institutionally and I have no means of knowing it since so much is kept from the press and the press then further edits what they keep from us.

I don't know what the sadistic tendencies were of these individuals BEFORE they went to Iraq.

I do know that where there was not contempt for the law up and down the chain of command there was dereliction.

I think the largest lapse in morals is with our leadership since these individuals were brazen enough to boast about it. They obviously thought it would get short shrift and I believe Bush in his quest for violence exudes this.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lone_Wolf_Moderate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 01:47 AM
Response to Original message
9. We must remember that
Edited on Thu May-06-04 01:50 AM by lib4life
these actions committed by a handful of assholes don't represent ALL of our troops. The real problem here is that these bastards responsible for this stuff make all our troops, and the country look even worse. To answer your question, my opinion of the military as a whole has not changed, but these actions need to be dealt with severely, and those at the top have a lot of work to do.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 02:08 AM
Response to Original message
11. yes it has
and not so much because of the last couple days, but when i saw the man on a leash and that "woman" holding that leash, you know that one has hit me the worse.

but i was reading where there are pictures of soldiers guttin cows and holding up the cut off head and killing cats. and another soldier riding a 70 year old woman like a mule, saddling her up and she is on all fours

you know, the barbarism that has just been around the middle east, and it is in their culture in many ways, not being a bigot nor in judgement but just a reality, lordy.......our men are acting in such barbarism that we point the finger at

yes my feel on the troops have changed

and this isnt in judgement of any of these soldiers, just not who i am, i can see a truth, and speak it and not be in judgement. the thing i am feeling is it is a feeding that we have had in the aggressive male fundie right wing grab your balls.

i am seeing a total dismissal of the rape and abuse of woman like i havent seen ever. rubbing menstraul blood on people, i dont know

yes i am feeling different with the soldiers. i also think they have been there too long. they had year long tours in other battles for reasons.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
maggrwaggr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 02:08 AM
Response to Original message
12. I grew up on Army bases during Nam
so I don't have rose-colored glasses about anything military.

I was in Germany in the early 70's. I had to walk through the bases every day to go to school, to go anywhere, really.

I wouldn't walk too close to the quarters because often drunk soldiers would lean out of the windows and vomit. Alcohol abuse was a real problem, as was heroin addiction at that time.

Of course this was during the draft.

We used to buy firecrackers from drunk GI's at the local little huts where you could stand and drink beer all day till you passed out. We'd give them money and they'd give us firecrackers.

I also had to get allergy shots twice a week at the big hospital in Frankfurt. The place was full of the wounded. Guys limping around on crutches missing legs, arms, whatever.

One day my Mom was upset by a drunk GI pissing in her flowers.

My father was an officer. He was in Nam for a year. I didn't find out what he did until years later, but it turned out he was in weapons development, and basically he and his guys would give new weapons to the South Vietnamese, and let them try them out. They'd then visit the battlefield later and see how the weapons did. He said "sometimes they worked pretty good, sometimes they didn't".

He didn't like to talk about it.

My brother in law was a green beret medic in Nam and he likes to talk about it. So I've heard some pretty harrowing stories from him.

When the draft ended, the Army became a place where young uneducated guys without much of a chance to get ahead, or guys who felt they were in need of some structure in their lives could go. Many of them are fine people, some are not.

At the same time, I saw the commitment my Dad had to take and the sacrifices he had to make. There aren't many jobs where the job description includes the risk of death by violence.

So I admire the guys who do what they have to do. I understand the necessary evil of having a military. And I understand how and why the military works.

In a case like this, you have to blame the leadership. It's obvious these people weren't doing this in private. In many of the pictures, especially the new ones in the Washington Post, you can see a lot of people standing around. It certainly wasn't going on in secret.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
TreasonousBastard Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 02:49 AM
Response to Reply #12
14. I was one of those guys in Germany...
but I was out in '71, so I figgers I wasn't the one who peed on the flowers. Actually, when I was there, hash and blotter acid were the drugs of choice. There were still a few drunks, but Red Lebanese and Black Afghani were fast taking over. No hangovers from Festbier and Rastsopus. And far fewer fights in Kurt's bar.

But, you are right, these are just people put in a situation, and they will generally react as they are trained to and expected to. Or do what their buddies are doing. Or, sometimes, go over the edge.

War breeds atrocities, and the people committing them are not evil, and often don't realize that they are committing atrocities. At some point, they are just going about business as usual. It's up to the leadership to make them understand where the line is drawn.

It's time for everyone to sit back and reread Hannah Ahrendt on the Banality of Evil.



Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
leftistagitator Donating Member (701 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 02:35 AM
Response to Original message
13. Nope
I knew before-hand what our soldiers are capable of. This isn't exactly the worst thing they have ever done, although the forced homosexuality is a new twist. I suppose that's done out of sheer disrespect of Islam, I just wonder how systematic that practice is. Still, I am generally supportive of the troops. Misguided as they may sometimes be, the vast majority of the troops are good people who find themselves trying to cope with an extremely messed up situation. At least I hope so.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
MajorFlaw Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 05:13 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. I realize it isn't politically correct to criticize our servicemen/women,
but how can we ignore acts of sadism and sexual perversion committed in our name. How do you think these photos are playing around the world. They must think we are barbarians. The problem is not that these disgraceful acts will inflame our enemies; the problem is that this will hurt our relations with our friends and allies.
This stupid motherfucking war must be ended before the Iraqis forget that they hated Saddam and only remember that they hate us.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
leftistagitator Donating Member (701 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #15
18. These photos are absolutely awful for relations around the world
All that rhetoric of liberation and human rights has been replaced with images of sadists getting cheap pleasure from the suffering of the people we came to "help". In fact, I'm not even sure there's enough good will left to make this war "winnable" now, (although, to be honest, I wasn't ever sure that the war was winnable in the first place). The only thing I was really saying is that I was not shocked that our soldiers could do such things, as I knew beforehand that the people in our armies are capable of great evil as well as good. I've read too many accounts of Vietnam to have any illusions about what our men are capable of. I was suprised that they would be so stupid as to take pictures of themselves doing what they had to know was a crime, but then you don't exactly have to be a genius to enlist in the military.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
ForrestGump Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 05:27 AM
Response to Original message
16. People should remember this kind of thing before they
rail against German military goings-on in WWII, where the reputation of some of history's best combat troops has been stained by atrocities (other than the larger atrocity of war) committed by a relative few and by a massive program of genocide that had nothing to do with most true soldiers. There are bound to be scum in any collection of humans -- I don't know whether or not the system that fills US military ranks increases that ratio over the US baseline -- but even if the abuses being reported now are as widespread as seems indicated, it'd be fallacious to point to returning military personnel and call them criminals. We all know who the real criminals are.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Christ was Socialist Donating Member (649 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 05:28 AM
Response to Original message
17. Would you expect more from American troops?
Who the hell signs up for the millitary besides opprutunists and jingnoists, misguided youth, and those with blood lust
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
IrateCitizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:00 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. Utter and complete bullshit
I signed up for the military as an ROTC cadet. I was commissioned as an officer in the US Army Reserve. I believed then that I was signing up for a noble purpose -- the defense of the nation.

Of course, the years since have certainly changed my opinions on that. However, I think that it is incredibly ill-informed and spiteful for you to characterize all people who sign up for the military as "opprutunists and jingnoists, misguided youth, and those with blood lust".

Your post highlights the fact that some of us haven't yet taken "How to Win Friends and Influence People 101".
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mouse7 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:01 PM
Response to Original message
20. Pentagon complains there's too many right wingers in uniform.
The Pentagon is on the record saying the vast majority of those in Armed Forces is right wingers, and it's become a big problem because right wingers are far more dificult to train.

I'm not going to issue blanket attacks on the troops. But I know what right wingers are, and find myself unsuprised by their actions in uniform.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
IrateCitizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:03 PM
Response to Original message
21. War brings out people's worst impulses
These people were all, for the most part, victims of a situation that they never should have been in in the first place.

Ever read about the Stanford experiment in the 1970's in which they divided participants into groups of "inmates" and "guards" to see how they'd interact? Within one week there was such abusive behavior by the "guards" towards the "inmates" that they actually had to cut the experiment short out of serious concern for the well-being of the "inmates" group.

It doesn't excuse their behavior, but it's something to keep in mind....
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
sangh0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:04 PM
Response to Original message
22. I am more supportive of the troops
This news shows me that they are more in need of support than I had originally thought. I don't save my support for the morally pure. They don't need my support.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DaveSZ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:06 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. I blame the people at the top
Edited on Thu May-06-04 03:06 PM by DaveSZ
Bush,

Cheney

Neocons

Military Brass

Still supportive of the troops, and want them home.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
thebigidea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:07 PM
Response to Reply #22
24. as my father said as a GI circa Vietnam: "Support the troops?
They don't want 'support' - they wanna get the fuck home!"
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
democratreformed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:14 PM
Response to Original message
25. My feelings have been verified, IMO
Our soldiers are in a terrible position. Whether or not they are really fighting for our freedom, they are, in fact, fighting for their lives. How mentally hard it must be for them to look at every individual as a possible enemy. How hard it must be for them to be forced to realize that their cause is not just. With every day that goes by, it must become harder and harder for them to do what is expected - because the lies are being exposed.

I neither hold them in high regard nor respect them - they are people that chose to do what they are doing for their own reasons. Now, they have a committment that they can't get out of easily.

I cannot make excuses for the abuse that those that were caught engaged in. Neither can I feel that they are the only ones at fault. Sometimes, circumstances cause things that wouldn't normally happen. Perhaps the circumstances that our leaders put these soldiers in brought out a terrible side of them.

Mostly, I am sad to the very depths of my soul - that people in power can wreak so much havoc on so many lives without being forced to answer for it. I am sad for what the soldiers have to go through. I am sad for what the families have to go through. I am sad at what the Iraqis have to go through. And, I am sad at what we Americans have to go through. I guess I am sort of grieving for the loss of an ideal that I had for many years - that our country was great and wonderful.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Bridget Burke Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:18 PM
Response to Original message
26. I wish all our troops home ASAP.
Most of them need to get back to their families & their lives.

Some of them need to come home to courts martial. Investigation must show just who took part. Obviously, more were involved than the handful of creeps we've seen in the pictures. Oh, and one general! (Yeah, the general was hanging out with the lower ranks--nobody else in the chain of command!)

Special attention needs to be paid to the civilian "contractors" who took part. And extra-special efforts are needed to see just how high the guilt goes.


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:19 PM
Response to Original message
27. I think we need to do the housecleaning on the upper levels, thus I am
very supportive :D

And I

feel the same :think:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
ramapo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:19 PM
Response to Original message
28. Not always the best
Not to denigrate the armed forces but the very nature of the volunteer army tends to attract the less well educated, less well behaved type.

It's like the small town police force. You often find the kids who were in trouble during high school (the hooligan type) grow up to become cops.

Yes this is a generalization but is true to a significant degree.

I'm not surprised by the behavior of the troops and only somewhat surprised that the management didn't catchon and/or take action.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
nadinbrzezinski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:20 PM
Response to Original message
29. I have full respsect for the troops
but we need serious housecleaning at the top, and I mean secretary of defense, under secretary... Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman, and the service chiefs... yes I am aiming high. This only came from a culture from above.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
TryingToWarnYou Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 03:48 PM
Response to Original message
30. Lost respect, somewhat unsupportive.
NT
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JohnOneillsMemory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 04:16 PM
Response to Original message
31. I've lost respect for the PUBLIC that let them get sent into fucking war.
As in, we get the leaders we deserve. Most of me wants to say 'Forgive them, they know not what they do.'

I'll be the first one to describe in detail how we are all lied to from birth about what 'our' gov't REALLY does.

People join the military willingly because they don't know what a fucking fascist slaughter machine it is, not Superman Jesus as advertised.

But I'm fucking disgusted with the public that doesn't push a button at home and read what is really going on the way we here at this website already have. JUST PUSH THE FUCKING BUTTON ON YOUR COMPUTER AND LOOK AT THE SCORE, ALRIGHT? QUIT PLAYING SOLITAIRE AND VIDEO GAMES!

We at democraticunderground.com have taken the initiative to be SELF-EDUCATED so we don't buy into the murderous bullshit being sold to the know-nothings who are CONTENT TO WATCH FUCKING SPORTS AND SITCOMS WHILE PEOPLE DIE.

Our troops are like abandoned children who've ended up in prison because their parents didn't have the interest in protecting them. Americans have become negligent Nazis and fascist enablers, just like FUCKING COLIN POWELL.

As Utah Phillips once said, I don't have rant control anymore...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mmonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 04:31 PM
Response to Original message
32. No
I hold this administration responsible for not adhering to the Geneva Conventions as well as its refusal to follow International law and norms. I also hold the Pentagon responsible as well as the chain of command and the CIA. But I'm just a citizen. We have no power or say in the new America.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
lagniappe Donating Member (228 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 04:31 PM
Response to Original message
33. Support the troops 100%.
Remember that John Kerry, Wesley Clark, and Max Cleland were in the military. This is really an issue of a few bad apples combined with corrupt, incompetent leadership (i.e. Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld).

Our troops were put into an impossible situation. Most are doing the best job they can. I know some people in the military, and they are decent individuals.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
TankLV Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 04:32 PM
Response to Original message
34. I am & always have been very selective in my support.
My "support" only goes to the ones who deserve and earn my "support".

These scum, these criminals, should be left alone in a crowd of the Iraqi people they have abused.

Just deserts I say.

I feel sorry for our troops that are behaving honerably. This will only make their live at more risk.

DAMN EVERY SINGLE REPUKE & DINO FOR THIS WAR HARD-ON!

And, yes, I am intentionally being bitterly partisan.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-06-04 04:34 PM
Response to Original message
35. Not blaming troops for this one. Bushco & individuals involved
I will not blame the troops more than I would blame myself.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Sun Dec 21st 2014, 10:03 PM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (Through 2005) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC