Nadler: President Should Apologize and Secretary of Defense Must Step Down

May 5, 2004

Washington, DC -- Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) today approved a House Resolution condemning the abuse and torture of Iraqi prisoners, but charged that the measure contains glaring and critical omissions, most importantly failing to call for Congressional investigations into Iraqi prisoner abuse.


"For all of their comments on how 'deplorable' they believe the abuse of Iraqi prisoners to be, the Republican Majority's response to this situation has been inadequate. Condemning the abuse of the Iraqi prisoners is the right thing to do, but investigations are necessary to ensure that all of those involved -- at all levels of government -- are punished," said Nadler. "Additionally, any future Congressional resolution on this issue must demand that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld step down for his refusal to respond to repeated warnings of abuse at Abu Ghraib prison."

"The abuse of the detainees will have profoundly negative consequences in our relations with our allies and Arab nations for decades to come," said Nadler. "We can't begin to have credibility with the Iraqi people by only making declarations. The President must apologize and take responsibility for  what has occurred in Abu Ghraib prison, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld must accept responsibility for the breakdown of discipline and the chain of command in his Department and resign or be fired, and full and transparent investigations must be conducted immediately to learn how these horrors could occur and how and when Administration officials learned of the abuse. "

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