28 September 2005

heroes, heroism, humanism...

Andrew Sullivan has been following the saga of Capt. Ian Fishback who has spent a lot of time "researching" the Armed Forces policies of humane and inhumane treatment of prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan. Capt. Fishback has written a letter printed in the Washington Post to Sen. John McCain asking for his assistance in assuring the honor and reputation of the United States' Armed Forces in the world from alleged disregard of the Geneva Conventions and treatment of prisoners as less than human beings by codifying the standards of treatment. In Captain Fishback's own words, "Once again, I strongly urge you to do justice to your men and women in uniform. Give them clear standards of conduct that reflect the ideals they risk their lives for." washingtonpost.com

He is reported as a totally upstanding member of the Army, a top-notch West Pointer and a caring individual both towards the soldiers under his command and foes. One co-worker, friend and acquaintance after another has attested to his solid background and actions.

The torture end-game is approaching - and Rumsfeld and Cheney know it. What is now being done to the hero, Captain Ian Fishback, who braved 17 months of obstruction, threats and intimidation by military brass to keep quiet, is a national disgrace. Fishback has now been sequestered at Fort Bragg under orders restricting his contacts (the pretext is that he is a key witness in a criminal investigation and that he should not be in contact with outsiders while it continues). My sources tell me that he has been subjected to a series of long, arduous interrogations by CID investigators. Predictably, the CID guys are out to find just one thing: they want to know the identities of his two or three NCO corroborators. Andrew Sullivan

This alleged treatment of Fishback is in keeping with how the current administration has handled instance after instance, not only with Iraq but with domestic and other diplomatic issues. It is concurrent with the secrecy built into the Homeland Security Law under the guise of national security.

...but what else is being kept secret?

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