Oct 21, 2005

*Bang* *Bang* We come in peace

In one of Tim Burton's less syrupy gothic interludes, he made a film called Mars Attacks. It was a good film.

Said cinematic satire involved a collection of skeletal martian midgets who ran buck-wild across the the US massacring all and sundry without a single inkling of remorse, all the while politely informing the generic screaming extras that they come in peace.

*Bang* *Bang* We come in peace.

And I mention all this, only it was the image that darted through my head on reading about this.

Embassies will tell local governments that reported abuses by US troops in Afghanistan do not reflect American values. The documentary, on the Australian SBS network, showed US troops setting fire to the corpses of two Taliban fighters after a gun battle in southern Afghanistan. One soldier uses the smoking corpses to taunt local villagers, describing the Taliban as "cowardly dogs" and "lady boys".
Which comes after this,

Indeed, the freedoms that we champion are as important to our success in Iraq and Afghanistan as the guns and missiles with which our troops are armed.
And maybe even this,

He insisted that detainees were well treated. They are given culturally appropriate food and drink and are allowed to practice their religion, he said. They are given clothing, shelter and health care and are allowed to send and receive mail.

*Bang* *Bang* We come in peace.

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