Why Target Civilians?

You would think if you were having a war, your top priority would be to destroy your enemy’s capability to fight you back. This would help you win the war as fast as possible at minimum expense and loss of your troops. You would do things like blow up munitions plants, railways, pipelines, aircraft, factories and barracks. You might temper your destruction of something like a hydro electric plant on the grounds it would be too expensive to rebuild once you won the war. There would be no point in killing children, women or old people. But what do we see in actual wars? targeting civilians of all ages and sexes, torturing people, killing people with weapons designed to make people die slowly and painfully, rape, blowing up sewage systems so children die of disease… These labour-intensive activities are peripheral to winning the war and seemingly a waste of time and resources. Why then are they universal? One reason is soldiers demand them as perks. Soldiers are sadists and they demand the right to make people suffer up close and personal so the suffering can be relished. It is much the way rape and looting were standard perks for soldiers in ancient times. It is interesting to note that our closest cousins, the chimpanzees are also intelligently inventive in creating ways to torture.

~ Roedy (1948-02-04 age:69)