Saturday, May 29, 2004

WaPo Calls it Like it is: Homicide

Prisoner abuse? I think murder is a more appropriate description. The first and last grafs from an editorial in today's WaPo:

PRESIDENT BUSH'S persistence in describing the abuse of foreign prisoners as an isolated problem at one Iraqi prison is blatantly at odds with the facts seeping out from his administration. These include mounting reports of crimes at detention facilities across Iraq and Afghanistan and evidence that detention policies the president approved helped set the stage for torture and homicide. Yes, homicide: The most glaring omission from the president's account is that at least 37 people have died in U.S. custody in Iraq and Afghanistan -- and that at least 10 of these cases are suspected criminal killings of detainees by U.S. interrogators or soldier


It is horrifying to contemplate that U.S. interrogators have tortured and killed foreign prisoners and that their superiors have ignored or covered up their crimes -- and yet that is where the available facts point. Pentagon officials say they will pursue investigations vigorously and that those guilty of crimes will be brought to justice. It is essential to the preservation of this country's fundamental values that they do so. It is essential also to examine the consequences in the field of policy decisions made by the most senior officials in Washington. But the sorry record of the Bush administration -- and the president's own refusal to speak the truth about it -- suggests that justice will require vigorous and sustained intervention by outside parties, beginning with Congress.

Explicit details in between.

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