By Anthony WadeOpEdNews.com
If there was ever an example of a complicit media, we need to look no further than the ongoing, yet dreadfully silent subject of the torture scandal.
George W. Bush has said that he is a war President, that makes decisions with war on his mind, and I believe him. He also would have us believe in the same breath that he is a victim, a victim of horrible intelligence, from nearly everyone who surrounds him. He asks us to look past this and re-elect him. I cannot look past Abu Ghraib.
You remember Abu Ghraib, don 't you? Back in the spring we first saw the pictures. Prisoners being led around on leashes. Prisoners standing on chairs with jumper cables attached to their genitals, in mock electrocution. Guards smiling for the cameras, enjoying every minute of it. We were all outraged, shocked and demanded answers ...and then we all kinda forgot about it.
The administration tried to sell us on the "few rotten apples " theory. Soon we were hearing about the fact that Bush had actually asked for a legal justification for avoiding the Geneva Conventions. This means that our President planned of course, the very torture he would have us believe was the actions of a few rotten apples. During the initial days of this controversy, we had the comparison of these acts to a "fraternity hazing " by noted right wing radio personality Rush Limbaugh. Considering how much drugs Mr. Limbaugh has done, I guess we can excuse such stupidity. However, at that same time we had some prominent republicans downplaying the torture. Tom Delay suggested folks were overreacting. Senator James Inhofe, was more "outraged about the outrage ", dismissing the barbaric tactics.
I want to make sure we do not lose sight of this scandal. This is a lot more than we have seen. This is more than Lynndie England. This is more than piling up naked prisoners and smiling for the cameras. Reports now are that US troops and translators sodomized and raped Iraqi prisoners. Not just adults either, reports are that teenage boys were also sodomized. Prisoners were urinated on. Handcuffed prisoners were tossed from moving cars. Prisoners were made to eat food that was infested with bugs. Some prisoners died as a result of the torture. One such death was the result of a man being forced to jump off a bridge into the Tigris River.
I wish the story ends there, as bad as this is, but it does not. This is because the allegations now, are that children were involved. Between January and May of this year, the Red Cross says that 107 children were registered as detainees. One story is that an interrogation of a 15-year-old girl had to be broken up, even though at that point she was half undressed. Another one says that a 16-year-old boy was doused with cold water, driven through the cold, smeared with mud and presented to his father, who immediately broke down. Reporter Seymour Hersh, who broke the initial scandal, has seen the sodomy of these young children on videotape and he recalls vividly, the shrieking of these boys as they were being violated.
This story is out there and is being reported in every country except ours. It takes a periodical like Rolling Stone to have the guts to print it in the US. Can you imagine the clamor there would be if this had happened under Clinton? There would be congressional hearings, daily press conferences, and of course, impeachment proceedings. It is the middle of an election year, three months before the election and what do we hear, silence. Where is our media? Why is this not the lead story on every channel until we get some answers to the allegations that we TORTURED, RAPED AND SODOMIZED CHILDREN! Where is the outrage! Where are the talking heads! Isn 't this an important enough story to get to the bottom of before we go to the polls? Is this what we have come to in America? That the rape of children is not newsworthy if it may shine negatively upon our President. Do we care anymore about who we are as a people and what we are supposed to stand for? It is bad enough that some would believe that democracy is a concept that must be forced upon people, reducing it to figurative and political rape. Do we really need to add physical rape on top of it, look the other way, and ignore the shrieks of these children?
I know this is not a pleasant story. I know it is not something we wish that had happened, but it has. It has all been verified, but forgotten. Please keep in mind that 70-90% of these people were eventually released because they actually had done nothing wrong. Keep in mind that it is a violation of international law, despite what Bush 's lawyers might say. Keep in mind that we adhere to those laws so that when our soldiers are captured, they are not tortured. Keep in mind that despite such medieval practices, the best intelligence we can gather these days, remains four years old.
Twenty years ago, the press would have been relentless in their pursuit of the truth. They would not have stopped until the real rotten apples had been rooted out. The truth of the matter is that this tragedy is the result of a few rotten apples. The torture, rape, sodomy, sodomy with a broomstick, sodomy with a phosphoric light, child abuse, squalor, and insect infested food is all the result of a few bad apples. They just happen to be Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Powell, Rice, Bremer, Ashcroft, and Feith. They are the ones leading us around on a leash. We need to stop smiling for the cameras and demand some answers.
Anthony Wade is co-administrator of a website devoted to educating the populace to the ongoing lies of President George W. Bush and seeking his removal from office. He is a 36-year-old independent writer from New York with political commentary articles seen on multiple websites. A Christian progressive, and professional counselor, Mr. Wade believes that you can have faith and hold elected officials accountable for lies and excess.
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