Ret. Fil-Am Major General warns of redactions in upcoming torture report

By Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN North America Bureau

Aug. 11, 2014

SAN DIEGO – After six years in the making the report on prisoner torture in Abu Ghraib is set to be released soon.

While there is debate on how many details of the alleged human rights violations carried out by US troops since 2002 should be made public, the Filipino American behind the original investigation has given his insights.

Major General Antonio Taguba published an op-ed piece in the New York Times last week in which he recalls his duties to investigate the torture in the Baghdad prison and the changes the investigation helped bring to the U.S. military.

Taguba does warn in the op-ed that the CIA will attempt to challenge the report’s credibility and ask for certain details to be removed. Reports say that only 700 of some 6800 pages will be declassified.

“I’ll leave it to the president whether he allows it to be unredacted. I’ll leave it to the members of congress whether there’s it’s duties to inform the public but my intent for the op-ed was to inform the public and inform our leader it was done many years ago, it’s was not the right thing to do. Let’s do the right thing,” said the retired US Army major general.

In preparation to the release of the report, President Barack Obama has acknowledge that the U.S. had tortured prisoners in the past.

Taguba is not surprised at the length of time it took to publish the report, but believes torture is an issue that will not go away as tensions continue in the Middle East.

The report is expected to comes as the U.S. began executing air strikes in Iraq against terror groups. President Obama has said despite the air attacks, US soldiers will not be redeployed to Iraq.

“Timing is everything, so but I think we could make amends. We have a good country, but a lot of people don’t like us. A lot of people like us even less today so we have a lot of work to do on that,” he said.

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