Thursday, April 28, 2005


Shameful Treatment

The Editors of the Wall Street Journal, writing online the in OpinionJournal, subtitle their latest on Abu Ghraib, "An overhyped story, not a whitewash."

Close readers of this blog may recall my earlier post, linking to Mudville Gazette's Abu Ghraib Quiz.

In that post, I stated:

The story the Army tells of a handful of sick individuals acting independently, with immediate supervisors reporting them the moment they became aware of their behavior, is the best factual description of what happened.

Those who wish to believe otherwise do so because they want to believe the worst about this administration, and our efforts in Iraq, without regard to evidence or facts.

Or they know what's true, but that doesn't stop them from wanting to hurt the United States or tarnish the reputation of the U.S. Military. And thanks to irresponsible and inaccurate reporting, Abu Ghraib became their disparagement of choice.

In the Journal, ostensibly the Editors say the same thing, adding that many fine members of the military had their reputations unfairly tarnished, and deserve and apology. (How the entire media can effect an apology, is beyond me, but what they are doing now, suggesting a "white-wash," surely ain't it.)

From the journal:

Sometimes we wonder if proponents of this torture-cum-whitewash accusation have ever stopped to consider the improbable nature of the coverup they are now suggesting. Mr. Schlesinger and other investigators would all have to be lying. And where are the whistleblowers? There would have been a widespread outcry in the military if senior brass and civilians really were trying to shift blame for abuse onto the lower ranks.

Yet the only military people claiming that they are taking some kind of fall are the convicted Graner and the former Abu Ghraib Commander, Brigadier General Janis Karpinski, who was blamed for weak leadership in the original Taguba report--which, by the way, remains a thorough and insightful account of what went wrong at Abu Ghraib.

The salient and remarkable truth here is that America has punished its own for the Abu Ghraib abuses; and it has done so even before Saddam and his henchmen have faced justice for the horrors they propagated in that same prison. More than a few good soldiers have had their careers tarnished by the media and Democratic innuendo that they somehow condoned human rights abuses. They deserve an apology. After all the evidence to the contrary, continuing to allege systematic prisoner abuse--and a coverup--by the U.S. military is itself shameful.

Yes, Abu Ghraib exposed some shameful treatment: of military leaders, at the hands of the western media.

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