THE SAGA CONTINUES (AND GETS MORE BIZARRE)
In an interview with a Colorado TV station, accused Abu Ghraib abuser PFC Lynndie England claims that she was just following the orders of those above her in her chain of command. The 21 year old soldier failed to specify which one of her superiors gave her the order to engage in the bahavior documented in the now infamous photos from the Iraqi prison. "I was told to stand here, point thumbs up, look at the camera and take the picture" England said.
The story has now taken another strange twist with the revelation that England appeared in numerous photos that have not been released. The NY Post is reporting that some of the photos showed England "engaged in graphic sex acts with other soldiers in front of Iraqi prisoners, Pentagon officials told NBC Nightly News." According to one lawmaker who saw the photos, "she was having sex with numerous partners. It appeared to be consensual."
It will be interesting to see how England, her attorney, and her family attempt to spin this latest revelation. Was England just following orders when these pictures were taken? Who was giving all of these (obviously) illegal orders? If such orders were given, England and her co-defendants need to name names. Mysterious someones just won't do in a military court.
There is little doubt that the chain of command failed these soldiers. This does not mitigate the fact that the soldiers who committed the abuses at Abu Ghraib failed us. And furthermore, they failed themselves as well.