Responsibility for the torture and abuse of detainees throughout Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as those held at GITMO, ultimately resides at the top.
The paper trail is taking its first halting steps on the road that will eventually lead to Bush. The first step will be placed on the head of General Ricardo Sanchez
A memo issued last summer by a U.S. Army military intelligence officer appealed for suggestions on how to extract information from prisoners in Iraq and called for tougher means of getting intelligence.
“The gloves are coming off gentleman regarding these detainees,” said the memo, which carried the signature of Capt. William Ponce Jr. The source of the memo, who refused to be identified, said it was sent by the intelligence staff of Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, who was then commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, to all concerned military intelligence personnel in Iraq.
In an apparent reference to Sanchez’s head of intelligence, Col. Steven Boltz, the memo asserted that “Col. Boltz has made it clear that we want these individuals broken. Casualties are mounting and we need to start gathering info to help protect our fellow soldiers from any further attacks.”
The source of the memo said it was issued about a month before the visit to Abu Ghraib by the commander of the U.S. military’s detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Defense attorneys for several of the defendants have said the visit by Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller, who is now in charge of detention operations in Iraq, was designed to loosen restrictions on interrogation techniques and that the guards charged with abuse were acting under orders of military intelligence officers and other superiors.