Saturday, May 05, 2007

Battlefield "ethics"

"Our boys" are such strange liberators.

A US survey of battlefield ethics among troops in Iraq has found widespread tolerance for torture in certain circumstances and problems with morale.

...The Pentagon survey found that less than half the troops in Iraq thought Iraqi civilians should be treated with dignity and respect.

More than a third believed that torture was acceptable if it helped save the life of a fellow soldier or if it helped get information about the insurgents.

About 10% of those surveyed said they had actually mistreated Iraqi civilians by hitting or kicking them, or had damaged their property when it was not necessary to do so.

Troops suffering from anxiety, depression or stress were more likely to engage in unethical behaviour, together with those who had had a colleague wounded or killed in their unit.
See also: further indications that massacres like Haditha are viewed, above all, as PR problems.