Sivits Gets a Year

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This just in:

Spc. Jeremy C. Sivits received the maximum penalty Wednesday ? one year in prison, reduction in rank and a bad conduct discharge ? in the first court-martial stemming from mistreatment of Iraqi prisoners at the Abu Ghraib prison.

Sivits, who pleaded guilty to four abuse charges, broke down in tears as he expressed remorse for taking pictures of naked Iraqi prisoners being humiliated.

"I'd like to apologize to the Iraqi people and those detainees," he said in his statement. "I should have protected those detainees, not taken the photos."

Whole thing here.

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  1. ?Sivits, who pleaded guilty to four abuse charges, broke down in tears as he expressed remorse for taking pictures of naked Iraqi prisoners being humiliated.?

    Call me a cynic, but I have a feeling the only thing this nimrod has remore for was that he got caught.

  2. If he had been tokin` on a doobie while preforming his chores, he would have got 25 years and a DD.

  3. I think it’s telling that the first person prosecuted for this stuff is the one who took the pictures. We can assume he was involved, of course, but it certainly sends a signal that the worst thing that happened was that it was documented. Notably, those who thought up these treatments, and implemented them haven’t been charged (so far as I know) and probably won’t be. But the guy with the camera recording it, whatever his motivation, is the one who gets dinged. Interesting…

  4. I understand he made a deal to rat on the others involved.

  5. Buh-bye, Sivits. Next?

  6. For real justice to be done here, it has to work its way up the chain of command.

    http://www.antiwar.com/justin/?articleid=2537

  7. The reason Sivits only got one year, is that he was tried under a Special Court Martial rather than a General Court Martial… and he agreed to the Special Court Martial as a deal in exchange for testifying against the others. No soldier can be forced to be tried under a SCM vs a GCM. The SCM has very limited punitive powers and also has only 3 members on the “jury” though, so it is often offered as an option to soldiers who are clearly guilty of a serious violation but when there may be extenuating circumstances that would warrent a lesser punishment (like a soldier who kills a civilian in order to prevent their entire unit from being discovered and attacked) or a soldier willing to turn “State’s Witness”. For a brief rundown on how Courts Martial work read the Explainer at Slate here: Slate Explainer

  8. Rick:

    “Real justice” punishes the guilty.

    The current liberal drive to prosecute George W. Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, etc… etc… for actions of other people is a dangerous cultural precedent.

    Personal responsibility is a very important concept in a free society.

    The excuse culture seems constantly find ways to blame anyone but the guilty:

    “my boss made me do it”
    “I was the victim of peer pressure”
    “I was the victim of cigarette advertising”
    “She was asking for it, look at the way she was dressed”

    People who do bad things are guilty. That’s it.

    Victims are not guilty. Their friends are not guilty. Their families are not guilty. They co-workers are not guilty. Their neighbors are not guilty.

    Here’s a good quote for you:

    “Probably personal responsibility,” she replied, explaining that this means “taking responsibility for your behavior and your expenditures and your actions, and not forever supposing that society must forgive you because it’s not your fault.” — Historian Barbara Tuchman when asked what she thought was needed in the 21st century

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