Sivits' Cops a Plea

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Spc. Jeremy Sivits, the first solider charged in the Abu Ghraib prison scandal, has copped a plea, according to this report.

One of the military police officers charged in the abuse scandal at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison has offered to plead guilty and provided investigators with a detailed account of how guards humiliated and beat detainees.

Spec. Jeremy Sivits, one of the seven members of the 372nd Military Police Company facing charges in the case, told investigators in a sworn statement that other prison guards forced detainees to strip, masturbate and pile on top of one another.

Staff Sgt. Ivan Frederick forced two detainees to punch each other, Sivits told investigators, according to a transcript.

In another instance, he said, Spec. Charles Graner put a sandbag over a detainee's head and "punched the detainee with a closed fist so hard in the temple that the detainee was knocked unconscious."

From this account, it's not clear what charges Sivits has pleaded guilty to. Nor is it clear that, as Pfc. Lynndie England has done in a couple of interviews, implicated higher-ranking soliders for giving orders to abuse the prisoners.

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  1. Don-

    I have a lot more faith in the collection of forensic evidence (including photos of higher level intelligence officers present during the torture) than I do in your analysis of England’s facial expressions.

    Also, the idea that having sex = being a liar is in incredibly stupid one, mainly because one has nothing to do with the other.

    As for vague claims, she (and everyone else save the precious Stivets) have been very consistent in describing their orders from higher ranked military intelligence to “give them hell”, including e-mails from some sent home prior to this investigation becoming public. That story is also consistent with the photo linked above and the presence if MI gearin the photos.

    Finally, you still haven’t explained why THE MOST IMPORTANT cellblock was emptied during the ICRC’s inspection and NO ONE noticed. Those High value detainees who are so important can disappear from their cells for days and no one reports it? Please.

    But hey, you read England’s face like tea leaves all you want.

  2. This crime seems to be much worse than just “sexual humiliation”. In the name of justice, one hopes that it is prosecuted as high up the chain of command as the evidence leads.

  3. Graner, a corrections officer in civilian life, seems to have been the subject of investigations at his day job. No convictions, though.

    http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/tribune-review/trib/fayette/s_193191.html

    Who knows if the domestic abuse charges are righteous or not, either. Those get flung around willy-nilly nowadays, to gain advantage in divorce and custody cases. Put it all together, and it sure doesn’t smell good.

    Kevin

  4. That last punch – the one to the temple – that was for John Derbyshire.

  5. Something stinks here, and it’s not just the scent of people left naked in dark rooms without toilets-

    If this abuse was completely unknown, as Sivit’s said it was, then that raises some questions-

    a)Those soldiers didn’t come to Iraq with hoods (MI has already copped to that). In addition, while Graner is most definitely a sadist, he’s produced some corroboration that he was an ENCOURAGED sadist. Why didn’t MI report the abuse, if it was just these “dirt people” reservists going buck wild?

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4855930/

    b) How did a group of 6-7 rogues hide an ENTIRE wing of prisoners from the ICRC? How did they know the ICRC was coming, and if they didn’t know what they were doing was wrong according to the Geneva Convention, why try to hide it?

    c) Why didn’t the officers accompanying the ICRC notice that an entire cellblock was empty of prisoners during that inspection? If done without their knowledge, the sudden disappearence of ALL “HIGH VALUE” detainees should have elicited some sort of response.

    In short, while England and Graner look like a horrible bitches, I can’t help but think Sivits is a terrible liar.

  6. I suspect that senior officers felt that since the soldiers were correction officers in civilian life they needed less supervision. Makes you wonder about the civilian prisons.

  7. Makes you wonder about the civilian prisons.

    Oh, I don’t know about that. My guess is that prison guards are usually just like the Tom Hanks character in the Green Mile. I think sadists are in the minority among the prison-guard corps — after all, why would sick, sadistic f*cks be attracted to a job like that?

  8. “In short, while England and Graner look like a horrible bitches, I can’t help but think Sivits is a terrible liar.”

    England appears to me to be the “terrible liar”. Her smirking attitude in the pictures suggests that she was enjoying the sadistic treatment of prisoners–not just carrying out orders. Her vague claim of orders from higher-ups (which could include just about any corpral in the prison) instead of a more specific claim is classic lying. And her sex videos, with various partners and watching Iraqis pretty much shoots down any credibility she ever had.

  9. I have a “friend” who was implicated in violence against prisoners here in Cook County/Chicago. Based on how he pleaded out, and based on what I know of his case it is probable that the plea agreement was a trade so that he would not name officers above him. In cases I am aware of the usual plea, (in the unusual case that anyone should care about prisoner abuse (a really rare thing in the home of the FREE)) is to not tell any more details, and not to implicate higer ups. SOP. Don’t worry, the government is doing it’s best to sweep this under the carpet. No doubt america will let them in the end.

  10. “Don-

    I have a lot more faith in the collection of forensic evidence (including photos of higher level intelligence officers present during the torture) than I do in your analysis of England’s facial expressions.”

    So far, we have a picture of the backs of some characters that one of the defendents claims is intellignece officiers. Maybe his claim is true, maybe it isn’t.

    “Also, the idea that having sex = being a liar is in incredibly stupid one, mainly because one has nothing to do with the other. ”

    Since she had sex with multiple men on camera, sometimes in front of Iraqi prisoners, one thing certainly has something to do with the other.

    Even if theat were not true, she is implicitly a lier due to her actions; those activites are sufficient to end her career, so she was certainly lying about them.

    “As for vague claims, she (and everyone else save the precious Stivets) have been very consistent in describing their orders from higher ranked military intelligence to “give them hell”, including e-mails from some sent home prior to this investigation becoming public. That story is also consistent with the photo linked above and the presence if MI gearin the photos.”

    Vague claims to CYA don’t go very far with me. When something of substance comes let me know . . .

    “Finally, you still haven’t explained why THE MOST IMPORTANT cellblock was emptied during the ICRC’s inspection and NO ONE noticed. Those High value detainees who are so important can disappear from their cells for days and no one reports it? Please.”

    I’m not going to explain anything that I don’t know jack about.

  11. “But hey, you read England’s face like tea leaves all you want.”

    She appears quite happy engaging in the sexual humilitaion of Iraqi prisoners. Maybe it’s all an act, but if it is she sure is a good actress.

  12. “one hopes that it is prosecuted as high up the chain of command as the evidence leads.”

    Yes Rick, but I would add “but no higher”.

    There is an incredible desire on the part of the Democrats to use this unfortunate incident as a bludgeoning tool on the Bush administration.

    Those folks seem to have previous little interest in “evidence”.

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