Lynndie England has lived in Fort Ashby since she was two, but when she appears, suddenly, in the car park, her outline is crooked with self-consciousness. She grew her hair for a while, but people recognised her anyway, so she cut it short again. …. When she got to Abu Ghraib, she was assigned to administrative duties and had no cause to be in the cellblocks, except that she was hanging out with Graner. She found the scene down there odd. “When we first got there, we were like, what’s going on? Then you see staff sergeants walking around not saying anything [about the abuse]. You think, OK, obviously it’s normal.” Graner, too, was initially disturbed, and is on record as having raised some objections. “When he first started working on that wing, he would tell me about it and say, ‘This is wrong.’ He even told his sergeant and platoon leader. He said he tried to say something. But everyone is saying it’s OK to do it and getting pats on the back.”
Remember, no one above the rank of sergeant was charged for any abuse in Abu Ghraib – even though techniques in use had been directly approved in the White House by Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Ashcroft.
And while I’ll be delighted to be wrong, given that Bush’s Secretary of Defense is to remain in place for another year, I doubt very strongly that cleaning up the US military, cleaning out all those implicated in torturing prisoners, is going to be any kind of priority for Obama’s administration.