Human Rights Watch said yesterday that the prisoner abuse scandal at Abu Ghraib was a near-inevitable consequence of the Bush administration’s rejection of international legal norms.
The 38-page report, The Road to Abu Ghraib, says U.S. policies created the climate for the abuses in three ways: by using the war on terror to circumvent international law and set up “offshore, off-limits” detention centers; by employing coercive interrogation methods to elicit information from detainees; and by ignoring reports of detainee mistreatment.
“The horrors of Abu Ghraib were not simply the acts of individual soldiers,” said Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch. “Abu Ghraib resulted from the decisions made by the Bush administration to cast the rules aside” (Human Rights Watch release, June 9).
Thanks to David Donahoe for forwarding this piece. –BL