Monday, January 09, 2006

Bush sides with torturers against veterans

State Veterans Affairs Secretary John Scocos wrote a column recently, marking the 15th anniversary of the start of the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

He told in some detail of the about the abusive treatment and torture of captured Americans, including a Wisconsin veteran, Joseph Small.

Those details and more are available in a lawsuit filed by a group of Gulf War veterans and their families, seeking punitive damages from the Iraq government for their mistreatment.

Scocos didn't mention the lawsuit, in which a federal district court awarded the veterans nearly $1-billion in damages from the government of Iraq.

The Bush administration opposed the award in an appeal, on the grounds that there is a new government in Iraq which needs the money to rebuild from the devastation caused by the current war, or, as an LA Times writer described the Bush argument:
Today's Iraqis are good guys, and they need the money.

The case — Acree v. Iraq and the United States,— abounds with ironies. It pits the U.S. government squarely against its war heroes and the Geneva Conventions.
The appeals court overturned the award, and the Supreme Court refused to take up the case.

So Bush's record is consistent -- for torture on both sides.


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