Wednesday, May 11, 2005
The Abusers at Abu Ghraib
You have read about them, seen them on TV and wondered about them---the central characters in the prison scandal whose faces first became familiar from the images that they themselves created. Images that shook the world and made us feel ashamed and revolted.
Who are they? What made them do what they did?
As the facts come out and more is known about them it becomes evident that there is little explanation. We just have to accept the fact that there are such people in the army and elsewhere. Given the opportunity the sadistic tendencies, the dormant brutality lurking in them, come out and Abu Ghraib happens. Other facts,too, become obvious. Failure of higher ranks to maintain discipline and permitting a climate of "anything goes". There was tacit support; they looked the other way. Conditions in Abu Ghraib Prison gave the slimy creatures the opportunity and they had a blast. One detects not the slightest display of remorse from any of them. They gloated in the images from Abu Ghraib; you see them gloating now. Scary, these sons and daughters of our society.
Guantanamo was different. There the abusive interrogation practices were in accordance with official policy! Those involved followed orders.
NY Times-Kate Zernike