[percy-l] Abu Ghraib general speaks out

Karey karey at kareyperkins.com
Sat Aug 27 17:04:58 EDT 2005

Robert & Tommy, you asked for evidence for what I spoke of, here are excerpts from an article on the torture at Abu Ghraib that shows that it goes all the way to the top. The link to the full article as well as the interview is below.  She is writing a book, due out in April.  Basic point is:  don't believe the media or the administration because you aren't getting the whole truth.  It is naive and gullible to do so in general, and particularly in this time period with this administration.  Now if you know someone in the military, or better yet, military intelligence, the information you get is going to be far more accurate - though incomplete because some of it is classified and they can't tell you all that they know.  Who here has a son or daughter in the military or in Iraq?  A father or mother?  Or sister or brother?  Unless you do, be very careful about saying what is going one, and about choosing war as an answer unless it is a last resort.  My student who just retired from the Navy after 25 years, the last few in Iraq, says it is more dangerous than it has ever been and keeps getting worse and that's why she retired early.  


Army Reserve Brigadier General Janis Karpinski was in charge of the infamous Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq when the now famous torture photographs were taken in fall of 2003. She was reprimanded and demoted to Colonel for her failure to properly supervise the prison guards. Karpinski is the highest ranking officer to be sanctioned for the mistreatment of prisoners. On August 3, 2005, I interviewed Janis Karpinski. In the most comprehensive public statement she has made to date, Karpinski deconstructs the entire United States military operation in Iraq with some astonishing revelations. 
    When Karpinski got to Abu Ghraib, "there was a completely different story than what we were being told in the United States. It was out of control. There weren't enough soldiers. Nobody had the right equipment. They were driving around in unarmored vehicles, some of them without doors ... So, knowing that they were ill-equipped and ill-prepared, they pushed them out anyway, because those two three-stars wanted their fifteen minutes of fame, I suppose." 


When Karpinski asked to see the log books, the sergeant told her that the Criminal Investigation Division had taken everything except for something on a pole outside the little office they were using. 
    "It was a memorandum signed by Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, authorizing a short list, maybe 6 or 8 techniques: use of dogs; stress positions; loud music; deprivation of food; keeping the lights on, those kinds of things," Karpinski said. "And then a handwritten message over to the side that appeared to be the same handwriting as the signature, and that signature was Secretary Rumsfeld's. And it said, 'Make sure this happens' with two exclamation points. And that was the only thing they had. Everything else had been confiscated." 


Karpinski describes what happened when General Geoffrey Miller arrived at Abu Ghraib: "The most pronounced difference was when Miller came to visit. He came right after Rumsfeld's visit ... And he said that he was going to use a template from Guantánamo Bay to 'Gitmo-ize' the operations out at Abu Ghraib."


I had been hesitant to speak out before because this Administration is so vindictive. But now I will ... Anybody who confronts this Administration or Rumsfeld or the Pentagon with a true assessment, they find themselves either out of a job, out of their positions, fired, relieved or chastised. Their career comes to an end. 


Speaking about the war, Karpinski said, "Iraq was a huge country, and when you have people largely saying now, 'He may have been a dictator, but we were better under Saddam,' this Administration needs to take notice. And at some point you have to say, 'Stop the train, because it's completely derailed. How do we fix it?' But in an effort to do that, you have to admit that you made a few mistakes, and this Administration is not willing to admit any mistakes whatsoever."

For the full article and interview, see: 
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