Pentagon and White House Deny Taguba Allegations About Rape Photos


Unreleased photos of US soldiers abusing detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan “show rape,” Major General Antonio Taguba told Britain’s Telegraph. Not so, say the White House and the Pentagon. The paper displayed “an inability to get the facts right,” a Defense Department spokesman said Thursday. “That news organization has completely mischaracterized the images. None of the photos in question depict the images that are described in that article.”

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs also denied the report and took a harsh tone towards the British press in general. “Let’s just say if I wanted to look up, if I wanted to read a write-up of how Manchester United fared last night in the Champions League Cup, I’d might open up a British newspaper,” Gibbs said. “If I was looking for something that bordered on truthful news, I’m not entirely sure it’d be the first pack of clips I’d pick up.”

A spokesperson for the ACLU, which is suing for the release of the photos, told Mother Jones the organization couldn’t confirm or deny the Telegraph‘s report. “The government has not provided us with a description of all of the photographs, and we do not have first-hand knowledge of what the photographs show. As a result, we don’t have enough information to comment on these reports,” the spokesperson said in an emailed statement.

We’ll continue to monitor this story.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.