When our government is involved in complex and sensitive activities or investigations, we can not expect to know all the details. There are legitimate reasons to keep some information secret, or to release only select information when the work is done.
That is why institutions of the government need to be as transparent as possible, and must be seen as honest and beyond reproach. When information has to be hidden, there must be evidence that those making the decisions on what can be released and what can not are acting in a honest manner.
Unfortunately, a couple of on going investigations clearly show why many can no longer trust our current government to do be truthful.
Pat Tillman;s death is now getting it's forth review. The real story of his death is coming out, but only after a series of official lies were exposed. If he had not been famous prior to his entry into the armed forces, the facts surrounding his death, and the resulting coverups may never have been exposed.
The Abu Ghraib cases are still working their way through the courts. A series of trials of lower ranking enlisted scape goats are ending and they are being herded into prison. While there is clear evidence that there were higher ups, up to and including some in DC, who encouraged harsher treatment and demanded more information by any means, there is no movement to explore their actions. We are told that all the bad apples have been exposed and that no one with real authority was responsible.
Now we have the investigation of the incident at Haditha. The armed forces are also investigating this. They promise a full and complete look at the event, and that they will find the truth, and punish any that may deserve punishment.
The same way we were promised justice for those as Abu Ghraib, the same way we have been promised the truth about Pat Tillman.
Now we have to trust, that in a time when congress refuses to exercise any oversight, in a time when the president can be unchallenged when he issues signing statement redefining law, or claims unlimited powers, that somehow, despite the evidence of the past, the truth will come out.
Iraq Abu Ghraib Tillman Haditha