Sunday, May 02, 2004

But Who Will Guard the Guardians Themselves?

José G. Perez, my esteemed comrade in Atlanta, reminds me that the seven individuals -- an army reserve brigadier general and six members of an Army Reserve military police unit -- publicly exposed in the unfolding scandal about torture of Iraqi prisoners are not "the real torturers or death squad types from army intelligence and the CIA. These were the folks in charge of prisoners between torture sessions." No doubt. The Washington Post reports that "[t]he deputy commander of the U.S. Army's intelligence force," Maj. Gen. George R. Fay, of the Army Intelligence and Security Command, "is leading an investigation into interrogation practices," a move made because of "allegations that military guards abused prisoners at the behest of military intelligence operatives"(Sewell Chan and Michael Amon, "Prisoner Abuse Probe Widened: Military Intelligence at Center of Investigation," May 2, 2004). As for the CIA, "A spokesman for the Central Intelligence Agency said Saturday that its inspector general is working with the Pentagon to determine whether the CIA was involved in the abuses" ("Prisoner Abuse Probe Widened: Military Intelligence at Center of Investigation"). In other words, the real torturers themselves are given the task of determining whether or not they are responsible for torture! Sed quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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