WASHINGTON - President Bush (news - web sites) apologized Thursday for the abuse and humiliation of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. soldiers, saying the scenes of mistreatment had made Americans "sick to our stomachs." A day after he stopped short of apologizing, Bush told Jordan's King Abdullah II: "I was sorry for the humiliation suffered by the Iraqi prisoners and the humiliation suffered by their families. "I told him I was as equally sorry that people seeing those pictures didn't understand the true nature and heart of America," Bush said, standing in the Rose Garden alongside Abdullah. The president's statement went beyond his comment Wednesday that the abuse of prisoners was "abhorrent" and "does not represent the America that I know." His lack of an apology Wednesday was striking, and his spokesman said later that the president was sorry. Bush gave voice to that sentiment Thursday. Scenes of mistreatment have been broadcast around the world, drawing international condemnation and prompting outrage in the Middle East. Bush said he discussed the pictures with Abdullah. Bush said he told the king: "Americans like me didn't appreciate what we saw, and it makes us sick to our stomachs. "I also made it clear to his majesty that the troops we have in Iraq (news - web sites) who were there for security and peace and freedom are the finest of the fine." For his part, the king said, "We're all horrified by the images" of torture and abuse. He said he was confident that American investigations would find the guilty parties. The abuse by some soldiers "doesn't reflect the morals and values" of the United States, Abdullah said. Describing a meeting he had Wednesday with Rumsfeld, Bush said, "I told him I should have known about the pictures and the report" done by the Pentagon (news - web sites) two months ago. The president said he had assured Abdullah that "people will be brought to justice in a way commensurate to how our system works." ------------------------------------ Wow! I was sure Bush's policy of admitting no mistakes whatsoever was going to mean he wouldn't apologize, but I was wrong. I should also say that I do not believe it was by any means Bush's fault the abuse went on.