A related fact from the same programme. UK and Australian troops in Iraq and Afghanistan are not handing suspects over to the Americans, for fear of their mistreatment.
The ex-SAS soldier on the programme supplied the key. "The Americans have not made the transition from war-fighting to counter-insurgency." he said.
There seem to be a few more elements to add to the mix. The honour culture of the American South, from where so many recruits are drawn, which can flip instantly from warmth to a lethal response if the subject feels 'dissed'. I guess seeing your buddies blown up would count. Also a kind of US parochialism mixed in with naive patriotism and a deep sense of American superiority over all other cultures.
And then there are the usual factors in the Sunni north:
- social distance between the troops and the locals
- lack of a shared culture and language
- dissimilar appearance and dress
- the lethal insurgents are indistinguishable from the 'civilians'.