Of course, the hubristic and staged look of the photos from Baghdad's Abu Ghraib prison
has a perfectly rational, systematic explanation (and don’t tell me there wasn’t a method or directive involved): simple, plain old psychological blackmail. To make a network of informants living in fear of humiliating exposure. It all makes sense now.
See Seymour Hersh
in the New Yorker (The Gray Zone
"The government consultant said that there may have been a serious goal, in the beginning, behind the sexual humiliation and the posed photographs. It was thought that some prisoners would do anything—including spying on their associates—to avoid dissemination of the shameful photos to family and friends. The government consultant said, "I was told that the purpose of the photographs was to create an army of informants, people you could insert back in the population." The idea was that they would be motivated by fear of exposure, and gather information about pending insurgency action, the consultant said. If so, it wasn’t effective; the insurgency continued to grow."
Let’s not talk about the anonymous and innocent Iraqis tortured and killed, or the 10,000 dead since the war began, or the age-old officer core protecting its own right up to the top brass, letting the actual soldiers dangle, or the secret Pentagon operatives or the sheer idiocy of George W mincing in smiling denial at the top, flouting that AOK thumbs up and ‘making progress in Iraq’ guff. It's all about dirty war tactics, the control of presentation and imagery, distraction and denial. And naked, hubristic means-end politics and abuse on a scale Machiavelli would've found disturbing.
And then there’s the army of private contractors and specialists lending their consultation to the war machine. See Mark Fiore’s quick capsule review