On the 15th of this month, the Australian television station SBS broadcast one of the most awful and horrendous programs I have ever seen. The images aired -- many for the first time anywhere -- were still photographs and raw videos of abuses at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. These were abuses committed by American servicemen and women against suspected terrorists.

We have already seen some of these images, including ones of a heap of naked men taken from the back, a shot of Army Pfc. Lynndie England, now in jail, holding a prostrate suspect on a leash, and that icon of George W. Bush's crusade for freedom and democracy, a man standing on a box with his fingers attached to wires and his head covered by a black hood.

When some of those photographs came to light in May 2004, even the Pentagon admitted they represented the tip of a massive iceberg. It is an iceberg that those people executing the war in the Middle East have managed to keep largely out of sight. Now, thanks to the SBS exclusive on its popular news program "Dateline," hosted by George Negus, some more of this material has entered the public domain. The question is: Will it strike the conscience of America, either now or in the future?