But many American soldiers are in fact kids fresh out of high school:
U.S. Marine Corps
It's a lot harder to look like the movies when someone isn't buffing up your shoulders in post.
That's what the military prefers; they're at the peak of physical fitness, and they've spent their whole lives following orders at school and home. The only downside is that, like every 19-year-old in history, they're usually not emotionally mature at all. That's how you end up with comrades playing "gay chicken," as Roger, a former marine who fought in Iraq, told us. "Who can do the gayest thing?"
Wouldn't that technically be gay rooster? But whatever. The point is that it's not a game isolated to one eccentric unit. Chuck, a nine-year Marine veteran, went into more detail. "I saw marines being forced to show [their] penis to other marines. Some marines being forced to touch penises. People putting their balls or penis on another person's face."
Shenanigans like that are what you're going to see when you take thousands of hormonal young men, separate them from women, and put them under extreme stress. "In 2004 ... I think I saw three women. And you can only beat off to the same porn DVD so many times ... it's not like we had WiFi in the barracks." Internet porn access wasn't the first priority in the early days of the occupation of Iraq, because the government was busy screwing up other things. So Roger and his comrades had a lot of steam to, uh, blow off. "There [were] some strange f*****g outlets ... when all you want to do is drink and f**k in a dry country where there's no women."
U.S. Dept. Of Defense
Iraq's nightlife fared about as well as its oppressive statues once the bombs started falling.