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Reply #4: Pentagon Caught In Fib about Koran-gate? (The Nation) [View All]

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leftchick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-20-05 11:18 AM
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4. Pentagon Caught In Fib about Koran-gate? (The Nation)
Edited on Fri May-20-05 11:21 AM by leftchick
Please rate this up....

Here's a posting I put up on the HuffingtonPost site. It may not be as juicy as Robert Evans' celebration of a menage a trois. But I do hope that this issue--the chief Pentagon spokesperson misleading the public about allegations concerning the desecration and mistreatement of the Koran at Gitmo--will get some attention:

The Bush administration really knows how to exploit a tragedy and deflect attention in order to duck responsibility. After Newsweek retracted its ten-sentence Koran-in-a-john item, Lawrence Di Rita, the chief Pentagon spokesman, claimed that the Pentagon had never received any "credible allegations" about "the willful desecration of the Koran as a component of interrogations" at Guantanamo. At a press briefing on Tuesday, Di Rita said that after the Pentagon had checked logs and found "several instances...that suggested that detainees have, for whatever reason, torn pages from the Koran." But these log reports, he added, were not corroborated. He claimed that

standard operating procedures at Guantanamo are very focused on the proper respect for the Koran, and in fact those standard operating procedures have been reviewed over time to make sure that they are as careful as they should be. We, I think, provided that to most of you all in the last day or two. But I think what you'll see there is a command philosophy that is clearly one of treating religious items, including the Koran, with a great deal of respect.


And he repeated his main point: "We have received no credible and specific allegations" of Koran desecration or Koran mistreatment conducted by US personnel at Gitmo.

How then does Di Rita explain the International Committee of the Red Cross' claim--which became news yesterday and today--that in 2002 and 2003 it told the Pentagon multiple times that prisoners in Guantanamo had said that US officials there showed disrespect for the Koran. Here's the lead of the Chicago Tribune's piece on this:

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