April 2nd, 2005


Major General Janis Karpinski tells the truth about Abu Ghraib.

Major General Janis Karpinski, former commanding officer in charge of the MPs who ran Abu Ghraib during its worse abuse, is the high-ranking scapegoat for the abuses that went on there, but in a recent interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, she makes it clear that others, such as Donald Rumsfeld and Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller, share responsibility for the abuse.

"Did I do everything perfectly? Absolutely not. We were in the middle of a damn war. Hold me responsible for the things I could control. I would even settle for being held equally responsible. But only responsible? To the exception and exclusion of everybody else? No way."

Karpinski especially blames Donald Rumsfeld -- and his subordinate, Maj. General Geoffrey Miller -- for installing questionable interrogation methods in Abu Ghraib. As she says of Miller:

"He had a very, very strong influence -- 'I come with the authority of Secretary Rumsfeld.' Miller was sent on a mission. ... He was sent there to 'Gitmoize' the operation."

She further reports sitting in on a briefing at Abu Ghraib with Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller, where Miller instructed those present to "treat prisoners like dogs".

Apparently, his instructions were followed to a tee. This claim is further confirmed in the text of the ACLU lawsuit against Karpinski, which cites that she carried out the plans of Maj. Gen. Sanchez and Miller, thus abdicating her duty as a commander to prevent torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.

In the Taguba report on the Abu Ghraib abuses, Taguba criticized Karpinski for failing to visit Abu Ghraib regularly. Karpinski rejected that charge, saying she was often at the facility but was prevented from visiting at night -- when she said most abuses took place -- on orders from Maj. Gen. Walter Wojdakowski, then the No. 2 Army general in Iraq.

Incidentally, Gen. Wojdakowski was under the direct command of General Ricardo Sanchez, the general who was recently shown to have perjured himself before Congress, by signing off on new interrogation methods in violation of the Geneva Convention just weeks after Rumsfeld sent Maj. Gen. Miller to "Gitmo'ize" Abu Ghraib.

So, that's at least one general (Sanchez), three major generals (Miller, Wojdakowski, and Karpinski), and Donald Rumsfeld... They're *all* guilty, every bit as much as the soldier holding the leash, who was also "just following orders..."