Abu Ghraib’s bigger context | AspenTimes.com
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Abu Ghraib’s bigger context

Dear Editor:(Re: Thom Shanker and Kate Zernike, “0fficers’ lapses in Iraq abetted prison abuse,” news story, Aug. 19.)So, after all the commotion about Abu Ghraib, it has come down to this. Since there were “no direct policy directives out of the Pentagon that caused this,” military commanders in Baghdad have been given a slap on the wrist “for not sufficiently supervising the prison systems throughout Iraq.”The reason why accountability has been frustrated in this investigation is that Abu Ghraib has not been examined in terms of its bigger context. When our commander-in-chief talked about “evildoers” who were not “with us” but “with the terrorists,” he staked out for us the mutually exclusive categories that made abuse and systematic denigration of Iraqi detainees not only justifiable, but the righteous thing to do. And when he launched an illegal war, he created an atmosphere that led some of our military to believe that anything goes. That is why it will require more than a three-star general to cut to the chase on this one.Joel BrenceAspen


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