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'Tortured' US citizens allowed to sue Donald Rumsfeld

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August 9, 2011 5:50:40 AM

Two former US security contractors may sue former Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for his role in their alleged torture in Iraq, a court has ruled.

In a statement, a lawyer for Mr Rumsfeld said the decision to allow the suit "saps the effectiveness of the military, puts American soldiers at risk, and shackles federal officials who have a constitutional duty to protect America".

Its never too late, beside what makes military a sacred cow which can't be touched upon? I think it probably reflects the mentality where these people have grown to completely unhindered power to do whatever they want to do, regardless of any laws. Anyway, this menace is not restricted to US military only, I think it is prevalent in so many other countries as well.

By the way there is a reason that my employer 'officially' banned hiring of any ex-military personnel ;) 
August 9, 2011 10:09:49 AM

Of course they should be able to sue Rumsfeld: the burden of proof should lie with the torturer to prove torture was necessary to save a great deal of lives (which would still not make it legal but might make the president give out a pardon, yeah I know the uncertainty sucks for the accused torturer but isn't that the responsibility that comes with "the duty to protect America" and isn't risk also used to justify politicians' and flag officers' high salaries?), not the other way around.
August 9, 2011 1:22:13 PM

Archean said:
Two former US security contractors may sue former Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for his role in their alleged torture in Iraq, a court has ruled.

In a statement, a lawyer for Mr Rumsfeld said the decision to allow the suit "saps the effectiveness of the military, puts American soldiers at risk, and shackles federal officials who have a constitutional duty to protect America".

Its never too late, beside what makes military a sacred cow which can't be touched upon? I think it probably reflects the mentality where these people have grown to completely unhindered power to do whatever they want to do, regardless of any laws. Anyway, this menace is not restricted to US military only, I think it is prevalent in so many other countries as well.

By the way there is a reason that my employer 'officially' banned hiring of any ex-military personnel ;) 



That's too bad then. Your employer is missing out on a great pool of talented and skilled labor if their policy is to not hire these people.
August 10, 2011 1:24:57 PM

I don't believe that every one who served in arm is 'very talented', some of them may but that is it. Their biggest attribute is that they are more 'focused' on the discipline part rather then the 'creative' side of things. Anyway, we can always agree to disagree on some things :) 
August 10, 2011 1:47:06 PM

Archean said:
I don't believe that every one who served in arm is 'very talented', some of them may but that is it. Their biggest attribute is that they are more 'focused' on the discipline part rather then the 'creative' side of things. Anyway, we can always agree to disagree on some things :) 


Yeah, most soldiers were criminals and/or high school dropouts before they joined the military (most joined for the money or to escape a prison sentence). Officers are educated, but not at some special super high level.
August 10, 2011 1:49:35 PM

Gulli said:
Yeah, most soldiers were criminals and/or high school dropouts before they joined the military (most joined for the money or to escape a prison sentence). Officers are educated, but not at some special super high level.



Maybe in your country Gulli.

In the US, the vast majority of our soldiers are the best and brightest among us who volunteer to serve their country.

Talking out of you arse again Gulli.
August 10, 2011 2:34:26 PM

Oldmangamer_73 said:
Maybe in your country Gulli.

In the US, the vast majority of our soldiers are the best and brightest among us who volunteer to serve their country.

Talking out of you arse again Gulli.


In my country you can't get out of a prison sentence by joining the military, unlike some other countries like the US. In your country it is a way for the poor to escape poverty or a sentence, why do you think minorities are overrepresented in your military, because they are more patriotic? This is you talking out of your ass (it's almost as ridiculous as saying god gave people the right to carry guns) and you know it: most soldiers have not, or barely finished high school and many have criminal backgrounds (or are still in gangs while in the military). You really have a warped fairy tail view of your military (which is not known for its high standards abroad).
August 10, 2011 2:39:21 PM

I don't want to start a pointless debate but TBH 'these same best and brightest gave us Abu Ghraib, and these same folks came up with unique torture techniques at Gitmo' to name couple of examples. I am not a fan of this kind of best/brightest lot, sorry.
August 10, 2011 2:41:36 PM

I completely object to our wars overseas, they should be ended immediately. But it is a bit misinformed to paint such a wide swath over our military. I have family members that have joined up. My cousin has been in Afghanistan for the last few months. I dont think that the military has issues with gang violence. Its not a prison or a militia.

I believe the types of people you are referring to are the independent contractors.
August 10, 2011 2:42:08 PM

Archean said:
I don't want to start a pointless debate but TBH 'these same best and brightest gave us Abu Ghraib, and these same folks came up with unique torture techniques at Gitmo' to name couple of examples. I am not a fan of this kind of best/brightest lot, sorry.



The exceptions rather than the rule.
August 10, 2011 2:42:56 PM

Gulli said:
In my country you can't get out of a prison sentence by joining the military, unlike some other countries like the US. In your country it is a way for the poor to escape poverty or a sentence, why do you think minorities are overrepresented in your military, because they are more patriotic? This is you talking out of your ass (it's almost as ridiculous as saying god gave people the right to carry guns) and you know it: most soldiers have not, or barely finished high school and many have criminal backgrounds (or are still in gangs while in the military). You really have a warped fairy tail view of your military (which is not known for its high standards abroad).



You can't avoid prison by joining the military! WTF are you talking about??
August 10, 2011 4:19:44 PM

Oldmangamer_73 said:
Maybe in your country Gulli.

In the US, the vast majority of our soldiers are the best and brightest among us who volunteer to serve their country.

Talking out of you arse again Gulli.


As a person who has served in the US Army I can safely say that this is false. The majority (with the exception of AF)
Are basically your average Joe that normally joined because of circumstantial reasons. The main reason is for the educational
benefits that they plan on using once they get out. Some do it out of desperation for money and secure benefits for
their family. Many young men join with a kid on the way or already born that they fear they could not support
if they were currently unemployed or simply had a poor job. The idea of doing a
honorable thing by protecting the people and the rights of the people does help in the decision for people to join.

Oldmangamer_73 said:
You can't avoid prison by joining the military! WTF are you talking about??


This does not happen nearly as often as it did in the past but its still enough to be asked it when joining.
You should be asked if this is the reason for you enlisting when you are visiting MEPS. People were indeed pressured to
join the military by the courts with a deal that charges would be dropped if they did.
To my knowledge I have never met someone who this has happened to of course its not something they
would likely tell another in the first place.
August 10, 2011 4:37:08 PM

^^ Well what do you expect? You were in the army! (joke)

I guess I should have said the majority of the military people I have been exposed to and talked with are some of the best and brightest. Our military is NOT replete with criminal scumbags as Gulli would have people believe. That was my main point.
August 10, 2011 4:53:52 PM

Well that is exactly where I didn't wanted this debate to go, not all of them are bad (claiming that is absurd in my opinion) but many many of them are just ..... scumbags. One more example just to let you know what I mean "US soldiers 'killed Afghan civilians for sport and collected fingers as trophies" (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/sep/09/us-soldiers...).
August 10, 2011 5:25:00 PM

Oldmangamer_73 said:
^^ Well what do you expect? You were in the army! (joke)

I guess I should have said the majority of the military people I have been exposed to and talked with are some of the best and brightest. Our military is NOT replete with criminal scumbags as Gulli would have people believe. That was my main point.


Most militaries are replete (as in they have more than the general population) with scum and it has always been that way, this isn't an insult against America (although America has some of the worst problems because of its gang culture and having less alternatives for poor youngsters). This is obviously concentrated at the lower ranks where few qualifications are required. Higher ranks and special forces are filled by people with better education and moral standing. The military is a lot more attractive to people with no educations and/or no hope at alternative careers and the character of the job attracts walking testosterone bombs. This is not to say there aren't many bright people in the lower ranks, who never got a shot at education because they came from poor families.

The majority of uniformed men and women are average Joes and Janes but they are by no means the best and brightest (they aren't called average Joe or Jane for nothing), while there are (relative of course) more criminals, rednecks and gang members (the FBI suspects the gang membership rate is 50-100 higher) in the military than in the general population.
August 10, 2011 9:31:18 PM

Oldmangamer_73 said:
^^ Well what do you expect? You were in the army! (joke)

I guess I should have said the majority of the military people I have been exposed to and talked with are some of the best and brightest. Our military is NOT replete with criminal scumbags as Gulli would have people believe. That was my main point.



Certainly cannot disagree. From my personal experience I can say that the majority is by far good and well meaning people.

Archean said:
Well that is exactly where I didn't wanted this debate to go, not all of them are bad (claiming that is absurd in my opinion) but many many of them are just ..... scumbags. One more example just to let you know what I mean "US soldiers 'killed Afghan civilians for sport and collected fingers as trophies" (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/sep/09/us-soldiers...).


I think you using the word "many" is incorrect as it suggests a majority or at-least a sizable amount. Five guys in your above example is not many.
You also have to realize that some bad apples make it into any group of people no matter what group it is. I bet I can find five registered sex offenders
in your neighborhood (assuming you are American or have a similar program) and likely your general area has less people than how many currently enlisted men and women
that are serving. Would it be fair if I said your neighborhood is full of sex offenders? That most of you (and therefor likely including you) are scumbags?


Gulli said:
Most militaries are replete (as in they have more than the general population) with scum and it has always been that way, this isn't an insult against America (although America has some of the worst problems because of its gang culture and having less alternatives for poor youngsters). This is obviously concentrated at the lower ranks where few qualifications are required. Higher ranks and special forces are filled by people with better education and moral standing. The military is a lot more attractive to people with no educations and/or no hope at alternative careers and the character of the job attracts walking testosterone bombs. This is not to say there aren't many bright people in the lower ranks, who never got a shot at education because they came from poor families.

The majority of uniformed men and women are average Joes and Janes but they are by no means the best and brightest (they aren't called average Joe or Jane for nothing), while there are (relative of course) more criminals, rednecks and gang members (the FBI suspects the gang membership rate is 50-100 higher) in the military than in the general population.



If you really believe such, if you truly believe the average military including the US is full of scum. Then why do you suppose any order would be able to be maintained within the military? This wouldn't be possible. I will agree that a poor person is more likely to join but that is because its a opportunity to get out of poverty and one that is of a noble cause. If anything this is a good thing and to top it off it gives this person a opportunity further their education which is unlikely that they would be able to otherwise.

As for criminals/gang members joining, yes there is a very small amount that join that are still loyal to a outside gang. This however is not a large part of the military.
Also there are former criminals and gang members in military, but isn't this a good thing? People that turned their lives around and actually became a positive for the entire nation they serve instead of a burden? I would much rather give a kid a chance at a good future that they could look back on and be proud of themselves than to have them in prison. As for the intelligence level of the men and women who are serving and have served, sure we are more average. I certainly don't feel that I am more intelligent than everyone else.

August 10, 2011 11:38:05 PM

Im waiting for many businesses to not allow the hiring of liberals, as theyve shown they dont really want what many businesses give, but would choose unions for protections, which in a way, union heads shouldnt be hired either, since theyre into protection, and havnt changed in years, thus showing little creativity
August 11, 2011 12:21:51 PM

NuclearShadow said:
If you really believe such, if you truly believe the average military including the US is full of scum. Then why do you suppose any order would be able to be maintained within the military? This wouldn't be possible. I will agree that a poor person is more likely to join but that is because its a opportunity to get out of poverty and one that is of a noble cause. If anything this is a good thing and to top it off it gives this person a opportunity further their education which is unlikely that they would be able to otherwise.

As for criminals/gang members joining, yes there is a very small amount that join that are still loyal to a outside gang. This however is not a large part of the military.
Also there are former criminals and gang members in military, but isn't this a good thing? People that turned their lives around and actually became a positive for the entire nation they serve instead of a burden? I would much rather give a kid a chance at a good future that they could look back on and be proud of themselves than to have them in prison. As for the intelligence level of the men and women who are serving and have served, sure we are more average. I certainly don't feel that I am more intelligent than everyone else.


I did not say "full of scum", I said scum is more prevalent in the military than in the general population (say 10-20% against say 5% in the general population, which still means that 80-90% are not scum). Order is maintained through far more stringent regulations than in civilian society so there being order in the military doesn't prove anything and for example, rape is still twice as common in the military as in the general population.

The FBI suspects 1-2% of all American military personnel to be members of a gang, this is far higher than in the general population. Contributing factors to scumlevels in the military are: 1) gender, men are more likely to be criminals/scum, most people in the military (many more than in the general population) are men, 2) age, young people are more likely to be criminals/scum, most people in the military (many more than in the general population) are young, 3) pay/qualifications, the lower ranks (who make up the majority of the military) consist of low-paid, low qualification jobs, but with more benefits than other such jobs and hence will attract more people from poor neighbourhoods, where people are more likely to have a criminal background (officially the military refuses people with severe criminal records, unofficially it will sign waivers and admit them to meet recruitment quota's), 4) the blow-stuff-up/killing-them-ragheads factor of the military which attracts people with extremist ideas and/or volatile personalities: the Timothy Mc Veighs (who actually did serve) and supremacists/neo-nazis of this world, 5) war traumas transform otherwise upstanding citizens in unpredictable and dangerous deranged individuals, many of them still "serve" for months or years while in this state.

Now you will find the same pattern in most militaries; the Russian military and many African militaries are worse than the US military, the UK military might be comparable while the Japanese or Northern European militaries are probably less problematic (though even here in Northern Europe many cases of soldiers engaging in assault or rape are known), but all of them do attract some of the worst people in their respective societies, even though I'm sure the majority are upstanding citizens, or at least average. So no, militaries definitely are not the "best" sector of their societies and certainly not the brightest (yes special forces, technicians, doctors and some senior officers are but they constitute a very small portion of the entire military).
!