Tough Interrogation Tactics Were Opposed

Despite their approval by Sec’y of Defense Rumsfeld and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, there was opposition within the ranks to aggressive interrrogation techniques;…otherwise known as torture, of course. Members of a Defense Dept. investigative taskforce were told by their commanders and attorneys not to participate. Declassified memos and emails show that they joined the FBI in reporting allegations of prisoner abuse.

This Washington Post investigative piece by Josh White assembles other evidence of pushback against the institutionalized encouragement of prisoner abuse. As an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, which obtained the documents in a lawsuit, noted,

“This just confirms that the policies that were adopted at Guantanamo were adopted as a matter of policy and over significant objections, not just within the FBI but within units of the Army. It calls into question the adequacy of the investigations the military undertook. It underscores that high-ranking officers were responsible for the abusive techniques that were put in place.”

It makes a mockery of Rumsfeld’s baldfaced denials that high-level policy condoned or encouraged prisoner abuse and of the scapegoating of lower level military personnel being disciplined for the perpetration of these acts. Isn’t it interesting that Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller, who was both in charge of the Guantanamo Bay mission and then traveled to Iraq to help establish Abu Ghraib prison, this week invoked his right against self-incrimination when he testified in abuse cases brought against two low-ranking soldiers? and that his application for retirement has been accepted by the Pentagon without prejudice?

Throughout the criminal and immoral invasion and occupation of Iraq, I have tried to post items here encouraging conscientious objection and resistance to the Bush regime’s policies from within the military. I think webloggers of like mind should be conspicuously publicizing such opposition as is reported on in this WaPo piece. Since the Vietnam era, when significant numbers of (conscripted) military personnel rejected complicity in the American crimes against the Vietnamese people, the climate of disssent has eroded to the point where awareness of the possibility of such acts of conscience is much more effectively suppressed. We should do what we can to counter that. See also my note on the passing of My Lai massacre whistleblower Hugh Thompson last week.

You and Me and Baby Makes…

…300 Million or So: “If the experts are right, some time this month, perhaps somewhere in the suburban South or West, a couple, most likely white Anglo-Saxon Protestants or Hispanic, will conceive a baby who, when born in October, will become the 300 millionth American.” (New York Times )

"Condoleezza Rice’s anti-Russian stance based on sexual problems"

Condoleezza Rice’s anti-Russian stance based on sexual problems: “The US Secretary of State released a coarse anti-Russian statement. This is because she is a single woman who has no children.

“…Complex-prone women are especially dangerous. They are like malicious mothers-in-law, women that evoke hatred and irritation with everyone. Everybody tries to part with such women as soon as possible. A mother-in-law is better than a single and childless political persona, though.

“This is really scary. Ms. Rice’s personal complexes affect the entire field of international politics. This is an irritating factor for everyone, especially for the East and the Islamic world. When they look at her, they go mad.

“Condoleezza Rice needs a company of soldiers. She needs to be taken to barracks where she would be satisfied.” ” — Vladimir Zhirinovsky, leader of the Liberal and Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR)

(Pravda via Wonkette)