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This is more than torture.
August 6, 2006 3:04 PM   Subscribe

The complete Abu Ghraib Video and Photo Collection Updated. Salon completes it's archive comprising of 279 photos and 19 videos spread across ten galleries oringinally posted to Mefi on 16th Feb. Pictures and videos are disturbing and definitely NSFW. (may require log-in by watching a quick advert).
posted by Funmonkey1 (31 comments total)

 
I saw this a few months ago and I became physically ill. Ponder whether you really want to see this.
posted by caddis at 3:28 PM on August 6, 2006


I think these videos have been on youtube for a while, unannotated.

por ejemplo
posted by eustatic at 3:41 PM on August 6, 2006


Welp, that's fucked up.
posted by delmoi at 3:42 PM on August 6, 2006


I debated whether to post it or not, but it is one of those cases where if you don't it ends up being swep under the rug and the truth becomes a blend of fiction. My choice was made for me after reading todays LA Times feature story documenting the heinous crimes of soldiers during Vietnam. Those abuses went unprosecuted and hidden from public view for the past forty years.

Also, the pictures and video are only part of the story. As much as I hate to admit it, Salon has done an incredible job reporting on Abu Ghraib.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 3:43 PM on August 6, 2006


The Abu Ghraib photos are considered atrocities but they are no different than what is done to women in the pornography industry. Except when it's done to women, people call it "harmless entertainment".
posted by Michelle_hermosabeach at 4:01 PM on August 6, 2006


I debated whether to post it or not...

No, it's a good and important post. I just think people need to know what they are in for.
posted by caddis at 4:03 PM on August 6, 2006


they are no different than what is done to women in the pornography industry

go away
posted by caddis at 4:03 PM on August 6, 2006


Michelle, I don't know if you are trying to trivialize Abu Ghraib, or criticize porn, but you are misinformed. Try clicking the link and see what you are talking about. Noone would call this harmless entertainment, except perhaps the idiots who characterized it as "frat-boy hijinx".
posted by Manjusri at 4:08 PM on August 6, 2006


What a one trick pony.
posted by caddis at 4:10 PM on August 6, 2006


I never thought that Americans torturing Iraqis was a good idea, these photos are concrete evidence I was right all along.

Torture bad, OK? Did anyone not get that memo?
posted by Meatbomb at 4:39 PM on August 6, 2006


The Republican Party?
posted by Artw at 4:53 PM on August 6, 2006


Broadly speaking, porn actresses aren't actually imprisoned.
posted by riotgrrl69 at 5:01 PM on August 6, 2006


Michelle - look for the pics/video of the prisoner who was mauled by a German shepard. Then reconsider your statement.
posted by Smart Dalek at 5:18 PM on August 6, 2006


As a prisoner tortured and photographed pornographically at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq explained, “We are men. It’s okay if they beat me….But no one would want their manhood to be shattered. They wanted us to feel as though we were women, the way women feel, and this is the worst insult, to feel like a woman.” (Source: Anne Kingston, “Porn of Another Kind: To Sexually Humiliate Someone Is to Destroy His Sense of Self,” National Post (Ontario), May 11, 2004.)
posted by Michelle_hermosabeach at 5:23 PM on August 6, 2006


My choice was made for me after reading todays LA Times feature story documenting the heinous crimes of soldiers during Vietnam. Those abuses went unprosecuted and hidden from public view for the past forty years.

The LA Times article is excellent, though unsurprisingly disturbing. Thanks for that link.
posted by homunculus at 5:41 PM on August 6, 2006


The Abu Ghraib photos are considered atrocities but they are no different than what is done to women in the pornography industry. Except when it's done to women, people call it "harmless entertainment".

Please stop trolling. [meta]
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:03 PM on August 6, 2006


Michelle_hermosabeach:

The Abu Ghraib photos are considered atrocities but they are no different than what is done to women in the pornography industry. Except when it's done to women, people call it "harmless entertainment".

Two points:

1. Your claim is absurd: I'm not sure what kind of porn you watch that involves electrocution, beating, and harrasment by dogs. The vast majority does not at all.

2. Even supposing an aberrant case where similarities did exist, there is the difference of *consent,* which is precisely the difference between sex and rape. From what I know, BDSM culture is not forced at gunpoint. Should I outlaw it, create anti-sodomy laws and morals codes, because what people might choose to do in the bedroom resembles an Abu Ghraib photograph?
posted by kid ichorous at 6:20 PM on August 6, 2006


I went to UC Santa Cruz, which was thick with the likes of Michelle. One weekend they showed their true colors and burned a pile of Playboy and Penthouse magazines in front of a bookstore. And then they wonder where lumps like Rush Limbaugh get their ammo for the "feminazi" label. (Before flaming me, please note that I loathe Rush and have no problem at all with my wife making more money than I do.)
posted by telstar at 7:56 PM on August 6, 2006


"no different than what is done to women in the pornography industry"
      -- Michelle_hermosabeach

I will note this as a wonderful example of a person who has absolutely no perspective and lives in a serious fantasy world.
posted by Kickstart70 at 8:49 PM on August 6, 2006


Michelle_hermosabeach writes "We are men. It’s okay if they beat me….But no one would want their manhood to be shattered. They wanted us to feel as though we were women, the way women feel, and this is the worst insult, to feel like a woman."

I'd be interested in seeing that article in its entirety, but I haven't been able to find it online. Is it available?

I imagine that the context--that this is in the Arab world, where women are viewed differently than they are in the West--is relevant. Drawing allusions to Western porn is silly.
posted by needs more cowbell at 9:11 PM on August 6, 2006


I imagine that the context--that this is in the Arab world, where women are viewed differently than they are in the West--is relevant. Drawing allusions to Western porn is silly.

My thoughts exactly, this strikes me less as indictment of the porn industry, and instead an indictment of the Arab world's views of women.
posted by Jezztek at 10:39 PM on August 6, 2006



"I'd be interested in seeing that article in its entirety, but I haven't been able to find it online. Is it available?"


Then try this one from the Guardian:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1222354,00.html

The other article is being cited in academic bibliographies. Try Lexis/Nexis, if you have a subscription.

My favorite quote from the Guardian article:

"Lara Roxx is 18, and arrived in California's San Fernando Valley, the capital of the US porn industry, only days before she contracted HIV. She had moved down from Canada with the aim of making quick money. She was infected while being penetrated anally by two men, simultaneously, neither of whom was wearing a condom. This act is the vogue in pornography today: condoms are rarely used, and the double penetration of a single orifice, whatever the physical consequences or limitations, is seen as hot."

"Roxx's interview with Adult Video News itself shows the fluidity of "consent" in these matters. "I told [my manager] I wasn't interested in anal at all, and I was a little freaky about the no-condom thing too," she said. On arriving at the film shoot, she was pressured into performing the "double anal" scene by the director, Marc Anthony. She says: "So I get there and Marc Anthony tells me it's a DA, which stands for double anal. And I'm like, 'What? I've never done a double anal'. And he was like, 'Well, that's what we need. It's either that or nothing'. And that's how they do it... I think that sucks, because he knew double anal was dangerous." Later, she says, she was in pain and could not sit down."

So much for all the moronic posts hear talking about mutual consent! Haha!!
posted by Michelle_hermosabeach at 11:36 PM on August 6, 2006


And diss me all you want for accidently misspelling "here". It's late in the evening in California and, unlike many of you critics, I lead a very busy life. Good night.
posted by Michelle_hermosabeach at 11:42 PM on August 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


Where are the Americans standing up and protesting against this, to say it is wrong? Where are the MeFi war supporters to speak out against this?

Not that I expect them to, or even think it's somethign they need to do, but those same folks who are utterly silent about this are the ones asking where are the muslims making statements when some atrocity happens over there.
posted by cell divide at 11:50 PM on August 6, 2006


I think you missed my point: what you quoted was about men describing how being made to feel like a woman is the ultimate degrading experience. That's pretty intriguing and deserves some context. I don't think that's really about porn, but I don't know.

The Guardian article seems to be a wholesale bashing of the porn industry under the guise of discussing Abu Ghraib. I'm not really into that, thanks. And the "It's either that or nothing" choice offered to the porn star you mention? Yeah, that's exactly
the choice that people at Abu Ghraib didn't have.

I'm female, if it matters.
posted by needs more cowbell at 12:15 AM on August 7, 2006


Michelle_hermosabeach is a troll, let's stop feeding him or her.
posted by nlindstrom at 12:26 AM on August 7, 2006


As the Physicians for Human Rights reported last year (and has been detailed in many places), "techniques of psychological torture used have included sensory deprivation, isolation, sleep deprivation, forced nudity, the use of military working dogs to instill fear, cultural and sexual humiliation, mock executions, and the threat of violence or death toward detainees or their loved ones."

I imagine that the use of sexual humiliation draws on ... the (here, Western) abuser's view of what sexual actions will humiliate the (Iraqi) detainee, the (here, Iraqi) detainee's views and experiences of what is sexually humiliating, all of which is complicated and connected to various depressing issues of gender and culture and violence. I'm sure it will and should be examined.

At the same time, it seems impossible and strange to separate out the sexual humiliation from the entire regime of psychological and physical torture at Abu Ghraib (although lots of media really focused on the sexual humiliation aspects). It is hard to imagine that many detainees at Abu Ghraib (or at Guantanamo) would "rank" one aspect of their psychological torture over other aspects of torture, the quote provided above notwithstanding. I imagine that the different aspects of psychological torture combine, making the whole far more gruesome and traumatic than the individual parts. E.g. extended isolation combined with sexual humiliation or threats of execution would make each aspect harder to bear. (A recent cover story in New York magazine highlighted the devastating impact of isolation upon Guantanamo detainees as well as other bad treatment including humiliation.)

Then again (is this my third hand?), the Abu Ghraib abusers seemed particularly committed to the sexual humiliation technique.

I don't find the reference to the abusive treatment of a young woman starting out in the porn industry in California to be helpful to thinking about Abu Ghraib. I mean, I suppose (generously) both topics include bad treatment of one or more humans with less control by one or more other humans with more control, and the possibility of reference to sexual matters/norms/abuse/violence, but it that's our umbrella there's little reason for discussion topics.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 12:35 AM on August 7, 2006


"But Marc Anthony was playing that, and I think that really sucks, because I’m mad at the friend I thought I had in Marc, because he knew double anal was dangerous. I knew it too, really, probably, but I was just putting it way back in my mind because I was down in California to make the maximum amount of money, to come back home wealthy. I had plans for the money.”

Seems like mutual consent to me. She knew better but agreed to do it anyway gambling the pay versus her health. She wasn’t held down and forced. The decision to walk away of her own free will was always there. The same can not be said of the prisoners in Iraq.
posted by Tenuki at 1:13 AM on August 7, 2006


Michelle, thanks for your post. In this crazy, topsy-turvy world, sometimes it feels like everyone is insane. However, glimpse into the mind of someone who is truly confused makes me take a step back and realize that most people aren't totally insane, just you.
posted by snofoam at 5:00 AM on August 7, 2006


Still thoroughly pisses me off. And I want that. I don’t want this to scab over.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:07 PM on August 7, 2006


Remember, remember, the - oooh, shiny!
posted by anthill at 9:45 AM on August 8, 2006


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