January 23rd, 2006

yellow_elephant

Is conviction of negligent homicide in the death of an Iraqi general a bad thing?

hum...
A senior Army interrogator was convicted late Saturday of negligent homicide in the death of an Iraqi general after he shoved the general head-first into a sleeping bag, sat on his chest and put his hands over his mouth.

A six-officer jury at Fort Carson, Colo., found the interrogator, Chief Warrant Officer Lewis E. Welshofer Jr., guilty of the charge, which carries a maximum sentence of three years in a military prison. He was also found guilty of negligent dereliction of duty. He was acquitted of murder and assault charges. Sentencing is scheduled for Monday.
...
Defense lawyers countered that Mr. Welshofer, a 19-year Army veteran, did nothing illegal and was using a technique that his commander had approved for use on uncooperative prisoners.
...
Testimony at Mr. Welshofer's court-martial last week confirmed that a team of Iraqis had beaten the general two days before he died, but the C.I.A.'s involvement remained largely unaddressed.

[ cf American Pravda ]
Maybe it is time to give up on the old cool stuff about how not to actually get actionable intelligence?

Or is there a problem here that it's useful to convict some, but, not to worry about which ones we convict?

Or is this too a part of the need to appear like one is doing some stuff, without actually having to do some stuff.