In response to a caller's assertion that under a similar rationale to the court proceedings leveled against soldiers implicated in the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal, former national security adviser Sandy Berger "deserves prison time," radio host Rush Limbaugh replied, "[U]sing your point of comparing this [the Berger incident] side by side with Abu Ghraib, yeah, you -- you're exactly right ... this is far worse. This is somebody who had far more access, responsibility, knowledge, and all that." Berger is under investigation for removing classified documents and personal notes from the National Archives last fall during preparations for his appearance before the 9-11 Commission.
From the July 22 broadcast of The Rush Limbaugh Show:
CALLER: Listen, I -- I'm really upset. If we can send our soldiers to prison over this Abu Ghraib, because they were supposed to know better, then what is going on here? The national security adviser to a president is supposed to know better. He deserves prison time.
LIMBAUGH: So, using your point of comparing this [the Berger incident] side by side with Abu Ghraib, yeah, you -- you're exactly right. We were told these people should have known better. This is unconscionable. The American people don't treat other people this way. Let's plaster their names all over the paper. Let's send them up for trial. Let's convict them. Let's put them in jail. Show trials and all this.
This is far worse. This is somebody who had far more access, responsibility, knowledge, and all that. And I -- but I -- you -- trust me on what I tell you about the words of the -- of the U.S. attorney that -- that's looking into this, [Deputy Attorney General] James [B.] Comey. They're refusing a deal. They're continuing to hold out this possibility of jail time and criminal charges.
As Media Matters for America has noted, Limbaugh has repeatedly downplayed, dismissed, and even endorsed the horrific abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib, prompting MMFA to call for the removal of Limbaugh's radio show from taxpayer-funded American Forces Radio and Television Service.