Sunday, May 02, 2004

Jason Van Steenwyk writes about the terrible things discovered at Abu Gharaib, which don't involve only low ranking officers, or even only the military. CIA and DIA officers encouraged behaviors they considered 'condusive to interrogation'.

The soldiers involved should see time in Leavenworth. And that's not just the soldiers in the photos. We need to look very hard at whether and which members of the chain of command ought to see prison time, too.

Here's yet another critical idea, obvious in retrospect but occuring to nobody before hand, especially not me. All this time, even those of us who opposed Guantanamo bay indefinite detentions under conditions we didn't want to know about (considered condusive to interrogation) did not speak loudly enough or with enough conviction. How could we answer those who said that some of these people might have information which might help us prevent another terrorist attack? The end result was that those who interrogate prisoners developed the mindset that anything which might do the job was OK. This training eventually leaked into Iraq. I don't know if we can still succeed in Iraq, but this has made it much harder, and made the consequences of failure worse.

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