September 26, 2005

"She was a follower, she was an individual who was smitten with Graner.... She just did whatever he wanted her to do."

Said the lawyer for Lynndie England. Duly noted, and duly convicted. All you "overly compliant" folks out there: heads up. You actually are expected to take responsibility for yourself.

33 comments:

Blogrankers said...
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Meade said...
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Elizabeth said...

Was she doing that earlier when she tried to plead guilty? Graner derailed that attempt when he testified that she'd been following his orders. Was he trying to help her, by providing her the option to plead that she wasn't responsible, or was he manipulating the court? At the time, I recall her saying "He ruins everything," so she might have meant to take responsibility by pleading guilty.

Too Many Jims said...

Taking responsibility is a good thing. Let's hope others who ordered, condoned, facilitated or permitted torture or the like come to realize that.

EddieP said...

Please Jim, humiliation possibly, but in no way torture!

Murky Thoughts said...

How did the "Manson children"'s sentences differ from Charles'? There must be some dispensation to those under others' sway. Would you convict Jonestown parents for murder in the first degree if any of them had by accident survived and their children hadn't?

Simon said...

That may actually be the best Althouse post ever. :p

Jacques Cuze said...

Taking responsibility for your actions is a good thing.

Bush.
Rice.
Rumsfeld.
General Miller.
Professor Yoo.
Perverters of Justice and apologists for torture: Reynolds, Volokh, Althouse.

Murky Thoughts said...
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Sean said...

Sad to say, this sort of defense has worked for women in the past, e.g., Hedda Nussbaum, who murdered (or connived in the murder of) her husband's and her adopted daughter. I hope it doesn't work here.

Murky Thoughts said...

(Once more with proofreading...)

Also, this should count as a war crime, and war crimes seem to get special treatment, even if we pretend that "I was just following orders" cuts no mustard as an excuse. In reality, not everybody involved in atrocities gets summoned to the Hague. They certainly don't start with the littlest of fish.

Jacques Cuze said...

I wish you would have given me this written question ahead of time, so I could plan for it... You know, I just -- I'm sure something will pop into my head here in the midst of this press conference, with all the pressure of trying to come up with an answer, but it hadn't yet."

* Bush - when asked if he had made any mistakes as President.
* Press Conference, April 13, 2004

Jennifer said...

I wonder if England were a man who idolized Graner rather than a woman in love with him, if people would make the same excuses. He couldn't help it, he just did whatever Graner wanted him to do, it's really not his fault...

I kind of doubt that would hold sway.

If it wouldn't, then you have to wonder why you would excuse England. Simply because she's a woman, she's inherently weak and vulnerable?

aidan maconachy said...

When the Abhu Ghraib revelations first surfaced I was inclined to believe that a minority of boneheads were behind it and I also felt a lot of the "torture" allegations were being hyped. However the recent revelations that have surfaced suggest a deeper and more prevasive problem.

It now appears that torture was used as a tool to humiliate others in a random and completely gratuitous fashion - for reasons of power and control basically. This is quite different from applying pressure to a suspect who has knowledge that within an hour a bomb will detonate in a mall killing and wounding hundreds. In such a case I would say do whatever it takes to extract information about the whereabouts of the device.

American methods can't be compared to the very real torture of regimes such as Iran, but given the apparent extent of this problem we can't off-load responsibility by simply saying "its worse over there".

Recently Hitchens in fact used the term "moral Chernobyl".

When the Bush administration presumes to be an exporter of "freedom and democracy" to other countries it better make damn certain that its representitives are above this type of mass descent into moral idiocy.

aidan maconachy said...

quxxo - anyone who rules out the option of strong arming suspects under all circumstances is tragically misguided and naive.

I'm from Belfast and lived in N.Ireland throughout the troubles. A great many civilian lives were saved as a result of RUC and British army methods. They managed to extract information about bombs in the city center and were able to evacuate civilians prior to the explosions occurring.

The Israeli armed services also know only too well that under dire circumstances you have to do whatever it takes to save innocent lives.

Despite the objections of armchair humanitarians, the people in the field will continue to take the necessary measures to prevent major atrocities.

Jacques Cuze said...

Aidin,

Yes, Ms. 7 to the Noggin, Shoot To Kill Innocents For the Betterment of the Majority Althouse agrees with you.

aidan maconachy said...

I'm in good company then

Jacques Cuze said...

Would you please put up Ms. Althouse in a spare room then? She's a nice girl, a bit dangerous perhaps, but you two will get along famously. Her friend Reynolds is a notorious drunk, but he can charm a snake, so please feel free to extend your invite....

miklos rosza said...

quxxo, have you ever had any contact, email or otherwise, with an actual iraqi? of course you can lie in your answer, so have at it, but your ire really has nothing to do with any iraqis from the look of it. you really don't care what becomes of them, do you? your war is in the USA.

Jacques Cuze said...

Yes, of course I have met Iraqis.

And yes, you're right too, as a victim of past culture wars, I am fighting in this culture war too.

I didn't start this culture war, Bush and Atwater, Bush and Rove did.

My battle is in the United States and for the United States The United States my parents and their parents fought for. The United States that came forward with the Constitution, and the Declaration of Independence, and the Bill of Rights.

The United States that Ann takes for granted.

I am in a battle for that United States, and against the United States of your creation: the United States that had dragged its soldiers into crimes against humanity. The United States that tosses citizens in jail indefinitely and without a trial or access to a lawyer. The United States that denies science. The United States that demolishes FEMA. The United States that rules based on fear. The United States that arrests citizens for exercising their first amendment rights. The United States that scapegoats the powerless while covering up the criminal and corrupt and incompetent. The United States that is pro-corporation, and anti-the little guy and the little companies. The United States of Crony Capitalism. The United States of Pollution and Anti-globalwarming. The United States of anti-gay. The United States of Intolerance. The United States of Corruption. The United States of Black Box Voting.

The President of that United States is much more dangerous to me and to my family than Saddam Hussein ever was. That President has made my life much more at risk.

Yes Miklos, that is not the United States I was born in. And that is the United States I fight for.

I wish Ann would join that fight. She owes her life and livlihood to that United States. She owes her fellow citizens to join that fight.

Jacques Cuze said...
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Jacques Cuze said...

We the People

"We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution....

These words and the words that follow were not written only for the Yangs, but for the Khoms as well. They must apply to everyone or they mean nothing, do you understand?"

Ann Althouse said...

Quxxo, your comments today have been very poor, and I am close to deleting them all, and now you've descended into Star Trek crap. Pick up the level of what you are writing and think about whether what you say makes sense and relates to the post, or I will methodically delete everything you've ever written in the comments.

Jacques Cuze said...

Hmm. Daniel Drezner once said something very similar when I once "smote him" with an apt Star Wars analogy. So maybe it's me, but maybe it's you.

Anyway, I wish I could apologize for the Star Trek reference, but I can't. I love that episode!

Ann Althouse said...

Quxxo: It's irrelevant that you love it. Write your own blog and blog about Star Trek. Comments to my blog need to be relevant. You're just ranting. If you did that on your own blog, perhaps you'd get some readers, but right now, you are taking advantage of my hospitality, and you aren't being a good guest. You need to think more clearly about how to behave over here. I'm trying to maintain a civil community and an awful lot of commenters are contributing to this thing we are making together. You seem to believe that you have good values, but you've been tone deaf about the values of this community.

Steve Donohue said...

Perverters of Justice and apologists for torture: Reynolds, Volokh, Althouse

Add me! Add me! That's a pretty prodigious list.

But seriously, Mrs. England got exactly what she deserved, and I think you'd be hard pressed to find anyone that would disagree.

Jimmy said...

quxxo,
I don't understand your comments. Althouse's post was tough on a woman who carried out torture> You respond by calling her a "apologist for torture". You're not making sense.

Sloanasaurus said...

Quxxo, it would be interesting to discuss the United States your parents and Grandparents were "fighting for."

"...that is not the United States I was born in. And that is the United States I fight for...."

I would be interested to know what "United States" you would fight for. It seems that you have basically ruled out every possibility with your laundry list of rants.

Of course my favorite was a "United States that denies science." I admit I have not heard that one yet. I will be looking for it amongst the various placards at Camp Casey.

Brando said...

When the Bush administration presumes to be an exporter of "freedom and democracy" to other countries it better make damn certain that its representitives are above this type of mass descent into moral idiocy.

It would help if the president himself wasn't a moral idiot as well.

Eli Blake said...

Hidden about halfway through an article about the administration's incompetence in the September 10 Boston Globe is the following tidbit:

Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham and John Warner, all Republicans on the armed services committee, recently put forward an amendment to the defense appropriations bill. It states that US policy should be:

defined as the interrogation procedures authorized by the US Army Field Manual, which specifically prohibits cruel, degrading, or inhumane treatment. Second, all detainees held by the United States, in whatever invented category, must be registered with the International Committee of the Red Cross.

McCain, in explaining it, said 'This is not about who ''they" are, McCain has said repeatedly. It's about who we are. ''We are Americans... and we hold ourselves to humane standards of treatment of people no matter how terrible they may be. To do otherwise undermines our security, but it also undermines our greatness as a nation.

Since it has been proposed, dozens of retired generals, admirals, and other ranking officials have signed letters supporting the McCain amendment. Retired Brigadier General James Cullen, former chief judge of the US Army Court of Appeals, told a conference on national security policy in Washington that the legal experts of the military's own criminal system had been systematically excluded from the setting of interrogation and detention policy after 9/11.

Bush has threated to veto the bill if the amendment is included. (Go ahead, IMO: it would be the perfect legacy for Bush if his first veto was on a bill outlawing the use of torture).

Now granted, everything McCain says and does is subject to suspicion since he is running for President in 2008, but it is also clear that this is in response to a public that is fed up with actions on the part of America that just a few years ago would have been considered unthinkable.

Condoleesa said...

is Quxxo 12 years old or what?

Aside from that, I think she was sucked in by Graner. Bottom line though is she is responsible for her own actions. She blew it. She will have a LONG time to sort it out.

Red A said...

She had sex with Graner and they took pics (those of course were not leaked by the defense...)

It's obvious that Rumsfeld is not ordering enlisted men and women to have sex and photograph such actions, so it seems to me it's easy to extend this logic to their other actions...

I don't understand how people still think Abu Ghraib was "sanctioned" by higher ups. Maybe a case could be made for a lack of management by the officers in charge of the facility...

Charles said...

I have to admit I sort of like that Q guy. No idea what he is talking about or that the liberal international socialists imposed most of the stuff he hates so much, not the conservatives. Haliburton (since I imagine that is one of his list big businesses), for example, was a Clinton darling corporation. Or does he hate Heinz ketchup too? Just one minor example.