Rotting From the Head Down

With all due apologies to fellow citizens, but we, the body of America, are starting to smell. By now most who are capable of reading and/or watching television know of the burning of dead Taliban fighter's bodies and the accompanying taunts to other Taliban members by what has been called an American "psychological operations" or "PSYOPS" unit in Afghanistan.

We can place it on the mantle next to the Naked Human Pyramid and the Dog Attacking Naked Prisoner trophies (to name a few).

For those unfamiliar with the story it can be found at ABC NEWS and the story with the accompanying (edited) video can be seen at CNN.

As usual, a more in depth analysis of the problems posed by that act and actual references to International Law and local customs can be found in overseas media such as The Independent, The Scotsman, and The Guardian.

Even if one is not outraged by these actions, a certain sense of bewilderment must exist. After all, this is nothing more than another "Bring 'em On" moment. First, one needs to go back to when pesky issues such as "torture" were attempted to be discussed only to have those that deigned bring them up (Amnesty International in the illustration) be quickly vanquished by the forces of "good" within the Administration- an Administration that has characterized this fight/war as an entirely "new type of war" thereby setting the stage for these "entirely new kinds of methods".

The truth is that war is war, killing is killing, torture is torture, and desecrating bodies is desecrating bodies. The only "new" thing about any of this is that it apparently has been given a wink and a nod by the highest levels of our Government.

Blaming these events on a "few bad apples" or on those who are not "upholding American standards of decency" is a pig that simply doesn't fly anymore. The American spirit and the American sense of decency cannot be hijacked by those who condone these tactics while clutching the flag and the cross in their hands- thereby desecrating both.

More importantly, what this proves is that we are now wallowing not only in the stench of passing the bounds of an oxymoron, namely, "acceptable warfare", we are now trying to wash the smell away with a stupidity shower.

Heeding the Administration's caution against "the bigotry of lowered expectations", why not discuss stupidity? The fact is that this was a "PSYOPS" operation. Presumably, these individuals have some training in psychological warfare. This act could not have possibly been in any valid work on the subject. The chances of "smoking out" other Taliban fighters with this act was close to nill and even if 1 or 2 did, then that would just be a culling of the herd that would probably be welcomed by other Taliban fighters as the "hotheads" would ultimately prove a larger risk to them than our own forces.

If this had anything to do with psychology, then it must have dealt with "projection" with a strong hint of Hollywood influence. Too bad the Taliban don't watch Sylvester Stallone and Chuck Norris movies. If they did, they'd fall right into our trap.

There was, and is, only one outcome to this "event"- many more recruits for either suicide bombers or fighters. The sheer folly of it is an indication of warped leadership in a warped fight that may be the right fight, but has not been characterized and framed properly in the interests of political expediency that is sure to lead to an ultimate defeat.

Far from being a statement for gentility in a fight, this is a plea for the leadership in this country to get their collective heads out of their collective fundraisers and see that we are doing nothing but planting seeds for a field that we will, one day, become too weak to cut back or control from simple exhaustion of both manpower and treasure.

The time has come for this Administration to rise above the pride of making it to the top as "C" students with portfolios consisting of a lack of military service and failed businesses (but for connections). Lives are at stake.


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