Hackworth on Abu Ghraib
In 1951 in Korea, I was told by my commanding officer to kill four POWs and refused his direct order. I well remembered the Nazi generals’ sorry rationale for their despicable conduct: “We were just following orders.” I would get booted out of the Army before I went that route.
In 1965 in Vietnam, I saw a very connected intelligence captain torturing a POW with a field-telephone wire attached to his testicles and decided my personal belief system outweighed his father’s four stars. When I told him I’d shoot him if he didn’t cease and desist, the atrocity came to a screeching halt…
“The bedrock truth about the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison is that they were so easily preventable,” adds SFTT (Soldiers for the Truth) Vice President Roger Charles, who researched this story for CBS News. “But that prevention required a recognition that the top people in the 800th were ill-prepared, incompetent and uncaring.”