I just refused a BlogAd from Penguin books for Tony Lagouranis's new book about American Soldiers torturing Iraqi prisoners. Sometimes, I don't have a problem with books with differing views or exposing issues. But I didn't want to take the money for this one, something made me remember something Froggy posted a few years ago...we actually talked about it over a few beers here in Chicago recently.
Lagouranis's new book, Fear Up Harsh, is an older story from a few years ago that was developed by a military writer with Lagouranis.
But you should first go to Froggy's place where he responds to a Frontline episode (October 2005) where Lagouranis is the main character making some pretty wild accusations. So, per SOP in the Frogosphere, Matt calls him out.
And Tony Lagouranis shows up in the Comments to defend himself, and an interesting debate ensues.
After a few exchanges, Froggy fires for effect:
By the looks of your interview, you were engaging in hypothermia inducement tactics yourself. You say you were in charge of your interrogations and you used dogs, and other tactics that you now find are in violation of the Geneva Convention or the UCMJ. Your use of those tactics was not, by your own admission, a result of your training in MI. They were adapted from what other units in the theatre were apparently doing. You heard about it from whoever and tried it on for size. Now you get religion and say that the way you were conducting the interrogations was professional, but the people that you learned it from were out of control. That sounds very convenient to me.
Additionally, I do not believe that you ever witnessed a SEAL or Force Recon platoon take down an HVT house in Iraq. They wouldn't let you near it. So you don't have any idea what happens in the heat of those battles, son. You may chit chat with some Team guys and bum a smoke from the FR corpsman or whatever, but your ass was not in the stack and going through those doors. Unless you are the man going through that door, you don't have anything to say about what happened behind those doors. The SEAL platoons in Iraq have been working almost exclusively with the CIA since very early in the conflict and the CIA guys that operate with the Platoons don't have need for Army MI interrogators.
I am calling you a liar if you contend that you personally witnessed Navy SEALs torturing prisoners in their homes or at some disco you heard about. And I am calling you naive if you believe every torture story told to you by a prisoner in your booth.
You participated in a coordinated slander of every person you ever worked with by volunteering for that interview. The bias demonstrated by Frontline during that piece was staggering, and you buddy @#$%ed everyone you served with by allowing yourself to become a tool with which to bludgeon your comrades.
You are no better than John Kerry. He came back from Vietnam and testified before Congress that his comrades had committed all manner of war crimes based on just as flimsy bullshit charges as you have laid out here. I hope for your sake that this was not some publicity stunt to launch your political career, because we will not forget what you did on that show.
I cannot prove a negative after the fact from half a world away, Tony. But you have shown yourself to be a craven and self centered buddy @#$%er on Frontline and here in my comments. You have no credibility to make many of the charges you have made and I suspect that is the reason your desperate attempts to "hold the military to the law" were unfruitful.
Final note: I have no problems with any blogger deciding to accept the ad. I accept and refuse ads for various reasons just like everybody else.