[quote]At the core of Ertel and Vance’s case is their allegations that "in August 2003 Rumsfeld sent Major Geoffrey Miller to Iraq to review the United States prison system.
"Plaintiffs claim that Rumsfeld informed Major Miller that his mission was to ‘gitmo-ize’ Camp Cropper [the site where Ertel and Vance were held], a task that required recommendations on how to more effectively obtain actionable intelligence from detainees and “authorized Major Miller to apply in Iraq the techniques that Rumsfeld had approved for use at Guantanamo and elsewhere. At Rumsfeld’s direction, Major Miller did just that,” court documents state.
The next hearing in the case is scheduled for March 25.[/quote]
The World Can’t Wait writes that this is the “1st time in U.S. history that court allows torture suit against current or former Cabinet Secretary”
A Wall Street Journal Law blog comments further…
[quote]March 8, 2010
A ruling on Friday guaranteed that Rumsfeld will have to defend himself against it for a while longer. The Chicago federal judge overseeing the suit, Wayne Andersen, denied Rumsfeld’s motion to dismiss the suit, holding that the plaintiffs had alleged enough to open up discovery. Click here for the AP story; here for Judge Andersen’s ruling; here for a National Law Journal story on the ruling.
The suit accuses Rumsfeld of personally taking part in determining such methods were acceptable for use by the military in Iraq.[/quote]
From the District Judge’s MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER:
[quote]I. Count I: Cruel and Inhumane Treatment Methods
In Count I, plaintiffs allege that they were subject to a number of cruel and degrading treatment methods during their respective periods of detention. Plaintiffs allege that the treatment methods included “threats of violence and actual violence, sleep deprivation and alteration, extremes of temperature, extremes of sound, light manipulation, threats of indefinite detention, denial of food, denial of water, denial of needed medical care, yelling, prolonged, solitary confinement, incommunicado detention, falsified allegations and other psychologically-disruptive and injurious techniques.”
SAC ¶ 259. We must determine whether it is plausible that Rumsfeld was personally involved in the decision to implement the class of harsh treatment methods that allegedly were utilized against plaintiffs Vance and Ertel.
A. Rumsfeld’s Personal Involvement in Alleged Cruel Treatment
According to plaintiffs’ allegations in their second amended complaint, Rumsfeld was personally involved in their unconstitutional treatment by his decision to approve the adoption of harsh treatment methods that were utilized at Camp Cropper during plaintiffs’ confinement. While plaintiffs acknowledge that Rumsfeld did not personally subject them to the harsh interrogation and confinement methods, plaintiffs rely on a number of Seventh Circuit cases to establish the proposition that individuals who issue an order to engage in unconstitutional conduct can themselves be held liable for that conduct. In other words, a superior officer may be considered personally involved in a constitutional violation when his subordinates carried out such a violation pursuant to his policy directive.[/quote]
And found under point B. Qualified Immunity:
When American citizens tortured under Cheney’s War of Terror finally see some sense of justice served, maybe Americans will try supporting Human Rights lawsuits around the world. As for this American, I’ll continue hoping our public ‘servants’ are forced into accountability.