We all know that in the news world, “man bites dog” gets the front page, while “dog bites man” is ignored. In a twisted way, then, one could say that the wall-to-wall Abu Ghraib coverage reflected the media’s horror that the American military had morphed from honor to dishonor. (Or we could be realistic and say that the MSM adores anything that puts the military in a bad light.)
Given the impression that Abu Ghraib created of S&M prison conditions for Iraqis detained by the US, the current “man bites dog” story should be this one, from Max Boot, about the extraordinary success the American military in Iraq has had with the current batch of detainees. Part of the success stems from changed conditions on the ground, but a significant part stems from changed conditions within the prison. Given the airtime Abu Ghraib got, and the way it shaped perceptions about American prisons in Iraq, this should be a news story — but what do you bet that it won’t be? Don’t bother to answer. That was a rhetorical question.
As for me, I salute our American military for learning from its mistakes, and for being creative, innovative and flexible.