Quarter Life Crisis

The world according to Sven-S. Porst

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Bad News Day

442 words

Today was just full of bad news. Not personally for me, but globally. When reading the paper in the morning I read a report about the police in some places being too scared, indifferent or even in favour of young right wing people that people have been hurt rather being protected when asking for help. Infuriating.

And then there was a historical report about the ‘human experiments’ Nazi doctors did in concentration camps. Where ‘human experiments’ is a euphemism for making the people suffer or kill them just to ‘learn’ how the body reacts to those treatments for the benefit of ‘medicine’. Sickening.

But finally, in the course of the day that story about German soldiers in Afghanistan playing with skulls made the rounds. To be honest, personally I think people shouldn’t be too insulted about this. To me kicking around some bones is somewhat less grave than killing or torturing people. But if the locals tend to think that kicking around bones is a bad thing to do for some religious retardedness or another and one of the main objectives of your job is to make friends with the locals (which according to reports actually worked rather well otherwise), well then you have to be a pretty big dumbass to kick those bones around if you want to do your job well.

Not that I have too much respect for soldiers anyway, but this kind of confirms the suspicion that this country doesn’t just rely on its smartest and brightest people to ‘protect’ itself. And of course the whole topic of the army showing bad manners is a bit more sensitive in a country with a tradition of starting world wars. So some dumbass soldiers not only disgraced themselves, but may actually have destroyed the not-too-shabby reputation of their colleagues with that little joke. Building that probably was a lengthy exercise that cannot easily be re-done.

What keeps puzzling me, though, is why the hell soldiers are allowed to take private photos. I mean isn’t it standard in many businesses that people in sensitive areas are not allowed to take photos at all? And isn’t the army a kind of very sensitive and expensive business? And as all these problems tend to be about not getting bad press rather than the real issues anyway, why don’t armies just ban cameras? Or at least be really explicit to their staff about what they can do and what they can’t do? That way they could at least maintain a cleaner reputation without the effort of having to hire new staff…

October 26, 2006, 1:01

Comments

Comment by fudo: User icon

If soldiers can’t have cameras, then we never learn about the next Abu Ghraib (sp.). How is this a good thing?

October 26, 2006, 17:36

Comment by ssp: User icon

Less hassle and bad press for the military and politicians of course. Isn’t that a good thing?

(Perhaps hiding the ‘disclaimer’ paragraph above wasn’t a good idea after all?)

October 26, 2006, 19:28

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