There has been talk on the cyberwaves about Evil and American exceptionalism -- "the deep belief that our motives are uniquely pure, our goals singularly above reproach."
I think the destruction of the Waco
compound [don't take everything on this site as kosher], by government organisations including the FBI representing the U.S. state, was an "evil act". Young children died in the fires that destroyed David Koresh's fantasy world.
A state is usually not described as evil, unlike individuals. Though the state is not described as evil, it consisists of inviduals who can or might be evil.
An Army is a killing machine. It is not a social service or a university medical school department of ethics. The almost real-time filming of military action, such as the recent killing of a wounded man in a Mosque in Falluja, is what occasionally happens in war. I wondered where the Marine's Officer was. He would have been the man to make a decision about what to do. From the video the wounded man didn't appear to be an immediate threat, so we must put it down to some illness or psychopathy in the solder who pulled the trigger. Most media reports said the Marine had only just returned to duty after a wound to his head. You're talking Vietnam Syndrome here: tired, boozed up, drugged up innocents without proper leadership.
No doubt, when the facts about Fallujah II
are out, we will learn that of the thousand or so insurgents/terrorists claimed to have been killed, a large proportion were completely innocent people who got caught up in the fighting. If you are in charge of a military force going in to a place like Falluja, you know perfectly well that you are not going to be able to tell the difference between fighters and bystanders. You can't worry about that. It would completely defeat your objective. If asked, you will dissimulate, before and after. "I don't know". "I have no figures on this". There is no need to tell the truth, either about your plans or your deeds. By the time the truth comes out, everyone who counts won't even remember what it was about.
FALLUJA AS A PLACE
is important. It is an article by Jonathan Lyons,"U.S. battles weight of history in Iraq". The Americans would have known all about this as they planned the battle. People sit there in the situation rooms, Googling, looking for information to help them carry out their job, or to cover up their projected misdeeds.