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Longer version of the Yee story

Post by News Tribune Staff on Sep. 20, 2007 at 10:05 am |
September 20, 2007 10:05 am

For space reasons, we ran a shorter version of today’s story about the Department of Defense Inspector General report on the treatment of former Fort Lewis chaplain James Yee.

The Olympian ran the story at full length, and you can read it here.

And click here to read the unclassified executive summary of the IG’s report.

To be honest, it’s hard to understand why it took the Pentagon three years to come up with this.

U.S. Rep. Adam Smith, D-Tacoma, was among several members of Congress who asked the Pentagon to review its handling of the Yee case. Defense Department officials briefed him on the classified report Wednesday.

Smith told The News Tribune on Thursday that his office is working to get a redacted version of the full report released as soon as possible. In the meantime, he said he was “disappointed that the report wasn’t a little more straightforward and honest about the situation, and didn’t admit any mistakes.”

That is, it does not explain why Yee was held 12 days in detention without being allowed to notify his family. And likewise, there is no adequate explanation for why he was held in isolation for the better part of two months.

But Smith said the larger issue raised in the report is the need for a rewrite of the military’s detainee policies. To that end the House Armed Services Committee is marking up a habeas corpus bill next week, he said.

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