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Think the army won't turn on it's citizens?

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posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 01:57 AM
I think this will change your mind?

1st Case Study

In the 1970's, a group of social scientists at Stanford University, decided to create a mock prison in the basement of the psychology building. They took a 35 foot section of corridor and created a cell block with a prefabricated
wall. Three small, six by nine cells were created and given steel-barred, black painted doors. A closet was turned into a solitary confinement cell. The group then advertised in the local papers for volunteers, men who
would agree to participate in the experiment. 75 people applied, and from those 21 were picked, who appeared the most normal. Half of the group was chosen at random, to be guards, and were given uniforms and dark glasses and told that their responsibility was to keep order in the prison. The other half were told that they would be prisoners.

They got the Palo Alto Police Dept. to "arrest" the prisoners in their homes, cuff them, and bring them to the station house, charge them with a crime, fingerprint them, then blindfold them and bring them to the prison in the
basement. They were stripped and then given a prison uniform to wear, and a number that was to serve as their only means of identification. The biggest question was, how much influence does immediate environment have on the way people behave.

The guards, some of which whom had previously identified themselves as pacifists, fell quickly into the role of hard-bitten disciplinarians. The first night they woke up the prisoners at two in the morning and made them do
push ups, line up against the wall, and perform other arbitrary tasks. On the morning of the second day, the prisoners rebelled. They ripped of their numbers and barricaded themselves in their cells. The guards responded
by stripping them, spraying them with fire extinguishers, and throwing the leader of the rebellion into solitary confinement. "There were times when we were pretty abusive, getting right in their faces and yelling at them," one
guard remembers. "It was part of the whole atmosphere of terror." As the experiment progressed, the guards got systematically crueler and more sadistic. Numerous other atrocities happened and the study was immediately ended.

2nd Case Study

A few years ago, two Princeton University psychologists, decided to conduct a study inspired by the biblical story of the Good Samaritan. As you may recall, the story, from the New Testament Gospel of Luke, tells of a traveler
who has been beaten and robbed and left for dead. Both a priest and a Levite came by the man and did not stop but rather went to the other side of the road. The only man to help him was a Samaritan.

The researchers met with a group of seminarians, individually, and asked to prepare a short, extemporaneous talk on a given biblical theme, then walk over to a nearby building to present it. Along the way to the presentation,
each student ran into a man slumped in an alley, head down, eyes closed, coughing and groaning. The question was, who would stop and help them?

The instructions given by the experimenters to each student varied. In some cases, as he sent the students on their way, the experimenter would look at his watch and say, "Oh, you're late. They were expecting you a few minutes ago. We'd better get moving." In other cases he would say, "It will be a few minutes before they're ready for you, but you might as well head over now."
The group that was rushed only 10 percent stopped. The other group 63 percent stopped.


In the first case study, we see that normal people, can turn violent because there are specific situations so powerful that they can overwhelm our inherent predispositions. The key word here is situation. Not about
environment, but the major external influences on our lives. There are certain times and places and conditions when much of our normal being can be swept away, there are instances where you can take normal people from good schools and happy families and powerfully affect their behavior by changing the immediate details of their situation.

I just don't like the argument, in which people will say, these are their neighbors or friends. These two study's alone, even hundreds more will suggest that people will turn on their own just by changing a situation.


"Interpersonal Dynamics in a Simulated Prison," International Journal of Criminology and Penology (1973), no. I, p. 73.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (1973), vol. 27, pp. 100-119.

[edit on 26-12-2008 by jhill76]

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 02:05 AM

I have to agree. Situation is always what dictates how a person will react. I have a few neighbors who I would turn against in a heartbeat given the opportunity. Unfortunately, they would most likely do the same to me if they had the opportunity. Furthermore, I believe troops would not be placed in their home state. Makes it more difficult to see the people in front of them as friends and neighbors.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 02:19 AM
Good thread but I don't find connection between the case studies and American soldiers turning on the public.I know that certain types of people are prone to instabillity when introduced to power however what we are talking about here(soldiers shooting civillians) is a bit if not drastically diferant, this is how: Scenario 1, Soldier is of American desent and upbringing, he has always lived by the values and morals taught by other Americans as well as always been surrounded by fellow Americans his whole life.As a American soldier he is surrounded by other American soldiers from simmiler origions. If said soldier were to recieve orders to shoot or kill others like him that would most certainly cause conflict not only emotional by physical as well. also the majority of his peers would be in this conflict thus causing a search for comfort (the need to be as others) when one refused the orders the rest would fall like dominoes. Scenario 2: A soldier in the U.S Army from Puerto Ricco, lived in the stateside U.S for 15 years before enlisting, is as stated above "surrounded by other Americans" (need to belong) given orders to shoot civillians would damage this example by attacking his basic human need to belong and be with others he is like in this case American, as he would no doubt not want to known among the ranks as the (exploitive deleted) who kills Americans, point being this whole scenario of the martial law "doomsday" makes no sence to me one's "neighbor" will not just one day decide that he will kill others if ordered it's more complicated then that I know but again makes no sence,IE: little johnnie and his platoon gunning down the local feed stores "regulars" because the gov deems them subversive, no way Imo.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 02:23 AM

Originally posted by jam321

Makes it more difficult to see the people in front of them as friends and neighbors.

Same type of people just differant faces! same clothes, shoes, cars, houses, stores, everything just diferant faces that is why the soldiers in vietnam were able to kill without mercey (some not all) women and childres because they bore no resemblence to the people the soldiers knew none whatsoever.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 02:28 AM
reply to post by alyosha1981

I see your point, but I guess I don't mean shooting civilians at will. But, I very will think it could come to that. If you see a civilian shooting at you, you really don't have a choice, American or not.

My point is that change a persons situation, and the worse will come out of them. Come home from Iraq and see your home in turmoil, you are going to change instantly.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 02:50 AM
Its easy to say you wont rob,hurt, or kill for food when you have a full stomache and plenty of food in your kitchen. Its easy to say you would never harm another human being when your safe at home with the police patroling your neighborhood. I always hear people say they will never do certain things, but thats usually because they have never been in a situation that would call for such behavior. Lets not forget people, that we humans are really animals, we just wear clothes.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 02:51 AM

Originally posted by jhill76
reply to post by alyosha1981

I see your point, but I guess I don't mean shooting civilians at will. But, I very will think it could come to that. If you see a civilian shooting at you, you really don't have a choice, American or not.

Agreed, one's will for self preservation is a strong one!

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 03:01 AM
reply to post by alyosha1981

If you have something to say, and as much as you had to it out please...i stopped reading not even halfway through of what u said, no mater how interesting it sounded.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 03:20 AM
reply to post by Hellsing

Sorry I'm at work most of the time I post on here so sometimes I have to do it quickly between other tasks, but thanks for the critique

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 03:26 AM
I don't see a connection. I really don't. And the samaritan one just seems irrelevant in the context of the thread title. I'm sorry if you see otherwise, but we're trained to help the injured. As for shooting civilians? You would need to blame the idiots who create the divide in the first place. The military doesn't need to shoot their own civilians. They [civilians] do a good enough job anyways.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 03:40 AM

Originally posted by joe_dirt976
I don't see a connection. I really don't.

And people wonder why the elites keep winning.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 04:19 AM
Of course they'd turn on American Citizens hell the American Miltary hasn't won a Conflict/War since WW2 which to me means that the Military leaders & regular enlisted people aren't fit to even fight the Hiyakawa Indians from F. Troop. So why not make a show of power to the folks that would least expect it, that way at least in their minds they would be a Military Force to be reckoned with.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 04:41 AM
reply to post by jhill76

Excellent thread
As soon as I saw the title, I thought of the Zimbardo Experiment. Good call.

I don't subscribe to the idea of the military turning aginst it's civilians. Agreed, there are examples around the world from time to time. I strongly believe that the conditions are totally different here. Still, I like your idea and think the notorious Milgram experiments add to your ideas. You'll certainly find them intriguing, if you don't already know of them.

Under the Milgram study, people were proven to respond to an authority figure against all their moral values. Some that took part exhibited compliance so extreme that they 'in effect' electrocuted people to death simply because they were told to. A very small minority refused to do as they were told. When I studied this at University, we were told that such a study would never be allowed again due to the ethics. Never say never!

In 2007 Professor Burger PhD, replicated the study and showed that people are just people. His recent study repeated the findings. Most of us will elctrocute a stranger if an authority figure directs us.

You can see where a human tendency towards compliance would be useful if a military was directed against it's own civilians.

[edit on 26-12-2008 by Kandinsky]

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 04:46 AM

Originally posted by smokehouseslim
Of course they'd turn on American Citizens hell the American Miltary hasn't won a Conflict/War since WW2

Do you really believe this or were you just trying to stir up a comments frenzy? Does Desert Storm ring any bells? please

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 05:18 AM
Then there's also The Lucifer Effect.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 05:22 AM
i think the army is working for the jba. i could be wrong about the whole national security policy and so fourth but i dont know seems kind of tricky all that al-queda running around.

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 05:36 AM

Originally posted by John Browns Army
i think the army is working for the jba. i could be wrong about the whole national security policy and so fourth but i dont know seems kind of tricky all that "al-queda" running around.


posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 08:04 AM
reply to post by jhill76

Here are two more case studies you might want to look into:

1. The Milgram Experiment
A famous experiment where the majority of the participants would've shock a fellow human being to death if told to do so by a person of authority. (any first year psychology textbook usually includes this experiment)

2.The Third Wave
High School teacher Ron Jones demonstrated that within 4 days regular American high school kids could be turned into something much akin to Nazi Germany. Unfortunately, the experiment was not well documented.

Sorry Kandinsky, just read your post.

[edit on 26/12/08 by ConspiracyNut23]

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 08:37 AM
All it takes is a little, very little, searching through our own history to find out just what our own will do to us if ordered.
Examples like the WWI Vets in D.C. during the Depression, The National Gaurd murdering striking mine workers (Rednecks) in Colorado, I believe or the Kent State incident are merely the tip of the iceberg.
Young men and women have time and again been used to attack their own. I believe that this is one reason that our forefathers were against "standing armies". This was the reason behind Posse Comatades [spelling].

posted on Dec, 26 2008 @ 08:59 AM
I am sure that there were some good soldiers in Nazi Germany as well...but the culture of being a "good soldier" means obeying orders. The question is at what point will good soldiers question immoral orders...the answer is that very on the lower rungs of authority will not but that it can come from higher levels (as it was in Operation Valkyrie).

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