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Friday, March 28, 2008

Sabrina Harman

This is Sabrina Harman. She is the rather infamous US Army Specialist that was court martialed (along with others) for her conduct at the Abu Ghraib prison. A coworker showed me some of her photos recently appearing in the New Yorker. This one is haunting me... I guess because she looks like a smiling, optimistic, all-American Rosie the Riveter. And, devoid of any sophisticated artistic intentions, she is being juxtaposed here next to the disgusting rotting body of a murdered Iraqi prisoner of war. Somehow these military idiots armed with a cheap digital camera concocted the most chilling and deplorable symbol of American foreign policy that I can imagine. If I were an Iraqi, this (not our "freedom") is why I would hate America.*

* Since I'm not an Iraqi, and my interaction with America is much more layered than this... I don't hate America. I am very sad about where we are right now as a nation. And images like this reinforce why I voted against Bush, and why I'll vote against McCain. I know McCain is no fan of military torture, but he'll continue a warmongering foreign policy that is doomed to recreate situations like this and worse.



At 3/28/2008 11:26:00 PM, Blogger lowcoolant said...

That's the most chilling foreign policy symbol you can imagine?

Did you ever meet my good buddy Daniel Pearl?

At 3/28/2008 11:41:00 PM, Blogger lowcoolant said...

And five demerits for using an asterisk and a smaller font. This is YOUR blog, dude. Get rid of that mess.

At 3/29/2008 09:21:00 PM, Blogger Yojimbo_5 said...

That's funny. I kinda LIKE the asterisk and the smaller font!

At 3/31/2008 12:07:00 PM, Blogger John said...

While the asterisk and font were a nod to Jim's OCD tendency to include qualifying clauses and explication (rather than my own style)... I stand behind the content of my qualifying clause.

If it makes you happier, just pretend it was a second paragraph.

At 4/07/2008 02:34:00 PM, Blogger Calvin said...

I don't have strong feelings about asterisks and fonts, but share the sentiment that this is an incredibly gruesome symbol of US Foreign Policy. A policy which, I can't help but add, has been relatively consistent between the two corporate parties for many decades.

One thing which separates our current era from the late '60s is that the Vietnam War was started by and escalated by supposedly progressive Democratic administrations, so the activists of that time could not suffer the illusion that the war was primarily the result of one bad apple in the White House, and could therefore be resolved by handing the reins over to the other party.

This misconception has seriously held down the antiwar movement and led it to focus much of its energies on this election, and lend most of it's support to a candidate, Obama, who is in turn calling for an increase in military spending and a simultaneous increase in the size of the military by 92,000 troops. Obama (and Clinton as well) has also refused to commit to having the troops withdrawn from Iraq by 2013.

How many times does the failed strategy of lesser-evilism need to demonstrate it's bankruptcy before we go about the real work of building a new progressive party? The Democrats are a thoroughly corporate controlled, top-down party that has never represented the interests of working people. That undeserved reputation is largely a historical accident that came about largely because FDR (who initially ran on a fiscal conservative platform) happened to be a Democrat and happened to be in power at a time when a militant labor movement, against the background of the Great Depression, fought for and won much of the social safety net which both parties have been attacking since the mid-70s.

At 3/14/2013 04:36:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Totally agree. And i like your self-reflection. You don’t look trough patriotic rose-coloured glasses. USA need Elector/Voter like you to get back Confidence and Credibility in the World.
I’m from Germany and I can say we Germans are not much better than USA. The only thing is we are not that much in focus of attention.
I think united states’ main problem is there are two parties to choose from. with this initial-position there can’t be an alteration in politics.
Just my two pence.


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