BLAMING IT ON THE TROOPS. It took what seemed like forever tonight for George W. Bush to get around to Abu Ghraib. And when he did, it was to blame it all on the troops, and to promise the completely symbolic (though probably necessary) step of demolishing the prison. Said Bush:
A new Iraq will also need a humane, well-supervised prison system. Under the dictator, prisons like Abu Ghraib were symbols of death and torture. That same prison became a symbol of disgraceful conduct by a few American troops who dishonored our country and disregarded our values.
America will fund the construction of a modern maximum security prison.
When that prison is completed, detainees at Abu Ghraib will be relocated. Then with the approval of the Iraqi government, we will demolish the Abu Ghraib Prison as a fitting symbol of Iraq's new beginning.
Those seven camera-and-glowstick-wielding soldiers deserve their share of the blame. But it's already been reported that similar abuses took place in Afghanistan, and Rummy only knows what's going on at Guantánamo. Sorry, Mr. President. You can knock down Abu Ghraib, but the truth is coming out anyway.