Category: USA: Armed Forces

Another consequence of racism

Present day soldiers, who mutilate enemy corpses or take body-parts as trophies, are typically considered to be suffering from the extreme stresses of battle.

But, research [] shows that this sort of misconduct has most often been carried out by fighters who viewed the enemy as racially different from themselves and used images of the hunt to describe their actions.

“The roots of this behavour lie [] in a social history of racism and in military traditions that use hunting metaphors for war. Although this misconduct is very rare, it has persisted in predictable patterns since the European Enlightenment. This was the period when the first ideologies of race began to appear, classifying some human populations as closer to animals than others.”

Metaphors of ‘war-as-hunting’ that lie at the root of such misconduct are still strong in some armed forces in Europe and North America, not only in military training but in the media and in soldiers’ own self-perception.

Why soldiers mutilate the enemy.

No wonder the suicide rate among vets is so high

This is just beyond tears.

I’ve been reading the rare posts on this blog for a while – and they should all be read – but I seldom comment simply because words are insufficient.

I’m sure there are many more women and probably gays in similar circumstances.

All I can do is agitate for better VA funding and programs and speak up for tighter controls in the military.

And weep. Continue reading