OPINION

A ‘civilizing’ mission

George Bush expressed «disgust» and Tony Blair was «sickened» by photographs and official reports confirming that some of the self-styled American and British liberators and civilizers abused and humiliated Iraqi detainees, i.e. prisoners of war who are protected by international accords. The hegemon’s disgust and the sickness of his principal ally, as well as the universal outrage, instantly prompted the harsh albeit fair punishment of the perpetrators. Six of them received a letter of reprimand while the seventh was handed a letter of admonition. After that, the triumphal grin on the faces of those responsible for the brutality has become broader. The war on Iraq was launched in the name of security, democracy and morality. A year after the formal declaration of its conclusion, violence persists, the sense of insecurity has become universal, and the forced export of democracy has been indefinitely postponed because the Iraqis are perceived as immature and ungrateful for they lament that they were not rid of Saddam only to be subjected to a new Saddam. As for morality – already tarnished by a swarm of lies and machinations, and the relentless bombing of residential areas – it has yet to make an appearance in the streets of Iraq or in the offices and the committees set up by the occupying forces with the docile contribution of a small group of quislings. It is probably held somewhere in Guantanamo or an Iraqi prison, being tortured to make it own up. These are isolated incidents, the American and British propaganda has it. But the grins of enjoyment and pride on the torturers faces’ suggest otherwise: that when committed against «barbarians,» such acts are acceptable, if not legitimate. It is certified by the heavy disciplinary action taken against the brave soldiers. Only the medals are missing. For the time being at least.