00:40 GMT01 December 2020
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    US military camps in Afghanistan have disturbingly low standards of personal conduct and discipline, and there is a widespread tendency in all levels of the chain of command to cover up military atrocities, Dr. David Gibbs from the University of Arizona told Radio Sputnik.

    Since the US military is very sensitive to its public image and doesn't want to let the public know about how things really are in many of its bases, there is a tendency among officers to cover up atrocities and acts of personal misconduct.

    "They [military atrocities] are certainly much more common than we hear about them," Dr. Gibbs told Radio Sputnik, adding that cover-ups are often done by smaller military units themselves to avoid getting in trouble.

    At the same time, military officers at a higher level don't really bother investigating incidents since exposing potential crimes could then affect the entire military chain.

    Poor discipline and substance abuse have also become a plague for many military units stationed in hot sports, like Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Soldier who are in difficult situations every day engage in substance abuse to cope with their surroundings, Dr. Gibbs said.

    "I think substance abuse, alcohol abuse, mental illness — these are very natural outcomes of war, unfortunately."

    Infamous US Army Staff Sergeant Robert Bales, who killed 16 civilians in the Afghan province of Kandahar, was drinking alcohol on the night of the massacre, violating rules of the combat zones.


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    radio, military atrocities, David Gibbs, Robert Bales, Iraq, Afghanistan, US
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