Skip to main content

U.S. Federal Judge says 'Yes, he can.'


WASHINGTON — A federal judge has ruled that former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld can be sued personally for damages by a former U.S. military contractor who says he was tortured during a nine-month imprisonment in Iraq.

The lawsuit lays out a dramatic tale of the disappearance of the then-civilian contractor, an Army veteran in his 50s whose identity is being withheld from court filings for fear of retaliation. Attorneys for the man, who speaks five languages and worked as a translator for Marines collecting intelligence in Iraq, say he was preparing to come home to the United States on annual leave when he was abducted by the U.S. military and held without justification while his family knew nothing about his whereabouts or even whether he was still alive.


The government says he was suspected of helping pass classified information to the enemy and helping anti-coalition forces get into Iraq. But he was never charged with a crime, and he says he never broke the law and was risking his life to help his country.

Court papers filed on his behalf say he was repeatedly abused while being held at Camp Cropper, a U.S. military facility near the Baghdad airport dedicated to holding “high-value” detainees, then suddenly released without explanation in August 2006. Two years later, he filed suit in U.S. District Court in Washington arguing that Rumsfeld personally approved torturous interrogation techniques on a case-by-case basis and controlled his detention without access to courts in violation of his constitutional rights.

U.S. District Judge James Gwin rejected previous arguments presented by the Obama administration through the Justice Department, stating that the Constitution protects U.S. citizens - even during wartime - whether they are at home or abroad.

Of course pigs will fly before Rumsfeld is ever actually held accountable in a court of law for anything related to the Iraq war.  Or Michele Bachmann will admit that the messages she says she gets from The Lord are actually a symptom of a psychotic break before Rumsfeld is ever held accountable in a court of law for...oh, you get the picture.

Still, it's nice to hear one of our Federal judges actually defend the protections provided American citizens by the Constitution. Even when they protect us from our own government.


Cross-posted at

[Photo by DonkeyHotey]

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Mimikatz, tmo, Marek, ogre, dalemac, deben, Linda Wood, Jeff Simpson, greenbird, tommurphy, musicalhair, Shockwave, cotterperson, Andrew M, polecat, KevinBondelli, SallyCat, jancw, Dumbo, jackspace, bronte17, Loquatrix, boadicea, chimpy, JuliaAnn, jennifree2bme, splashy, Cedwyn, wader, TexDem, Dr Colossus, Lawrence, HeyMikey, BMarshall, Sychotic1, annetteboardman, cevad, nswalls, mungley, eztempo, Sybil Liberty, Maggie Pax, Frank Vyan Walton, Tirge Caps, davidincleveland, maybeeso in michigan, marina, radarlady, Jeffersonian Democrat, jfdunphy, PBen, DoGooderLawyer, ChemBob, Brooke In Seattle, eru, jimreyn, lotlizard, markdd, Ginny in CO, Snud, SoulCatcher, golfervet, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, cybersaur, tung sol, kestrel9000, sleipner, KenBee, Magnifico, mango, luckydog, MJ via Chicago, gooderservice, real world chick, plf515, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, bstotts, andrewj54, NonnyO, One Pissed Off Liberal, bluicebank, Mr K, ColoTim, gloriana, gustynpip, truckystiv, Russ Wellen, davehouck, Strabo, bnasley, Swill to Power, artisan, snowshoeblue, Sarahkatheryn, jamesia, Uberbah, Got a Grip, VA Breeze, MKinTN, wayoutinthestix, ScottyUrb, dadadata, bythesea, elwior, Lujane, dewley notid, brasilaaron, glendaw271, petulans, drslammy, J M F, DontTaseMeBro, The Dead Man, notrouble, DefendOurConstitution, followyourbliss, UnaSpenser, stevenwag, ohmyheck, confitesprit, pyegar, FogCityJohn, roadbear, kjoftherock, angelajean, Actbriniel, slice, Onomastic, TAH from SLC, sostos, AuroraDawn, poorbuster, m00finsan, HiKa, FarWestGirl, pbgv23, trumpeter, Haf2Read, peregrine kate, MinistryOfTruth, beforedawn, happenstance, stlsophos, Auriandra, No one gets out alive, BoldProgressives, Mr Robert, citizendane, jan4insight, Ana Thema, doroma, Spirit of Life, Marjmar, red8top, LibbyLuLu, Chaddiwicker

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site