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Rumsfeld Offers Apology for Abuse of Iraqi Prisoners

A chastened Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld offered his personal apology today for the abuses inflicted upon Iraqi prisoners by their American military jailers, saying that the wrongdoings were “fundamentally un-American” and signaling that even uglier disclosures are to come. “I take full responsibility,” Mr. Rumsfeld told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee, some of whom pressed him with hostile questions. “I offer my deepest apology.” In an appearance widely seen as crucial to his prospects of remaining as Pentagon chief, Mr. Rumsfeld acknowledged that he was responsible for what happened in the Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad because the events occurred “on my watch.” “I feel terrible about what happened to these Iraqi detainees,” Mr. Rumsfeld said. “They’re human beings.” The secretary said he would name a commission to look deeply into the incidents of abuse, notwithstanding the inquiries already under way, and that he would try to find a way to compensate the individual detainees who were abused. Full Story

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