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Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Sy Hirsch, General Taguba and All That

Sacre bleu, mes amis!

Once again, eet ees ze time of Listening to ze Generals!

We can nevair keep zis straight, you see. Zis business of ze listening, eet is of ze most tiresome, n'est pas?

All ze time avec le "Attendez-vous! N'attend pas! ... do we listen or don't we? Et bien.

Today, we listen:
Taguba wrote in his report of "[n]umerous incidents of sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses were inflicted on several detainees . . . systemic and illegal abuse." But he wasn't allowed to trace the behavior to its root cause.

Writes Hersh: "'From what I knew, troops just don't take it upon themselves to initiate what they did without any form of knowledge of the higher-ups,' Taguba told me. His orders were clear, however: he was to investigate only the military police at Abu Ghraib, and not those above them in the chain of command. 'These M.P. troops were not that creative,' he said. 'Somebody was giving them guidance, but I was legally prevented from further investigation into higher authority. I was limited to a box.'"

But surely here is a confusion? Did not General Taguba testify to Congress that he believed these men acted on their own volition? Would thees not be... how do you say... the lying which is wrong/bad? This is a great confusion. Was he lying then, or now? How are we to know?

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