In the run-up to the coming election, combat troops are now deployed within the United States. These troops are, of course, under the control of that great upholder of peace and democracy, George W Bush. A little worrying, given that according to one US congressman, martial law has been threatened in the successful attempt to get congress to approve the bailout. See more in this article by Naomi Wolf and in this by Amy Goodman of Democracy Now
And, further to the debate on the sex industry, Naomi, in another article makes a convincing case that the abuse of prisoners in such places Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo should be viewed as sex crimes - planned in and authorised by the White House. I quote a particularly telling passage from the article:
The sexualization of torture from the top basically turned Abu Ghraib and Guantnamo Bay into an organized sex-crime ring in which the trafficked sex slaves were US-held prisoners. Looking at the classic S and M nature of some of this torture, it is hard not to speculate that someone setting policy was aroused by all of this. And Phillipe Sands' impeccably documented Torture Team: Rumsfeld's Memo and the Betrayal of American Values, now proves that sex crime was authorized and, at least one source reports, eroticized: Diane Beaver, the Staff Judge Advocate at Guantanamo who signed off on many torture techniques, told Sands about brainstorming sessions that included the use of sexual tension, which was "culturally taboo, disrespectful, humiliating and potentially unexpected."
"These brainstorming meetings at Guantanamo produced animated discussion," writes Sands. "Who has the glassy eyes?" Beaver asked herself as she surveyed the men around the room, thirty or more of them. She was invariably the only woman in the room, keeping control of the boys. The younger men would get excited, agitated, even: "You could almost see their dicks getting hard as they got new ideas" [reported Beaver]. A wan smile crossed Beaver's face: "And I said to myself, you know what, I don't have a dick to get hard, I can stay detached." [Sands, p 63]
Here the issue of consent on the part of the detainees is clearly absent. Rape and sexual torture as state policy authorised by an administration which wraps itself in the flag and carries a bible. And is, according to Palin, doing god's work.
Weekly round-up and open thread
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