Dehumanization of the Enemy: Explaining Abu Ghraib, Stanford Prison and Nazi Camps Persuasive Essay by scribbler

Dehumanization of the Enemy: Explaining Abu Ghraib, Stanford Prison and Nazi Camps
A paper in three sections on abuses in the Abu Ghraib prison, Zimbardo's Stanford prison study and how cruelty results from dehumanization of the enemy.
# 152202 | 1,665 words | 20 sources | APA | 2013 | US
Published on Jan 13, 2013 in Hot Topics (Terror and 9/11) , Psychology (General) , Holocaust Studies (General)

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In the first section of this paper, the physical, psychological and sexual abuses that took place at Abu Ghraib prison is addressed as well as the Bush Administration's reaction to these behaviors. In the next section of the paper, the author discusses Phillip Zimbardo's Stanford prison study and describes the level of baseness and utter disregard for humanity that the guards exhibited. Finally, in the third section, the paper addresses the inhumane treatments expressed in Zimbardo's experiments, Abu Ghraib and in Nazi concentration camps, and explains how during wartime, it is typical for the political powers to attempt a dehumanization of the enemy and when the "enemy" loses its human characteristics, the morality that would usually make someone reasonable towards their fellow humans disappears too. The paper asserts that recently, dehumanization took place in a world after 9/11 that made it perfectly acceptable to almost every American to slander and even harm anyone of Middle Eastern descent.

From the Paper:

"Beginning in 2004, the American public became aware of a number of physical, psychological, and sexual abuses that had taken place at the Army's Baghdad Correctional Facility, also known as Abu Ghraib Prison. These acts of rape, sodomy, torture, and even homicide were undertaken by members of the 272nd Military Police Company. It was later revealed in the so-called Taguba Report, that a criminal investigation of activities at Abu Ghraib had been underway for over a year and that the authorities in Iraq were utilizing the Uniform Code of Military Justice to deal with the perpetrators (Hersh). However, an April 28, 2004 segment on CBS's 60 Minutes, combined with an April 30, 2004 article in The New Yorker so incensed the public, congress, and military leaders that for a few weeks, events at Abu Ghraib were top priority (Leung). One of the first to be publically punished, the former commander of Abu Ghraib, Janis Karpinski, demoted because of her lack of oversight, told officials that in actuality, she believed that about 90 percent of Abu Ghraib detainees were innocent. What is also interesting is that even though the Army released information about their own investigation, it was not until after the public outcry from the 60 Minutes and New Yorker pieces that anyone in Washington seemed to be interested in the events."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • "Donald Runsfeld Should Go." 7 May 2004. The New York Times. <>.
  • Gardham, D. "Abu Ghraib Abuse Photos "Show Rape"." 2009 27 May. <>.
  • Gellman, B. and J. Becker. "Pushing the Envelope on Presidential Power." 25 June 2007. The Washington Post. <>.
  • Gore, Al. "Remarks on U.S. Foreign Policy." 26 May 2004. MoveOn PAC. <>.
  • Graveline, C. and M. Clemens. The Secrets of Abu Ghraib. Washington, DC: Potomoc Books, 2010.

Cite this Persuasive Essay:

APA Format

Dehumanization of the Enemy: Explaining Abu Ghraib, Stanford Prison and Nazi Camps (2013, January 13) Retrieved November 28, 2023, from

MLA Format

"Dehumanization of the Enemy: Explaining Abu Ghraib, Stanford Prison and Nazi Camps" 13 January 2013. Web. 28 November. 2023. <>