Thursday, March 10, 2005
Weeping At The SAEN
Church concluded that no civilian or uniformed leaders directed or encouraged abuse, and his report holds Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and other top defense leaders largely blameless on the narrow question of pressuring interrogators as well as the larger matter of interrogation policies.
"We found no evidence to support the notion that the office of the secretary of defense (or other military or White House staff) applied explicit pressure for intelligence or gave 'back channel' permission to forces in the field in Iraq or in Afghanistan" to exceed the bounds of authorized interrogation practices, the report said.
Well, looking on the bright side, if they decide to report this tomorrow they can run another picture from Abu Ghraib again; you know, for old times sake.
There's a big problem, one senator said Thursday, when investigators are "in the chain of command of the officials whose policies and actions they are investigating."
"I can only conclude that the Defense Department is not able to assess accountability at senior levels, particularly when investigators are in the chain of command of the officials whose policies and actions they are investigating," said Sen. Carl Levin, the ranking Democrat on the Armed Services Committee.How can Church say that his report clears Rumsfeld when at the same time he admits that was not even in the scope of his investigation?
Church said he did not focus on senior official accountability because that had been assessed in earlier investigations.