A Faulknerian New Story
the CACI folks have set a high standard for the young soldiers to follow

Civilian Contractors and the Iraqi Torture Scandal

A couple of people have sent me this URL, and I am insanely busy today so I had not intended any further blogging. But this shocks me.

I did not think I would be easy to shock on the subject of the use of private contractors in Iraq, but this bit -- the role of private contractors in the emerging scandal over the US treatment of Iraqi prisoners -- is just insane.

US military in torture scandal: Use of private contractors in Iraqi jail interrogations highlighted by inquiry into abuse of prisoners

Graphic photographs showing the torture and sexual abuse of Iraqi prisoners in a US-run prison outside Baghdad emerged yesterday from a military inquiry which has left six soldiers facing a possible court martial and a general under investigation.

The scandal has also brought to light the growing and largely unregulated role of private contractors in the interrogation of detainees.

According to lawyers for some of the soldiers, they claimed to be acting in part under the instruction of mercenary interrogators hired by the Pentagon.

Immediate questions that spring to mind for the next White House press conference or Pentagon briefing: Who hired these contractors? What private military firm are they with? What was the nature of their screening, if any?

Bot the Guardian and the L. A. Times reports that the companies involved were CACI International of Arlington, Va., and Titan Corp. of San Diego.

This, also, from the Guardian, tells what was done about contractor misbehavior:

Colonel Jill Morgenthaler, speaking for central command, told the Guardian: "One contractor was originally included with six soldiers, accused for his treatment of the prisoners, but we had no jurisdiction over him. It was left up to the contractor on how to deal with him."

She did not specify the accusation facing the contractor, but according to several   sources with detailed knowledge of the case, he raped an Iraqi inmate in his mid-teens.

We're paying these guys to rape boys? And, presumably, they sent they guy home to do it over here, without legal consquences? What planet are these people from?

Gary Farber has a detailed post on the torture story.

And I haven't even had a chance to scratch the surface of the new Mother Jones article, New Word Order.

Can I just repeat what I said a month ago? BREMER SHOULD RESIGN. And not only that, RUMSFELD SHOULD RESIGN.

(Thanks to Gary Farber and Andrea Eastman.)

This scandal has provoked a lot of blog discussion. Some of it can be found via this technorati link.