The Corner

The White House On The Torture Tape

From yesterday’s White House press briefing:

Q On Tuesday, the American Enterprise Institute held a media event where a video of Saddam’s atrocities was shown. The tape showed fingers being cut off, tongues being cut out, and beheadings. None of the networks showed the tape. And few media outlets even mentioned it. Did anyone in this administration ask that these images not be showed to the American people?

MR. McCLELLAN: No, Jeff. But it is important to remind people of the atrocities that Saddam Hussein’s regime committed. Saddam Hussein was a brutal oppressive dictator who carried out atrocities over a period of years against his own people and against his neighbors. And it’s important that the public –

Q Well, how do you explain a virtual media blackout on these horrendous acts, when every single day there are pictures about what American soldiers have done in Iraq when these things are far worse? How is there any explanation for that? Is there somebody in the administration that doesn’t want the American people to see that?

MR. McCLELLAN: I think you’re going to see the Iraqi people hold Saddam Hussein accountable for the atrocities that he committed. We will be turning him over to the Iraqi people to face a tribunal by the Iraqis for the atrocities that you mentioned. And I don’t think the Iraqi people will ever let people forget those atrocities. It’s important to remember that this was a regime that had mass graves, torture rooms, and rape rooms, and engaged in the kinds of atrocities that no one should stand for.

Q There is visual physical evidence out there. Why is not being put out there for Americans to see and make their own judgment against?

MR. McCLELLAN: Yes, I think I’ve expressed it from our standpoint. If you’re talking about it from the media standpoint, I’ll leave it to the media to address those issues?

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