One thing in war that I’ve always found to be hypocritical and even sometimes amusing is when an army bombs a target with the intent of eliminating (assassinating) that target and then attempting to save that person’s life after the raid.
Such was the case in the Abu Musab al-Zarqawi hit last week in a raid in Iraq. He was responsible for many bombing attacks with high civilian casualties and he was also responsible for beheadings that took place in Iraq over the last few years on US civilians. The US Army wanted this man dead. They were hoping to get him sooner, but he pulled off some spectacular disappearing acts and manage to evade the US Army for a very long time.
According to reports, after the bombing, US medics treated al-Zarqawi but he died 28 minutes later from massive internal injuries.
I think it is funny how there’s this war “etiquette” where you try to save somebody’s life after deliberately attempting to murder the person. In less civilized warfare, this would not have been the etiquette. If a high profile target survived a bomb raid and was in the hands of Joseph Stalin or Adolf Hitler, he surely would have been executed or tortured.
It’s interesting how war can still have its own level of morals and decency, even though the very nature of war is usually so morally unjustified. I guess in order to feel like you have morals in war you need to convince yourself that what you’re doing is in the long run going to do some sort of good for mankind. Some wars are easier than others to convince yourself of this. Most soldiers in Iraq only need to remember 9/11 to justify their actions. This was ingrained in their minds right from day 1, and no matter how much evidence there is to prove the lies, people will still associate Iraq with 9/11, and this will always be used in their own minds to morally justify their actions.