Today’s rounds brought me to this item. In that article the following story is recounted:
“They called all the prisoners out to the courtyard for what they called a ‘celebration.’ We all knew what they meant by ‘celebration.’ All the prisoners were chained to a pipe that ran the length of the courtyard wall. One prisoner, Amer al-Tikriti, was called out. They said if he didn’t tell them everything they wanted to know, they would show him torture like he had never seen. He merely told them he would show them patience like they had never seen.”
“This is when they brought out his wife, who was five months pregnant. One of the guards said that if he refused to talk he would get 12 guards to rape his wife until she lost the baby. Amer said nothing. So they did. We were forced to watch. Whenever one of us cast down his eyes, they would beat us.”
“Amer’s wife didn’t lose the baby. So the guard took a knife, cut her belly open and took the baby out with his hands. The woman and child died minutes later. Then the guard used the same knife to cut Amer’s throat.”
Put aside all talk of politics. What gets into people? What makes it possible for a man to perform such an atrocity? I can’t… I don’t… I am at a loss for even the right words to question how or why this is possible… let alone express the feelings it evokes. What disease of the mind is it that a group would not sooner turn their weapons on themselves, or their superiors, than act on such a vile order? What gives a man the hideous strength of will to go on violating and mutilating a woman after he has heard her first screams of fear and pain? What manner of dissociation allows him to return home to sleep with his wife and play with his children, and then return to work the next day, without casting himself in the path of the first truck he sees?
I am at a loss. We have the capacity for evils hell never dreamed of. And though I recoil at the thought I know none of us are immune.