Monday, February 07, 2005

Mud Wrestling in Iraq

Every time I read a story like this, I think of Don Rickles character, SSgt. Crapgame, in the movie Kelly's Heroes. Crapgame was always looking for an angle; always looking for a way to make a buck. We're left wondering who would have organized this little "Girls Gone Wild" frat party at Camp Bucca, Iraq, and what the "angle" of the organizers might have been:

A party held last October by American G.I.s at the Camp Bucca jail got a little wilder than most army brass would have liked. More than 30 photographs have surfaced of female soldiers wearing bras and panties and engaging in mud wrestling while male soldiers cheer them on. Some of the photos show female GIs baring their breasts.

Investigators also discovered that some sergeants at Camp Bucca may have lent their rooms to soldiers for sex.

The party in question was thrown by the sergeants of the 160th Military Police Battalion and was designed to celebrate the end of their tour of duty.

One of the Sergeants, Amil Ganim, was quoted in the report as saying, 'It let people blow off steam before coming home after a year in a combat zone.'

I'm not even quite sure what to say about this incident. Certainly, "blowing off steam" is the excuse that Rush Limbaugh provided to the abusers and torturers at Abu Ghraib. And, interesting enough, Camp Bucca was the location of a detainee riot last week, in which several detainees were shot dead during the subsequent "blowing off steam" by U.S. military guards.

Still, I keep coming back to the "angle" aspect, because I suspect there's a whole lot more to this story than meets the eye. Talk about a breakdown of military discipline...anyway, it's rather strange that just one of the female participants received punishment for this event.