May 06, 2004


Here's what you can expect to see all over the nightly news this evening: More pictures from Abu Ghraib. If your stomach is strong enough, you can click on the "More photos" link at the right sidebar within that article.

Mixed in with more than 1,000 digital pictures obtained by The Washington Post are photographs of naked men, apparently prisoners, sprawled on top of one another while soldiers stand around them. There is another photograph of a naked man with a dark hood over his head, handcuffed to a cell door. And another of a naked man handcuffed to a bunk bed, his arms splayed so wide that his back is arched. A pair of women's underwear covers his head and face.

The graphic images, passed around among military police who served at the Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad, are a new batch of photographs similar to those broadcast a week ago on CBS's "60 Minutes II" and published by the New Yorker magazine. They appear to provide further visual evidence of the chaos and unprofessionalism at the prison detailed in a report by Army Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba. His report, which relied in part on the photographs, found "numerous incidents of sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses" that were inflicted on detainees.

Here's the full text of the Taguba report.

Here are pertinent references to military doctrine and to news stories about this disaster.

I'm not so naive as to think that Americans "don't do this sort of thing." But I really have to wonder just what sort of command structure would allow this to go on. Taguba's report is from January. It is now May. Taguba is a Major General; he doesn't report to some colonel at the staff level. It should have gone to Myers, to Kimmit, and to Sanchez among the uniforms, and to Rumsfeld himself among the civilians. So why was nothing done until the press got hold of it?

People at the top need to be fired, although even that may not be enough. I suspect that these photos have created a whole new batch of terrorists al-Qaeda will be quite happy to recruit.

Posted by Linkmeister at May 6, 2004 12:01 AM

I suspect you're right (correct).

Posted by: shelley at May 6, 2004 04:16 AM

I'm thinking that the people who did this should be treated/tried as war criminals. Then again, military trials are fairly harsh. But I'm hoping the media will be diligent in covering all of this.

Have you heard what Limbaugh supposedly said about this? He compared it to frat hazing.

Have I mentioned that all of this literally makes me want to vomit?

Posted by: batty at May 6, 2004 12:25 PM

Don't feel alone, Batty.

And yes, I did read what Limbaugh had to say. The trouble is, he's got 20 million people listening to him when he spews that kind of idiocy.

I hope the Air America people can continue to expand their audience.

Posted by: Linkmeister at May 6, 2004 12:46 PM