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Is Marine desecration video a new Abu Ghraib?

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Phil Stewart
January 13, 2012

WASHINGTON — A video appearing to show U.S. Marines urinating on the bodies of dead Taliban fighters promises to become an enduring memory of the Afghan war and is already drawing sharp reaction from across the world as it goes viral on the Internet.

But experts inside and outside the U.S. military are so far unconvinced the incident will cause as much damage as Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal did, even as it stirs anti-American sentiment and revives questions about why some American troops appear prone to committing abuses — and then proudly documenting them.

Like in the 2004 Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal, in which U.S. troops photographed themselves humiliating and intimidating detainees, the Americans shown in the Marine video appeared to have wanted a record of themselves desecrating the corpses of the men they had just killed.

Cracking jokes, like “have a great day, buddy,” as they urinate on the dead, they are aware the video is being taken. Near the end of the clip, one of the Americans seeks to confirm that the video caught everything.

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This article was posted: Friday, January 13, 2012 at 4:22 am

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