The Abu Gharib photos.
First off, I have to say that a defense of "If you release all these photos they could harm our image!" isn't the best defense in the world to make. Kinda makes it difficult to argue the photos are innocent. We did absolutely nothing wrong, but don't let anyone see these pictures, it could hurt our image. Huh? Couldn't any criminal make this claim? "Don't put my name on a list of convicted child abusers - it could hurt my image." We wouldn't buy THAT argument - why should we buy this one? Judge Hellerstein said it best: "Our nation does not surrender to blackmail, and fear of blackmail is not a legally sufficient argument to prevent us from performing a statutory command. Indeed, the freedoms that we champion are as important to our success in Iraq and Afghanistan as the guns and missiles with which our troops are armed."
When the news of these photos - the ones that the Bush Admin tried to suppress - came out, I e-mailed a discussion group and said, "If there are true, we've lost the war." These are the bad ones, the ones that even Rush Limbaugh can't explain away as "blowing off some steam" (which did make me wonder exactly where Rushie pledged). These are the ones that can't be defended at all - rape, murder, and the raping of young kids done on camera, if what Seymour Hersh claimed is true. We know the pictures and videotape contained acts of rape and murder - Congressmen who saw the tapes said so. I can only hope the claim of kids being raped are wrong. All of these acts are unforgivable - but raping kids deserves a special level in Hell. (As a side note, compare how hard the Bush Admin. fought to keep these tapes and pictures out of the public eye to the energy placed into investigating Captain Ian Fishback's abuse reports.)
There's still an appeals process, and knowing the Bush penchant for keeping bad facts out, I wouldn't be surprised if they try to classify these things as a last attempt to keep them out of the public eye. I, for one, would love to see that all the original reports were wrong - but the more they try and hide them, the more I don't think that will happen.