Mothers day is something to ignore. Which I now already haven't. Crap!
I feel I should comment on the torture and mistreatment of Iraqi prisoners: “It's not surprising at all.” There.
Consider the results af the famous Stanford Prison Experiment where two equal groups were made guards and prisoners in a controlled experiment meant to last two weeks but aborted early, as Dr. Zimbardo, the leader of the experiment, wrote:
I ended the study prematurely for two reasons. First, we had learned through videotapes that the guards were escalating their abuse of prisoners in the middle of the night when they thought no researchers were watching and the experiment was “off.” Their boredom had driven them to ever more pornographic and degrading abuse of the prisoners.
The second reason was when an outsider, Christina Maslach, as the first of around 50 visitors, objected to the treatment of the “prisoners” and made Dr. Zimbardo realize how deep into the role of running a “correctional facility” (the irony in that phrase is striking, no one become better humans, “corrected”, by being in a prison setting) he is.
In Iraq the setting is even more cruel, the guards are actively encouraged by the CIA operatives to “soften” the prisoners before interrogation, and they've had months of boredom to hone their skills.
In “Is it in anyone to abuse a captive?” historian Christopher Browning “… who researched the activities of a group of unremarkable World War II German reservists – who went on to massacre many thousands of Jewish villagers with little or no coercion from their officers.” is saying:
In the War on Terror, the US has set limits on the Geneva Convention to minimise the protections it offers, think of Guantanamo. These things filter down from the very top.
It's bizarre to see how everybody is busy washing their hands acting out a play of innocence. And in the end the guards and prisoners are just human, no more, no less. Cruelty is so very human it's scary.