Sour Grapes
Of course we're Fair and Balanced!


Land of the free and home of the brave

Words can't convey how sick I feel upon reading this article from the New York Times:

A C.I.A. contractor broke both the agency's rules and the law when he used a two-foot-long metal flashlight to beat an Afghan man [named Abdul Wali] who later died, a prosecutor said Monday at the federal trial of the first American civilian charged with mistreating a detainee in Iraq or Afghanistan.

But lawyers for the defendant, David A. Passaro, a onetime Special Forces medic, said he had been a frustrated but concerned interrogator who never hit the man and who checked daily on his condition.

"Dave is guilty only of trying to serve his country," said Joe Gilbert, Mr. Passaro�s public defender. "He�s not guilty."

I sincerely hope Mr Gilbert is right, and that Mr Passaro is not guilty in every sense. One reason this story sickens me so is that it has become far too easy to believe that he actually is guilty and that this case is just one of many.

One prosecutor, Pat Sullivan, said Mr. Wali was chained to the floor and wall of a cell as Mr. Passaro kicked him and struck him with the flashlight and his fists. Once, he said, Mr. Passaro kicked his captive in the groin, having lined up like a football place-kicker. Mr. Passaro's fingerprints were on batteries from the flashlight, said Mr. Sullivan, adding that photographs to be shown the jury would detail the extent of Mr. Wali's injuries.

Other versions of the story allege that Mr Wali begged to be shot to be put out of his pain.

[Thanks to today's Capitol Hill Blue.]

Blog home
Blog archives