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Decorated veteran, and lifelong Republican, says new Abu Ghraib photos must be released


Larisa Alexandrovna

In an exclusive interview with RAW STORY, retired U. S. Army Colonel Michael Pheneger explained why he submitted testimony in support of the ACLU's lawsuit seeking new Abu Ghraib detainee abuse documents, saying "the only way to assign accountability is to conduct a thorough investigation of every aspect of these deplorable episodes."

The Pentagon has successfully kept new photographs out of the public eye, arguing that their release would be detrimental to the safety of troops abroad.

Colonel Pheneger is a highly decorated thirty year veteran who has served in various high level military posts throughout his career, including: Commander, U. S. Army Intelligence School, Director of Intelligence, U. S. Special Operations Command; Deputy Director of Intelligence, and has worked with the USSOCOM and USCENTCOM teams providing high level intelligence support. Colonel Pheneger is also a lifelong Republican, who finds the government’s case just another "bending of rules" long since prohibited by the military. He voted for George W. Bush in 2000, and works with the ACLU.

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This is an important story. If the government is allowed to hide this, can we ever hold them accountable for anything? Names like Rumsfeld and Bush come to mind, but this is more important than a few individual rogues.

Does anyone know who the one's taking these photo's are? Are these casual photo's taken by the security personel? For their own amusement? Are these official government sactioned photo's? It seems odd to me that if these are official millitary sactioned photo's then what is the ultimate purpose of taking them? If their soo damming, why are they not shreded? This whole photograph situation of improprietie's being photographed seems odd indeed. If i was involved in criminal activity that could land me in prison for a long time i certainly wouldn't wouldn't want photographic evidence produced. something is not right here.**HUMPHREY**

In part, they are taken to blackmail the detainees, in part to scare the next batch of detainees, and, probably, in part out of habit, or for kicks. This type of stuff apparently just became "procedure."

You said "part of it' was for the reasons you stated. could you possibly elaborate further in the rational?

I sat in the classroom trainning of rules of armed conflict, and the laws regarding the Geneva Accord's back in 1969. So im a little rusty on these but you know, "common sense" can be a great guide as to conduct that will land you in Levonworthand how to advoid that place. I think down the road, the field command running this show is going to regret all this as no matter what they may presently think or beleive, like the Nazi war criminals, they may end up facing accountibillity. I don't beleive the end can subsequently justify the mean's.This conduct reflects negitivly on all of us as a whole and i don't like it. Were suppose to be above this type of conduct.
**HUMPHREY**

If this thing ever goes to trial, im sure there will be victims who will be brought in to testify and this testmony will be admissible into evidence. there are already photo's and these are already documented proof substantiating the violation's did in fact occure and were somewhat hainous in thier nature. There have already been conviction's in a courts martial, so it is just a matter of going forward, eventually, against command staff. I don't think excuses from command staff will be excepted either. Excuse's like, "i had no idea this was going on in my command". You see, what this leads to is negligence in that, through this (negligence) or, as a direct result of this negligence, we have a situation that has been allowed to occure, AS A DIRECT RESULT, that constitute's human right's violation's that, but for the negligence, could reasonable be considered to not have occured through a more active command participation. IT'S NOT RIGHT TO ONLY HOLD E-5'S AND BELOW SOLY ACCOUNTIBLE. If command staff had gotten more personally involved then, this may not have occured. THEY DON'T EXCEPT LAME EXCUSES FROM ENLISTED PERSONEL IN NEGLIGENCE ISSUES! ("NO EXCUSE SIR") SO WHY SHOULD THEIR LAME EXCUSE'S BE EXCEPTED?

Then there is the other side of the issue in that, perhaps these command staff members were fully aware and was silently in approval of these tactic's! Perhaps the approval came from higher up? All the way from the top?

Buck sgts, sp/4's and pvt's don't commit the type of circus antic's like what we saw in the previous photo's on their own personal inititive inside a millitary detention facility! Especially within the common gallery area's there in plain site with other prisonor's watching and where discovery is possible from some suprise visit from outside command. Common sense tells you your just asking for trouble. Big trouble. So there had to be some unkown undocumented order that compelled these co's to commit these act's.

In US max security facilitie's, when you have a disciplinary problem inmate that administratively you cant control, you take that inmate to segregation. But first, you take him into an enclosed room, away from administrative staff, and other witnesses, then you put a boot up his ass. You don't do it on the common galleries in front of other inmate witnesses or staff witnesses. Not enless you want to end up in a courtroom, as a defendent.

I DON'T BELEIVE FOR ANY SECOND HAT THESE ENLISTED PERSONEL WERE ACTING ON THEIR OWN INITIATIVE! TRAINED EXPERIENCED CORRECTIONAL FACILITY STAFF ARN'T THAT STUPID. YOU CAN TAKE THAT FOR WHAT IT'S WORTH!**HUMPHREY**

I want to know why liberals spend so much time bashing the U.S. military about "torture" and NEVER bash the Islamic terrorist!!!

Watch Islamic terrorist cut off Eugene Armstrong's head, if you have the stomach. THIS IS REAL TORTURE!!!

http://www.mensnewsdaily.com/video/armstrong-murder2.wmv

BECAUSE WE, AS AMERICANS ARE ABOVE THAT BARBARIC CONDUCT! WHEN WE LOWER OURSELVES TO THE LEVEL OF THOSE ASSHOLES WHO CUT OFF HEADS, WE BECOME NO BETTER OURSELVES. NO END CAN BE JUSTIFIED BY THESE MEANS.
TO WHAT PURPOSE CAN THERE BE FOR ACT'S OF SODOMY COMMITTED BY AMERICAN SERVICE PERSONEL AGAINST 14 YEAR OLD'S. YES THERE ARE REPORTS OF THIS TYPE OF CONDUCT. YOU TELL ME WHAT PURPOSE THAT SERVES? AND FOR YOUR INFORMATION, I WATCHED EUGENES HEAD GET CUT OFF AND IT SICKEND ME AND UPSET ME ALOT!!
**HUMPHREY**

I agree with your assessment, except for the asshole part. We must take the high road, and not lower ourselves to their level. I do not condone or justify mistreatment of any prisoners, "enemy combatants" or "detainees" under any circumstances. Our "bad guys" will be prosecuted and punished accordingly. I would just like to see more outrage against the terrorists.

P.s. If you think this video is bad, there are far more gruesome videos. I almost vomited while watching one of them.

OF THE MOST GRUSOME TYPE IMAGINABLE.

I think there can clearly be argued that there is a difference except possibly, if torture is used to acquire a slow and agonizing death for the victim, ie.IF DEATH IS THE INTENDED OBJECTIVE.

If torture is used to extract information, through the implimation of pain as the tool, thats something entirly altogether different.
I acknowledge that our people are employing pain and other mental tactic's for the probable extraction of information, and not on the level of the beheading's.

But non the less, it is a process our government and millitary has preveiously taught, publiclly, is an illegal act. I know this tactic was employed during Viet Nam. Those involved beleived then, as presently that their on the moral high ground, but, then, why are their efforts to keep this activity publiclly concealed? Because it is morally incorrect, and illegal and can land those involved to prison sentence's at Leavonworth. Response? **HUMPHREY**

Technically speaking, I suppose having one's HEAD SLOWLY and very PAINFULLY SEVERED may not qualify as torture. However, I would consider this a torturous death. Also, it's reasonable to assume these beheadings were the culmination of a slow and severe physical and psychological torturing process.

Regardless, of the brutal torture and death Americans must endure, we must take the high road. I would hope in our free society, our military cannot, and would not, conceal any mistreatment of our enemies. The word always gets out, and the guilty parties should be brought to justice. While our society is not perfect (no society is), we do believe in liberty and justice for all. That's a lot more than you can say for our enemies.

How can we ever save face if we do not confront these horrible events. Torture is never okay. Our government may cause more harm to our soldiers by their sick behavior but they allowed torture. If we ignore this then we ignore everything! Are we going to continue being bullies or are we going to admit that we have done wrong and attempt to make things better. I believe we went to this war for oil. The new project for the 21'st century was their guide. Please read and be chilled. Written by Cheney, Rumsfeld and others in this administration in the late 80's

You will not see this in the mainstream news

Iraq Reconstruction and Humanitarian Relief Weekly Update
http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/RWB.NSF/db900SID/EGUA-6FHQTU?OpenDocument&rc...

184 public works and water projects are planned
http://www.estripes.com/article.asp?section=104&article=30125&archive=true

Najaf road projects improve transportation
http://www.portaliraq.com/news/Najaf+road+projects+improve+transportatio...

Housing projects for returning refugees
http://www.azzaman.com/english/index.asp?fname=news\2005-08-17\10488.htm

School improvements continue
http://www.defenselink.mil/news/Aug2005/20050820_2493.html

Sunni General Conference Urges on Participating in Elections
http://www.almendhar.com/english_5304/news.aspx

Sunni Arabs in Fallujah ready for in Iraq's coming referendum
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2005-08/19/content_3375351.htm

Kurds revive villages in Iraq
http://www.columbiatribune.com/2005/Aug/20050824News013.asp

Iraqi citizenship being restored
http://www.almendhar.com/english_5350/news.aspx

Najaf Property Boom
http://www.iwpr.net/index.pl?archive/irq/irq_138_5_eng.txt

IFC to invest $210 million in Iraq cement works
http://www.portaliraq.com/news/IFC+to+invest+$210+million+in+Iraq+cement+works__1111458.html?PHPSESSID=14d8898c62d72567ae4cff87fa8481b8

Iraq and Sweden Agree on Establishing a Chamber of Commerce and Industry
http://www.almendhar.com/english_5345/news.aspx

Iraq increases southern oil production to 2.3 mln bpd
http://www.forbes.com/business/feeds/afx/2005/08/15/afx2180951.html

Korea Supplies Iraq with an Internet System
http://www.almendhar.com/english_5418/news.aspx

Al-Najaf base to be international airport
http://www.iraqdirectory.com/files/articles/article662.htm

American Grant of $20 Million for Rehabilitating Baghdad telecommunications infrastructure
http://www.almendhar.com/english_5373/news.aspx

ITALY INVESTS 2.18 MILLION EUROS FOR WATER AND ROADS IN NASIRIYA
http://www.adnki.com/index_2Level.php?cat=Politics&loid=8.0.197608936&par=0

New Hospitals in Maisan Province
http://www.almendhar.com/english_5524/news.aspx

Strategy for Water and Land Resources
http://www.portaliraq.com/news/First+planning+document+for+Iraq%27s+wate...

LAKES TO BE TURNED INTO TOURIST RESORTS
http://www.adnki.com/index_2Level.php?cat=Politics&loid=8.0.196862617&par=0

Propaganda. The citizens of the USA deserve to have their taxes support the USA.

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