Even now, at the possible nadir of Bush’s popularity, impeachment of him or Cheney is inconceivable. But now it seems like a criminal charge of Rumsfeld is looking possible:
The Army has finally charged a mid-level inteligence officer for some of the abuses at Abu Ghraib. According to his charge sheet Lt. Col Steven L. Jordan “did oppress Iraqi detainees, persons subject to his orders, by subjecting them to forced nudity and intimidation by military working dogs.”
Military prosecutors assert such treatment violates UCMJ 93, which states, “[A]ny person subject to this chapter who is guilty of cruelty toward, or oppression or maltreatment of, any person subject to his orders shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.”
Which is darn interesting, because top Pentagon officials, including Rumsfeld, once approved the exact same treatment— forced nudity and intimidation by dogs.
Marty Lederman analyzed the situation and agrees – Rumsfeld could be charged for authorizing torture. And thank God. As much as I want Bush to go, I want him to go for something important like Plame, not something trivial, as would probably be the case. If Rumsfeld can be prosecuted for this, it wouldn’t just serve to remove a dangerous individual from government – it would serve justice as well. Moreover, it would bolster America’s humanitarian credentials, by showing that we are willing to prosecute even our own country’s war criminals. Let’s just hope that there is a brave prosecutor out there somewhere.