Friday, May 13, 2005

Brigade Commander Relieved Over Abu Ghraib Scandal

The American Forces Press Service reports that an Army colonel has been relieved of his command for dereliction of duty in the Abu Ghraib prison scandal, in a nonjudicial proceeding (the colonel could have demanded a court martial, but chose administrative action).
Army Col. Thomas M. Pappas, commander of the 205th Military Intelligence Brigade, was relieved of his command by Gen. B.B. Bell, commander of U.S. Army Europe, after the colonel was administratively punished for two instances of dereliction of duty.

The action alleged that Pappas failed to ensure that subordinates received adequately information, training and supervision in the applying interrogation procedures. He also allegedly failed to obtain the approval of superior commanders before authorizing a nonsanctioned interrogation technique, specifically the presence of military working dogs during the questioning of a detainee.
Pappas was relieved of his command, issued a written reprimand, and ordered to forfeit $8,000 in pay.

Maj. Gen. Bennie E. Williams, who presided, also chose to place a record of the proceedings in Pappas' official military records, effectively driving a stake through the heart of Pappas' career.