Rumsfeld Said to Have Fled France to Avoid Torture Arrest

On Friday, while former Defense Sec. Donald Rumsfeld was visiting France, human rights groups based there and in the United States filed complaints against him, charging him with approving torture:

Rumsfeld is accused of authorizing torture at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, and at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.

The French complaint accuses Mr. Rumsfeld of authorizing torture at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, and at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and says it violated the Convention Against Torture, which came into force in 1987.

As part of their complaint, the groups submitted 11 pages of written testimony from Janis Karpinski, the highest-ranking officer to be punished in the Abu Ghraib prison scandal. She was demoted to colonel from brigadier general and lost command of her military police unit. She contended that the abuses at the prison had started after the appearance of Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller, who was sent by Mr. Rumsfeld to assist military intelligence interrogators.

French prosecutors were said to have the power to pursue the case while Rumsfeld was in the country.

One source cites unconfirmed reports that Rumsfeld was abruptly whisked away from a breakfast meeting on Friday in order to avoid his arrest:

U.S. embassy officials whisked Rumsfeld away yesterday from a breakfast meeting in Paris organized by the Foreign Policy magazine after human rights groups filed a criminal complaint against the man who spearheaded President George W. Bush’s “war on terror” for six years.

Under international law, authorities in France are obliged to open an investigation when a complaint is made while the alleged torturer is on French soil.

The report said Rumsfeld fled to Germany because similar charges were dismissed against him there in the spring.The German court ruled that Rumsfeld’s criminality was an internal matter for the United States.

41 Comments

  • big dave from queens
    October 28, 2007 - 10:52 am | Permalink

    Rumsfield on the Run.

    Updates on Earth’s Most Wanted next week

  • Frances
    October 28, 2007 - 5:07 pm | Permalink

    Is it not clear that the rule of law applies to some people but not to others? Where Rumsfeld had the power to put people in prison without due process of law, when he is the subject of a complaint himself, he flees the country like a common criminal.

    Accountability, hah!

    There goes the US moral superiority.

  • What?
    October 28, 2007 - 5:35 pm | Permalink

    What are you talking about? How does the actions of Rumsfeld reflect on United States morals? Also, since when does the United States claim moral superiority?

    Also your argument fails to muster basic logic. Rumsfeld’s decision to leave (assuming the article above is generally accurate – to which I am skeptical) would only evidence that he feels he is, indeed, subject to the authority of France to charge him with violations of International Law (as an aside, France is not the actual arbiter).

  • makesenseofit
    October 28, 2007 - 5:43 pm | Permalink

    Those poor bottom feeders who went ot war only to be subjected to court martial or trial and dismissed from the army when they only took orders and were more than likely given an open window to do what had to be done. But only to be caught on camera and
    finished with their service at the very least.
    With no one of authority taking the heat and everyone lying about the torture used …

  • October 28, 2007 - 5:58 pm | Permalink

    “There goes the US moral superiority.”

    Goes? Brother, it’s up and went, and that was a while ago.

  • Hageeisanass
    October 28, 2007 - 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Too bad Americans haven’t filed a complaint on American soil. I’d like to see Rumsfeld a fugitive for the rest of his life.

  • Anonymous
    October 28, 2007 - 6:20 pm | Permalink

    More like Amerika’s immoral insecurity.

    Actually, Rumpsmelt has committed crimes right here in the USA.

    We signed treaties that outlaw torture, among other crimes he also committed.

    Those treaties are also US laws.

    That makes him a US criminal as well as an international criminal.

    His ill gotten war profiteering assets are also subject to confiscation, no matter where in the world they are hidden.

    I hope he likes his new bug out home on the Bush/cheney estate in Paraguay.

  • Ronnie
    October 28, 2007 - 6:25 pm | Permalink

    The part that caught my eye is this: “U.S. embassy officials whisked Rumsfeld away…”

    Don’t try this at home or anywhere else folks. If you are a regular joe, the U.S. embassy officials will hand you over, not whisk you away, no matter how outrageous the charges filed against you in a foreign country and no matter how much they know its false. Trust me on this one.

  • gary
    October 28, 2007 - 7:10 pm | Permalink

    Go France…

  • David Irving
    October 28, 2007 - 7:24 pm | Permalink

    I hope they put a bounty on his head. Hell, we have plenty of guns in this country. We will catch that SOB in less than a week for CASH!

  • Anonymous
    October 28, 2007 - 7:31 pm | Permalink

    im waiting for Cheney’s turn, as soon as they let him know about the case, he will get a heart attack and won’t be able to run away….

  • ted
    October 28, 2007 - 7:52 pm | Permalink

    As if he was actually worried the French would arrest him.

    Just checking, but I wonder if any of you have seen the Easter Bunny running around here.

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  • g4man
    October 28, 2007 - 8:38 pm | Permalink

    At least we have justice in the fact that old Rummy will never be an to vacation in Europe again.

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  • Bill Clinton
    October 29, 2007 - 2:38 am | Permalink

    Cheese eating surrender moneys!

  • Hillary
    October 29, 2007 - 5:30 am | Permalink

    Hmmmm, so rather than arrest him when he arrived in France, those dang Frenchies were going to interrupt him during his croissant and espresso?!? Mon Dieu! Where was Rummy “whisked” too? It’s possible all that fancy French food was finally catching up with him too.

  • Helen Rainier
    October 29, 2007 - 6:07 am | Permalink

    Funny — this is the guy who said you go to war with Army you have not the one you want.

    But, he cut and ran from France because he was confronted by some humanitarian groups who charged him with “war crimes.”

    Striking sign of machismo there, Dumsfeld. You big, brave lout, you.

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  • Hillary
    October 29, 2007 - 8:17 am | Permalink

    I hope you meant, ‘cheese eating surrender monkeys’ Bill. Don’t make me look bad when I almost have a lock on the nomination.

    Meanwhile, Rummy is as spineless as the rest of them. Cheney is the profiteering maniac that should be prosecuted, first and foremost. I’m not surprised Cheney ran under bush. Wuss!

  • October 29, 2007 - 10:00 am | Permalink

    He’s probably hiding out in the White House basement with his co-conspirators who should be brought up on war crimes charges, too. Fat chance Bush and his henchmobs who live above the law in this “nation of laws” will ever have to spend a single moment behind bars where they belong. Whatta con-tree!

  • October 29, 2007 - 12:34 pm | Permalink

    Where is Simon Wiesenthal when you need him?

    :::::::::SIGH::::::::::

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  • labol
    October 29, 2007 - 2:27 pm | Permalink

    They should use the american practice of ‘extraordinary rendition’ and return Rumsfeld to France to face criminal prosecution. We’ll deal with Rice, Cheney, Powell, and Bush, at the Hague.

  • jimbo92107
    October 29, 2007 - 3:22 pm | Permalink

    Don Rumsfeld, “Le Fugitive.”

    First we gotta smoke ’em out, then get ’em on the run…

  • Buford
    October 29, 2007 - 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Dead man running.

  • Kevin
    October 29, 2007 - 4:12 pm | Permalink

    My hope is that early in the afternoon on January 20, 2009, instead of the final trip to Crawford, Air Force One flys GWB straight to the Hague. It will also be fitting to have war criminals Rice, Rummy, Wolfowitz and Cheney as passengers.

  • Matthew
    October 29, 2007 - 8:15 pm | Permalink

    I would like to believe this story is true but the American people won’t do anything to stop this bullshit so why should the French feel obligated?This man needs to be tried and convicted along with the other loonies in the WH,be it here or at the Hague.If i tried to pull off half the shit these guys have they would have locked my ass up a long time ago and thrown away the key.

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