U.S. soldiers took pictures of themselves posing with the mangled remains of suspected Afghan suicide bombers on more than one occasion in 2010, the Los Angeles Times reported on Wednesday.
The LA Times said the U.S. Army had launched an investigation into the incident after the newspaper showed them some of the photos, which it had obtained from a soldier in the division.
The first incident took place in February 2010, when paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division were sent to an Afghan police station in Zabol province to inspect the remains of an alleged suicide bomber.
The soldiers had intended to try to get fingerprints and possibly scan the irises of the corpse, but instead they posed for pictures next to the Afghan police, holding up or squatting beside the remains, the newspaper said.
A few months later, the same platoon went to inspect the remains of three insurgents whom Afghan police said had blown themselves up by accident.
Two soldiers posed holding up one of the dead men's hands with the middle finger raised, while another leaned over the bearded corpse, the newspaper reported.
The LA Times said the military had asked it not to publish the photos for fear of inciting violence, but Times editor Davan Maharaj said that the newspaper had decided to publish a “small but representative selection.”