Penalty in military abuse hurts the U.S.


Re “Mild Penalties in Military Abuse Cases,” Jan. 25

Army Chief Warrant Officer Lewis E. Welshofer Jr. is convicted of “negligent homicide” in the killing of an Iraqi general during interrogation.

The general was stuffed head-first into a sleeping bag and was asphyxiated when Welshofer sat on his chest. The punishment for “negligent homicide”: forfeiture of $6,000 in salary and restriction to his home, church and workplace for 60 days. Another in the very long list of reasons “why they hate us.”


West Hollywood



The military jury that allowed Welshofer to go home free after brutally killing Abed Hamed Mowhoush destroyed the very values this country was founded upon.

As Americans, we pride ourselves on being a civilized nation that believes in human rights and due process of law. Welshofer’s verdict, however, sends a clear message that the U.S. government approves of cruel torture tactics against detainees.

How can we hold dictators accountable for human rights abuses when our own government is in violation of those rights? Our reputation in the world can only be restored if our judicial process and our value for human life are not only bound to us.


El Segundo


A nonviolent peace activist in New York is sentenced to six months in prison for splattering his own blood at a military recruiting station (Jan. 24) while a U.S. Army interrogator convicted of killing an Iraqi general is fined $6,000 and remains in the military.


La Jolla