Senate report ties Rumsfeld to Abu Ghraib abuse
Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and other senior U.S. officials share much of the blame for detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, according to portions of a report released on Thursday by the Senate Armed Services Committee.
The report concluded that Rumsfeld's actions were "a direct cause of detainee abuse" at Guantanamo and "influenced and contributed to the use of abusive techniques ... in Afghanistan and Iraq."
"The abuse of detainees at Abu Ghraib in late 2003 was not simply the result of a few soldiers acting on their own," the executive summary said.
The report found that the military derived the techniques from a Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape program, or SERE, which trains U.S. soldiers to resist enemy interrogation that does not conform to the Geneva Conventions or international law.
"These policies are wrong and must never be repeated," McCain, who last month ended an unsuccessful bid for the White House, said in a statement released with the executive summary.
McCain said the report revealed an "inexcusable link between abusive interrogation techniques used by our enemies who ignored the Geneva Conventions and interrogation policy for detainees in U.S. custody."
The executive summary also traces the erosion of detainee treatment standards to a Feb,. 7, 2002, memorandum signed by President George W. Bush stating that the Geneva Convention did not apply to the U.S. war with al Qaeda and that Taliban detainees were not entitled to prisoner of war status or legal protections.