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Limbaugh Defends Torture at Abu Ghraib

[ For background on U.S. torture of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib, see this earlier story. –BL ]

Limbaugh on torture of Iraqis: U.S. guards were "having a good time," "blow[ing] some steam off"

May 5, 2004 | MediaMatters.org

by A.S. & G.W.

Hours before President George W. Bush announced plans to address the Arab world to condemn the abuse of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. military personnel at the Abu Ghraib prison, Rush Limbaugh justified the U.S. guards’ mistreatment of the Iraqis, stating that they were just "having a good time," and that their actions served as an "emotional release."

As reported by Wonkette.com, Limbaugh’s comments can be found on his website. From the May 4 Rush Limbaugh Show, titled "It’s Not About Us; This Is War!":

CALLER: It was like a college fraternity prank that stacked up naked men —

LIMBAUGH: Exactly. Exactly my point! This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation and we’re going to ruin people’s lives over it and we’re going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I’m talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You of heard of need to blow some steam off?

Listen to this audio clip: mp3 audio file


Limbaugh: prisoner abuse "brilliant"

May 7, 2004 | MediaMatters.org

On his May 6 radio show, Rush Limbaugh continued to defend U.S. military personnel accused of abusing Iraqi prisoners, comparing the abuse photos to "good old American pornography":

LIMBAUGH: All right, so we’re at war with these people. And they’re in a prison where they’re being softened up for interrogation. And we hear that the most humiliating thing you can do is make one Arab male disrobe in front of another. Sounds to me like it’s pretty thoughtful. Sounds to me in the context of war this is pretty good intimidation — and especially if you put a woman in front of them and then spread those pictures around the Arab world. And we’re sitting here, "Oh my God, they’re gonna hate us! Oh no! What are they gonna think of us?" I think maybe the other perspective needs to be at least considered. Maybe they’re gonna think we are serious. Maybe they’re gonna think we mean it this time. Maybe they’re gonna think we’re not gonna kowtow to them. Maybe the people who ordered this are pretty smart. Maybe the people who executed this pulled off a brilliant maneuver. Nobody got hurt. Nobody got physically injured. But boy there was a lot of humiliation of people who are trying to kill us — in ways they hold dear. Sounds pretty effective to me if you look at us in the right context.

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