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U.S. Policies are Creating More Terrorists
By Denise Magditch
Edited by Megan Maloy

The policies upheld by the Bush Administration are destroying all we have fought to uphold as human beings. Our rights as people, as citizens, and as inhabitants of this planet are threatened daily. If we do not make a stand now to protect the freedoms of the people of the United States and of the world, we may not have anything left to make a stand for.

Some of the major policies that have hung over our heads since that fateful day in September of 2001 revolve around Bush’s "War on Terror". Besides being a vague war with no foreseeable end, the way in which the administration has been going about ridding the world of terrorists is marring the name of America. Our great nation, which once stood as a power that other countries looked to for leadership and guidance, is now viewed as a world bully, saturated with arrogance and ignorance.

Recently, the abuse of Iraqi prisoners by United States soldiers was revealed to the public. Understandably, this brought about a universal reaction of shock, disgust, and dismay as we thought about what might happen next. Unknown to the public, however, is the ugly reality that the Administration knew about the prisoner abuses months before the pictures ever aired on CBS. Apparently, as early as October 13th, 2003, investigations had begun in the prison systems in Iraq, looking into what was called "possible manpower, training and human rights problems that should be addressed immediately."1 However, it was not until January 14th, 2004, that a member of the 800th Military Police Brigade came forward to inform his superiors that prisoner abuse was taking place. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was supposedly first notified a few days after that. By January 16th, investigations had started, and were well underway when Maj. Gen. (don’t abbreviate these titles when first used) Antonio M. Taguba was named the Chief Investigator on January 31st. It was not until March 3rd, 2004, that Taguba’s findings were handed over to Lt. Gen. David McKiernan, the ground commander in Iraq in charge of the prison reviews. Furthermore, on April 28th, 2004 some of the pictures of prisoner abuse aired on CBS. Interestingly enough, on May 5th, 2004, President Bush admonished Rumsfeld for "not telling him" about the scandal. The President apparently first learned about the prisoner abuses by watching television that night.

Regardless of what side of the political fence one is on, not one person can look favorably at an administration that claims to be doing what is right, yet proceeds to botch their own plans so seamlessly, and take America’s reputation down with them. "America claims that it is fighting terrorism, and not sponsoring it, and is spreading justice and equality among peoples and freedom and democracy," Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr said. "Now it is doing the same acts done by the small devil Saddam and in the same place where Iraqis were oppressed."2 Now is the time to make our stand against the Bush Administration and its policies.

1 Edwin Chen, John Hendren and Janet Hook, "Bush Scolds Rumsfeld on Abuse Inquiry," Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2004.
2 Louis Meixler, "Red Cross Says It Warned U.S. of Abuse", Associated Press, 7 May 2004.

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