Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Report Clears Army of Prisoner Abuse

From Powerline

We're a few days late with this one, but Dafydd ab Hugh's analysis of the U.S. Army's report on prisoner abuse that was released last week is worth passing on:

The Army has released the findings of its report on all confirmed or alleged cases of prisoner abuse in Iraq, Afghanistan, and in the war on terror in general. The "shock" headline (for the mathematically challenged) is "U.S. Reports 94 Cases of Prisoner Abuse"

But in fact, the report is stunning as an example of the dog that *did not* bark -- and it's another vindication for Bush and Rumsfeld.

First of all, headline aside, the body of the AP story makes clear that the number ninety-four refers not just to confirmed cases but to all allegations of abuse as well: if a prisoner says "I was beaten," it's counted as part of those ninety-four, even if there is no corroboration whatsoever for it, or even if it's disputed by a dozen eye witnesses.

Second, and bearing the above in mind, the real shocker is at the bottom
of the article:

The Army inspector general report found that since the fall of 2001, overall the United States had held more than 50,000 prisoners in Afghanistan and Iraq, a number never before made public.

I blinked in surprise at this: out of 50,000 arrests and detentions during a war, a grand total of only ninety-four allegations of abuse were made? That's astonishingly low -- and it's a wonderful testament to the professionalism and calm devotion to duty among our soldiers, led by Donald Rumsfeld and George W. Bush.

Read on, it gets better.

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