Inconvenient News,
       by smintheus

Saturday, May 06, 2006

  A bunch of sensationalist liars

Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, who was named in a government document released last week by the ACLU, has fired back in a most impressive way. As I described on Wednesday, the document comes from an investigation of prisoner abuse conducted by the Defense Intelligence Agency. In its press release about this text, which accompanied the publication of dozens of related documents, the ACLU had the temerity to describe the actual contents of the DIA text.

Among the documents released today by the ACLU is a May 19, 2004 Defense Intelligence Agency document implicating Sanchez in potentially abusive interrogation techniques. In the document, an officer in charge of a team of interrogators stated that there was a 35-page order spelling out the rules of engagement that interrogators were supposed to follow, and that they were encouraged to "go to the outer limits to get information from the detainees by people who wanted the information." When asked to whom the officer was referring, the officer answered "LTG Sanchez." The officer stated that the expectation coming from "Headquarters" was to break the detainees.


That did not sit well with Lt. Gen. Sanchez, who defended his honor in an interview with Joseph Galloway of Knight Ridder.

Sanchez said the ACLU "is a bunch of sensationalist liars, I mean lawyers, that will distort any and all information that they get to draw attention to their positions."


Now that was a revealing statement. Are we meant to believe it was a mere slip of the tongue? Or does the General believe it's the duty of men in uniform to belittle those who investigate the torture that was committed on his watch? And how did that occur in the first place, under an officer who is so quick to criticize perceived wrongdoing?

[Sanchez said] "Every document and discussion that was held in Iraq about interrogations highlighted the fact that we were bound by the Conventions." ...

So how did it all go terribly wrong when he'd given orders to work within the limits of the Geneva Conventions? Sanchez blamed the military police brigade assigned to guard the prison. ...

Sanchez's description of his instructions, however, leaves many unanswered questions about how harsher interrogation techniques migrated to Abu Ghraib from the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, when the abuse was first discovered and why it wasn't ended and the perpetrators punished immediately.

It also remains unclear whether any higher-ranking military officers or civilian officials at the U.S. Central Command, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Department of the Army, the office of Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld or the White House may have given interrogators greater leeway than Sanchez did.


In other words, more than two years after the news of abuse at Abu Ghraib broke into the open, every significant question about how and why this torture occured remains unanswered. It is good to learn, however, that Gen. Sanchez bears no responsibility himself. That's a good first step, finally, toward discovering who did create the horrific conditions in Iraq while he was in command there.

1 Comments:

  • They are all starting to act like cornered cats, it's alittle unnerving to imagine what they'll do next. Thx for this report.

    By Blogger Man Eegee, at 12:12 AM  

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