Bush Admin hides Abu Ghraib images of child rape
“Basically what happened is that those women who were arrested with young boys/children in cases that have been recorded. The boys were sodomized with the cameras rolling. The worst about all of them is the soundtrack of the boys shrieking that your government has. They are in total terror it’s going to come out.”— Journalist Sy Hersh, in a 2004 speech, on rapes of minors by U.S. soldiers caught on camera at Abu Ghraib
The lack of U.S. response to the request by the Human Rights Campaign to condemn Iran for the hanging of two gay teenagers is understandable now, because our government has no moral authority to do so. It really doesn’t look good when we have soldiers on tape raping boys held at Abu Ghraib — and Bush’s Pentagon is hiding the evidence.
An article in Editor and Publisher, Pentagon Blocks Release of Abu Ghraib Images: Here’s Why, Greg Mitchell reports that the Pentagon refused to cooperate yesterday with federal order to release tapes of the rapes and other abuses to the public for political reasons. Guess who filed the FOIA lawsuit to get this released — the ACLU, one of the organizations with a nice thick file (1200+pages) being monitored by Bush’s FBI as a possible terrorist threat (covered here on the Blend last week).
The puzzle pieces are all fitting together nicely aren’t they?
A Republican Senator suggested the same day they contained scenes of “rape and murder.” No wonder Rumsfeld commented then, “If these are released to the public, obviously it’s going to make matters worse.“
…Just a few that were released to the press sparked the Abu Ghraib abuse scandal last year, and the video images are said to be even more shocking.
The Pentagon lawyers said in a letter sent to the federal court in Manhattan that they would file a sealed brief explaining their reasons for not turning over the material. They had been ordered to do so by a federal judge in response to a FOIA lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union. The ACLU accused the government Friday of putting another legal roadblock in the way of its bid to allow the public to see the images of the prisoner abuse scandal.
One Pentagon lawyer has argued that they should not be released because they would only add to the humiliation of the prisoners. But the ACLU has said the faces of the victims can easily be “redacted.”
The first stories about these images and video surfaced back in May 2004 in Sy Hersh‘s The New Yorker, article “Chain of Command”.
In his news conference last Tuesday, Rumsfeld, when asked whether he thought the photographs and stories from Abu Ghraib were a setback for American policy in Iraq, still seemed to be in denial. “Oh, I’m not one for instant history,” he responded. By Friday, however, with some members of Congress and with editorials calling for his resignation, Rumsfeld testified at length before House and Senate committees and apologized for what he said was “fundamentally un-American” wrongdoing at Abu Ghraib. He also warned that more, and even uglier, disclosures were to come. Rumsfeld said that he had not actually looked at any of the Abu Ghraib photographs until some of them appeared in press accounts, and hadn’t reviewed the Army’s copies until the day before. When he did, they were “hard to believe,” he said. “There are other photos that depict . . . acts that can only be described as blatantly sadistic, cruel, and inhuman.” Later, he said, “It’s going to get still more terrible, I’m afraid.” Rumsfeld added, “I failed to recognize how important it was.”
NBC News later quoted U.S. military officials as saying that the unreleased photographs showed American soldiers “severely beating an Iraqi prisoner nearly to death, having sex with a female Iraqi prisoner, and ‘acting inappropriately with a dead body.’ The officials said there also was a videotape, apparently shot by U.S. personnel, showing Iraqi guards raping young boys.”
In all those months that have transpired since Hersh’s report it’s clear that the Pentagon was keenly aware of the PR disaster on its hands — this fragile illusion of competence and compassion (and putting the few soldier patsies away [Graner, England], of course) has kept this illegitimate war afloat. It’s no surprise why the push to renew the Patriot Act and all of its capabilities to attack our civil liberties was needed. The War on Terror has conveniently justified its need to monitor “enemies” that would threaten to expose its lies, like the ACLU. Our country is under attack from within. Bush and his cronies are a cancer on the presidency and a threat to our freedom and it’s happening without a shot being fired.
Thousands dead, thousands maimed. No democracy as we know it in sight as Iraq continues to descend into chaos. Troops honorably serving whose families are on food stamps, and are being pressured to re-up for an additional tour. These same troops are also returning to find that they don’t have adequate access to health care. Their reputations cannot and should not be swept in with the criminal behavior of some of their colleagues. A cover-up hurts everyone — the Pentagon has let everyone in this situation down, and become part of this Administration’s seemingly unendless list of amoral criminal activities.
The President and his chickenhawk, amoral, criminal servants have counted on the sheeple to be pacified, manipulated and completely out of touch with the harsh reality that they are being lied to and played. This has to end.
The Freepi are conflicted about this…we’ve got calls to burn/destroy the videos by some, actual concern that it will hurt the Chimperor by others, and less creatively, finding yet another way to “blame the homos”for the atrocities.
“Dems are at it again.”
“This won’t hurt a bit.”
“I believe there are some lines we should not cross. What the whole story behind some of these incidents is, we’ll probably never know. The ACLU and the democrats have throughly destroyed their ability to be viewed as objective critiques. When we’re talking about terrorism and bombings that may kill anywhere from tens to millions, the gloves are considered off by me and most civilized humans. The terrorists have written the rules for these times. They want to kill indiscriminately, yet be treated by Geneva convention rules. LOL, fat chance. Live like a rabid dog, get treated like a rabid dog. ACLU, democrats… neither of you are fit to judge anyone.”
“If they have video footage of our soldiers committing (or setting up) child rape…I’m gonna be one pissed off American.”
s, gentlemen. W
e should not turn our eyes from that.”
“So what is shown on the 87 photographs and four videos from Abu Ghraib prison that the Pentagon, in an eleventh hour move, blocked from release this weekend?”
“Karl Rove talking to a report from the Ladies Home Journal and revealing a recipe from the CIA cafeteria.”
“I agree that the ACLU and Dems have no credibility….but if Rumsfeld is disgusted by the photos/video and they are legitimate (not faked in anyway), then can we not admit this is a problem…deal with it and fix it?”
“Lets not forget that our own media desperately avoided showing an American getting his head slowly sawed off at the hands of islamderthal scum.”
“Actually, what this article points to is the absolute and total failure of “don’t ask, don’t tell” to properly serve military purposes in a war.”
“If these stories are true, these men and women have done far more than just disgrace their country and their uniform. They should be prosecuted no less vigorously than the likes of John Couey or that POS Duncan.”
“This was Seymour Hersch speaking before the ACLU so he can’t be held responsible for his words (he thinks). Let’s hope it’s not true. Otherwise the Army is allowing homosexual predators into its ranks. Let’s hope the recruiters aren’t that desperate.”
“I can laugh about the panties on the head…but this sounds way more than that….if it’s true. With that said, I don’t know that they are going to do about the photos/videos. I believe in an open society, but releasing these photos would put our soldiers and US citizens in grave danger. I have no answer. Where’s Solomon?”
“Even alleged rape? If these prisoners had anything important or informative to add, they wouldn’t be sitting in Abu Ghraib. I personally think this emphasizes a breakdown in command, not orders on high. War does not give carte blanche to depraved behavior.”
“As far as I’m concerned, this may be one where the President should go to the mat and order them not to be released. This could be harmful to national security right at a critical time in Iraq.”
“It is being dealt with and fixed. This is old news. The quotes are from over a year ago. The only thing this piece is about is whether more pictures go out to the public. Nothing has been shielded from the prosecution of the Abu Ghraib goons. Take a breath, people.”
“This may very well make some of us rethink our stance on what exactly is acceptable in such an environment. If the truth is the truth, we should discuss it as Americans. This is how you avoid being blindsided. Transperancy is the best policy, gentlemen (and ladies).”
“It would only attract more attention. Kind of a Catch-22 if you ask me.”
“Where indeed. Though if it were in my power, these videos and photos would have been used in a closed military tribunal and then destroyed. If the Rumsfield and Graham quotes are accurate, this can’t be shrugged off. But I’m suspicious about Hersh. How could he have seen the videos?”
“The only reason I’m giving this story any consideration is because of Rumsfeld’s comments about the nature of the photos/videos. I may be a fish taking the bait, but is it any worse than an ostrich hiding his head in the sand over bad news?”
“If the images truly are that bad, I think they’d attract a lot more attention than if we simply refused to turn them over. They’d be used as propaganda by the islamo-fascists for years. Abu Ghraib wouldn’t have had nearly the shelf life as a story without those pictures.”
“We can’t put everything under the umbrella of “we are at war.” I may not be the most Gung-Ho of cons out there, but I belive that blind devotion is akin to ignorance and homeland (in)security.”
Hat tip, AmericaBlog