Reports are surfacing of photos showing Iraqi prisoner abuse by US troops.
If this is true, then the guys who did it need to be punished severely, and the officers who should have prevented this should be tossed in jail, not just forced into retirement with a letter of reprimand. If General Karpinski’s culpable, nail her too. Don’t tell me that the guards never heard of the Geneva Conventions, or my BS-o-meter will peg out at 100%.
An investigation’s been brewing since January, but there had better not be a late and hasty whitewash on this one now that somebody finally lifted up the flat slimy rock it’s been hidden under. This is one retired officer who isn’t afraid to raise an unholy stink if the Army scapegoats the enlisted troops and gives the officers a slap on the wrist.
This little blurb from the UK Daily Mail (transcribed by Drudge) really frosted my giblets:
CBS executives received an appeal from the chairman of the military Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Richard Myers, two weeks ago to hold the story because of the dangers of a backlash against soldiers in Iraq from outraged insurgents.
If CBS is being up-front here, then shame on you, General Myers. If you failed to drop the hammer on the wrongdoers by mid-April in an explosive and obviously critical investigation that started in January, then it’s your fault if the enemy’s spine stiffens with the news of our inexcusable behavior.
How in God’s name is the Arab world going to believe our claims to occupy the moral high ground when our troops do inexcusable things like this, and the brass sits idly by?
UPDATE: The reports say the abuses happened in Abu Ghraib Prison, which Saddam used as one of his main torture facilities. Why is Abu Graib still standing, much less being used by American troops to hold Iraqis? Our using it now is about on a par with using Buchenwald as a prison for Germans after WWII (thank God we didn’t). I can almost hear the REMF brass talking it over after Baghdad fell: “Hmm, Abu Ghraib’s nice and convenient and ready to go … shame to let it go to waste.” This mess doesn’t pass the sniff test, folks.
UPDATE 2: The Taguba Report on the criminal investigation at Abu Ghraib is now available.
UPDATE 3: Islamists have beheaded American hostage Nick Berg, and claim it’s retaliation for Iraqi prisoner abuse in Abu Ghraib. I’m not buying it.