Via Atrios - this indictment of the most recent round of Blame The Troops First being played by the Bush Administration is an extremely important point that almost no one is making.
The idea behind the command structure in the army is that the higher pay grades take responsibility for that their units do. That's the basis of our entire system of military organization. What's happening today is the opposite. Conduct that was clearly authorized by top brass in documents that are now in the public domain is being punished by long prison terms.
Personally, our monstrous military does very little to help me sleep at night. I wish the military were a lot smaller, I am among the 10% or so Americans and 90% or so of the world population who has not agreed that it is obvious that America can "no longer wait until we are attacked" before blasting some defenseless country or other to kingdom come, and if the military were about 1,000 times smaller I would not feel in the least bit concerned about it, since I don't worry too much about being killed generally, much less by some unidentified foreign power.
But I know I am in the minority here. Most Americans believe that a strong military is vitally important to our individual safety as Americans. Which is fine; eeryone is welcome to their opinion. But if you really believe that, you should be deeply concerned at what is happening here. The unwillingness of the military command to accept responsibility for its decisions is going to undermine, perhaps irretrievably, the confidence of enlisted personnel in their freedom to enact their superiors' plans without fear of criminal prosecution.
So for all of you out there in blogland who think it's really important to have an effective military, get on the horn to your congresspeople and let em know you aren't happy. This isn't a liberal or conservative issue. It's an issue of National Security.