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NY Times Helpfully Reports the Self-Evident

War can cause young soldiers to dehumanize their opponents? The pressures of combat may erode moral sensibilities? Who would have thunk it? Apparently not the ace reporters chasing the Afghan ‘pee-gate’ story at the New York Times–so they spoke to experts who kindly explained the obvious:

Reprehensible behavior, combat veterans and military experts say, is an ever-present risk when troops in their teens and early 20s are thrown into nerve-racking battle for months at a time. And if there are weaknesses in their leadership or breakdowns in discipline, that behavior can easily spill over into acts that might be considered war crimes.

War is hell.  Who knew? Thank goodness for experts. Next up: exposure to water found to cause dampness in cloth.

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  • Jim.

    They have to fill the rag up with something, otherwise they’d have to cover the collapse of the whole ramshackle edifice of the Blue Social Model in general (and Eurosocialism in particular) in excruciating detail.

    I miss the days when Newsweek had worthwhile news, and Time really reported on the times. I like the Economist well enough, but couldn’t we manage to put together something like that in America?

  • Andrew Allison

    Peeing on a dead combatant a war crime? GMAB!

  • Kris

    On the other hand, many Americans (i) have been living in a safe cocoon (ii) are woefully under-educated, especially in the classics. Maybe many do have to be told water is wet…

  • bobby b

    If those reporters are this upset over the soldiers peeing on the dead guys, just wait until they find out that they’re the ones that killed ’em in the first place! You can wash pee off. You can’t wash dead off. Killing someone is the zenith of dis.

    I’ve not been to war in an arab country myself, so I might just be whistling Dixie here, but I’m gonna predict that a majority of Taliban would answer “being killed” when choosing between that and being peed on, as far as which they think is the worst.

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