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Senator Inhofe Is old Enough To Know Better

Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., said: “I’m probably not the only one up at this table that is more outraged by the outrage than we are by the treatment.” That is patently ridiculous.

According to an article in this week's Newsweek by Evan Thomas, the images the Senators are seeing today

include an American soldier having sex with a female Iraqi detainee and American soldiers watching Iraqis have sex with juveniles. Another photo shows a female prison guard gloating over the body of a dead Iraqi.
Also, S/Sgt. Van Frederick, one of the guards under investigation, wrote a letter to his wife
about a prisoner 'stressed' by interrogators until he died; the body, he said, was packed in ice and given a fake IV to simulate a medical emergency. When he brought up his concerns about conditions at Abu Ghraib to a senior officer, the response, he said, was not to worry about it: military intelligence was pleased with the results
(Mentioned in the print edition - I couldn't find the quote online)

Additionally, at least 25 prisoners have died in US custody since 9/11, including 3 from Afghanistan.

These facts and allegations are worthy of outrage. The United States took over Iraq on the (after-the-fact) justification of human rights, and we've betrayed our own high principles. Wherever blame lies, from Iraq to the Pentagon to the White House, the United States military made a huge mistake that is worthy of condemnation and outrage.

Inhofe said

The idea that these prisoners -- you know, they're not there for traffic violations. If they're in cell block 1A or 1B, these prisoners -- they're murderers, they're terrorists, they're insurgents. Many of them probably have American blood on their hands. And here we're so concerned about the treatment of those individuals.

Have these prisoners been found guilty, or does Inhofe believe that "innocence until proven guilty" is an outdated concept? Do human rights depend on the identity of the human? As Bruce Jackson says,

Listening to him was like listening to someone on his way home from a lynching 50 years ago: 'They deserve what they get, whether or not they did what we said. They are what they are, aren't they? If they weren't, why would we have lynched them? Goddam right!'

All Americans should be ashamed of ourselves for what happened in Iraq. Inhofe should also have the shame of thinking torture is less important than anger over torture.

Posted by LawnBoy at May 12, 2004 11:31 AM