Saturday, March 18, 2006
Move Over Abu Ghraib: Second Abuse Scandal Surfaces
The New York Times has an in-depth article detailing another example of prisoner abuse in Iraq. There is so much in this article to hit on, I don’t even know where to begin.

The story of detainee abuse in Iraq is a familiar one. But the following account of Task Force 6-26, based on documents and interviews with more than a dozen people, offers the first detailed description of how the military's most highly trained counterterrorism unit committed serious abuses.

I won’t point out each abuse specifically because there are quite a few charges. I’ll leave that for everyone else to read on their own.

Despite the task force's access to a wide range of intelligence, its raids were often dry holes, yielding little if any intelligence and alienating ordinary Iraqis, Defense Department personnel said. Prisoners deemed no threat to American troops were often driven deep into the Iraqi desert at night and released, sometimes given $100 or more in American money for their trouble.

This is what they were doing to people who were no threat at all (read:innocent). If these people were no threat why were they disposed of in this manner? Throwing innocent prisoners in the middle of the Iraq desert could very well lead to death. I would imagine that these interrogators were not worried about the life of these people, though, so I guess it’s okay.

Senior military commanders insist that the elite warriors, who will be relied on more than ever in the campaign against terrorism, are now treating detainees more humanely and can police themselves. The C.I.A. has resumed conducting debriefings with the task force, but does not permit harsh questioning, a C.I.A. official said.

This statement by military commanders really comes off as a big “Fuck You”.
Excuse me if I do not feel they can police themselves. They have shown that they are very brutal people. People who commit actions like those described in this article will not just stop. There is something mentally wrong with them, so excuse me if I do not believe that they will suddenly get better.
This really undermines any progress that has been made in The War on Terror. When Muslim countries pick up on this piece they will use it to rally Muslims against us, claiming that we are a brutal people who torture their friends and family. You would think that if our government was so concerned about this war they’d stop giving the enemies fuel to start a big fire. It is impossible to look like the good guys to these people when this is what they see.

These abuses were happening after Abu Ghraib, so pardon me when I don’t believe those who say that Abu Ghraib was just a small incident by nutty people and that the problem has been corrected. Obviously it wasn’t corrected then, it wasn’t a small group of nutty people, and I have no reason to think that it isn’t happening now. How is our government going to assure us that this isn’t still taking place? Their word is no longer good enough.
I can’t even begin to describe the disgust I’m feeling. To put it down on this white page would only make it hollow, an almost nonexistent testament to the intensity of the sickness. I’m sure you are all feeling it too, so I’ll just stop here.


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