The Abu Ghraib whistleblower's ordeal

By Dawn Bryan
BBC News

"The US soldier who exposed the abuse of Iraqi prisoners in Abu Ghraib prison found himself a marked man after his anonymity was blown in the most astonishing way by Donald Rumsfeld.

When Joe Darby saw the horrific photos of abuse at Abu Ghraib prison he was stunned.

So stunned that he walked out into the hot Baghdad night and smoked half a dozen cigarettes and agonised over what he should do.

Promised anonymity

Joe Darby knew what he saw was wrong, but it took him three weeks to decide to hand those photographs in. When he finally did, he was promised anonymity and hoped he would hear no more about it.

And then he was sitting in a crowded Iraqi canteen with hundreds of soldiers and Donald Rumsfeld came on the television to thank Joe Darby by name for handing in the photographs.

Labelled a traitor

His wife had no idea that Mr Darby had handed in those photos, but when he was named, she had to flee to her sister's house which was then vandalised with graffiti. Many in his home town called him a traitor. "

No votes yet

Thank you for posting this neighborhood. Whistleblower protection is a important part of the military. Darby should not have had his name disclosed unless he signed a disclosure form.

This is important because this type of whistleblowing is one of the few forms that is under legal protection. Something many reporters don't tell their sources when they quote whistleblowers who were unaware they could do it legally.



Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.