Today German tabloid Bild published photos that they claim were taken in 2003, of some German soldiers in Afghanistan clowning around with a human skull.
The photos are pretty typical of what we in America are no longer so surprised to see from our soldiers in the War on Terror: shots of a soldier posing with the skull, positioning the skull as the hood ornament of their Jeep. One creative soldier, in a reversal of the pointing at the prisoner's penis pose that Lynndie England made famous, took out his own penis and photographed it next to the skull.
Here's the Bild article in German and translated.
Defense Minister Franz Josef Jung said, "These pictures revolt and mystify me. It is clear that such behavior cannot be tolerated from German soldiers. It runs counter to the values and codes of conduct we try to instill in our soldiers."
Posing for pictures with a skull that military sources say may have come from a mass grave is certainly not as bad as posing with actual live, tortured prisoners, like some U.S. soldiers did. The German pictures probably are revolting, as the Minister says, but after Abu Ghraib, how mystifying can they really be? "We must investigate exactly how such degeneration and misbehaviour can happen despite good training and good supervision," said Bernhard Gertz, who represents German troops.
Bernhard: this behavior happens because of the training, the supervision, and the entire approach that our countries have taken to this war.