The Outer Limits of Abu Ghraib

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Via Sploid comes revelations the abuses at Abu Ghraib were sanctioned by Lt. Gen Ricardo Sanchez:

New Army documents released by the American Civil Liberties Union today reveal that Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez ordered interrogators to "go to the outer limits" to get information from detainees. The documents also show that senior government officials were aware of abuse in Iraq and Afghanistan before the Abu Ghraib scandal broke.

More from The Raw Story here.

Reason on Abu Ghraib here, here, and here for starters.

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  1. The idea of “Speaker Pelosi” is not exactly appealing, but I think Abu Ghraib is one more reason why freedom lovers have to be rooting for the Dems in the ’06 mid-terms. Get control of one of the two houses, get some subpoena power, and get the papers flying. National honor is at stake.

  2. The idea of “Speaker Pelosi” is not exactly appealing, but I think Abu Ghraib is one more reason why freedom lovers have to be rooting for the Dems in the ’06 mid-terms. Get control of one of the two houses, get some subpoena power, and get the papers flying. National honor is at stake.

  3. Another thing that tipped them off that he was in on the Abu Ghraib scandal from the beginning:

    His friends call him Lt. Gen Ricardo “Dirty” Sanchez.

  4. Yeah. I went there.

  5. We need criminal prosecution for Sanchez and all other government officials who were responsible for the savagery. The honor of our republic demands that these folks do some serious time. Each of us should contact our representative and senators and tell them that we want these criminals brought to justice:

    http://www.visi.com/juan/congress/

    Bush should issue an apology, and we should go on to sites and blogs frequented by folks from the mid-East and we should tell em that these actions of our government are not reflective of the character of most Americans, and that we are sorry for not controlling our idiot government and we will endeavor to shackle this monster.

  6. but I think Abu Ghraib is one more reason why freedom lovers have to be rooting for the Dems in the ’06 mid-terms.

    What?? What other reason could there possibly be? Electing Dems to control will only give impetus to Bush’s big spending ways. In many concerns, the Dems are even worse than the Bush administration. Electing Dems will punish us. Also, H. Clinton, Pelosi et al are unmitigated war hawks:

    Hillary Clinton is more of a hawk on Iran than most of the Republicans in Congress: she criticizes the administration for not being tough enough on Tehran. The Republicans, she brays, are appeasers: they are letting the mullahs off the hook. She assures us she won’t. With a few sterling exceptions, such as Rep. Dennis Kucinich, congressional Democrats, led by the warmongering Nancy Pelosi, take some variant of Hillary’s position.

    http://antiwar.com/justin/

  7. Rick,

    You must live outside the contintental US. Last time I checked, the majority of Americans, and a substantive number of folks here on this board, love torture.

    This was a representative policy of the American Electorate.

    And lets be honest, it is disingenious to suggest that Bush did not know this was happening, or to suggest that this went down any way than what the Administration wanted (except for people finding out, they didn’t count on the fact that someone would start the ball rolling with a traitorous act like objecting, and forwarding pics that couldn’t be denied).

    This is who we are know. China with corporations.

    This is what anyone who voted for Bush voted for.

    Come on. This is who Bush is, and I’ve never really seen him hide his affinity for Soviet and Facist style leaders.

  8. Last time I checked, the majority of Americans, and a substantive number of folks here on this board, love torture.

    I don’t think so. Couldja provide evidence?

    it is disingenious to suggest that Bush did not know this was happening, or to suggest that this went down any way than what the Administration wanted

    I agree. It wouldn’t surprise me if Bush knew, and I’d be quite surprised if some folks high in the administration were not in the loop.

  9. Legs legs legs. This story isn’t dead yet. I hope this goes all the way. I won’t be mollified until Bush and Rumsfeld are convicted of war crimes. In the mean time, the tar-ry finger of guilt keeps pointing higher.

  10. I wish this topic weren’t so serious that I would feel bad cracking controlling-the-vertical jokes.

  11. The important word here is “limits”.

  12. I remember polls from about a month after the Abu Ghraib story broke saying that people supported our actions there. All the “not really torture” talk.

    I wonder, in 5 or 10 years, how many people will have been against the torture? Disliked it from the start, don’t you know.

  13. What?? What other reason could there possibly be? Electing Dems to control will only give impetus to Bush’s big spending ways. In many concerns, the Dems are even worse than the Bush administration. Electing Dems will punish us.

    No, silly. Remember the good old days of gridlock? That’s what we need. Two years of lawsuits against the administration and televised infighting are two years not spent passing stupid NCLB and Medicaid style boondoggles.

    Plus, it will be quality amusment.

  14. Remember the good old days of gridlock?

    Gridlock nothin’. Remember those few days of actual government shutdown? I was living overseas at the time and couldn’t enjoy the governmentless goodness of it all firsthand. I want another crack at that kind of bliss!

  15. In addition to Fishbane’s excellent point, that gridlock limits spending and new legislation, there’s an endless list of other reasons for libertarians to help give the worthless Democrats control of at least one chamber: NSA wiretapping, extraordinary rendition, detentions without charge, politicization of intelligence branches, attacks on science, blurring of the separation of church and state, cronyism in appointments and contract awards. . . . Rick Barton, do you really think any of these situations will ever improve if we continue the one-party state? Have you been paying at all these last years?

  16. Gridlock is great, but unsustainable. Most of us here, including myself, will be happy if the Dems take Congress in ’06.

    But what happens when the Dems retake the White House in ’08, and inherit all of the current administration’s nifty new powers and a friendly Congress? It may be warrantless prejudice, but in my gut, I trust the self-restraint of Democrats far less than that of Republicans.

  17. I remember polls from about a month after the Abu Ghraib story broke saying that people supported our actions there. All the “not really torture” talk.

    I wonder, in 5 or 10 years, how many people will have been against the torture? Disliked it from the start, don’t you know.

    The first stories that broke, and particularly the pictures, weren’t about torture. Unfortunately, most of the hawks (and a startling number of doves) act as if no new information has come out since. The discussion is still centered on naked pyramids and waterboarding* when the real story is people being beat bloody, raped, or outright killed.

    *I’m not saying waterboarding is or isn’t torture (I think it is), but that anyone on either side focusing on that particular practice as being representative of the “torture issue” is far behind the times.

  18. “We need criminal prosecution for Sanchez and all other government officials who were responsible for the savagery. The honor of our republic demands that these folks do some serious time.”

    I agree, Rick. Tapping our phones without warrants, torture, lying us into war, disappearing people…these aren’t legitimate policy differences, these are crimes committed by individuals holding government offices, using the powers of those offices. I want the next president, and the one after that, and the one who wins election in 2096, to look back at the Bush administration and be afraid of arrest, prosecution, and incarceration if he so much as thinks about committing similar crimes.

  19. Piggie here. Joe, I was reading some old threads tonight to see what all you guys were like back when you were muppet babies of your current selves. Back then (mid 2003) I understood you to be saying that lying us into war was not a crime and was therefore political rather than an impeachable crime.

    Just curious: has your thinking changed a bit on this particular issue?

    Respectfully yrs,
    Dave

  20. Dave W.,

    OK, that one isn’t as cut and dry as the others. But there were definitely some knowingly false statements made to Congress, which is a federal offense.

  21. AP reported this on April 28, 2006:

    The Army on Friday charged Lt. Col. Steven L. Jordan, the former head of the interrogation center at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq with cruelty and maltreatment, dereliction of duty and other criminal offenses for his alleged involvement in the abuse of detainees at the notorious prison in 2003. He is the highest-ranking officer at Abu Ghraib to face criminal charges.

  22. crimethink writes: “But what happens when the Dems retake the White House in ’08, and inherit all of the current administration’s nifty new powers and a friendly Congress? It may be warrantless prejudice, but in my gut, I trust the self-restraint of Democrats far less than that of Republicans.”

    Ah, but there will still be the media, all the right-wing media will go batshit(ier?), and the “liberal” media will work that much harder to show that they “aren’t liberal”.

    And the Democrats are nothing if not weak in the face of MSM disapproval.

  23. fishbane:

    No, silly. Remember the good old days of gridlock? That’s what we need. Two years of lawsuits against the administration and televised infighting are two years not spent passing stupid NCLB and Medicaid style boondoggles.

    A gridlock with Bush as pres and the Dems with congress doesn’t sound as promising for the slow growth government that was produced with the GOP congress and Clinton as pres. Remember it’s congress that must pass the spending. It’s hard to imagine the Dems shutting down a Bush agenda the way that the GOP did with Clinton’s. Hell, the Dems would add to it with relish. Also, there are now GOP congress people who are standing up against the runaway spending of the Bush era. Although, the prospects of government paralyzing legal infighting that you raise do sound intriguing. For considerations past the nest two years, see crimethink’s excellent point at 4:20 PM.

    Ya call me “silly” and your screen name is fishbane? 🙂

  24. jbd :

    Rick Barton, do you really think any of these situations will ever improve if we continue the one-party state?

    The one thing that might improve with the Dems in control of congress is a throttling of the Bush doctrine of needless wars on behalf of the Israeli government. And that’s only a “might” cuz so many Dems are becoming war mongers- a truly disgusting development. If the neocons think that this might happen, they’ll really push for an attack on Iran before 2007. Maybe that’s why they are…

  25. Dave W.:

    I was reading some old threads tonight to see what all you guys were like back when you were muppet babies of your current selves. Back then (mid 2003)

    For the record, although I didn’t call it criminal; from the start, I thought the WMD claims and terrorist “connection” claims were duplicitous, and that the chief motivators of the Iraq war had what they thought was good of the Israeli government as their main concern.

    But I was seeing the truth by using the perspective of a giant:

    http://antiwar.com/justin/

  26. For the record

    I was mostly just trying to get a handle on how prowar versus antiwar things used to be around here. Didn’t really go back further than mid 2003. Generally I was impressed with the tone of the board and found more skepticism about the war and wmd than I expected to. Less jingoism than I expected. On the other hand, there was less concern about military spending and the strategic use of the war to increase the size/power of the gov’t than I would have liked. Most of the concern was about gov’t lies to US public and about the ineffectiveness of the war as a counterterrorism measure. Not bad concerns, but more Kissingerian than smallgovtarian.

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