Monday, April 25, 2005

The Scum Also Rises

Imagine that--top Army officials were cleared following an internal investigation into the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib and elsewhere:

The only Army general officer recommended for punishment for the failures that led to abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison and other facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan is Brig. Gen. Janis L. Karpinski, who was in charge of U.S. prison facilities in Iraq as commander of the 800th Military Police Brigade in late 2003 and early 2004. Several sources said Karpinski is expected to receive an administrative reprimand for dereliction of duty.

Karpinski apparently knew she was on the chopping block and previously indicated she would appeal any adverse decision.

The investigation essentially found no culpability on the part of Lt. Gen. Ricardo S. Sanchez and three of his senior deputies, ruling that allegations they failed to prevent or stop abuses were "unsubstantiated." A military source said a 10-member team began the investigation in October and based its conclusions on the 10 major defense inquiries into abuse and interviews with 37 senior officials, including L. Paul Bremer, who led the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq. The report has not been released.

Gee, I wonder how the inquires and interviews went...

MI: General Sanchez, did you authorize the abuse of prisoners?
Sanchez: No.
MI: Good enough for us...what about you, Jerry?
Paul Bremer: Not that I'm aware of.
MI: Thanks for your time.

In militarese, here's a gem of a quote from an otherwise unidentified defense official:

"The dereliction happened at the brigade level and below."

In other words, those lacking tenure.

Just another lesson for anyone thinking of signing up for the Army of One: not only is it a lifetime committment (shorter than you might imagine, considering the casualty counts are rising), there's always the chance you'll be caught holding the, um, leash as it were...maybe not for your CO, but for your CO's CO.

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