Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Okay first this is disturbing to watch. I kind of felt like crying at parts of it. This is the camera footage from an attack helicopter in Iraq. In the video use see the helicopter fire on a small group of people with some of them admittedly armed. Also in that group were a pair of reporters for Rueters. Flagging them as maybe hostile was not the part i object too.

Things happen in combat and I get that, but firing on a group who is not actively perusing combat, firing on people because they are trying to help the wounded, and kids getting hit in the exchange? These guys should have been court martialed. Things happen in combat, but that does not free you of responsibility for your behavior. The military should not have lied and said reporters and children getting caught in a clear exchange of fire. Not once did anybody return fire or even try and fire. This made me sick.

I have nothing but love for the guys serving over there. They were doing a hard job in a hard place but this….this is not the honorable behavior I expect from folks representing us over there.I want them to fight and protect themselves but I want them to be better than our enemies morally as well as militarily. This is not that and someone should be held to account for it.

Originally published at McCoy's Geeky Emporium of Thought. You can comment here or there.


Apr. 7th, 2010 09:21 pm (UTC)
That may be so... but the participants are playing a video game... assuming they have much the same view as the camera we're seeing.

It's been noted by many soldiers (and Sam Harris references a Russian soldier in The End of Faith saying much the same thing) that if you don't have to kill people face to face it can even be sort of fun to kill them. Viewing live human beings through video crosshairs makes killing a game with wonderful graphics; so yes, the story is old, but the emotional detachment that exists here is a development of the video game generation.
Apr. 7th, 2010 09:38 pm (UTC)
It really isn't. In world war two and one they had similar forms of detachment. Detachment is a safety mechanism in the human mind. People have been doing it for as long as there have been terrible things to do to other people. In Russia they referred to the mongol raiders who road across the plane as Tatars. This was reference to them being from Tartarus or in other words hell. The detachment came from viewing them as not human but monsters out of hell.

The problem comes in when the detachment interferes with judgement like in this case. The person on the other side is not a person, he is the enemy. Enemies are not people. Things like this happened in Vietnam long before there was the first pong machine.

Laying this at the feet of video games is like blaming the stars or the number five. You can draw a link if you want but it is the mind finding patterns where they really mean nothing.



Latest Month

February 2011
Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Teresa Jones