Wow, if there was ever a chance to say "I told you so."
I am disgusted by the images of prisoner abuse in Iraq. I am disgusted by the video of the beheading of Nicholas Berg. These two things are obviously related to each other.
Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda came about from the U.S. involvement in the Middle East during Operation Desert Storm. By invading Iraq, we really got a lot of people pissed off at the U.S.
Ten years or so later, we decide to do the same thing. I am not going to argue if invading Iraq regardless of the consequences is a good idea. There are definite good arguments to be made in both directions.
However, I feel like the current administration did not even put any thought into the possible consequences of invading Iraq again. Invading and controlling Iraq as a way of preventing terrorism is about like amputating a hand because it has a cut on it and you want to stop the bleeding.
Invading Iraq, and mismanaging the control of the country, is a really good way of causing MORE people to be upset at the U.S. The Berg video is an excellent example of that.
Some things that really disturb me:
1) When the ICRC expressed concerns with the handling of prisoners in Iraq back in November, what did the U.S. military do? They decided to restrict ICRC access to the prison.
2) Rumsfeld's take on these pictures showing abuse? He wants to crack down on cameras in the prisons. Those pesky cameras...
What bothers me more than anything is that this claim of "I did not know what was going on" seems to be an acceptable excuse in the case of the prisoner abuse scandal.
I am sorry, but if you are *in charge* of a prison, and abuses are going on at this prison, you should either a) get in trouble for knowing and allowing it to happen, or b) get in trouble for not knowing what was going on in a place you are in charge of.
I am a somewhat bigger conspiracy nut than a lot of people, and I am not sure Rumsfeld knew about the "coercion" techniques, but these abuses seem bigger than a handful of guards.
I just dislike that this policy of "claim ignorance, and promise it will not happen again". It never should have happened in the first place! Where were the commanders then?
The administration seems to be saying "These are problems, and they will be fixed." I am saying "These are the reasons we were telling you not to go into Iraq i the first place!"