The decision of the US military to throw out the only conviction of an officer for misbeavior in the Abu Ghraib scandal has raised the level of criticism by human rights advocates regarding the failure of the military to conduct a fair investigation. Lt. Col. Steven Jordan, whose conviction was overthrown, admitted many officers and enlisted soldiersdid not face adequate scrutiny in the investigation. He said the probe was “not complete” and a link between Abu Ghraid and conditions in Guantanamo as never pursued. If rough interrogation techniques were taught militay personnel who abused prisoners, Jordan said, “the question at that point is, who’s responsible for that? Is is Donald Rumsfeld? General Sanchez?..I don’t know.”
Colonel Jordan raises important questions that unfortuntely will never be answerd as long as George Bush holds the presidency. At what point do those in top level commands assume responsibility for what occurs on their watch? Why are those at the bottom of the chain of command the only people to be convicted? As Harry Truman used to say about his reponsibility as president, “the buck stops here.” That is a buck that will never appear in the wallet of George Bush or Donald Rumsfeld.