Iraqis Tortured and abused "Sadistic Style" By US Personnel

The Pictures That Lost The War!

Military Intel & CIA Ordered
Abuses At Abu Gharib Prison (article below)

"I'm afraid that this is, in a sense, the last nail in the coffin in the raft of arguments for the Iraq war," said Rashid Khalidi, director of the Middle East Institute at Columbia University. (article below)

Part 2

BCST 8/27/06
C-SPAN BOOK TV - 9/11 COMMISSION INTERVIEW
9/11 ACCOUNTABILTY Vs. "The Case For Impeachment"
AUDIO (ABOUT 55 MINUTES)
http://www.apfn.net/pogo/L002I060827-911-impeachment2.MP3

9/11 ACCOUNTABILITY....WE WHERE VERY UNJUDGEMENTAL
THE 9/11 COMMISSION....THESE GUYS ARE SHOCKING!!!!
AUDIO:
http://www.apfn.net/pogo/L001I060827-911-impeachment1.MP3

Part 1 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW.htm 
Part 3 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW3.htm 
Part 4 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW4.htm 
Part 5 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW5.htm 
Part 6 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW6.htm 
Part 7 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW7.htm 
Part 8 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW8.htm
Part 9 http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW9.htm 

Legal Docs. http://www.apfn/apfn/POW_legal_doc

53 Page Prison Abuse Report http://www.apfn.org/apfn/Prison_abuse_report.pdf
24 Page Red Cross Report http://www.apfn.org/pdf/Red-Cross-report.pdf

Iraqis Abused by U.S. Personnel - Military Documents
http://www.apfn.org/apfn/pow_legal_doc.htm

Intelligence Interrogation
Legal Documents and punishments
http://www.apfn.org/apfn/pow_legal_doc.htm

 

Army Field Manual Doc 34-52
Uniform Code of Military Intelligence


Intelligence Interrogation
Legal Documents and punishments

http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW_legal_doc.htm

Part 1
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
POW_legal_doc

 

53 Page Prison Abuse Report Click Here

 

Saturday 8th May 2004 :
US soldiers abused young girl at Iraqi prison
ITV

Fri May 7 2004 - The US military has said it will investigate claims by a former inmate of Abu Ghraib prison that a girl as young as 12 was stripped and beaten by military personnel.

Suhaib al-Baz, a journalist for the al-Jazeera television network, claims to have been tortured at the prison, based west of Baghdad, while held there for 54 days.

Mr al-Baz was arrested when reporting clashes between insurgents and coalition forces in November.

He said: "They brought a 12-year-old girl into our cellblock late at night. Her brother was a prisoner in the other cells.


"She was naked and screaming and calling out to him as they beat her. Her brother was helpless and could only hear her cries. This affected all of us because she was just a child.

The allegations cannot be verified independently but Mr al-Baz maintains psychological and physical violence were commonplace in the jail.

He also claims that a father and his 15-year-old son were tortured in front of his cell.

He said: "They made the son carry two jerry cans full of water. An American soldier had a stick and when he stopped, he would beat him.


"He collapsed so they stripped him and poured cold water over him. They brought a man who was wearing a hood. They pulled it off. The son was shocked to see it was his father and collapsed.

"When he recovered, he now saw his father dressed in women's underwear and the Americans laughing at him.

Mr al-Baz claims the guards at the prison were keen to take photographs of the abuse and turned it into a competition.

"They were enjoying taking photographs of the torture. There was a daily competition to see who could take the most gruesome picture.

"The winner's photo would be stuck on a wall and also put on their laptop computers as a screensaver.

"I had a good opinion of the Americans but since my time in prison, I've changed my mind. In Iraq we still have no freedom or democracy. They are so cruel to us."


The International Committee of the Red Cross has said Iraqis held by US forces have been subjected to systematic degrading treatment, sometimes close to torture, that may have been officially condoned.

The ICRC said visits to detention centres in Iraq between March and November 2003 had turned up violations of international treaties on prisoners of war.

The ICRC, whose reports on prison visits are confidential, went public with some of its findings after parts of the 24-page document were carried by the Wall Street Journal.

The scandal over detainee abuse broke last week with the release of photographs showing the sexual humiliation of Iraqi prisoners in Abu Ghraib.

US Defencse Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has taken responsibility for the incidents and apologised to the victims, the Iraqi people and Americans.

http://lists.econ.utah.edu/pipermail/rad-green/2004-May/014047.html
http://bellaciao.org/en/article.php3?id_article=955

================================================

SEYMOUR M. HERSH
TORTURE AT ABU GHRAIB: How far up does the responsibility go?
Mon May 3, 2004 22:02
64.140.158.19



http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2004/05/10/040510fa_fact 

TORTURE AT ABU GHRAIB 
by SEYMOUR M. HERSH

American soldiers brutalized Iraqis. How far up does the responsibility go?
Issue of 2004-05-10

In the era of Saddam Hussein, Abu Ghraib, twenty miles west of Baghdad,
was one of the world’s most notorious prisons, with torture, weekly
executions, and vile living conditions. As many as fifty thousand men
and women—no accurate count is possible—were jammed into Abu Ghraib at
one time, in twelve-by-twelve-foot cells that were little more than
human holding pits.

In the looting that followed the regime’s collapse, last April, the huge
prison complex, by then deserted, was stripped of everything that could
be removed, including doors, windows, and bricks. The coalition
authorities had the floors tiled, cells cleaned and repaired, and
toilets, showers, and a new medical center added. Abu Ghraib was now a
U.S. military prison. Most of the prisoners, however—by the fall there
were several thousand, including women and teen-agers—were civilians,
many of whom had been picked up in random military sweeps and at highway
checkpoints. They fell into three loosely defined categories: common
criminals; security detainees suspected of “crimes against the
coalition”; and a small number of suspected “high-value” leaders of the
insurgency against the coalition forces.

Last June, Janis Karpinski, an Army reserve brigadier general, was named
commander of the 800th Military Police Brigade and put in charge of
military prisons in Iraq. General Karpinski, the only female commander
in the war zone, was an experienced operations and intelligence officer
who had served with the Special Forces and in the 1991 Gulf War, but she
had never run a prison system. Now she was in charge of three large
jails, eight battalions, and thirty-four hundred Army reservists, most
of whom, like her, had no training in handling prisoners.

General Karpinski, who had wanted to be a soldier since she was five, is
a business consultant in civilian life, and was enthusiastic about her
new job. In an interview last December with the St. Petersburg Times,
she said that, for many of the Iraqi inmates at Abu Ghraib, “living
conditions now are better in prison than at home. At one point we were
concerned that they wouldn’t want to leave.”

A month later, General Karpinski was formally admonished and quietly
suspended, and a major investigation into the Army’s prison system,
authorized by Lieutenant General Ricardo S. Sanchez, the senior
commander in Iraq, was under way. A fifty-three-page report, obtained by
The New Yorker, written by Major General Antonio M. Taguba and not meant
for public release, was completed in late February. Its conclusions
about the institutional failures of the Army prison system were
devastating. Specifically, Taguba found that between October and
December of 2003 there were numerous instances of “sadistic, blatant,
and wanton criminal abuses” at Abu Ghraib. This systematic and illegal
abuse of detainees, Taguba reported, was perpetrated by soldiers of the
372nd Military Police Company, and also by members of the American
intelligence community. (The 372nd was attached to the 320th M.P.
Battalion, which reported to Karpinski’s brigade headquarters.) Taguba’s
report listed some of the wrongdoing:

Breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees;
pouring cold water on naked detainees; beating detainees with a broom
handle and a chair; threatening male detainees with rape; allowing a
military police guard to stitch the wound of a detainee who was injured
after being slammed against the wall in his cell; sodomizing a detainee
with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick, and using military
working dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees with threats of
attack, and in one instance actually biting a detainee.


There was stunning evidence to support the allegations, Taguba
added—“detailed witness statements and the discovery of extremely
graphic photographic evidence.” Photographs and videos taken by the
soldiers as the abuses were happening were not included in his report,
Taguba said, because of their “extremely sensitive nature.”

The photographs—several of which were broadcast on CBS’s “60 Minutes 2”
last week—show leering G.I.s taunting naked Iraqi prisoners who are
forced to assume humiliating poses. Six suspects—Staff Sergeant Ivan L.
Frederick II, known as Chip, who was the senior enlisted man; Specialist
Charles A. Graner; Sergeant Javal Davis; Specialist Megan Ambuhl;
Specialist Sabrina Harman; and Private Jeremy Sivits—are now facing
prosecution in Iraq, on charges that include conspiracy, dereliction of
duty, cruelty toward prisoners, maltreatment, assault, and indecent
acts. A seventh suspect, Private Lynndie England, was reassigned to Fort
Bragg, North Carolina, after becoming pregnant.

The photographs tell it all. In one, Private England, a cigarette
dangling from her mouth, is giving a jaunty thumbs-up sign and pointing
at the genitals of a young Iraqi, who is naked except for a sandbag over
his head, as he masturbates. Three other hooded and naked Iraqi
prisoners are shown, hands reflexively crossed over their genitals. A
fifth prisoner has his hands at his sides. In another, England stands
arm in arm with Specialist Graner; both are grinning and giving the
thumbs-up behind a cluster of perhaps seven naked Iraqis, knees bent,
piled clumsily on top of each other in a pyramid. There is another
photograph of a cluster of naked prisoners, again piled in a pyramid.
Near them stands Graner, smiling, his arms crossed; a woman soldier
stands in front of him, bending over, and she, too, is smiling. Then,
there is another cluster of hooded bodies, with a female soldier
standing in front, taking photographs. Yet another photograph shows a
kneeling, naked, unhooded male prisoner, head momentarily turned away
from the camera, posed to make it appear that he is performing oral sex
on another male prisoner, who is naked and hooded.

Such dehumanization is unacceptable in any culture, but it is especially
so in the Arab world. Homosexual acts are against Islamic law and it is
humiliating for men to be naked in front of other men, Bernard Haykel, a
professor of Middle Eastern studies at New York University, explained.
“Being put on top of each other and forced to masturbate, being naked in
front of each other—it’s all a form of torture,” Haykel said.

Two Iraqi faces that do appear in the photographs are those of dead men.
There is the battered face of prisoner No. 153399, and the bloodied body
of another prisoner, wrapped in cellophane and packed in ice. There is a
photograph of an empty room, splattered with blood.

The 372nd’s abuse of prisoners seemed almost routine—a fact of Army life
that the soldiers felt no need to hide. On April 9th, at an Article 32
hearing (the military equivalent of a grand jury) in the case against
Sergeant Frederick, at Camp Victory, near Baghdad, one of the witnesses,
Specialist Matthew Wisdom, an M.P., told the courtroom what happened
when he and other soldiers delivered seven prisoners, hooded and bound,
to the so-called “hard site” at Abu Ghraib—seven tiers of cells where
the inmates who were considered the most dangerous were housed. The men
had been accused of starting a riot in another section of the prison.
Wisdom said:

SFC Snider grabbed my prisoner and threw him into a pile. . . . I do not
think it was right to put them in a pile. I saw SSG Frederic, SGT Davis
and CPL Graner walking around the pile hitting the prisoners. I remember
SSG Frederick hitting one prisoner in the side of its [sic] ribcage. The
prisoner was no danger to SSG Frederick. . . . I left after that.


When he returned later, Wisdom testified:

I saw two naked detainees, one masturbating to another kneeling with its
mouth open. I thought I should just get out of there. I didn’t think it
was right . . . I saw SSG Frederick walking towards me, and he said,
“Look what these animals do when you leave them alone for two seconds.”
I heard PFC England shout out, “He’s getting hard.”


Wisdom testified that he told his superiors what had happened, and
assumed that “the issue was taken care of.” He said, “I just didn’t want
to be part of anything that looked criminal.”



The abuses became public because of the outrage of Specialist Joseph M.
Darby, an M.P. whose role emerged during the Article 32 hearing against
Chip Frederick. A government witness, Special Agent Scott Bobeck, who is
a member of the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division, or C.I.D., told
the court, according to an abridged transcript made available to me,
“The investigation started after SPC Darby . . . got a CD from CPL
Graner. . . . He came across pictures of naked detainees.” Bobeck said
that Darby had “initially put an anonymous letter under our door, then
he later came forward and gave a sworn statement. He felt very bad about
it and thought it was very wrong.”

Questioned further, the Army investigator said that Frederick and his
colleagues had not been given any “training guidelines” that he was
aware of. The M.P.s in the 372nd had been assigned to routine traffic
and police duties upon their arrival in Iraq, in the spring of 2003. In
October of 2003, the 372nd was ordered to prison-guard duty at Abu
Ghraib. Frederick, at thirty-seven, was far older than his colleagues,
and was a natural leader; he had also worked for six years as a guard
for the Virginia Department of Corrections. Bobeck explained:

What I got is that SSG Frederick and CPL Graner were road M.P.s and were
put in charge because they were civilian prison guards and had knowledge
of how things were supposed to be run.


Bobeck also testified that witnesses had said that Frederick, on one
occasion, “had punched a detainee in the chest so hard that the detainee
almost went into cardiac arrest.”

At the Article 32 hearing, the Army informed Frederick and his
attorneys, Captain Robert Shuck, an Army lawyer, and Gary Myers, a
civilian, that two dozen witnesses they had sought, including General
Karpinski and all of Frederick’s co-defendants, would not appear. Some
had been excused after exercising their Fifth Amendment right; others
were deemed to be too far away from the courtroom. “The purpose of an
Article 32 hearing is for us to engage witnesses and discover facts,”
Gary Myers told me. “We ended up with a c.i.d. agent and no alleged
victims to examine.” After the hearing, the presiding investigative
officer ruled that there was sufficient evidence to convene a
court-martial against Frederick.

Myers, who was one of the military defense attorneys in the My Lai
prosecutions of the nineteen-seventies, told me that his client’s
defense will be that he was carrying out the orders of his superiors
and, in particular, the directions of military intelligence. He said,
“Do you really think a group of kids from rural Virginia decided to do
this on their own? Decided that the best way to embarrass Arabs and make
them talk was to have them walk around nude?”

In letters and e-mails to family members, Frederick repeatedly noted
that the military-intelligence teams, which included C.I.A. officers and
linguists and interrogation specialists from private defense
contractors, were the dominant force inside Abu Ghraib. In a letter
written in January, he said:

I questioned some of the things that I saw . . . such things as leaving
inmates in their cell with no clothes or in female underpants,
handcuffing them to the door of their cell—and the answer I got was,
“This is how military intelligence (MI) wants it done.” . . . . MI has
also instructed us to place a prisoner in an isolation cell with little
or no clothes, no toilet or running water, no ventilation or window, for
as much as three days.


The military-intelligence officers have “encouraged and told us, ‘Great
job,’ they were now getting positive results and information,” Frederick
wrote. “CID has been present when the military working dogs were used to
intimidate prisoners at MI’s request.” At one point, Frederick told his
family, he pulled aside his superior officer, Lieutenant Colonel Jerry
Phillabaum, the commander of the 320th M.P. Battalion, and asked about
the mistreatment of prisoners. “His reply was ‘Don’t worry about it.’”

In November, Frederick wrote, an Iraqi prisoner under the control of
what the Abu Ghraib guards called “O.G.A.,” or other government
agencies—that is, the C.I.A. and its paramilitary employees—was brought
to his unit for questioning. “They stressed him out so bad that the man
passed away. They put his body in a body bag and packed him in ice for
approximately twenty-four hours in the shower. . . . The next day the
medics came and put his body on a stretcher, placed a fake IV in his arm
and took him away.” The dead Iraqi was never entered into the prison’s
inmate-control system, Frederick recounted, “and therefore never had a
number.”



Frederick’s defense is, of course, highly self-serving. But the
complaints in his letters and e-mails home were reinforced by two
internal Army reports—Taguba’s and one by the Army’s chief
law-enforcement officer, Provost Marshal Donald Ryder, a major general.

Last fall, General Sanchez ordered Ryder to review the prison system in
Iraq and recommend ways to improve it. Ryder’s report, filed on November
5th, concluded that there were potential human-rights, training, and
manpower issues, system-wide, that needed immediate attention. It also
discussed serious concerns about the tension between the missions of the
military police assigned to guard the prisoners and the intelligence
teams who wanted to interrogate them. Army regulations limit
intelligence activity by the M.P.s to passive collection. But something
had gone wrong at Abu Ghraib.

There was evidence dating back to the Afghanistan war, the Ryder report
said, that M.P.s had worked with intelligence operatives to “set
favorable conditions for subsequent interviews”—a euphemism for breaking
the will of prisoners. “Such actions generally run counter to the smooth
operation of a detention facility, attempting to maintain its population
in a compliant and docile state.” General Karpinski’s brigade, Ryder
reported, “has not been directed to change its facility procedures to
set the conditions for MI interrogations, nor participate in those
interrogations.” Ryder called for the establishment of procedures to
“define the role of military police soldiers . . .clearly separating the
actions of the guards from those of the military intelligence
personnel.” The officers running the war in Iraq were put on notice.

Ryder undercut his warning, however, by concluding that the situation
had not yet reached a crisis point. Though some procedures were flawed,
he said, he found “no military police units purposely applying
inappropriate confinement practices.” His investigation was at best a
failure and at worst a coverup.

Taguba, in his report, was polite but direct in refuting his
fellow-general. “Unfortunately, many of the systemic problems that
surfaced during [Ryder’s] assessment are the very same issues that are
the subject of this investigation,” he wrote. “In fact, many of the
abuses suffered by detainees occurred during, or near to, the time of
that assessment.” The report continued, “Contrary to the findings of MG
Ryder’s report, I find that personnel assigned to the 372nd MP Company,
800th MP Brigade were directed to change facility procedures to ‘set the
conditions’ for MI interrogations.” Army intelligence officers, C.I.A.
agents, and private contractors “actively requested that MP guards set
physical and mental conditions for favorable interrogation of
witnesses.”

Taguba, in his report, was polite but direct in refuting his
fellow-general. “Unfortunately, many of the systemic problems that
surfaced during [Ryder’s] assessment are the very same issues that are
the subject of this investigation,” he wrote. “In fact, many of the
abuses suffered by detainees occurred during, or near to, the time of
that assessment.” The report continued, “Contrary to the findings of MG
Ryder’s report, I find that personnel assigned to the 372nd MP Company,
800th MP Brigade were directed to change facility procedures to ‘set the
conditions’ for MI interrogations.” Army intelligence officers, C.I.A.
agents, and private contractors “actively requested that MP guards set
physical and mental conditions for favorable interrogation of
witnesses.”

Taguba backed up his assertion by citing evidence from sworn statements
to Army C.I.D. investigators. Specialist Sabrina Harman, one of the
accused M.P.s, testified that it was her job to keep detainees awake,
including one hooded prisoner who was placed on a box with wires
attached to his fingers, toes, and penis. She stated, “MI wanted to get
them to talk. It is Graner and Frederick’s job to do things for MI and
OGA to get these people to talk.”

Another witness, Sergeant Javal Davis, who is also one of the accused,
told C.I.D. investigators, “I witnessed prisoners in the MI hold section
. . . being made to do various things that I would question morally. . .
. We were told that they had different rules.” Taguba wrote, “Davis also
stated that he had heard MI insinuate to the guards to abuse the
inmates. When asked what MI said he stated: ‘Loosen this guy up for
us.’‘Make sure he has a bad night.’‘Make sure he gets the treatment.’”
Military intelligence made these comments to Graner and Frederick, Davis
said. “The MI staffs to my understanding have been giving Graner
compliments . . . statements like, ‘Good job, they’re breaking down real
fast. They answer every question. They’re giving out good information.’”

When asked why he did not inform his chain of command about the abuse,
Sergeant Davis answered, “Because I assumed that if they were doing
things out of the ordinary or outside the guidelines, someone would have
said something. Also the wing”—where the abuse took place—“belongs to MI
and it appeared MI personnel approved of the abuse.”

Another witness, Specialist Jason Kennel, who was not accused of
wrongdoing, said, “I saw them nude, but MI would tell us to take away
their mattresses, sheets, and clothes.” (It was his view, he added, that
if M.I. wanted him to do this “they needed to give me paperwork.”)
Taguba also cited an interview with Adel L. Nakhla, a translator who was
an employee of Titan, a civilian contractor. He told of one night when a
“bunch of people from MI” watched as a group of handcuffed and shackled
inmates were subjected to abuse by Graner and Frederick.

General Taguba saved his harshest words for the military-intelligence
officers and private contractors. He recommended that Colonel Thomas
Pappas, the commander of one of the M.I. brigades, be reprimanded and
receive non-judicial punishment, and that Lieutenant Colonel Steven
Jordan, the former director of the Joint Interrogation and Debriefing
Center, be relieved of duty and reprimanded. He further urged that a
civilian contractor, Steven Stephanowicz, of CACI International, be
fired from his Army job, reprimanded, and denied his security clearances
for lying to the investigating team and allowing or ordering military
policemen “who were not trained in interrogation techniques to
facilitate interrogations by ‘setting conditions’ which were neither
authorized” nor in accordance with Army regulations. “He clearly knew
his instructions equated to physical abuse,” Taguba wrote. He also
recommended disciplinary action against a second CACI employee, John
Israel. (A spokeswoman for CACI said that the company had “received no
formal communication” from the Army about the matter.)

“I suspect,” Taguba concluded, that Pappas, Jordan, Stephanowicz, and
Israel “were either directly or indirectly responsible for the abuse at
Abu Ghraib,” and strongly recommended immediate disciplinary action.



The problems inside the Army prison system in Iraq were not hidden from
senior commanders. During Karpinski’s seven-month tour of duty, Taguba
noted, there were at least a dozen officially reported incidents
involving escapes, attempted escapes, and other serious security issues
that were investigated by officers of the 800th M.P. Brigade. Some of
the incidents had led to the killing or wounding of inmates and M.P.s,
and resulted in a series of “lessons learned” inquiries within the
brigade. Karpinski invariably approved the reports and signed orders
calling for changes in day-to-day procedures. But Taguba found that she
did not follow up, doing nothing to insure that the orders were carried
out. Had she done so, he added, “cases of abuse may have been
prevented.”

General Taguba further found that Abu Ghraib was filled beyond capacity,
and that the M.P. guard force was significantly undermanned and short of
resources. “This imbalance has contributed to the poor living
conditions, escapes, and accountability lapses,” he wrote. There were
gross differences, Taguba said, between the actual number of prisoners
on hand and the number officially recorded. A lack of proper screening
also meant that many innocent Iraqis were wrongly being
detained—indefinitely, it seemed, in some cases. The Taguba study noted
that more than sixty per cent of the civilian inmates at Abu Ghraib were
deemed not to be a threat to society, which should have enabled them to
be released. Karpinski’s defense, Taguba said, was that her superior
officers “routinely” rejected her recommendations regarding the release
of such prisoners.

Karpinski was rarely seen at the prisons she was supposed to be running,
Taguba wrote. He also found a wide range of administrative problems,
including some that he considered “without precedent in my military
career.” The soldiers, he added, were “poorly prepared and untrained . .
. prior to deployment, at the mobilization site, upon arrival in
theater, and throughout the mission.”

General Taguba spent more than four hours interviewing Karpinski, whom
he described as extremely emotional: “What I found particularly
disturbing in her testimony was her complete unwillingness to either
understand or accept that many of the problems inherent in the 800th MP
Brigade were caused or exacerbated by poor leadership and the refusal of
her command to both establish and enforce basic standards and principles
among its soldiers.”

Taguba recommended that Karpinski and seven brigade military-police
officers and enlisted men be relieved of command and formally
reprimanded. No criminal proceedings were suggested for Karpinski;
apparently, the loss of promotion and the indignity of a public rebuke
were seen as enough punishment.



After the story broke on CBS last week, the Pentagon announced that
Major General Geoffrey Miller, the new head of the Iraqi prison system,
had arrived in Baghdad and was on the job. He had been the commander of
the Guantánamo Bay detention center. General Sanchez also authorized an
investigation into possible wrongdoing by military and civilian
interrogators.

As the international furor grew, senior military officers, and President
Bush, insisted that the actions of a few did not reflect the conduct of
the military as a whole. Taguba’s report, however, amounts to an
unsparing study of collective wrongdoing and the failure of Army
leadership at the highest levels. The picture he draws of Abu Ghraib is
one in which Army regulations and the Geneva conventions were routinely
violated, and in which much of the day-to-day management of the
prisoners was abdicated to Army military-intelligence units and civilian
contract employees. Interrogating prisoners and getting intelligence,
including by intimidation and torture, was the priority.

The mistreatment at Abu Ghraib may have done little to further American
intelligence, however. Willie J. Rowell, who served for thirty-six years
as a C.I.D. agent, told me that the use of force or humiliation with
prisoners is invariably counterproductive. “They’ll tell you what you
want to hear, truth or no truth,” Rowell said. “‘You can flog me until I
tell you what I know you want me to say.’ You don’t get righteous
information.”

Under the fourth Geneva convention, an occupying power can jail
civilians who pose an “imperative” security threat, but it must
establish a regular procedure for insuring that only civilians who
remain a genuine security threat be kept imprisoned. Prisoners have the
right to appeal any internment decision and have their cases reviewed.
Human Rights Watch complained to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld
that civilians in Iraq remained in custody month after month with no
charges brought against them. Abu Ghraib had become, in effect, another
Guantánamo.

As the photographs from Abu Ghraib make clear, these detentions have had
enormous consequences: for the imprisoned civilian Iraqis, many of whom
had nothing to do with the growing insurgency; for the integrity of the
Army; and for the United States’ reputation in the world.

Captain Robert Shuck, Frederick’s military attorney, closed his defense
at the Article 32 hearing last month by saying that the Army was
“attempting to have these six soldiers atone for its sins.” Similarly,
Gary Myers, Frederick’s civilian attorney, told me that he would argue
at the court-martial that culpability in the case extended far beyond
his client. “I’m going to drag every involved intelligence officer and
civilian contractor I can find into court,” he said. “Do you really
believe the Army relieved a general officer because of six soldiers? Not
a chance.”

===========================

SEE
Iraqis Being Abused by US Personnel
http://www.apfn.org/apfn/pow.htm

===========================

Autonomy & Solidarity

Pamphlet on Occupation, Prisons and Torture - Analysis and Photos

PAMPHLET on Occupation, Prisons and Torture

==========================================

 

Key excerpts from the Taguba report

Updated: 6:20 p.m. ET May 03, 2004

The following are some of the key excerpts from the report prepared by Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba on alleged abuse of prisoners by members of the 800th Military Police Brigade at the Abu Ghraib Prison in Baghdad. The report was ordered by Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, commander of Joint Task Force-7, the senior U.S. military official in Iraq, following persistent allegations of human rights abuses at the prison.


The following are some of the key excerpts from the report prepared by Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba on alleged abuse of prisoners by members of the 800th Military Police Brigade at the Abu Ghraib Prison in Baghdad. The report was ordered by Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, commander of Joint Task Force-7, the senior U.S. military official in Iraq, following persistent allegations of human rights abuses at the prison.
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(B)etween October and December 2003, at the Abu Ghraib Confinement Facility (BCCF), numerous incidents of sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses were inflicted on several detainees. This systemic and illegal abuse of detainees was intentionally perpetrated byseveral members of the military police guard force (372nd Military Police Company, 320thMilitary Police Battalion, 800th MP Brigade), in Tier (section) 1-A of the Abu Ghraib Prison (BCCF).

In addition, several detainees also described the following acts of abuse, which under the circumstances, I find credible based on the clarity of their statements and supporting evidence provided by other witnesses

a. Breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees;

b. Threatening detainees with a charged 9mm pistol;

c. Pouring cold water on naked detainees;

d. Beating detainees with a broom handle and a chair;

e. Threatening male detainees with rape;

f. Allowing a military police guard to stitch the wound of a detainee who was injured after being slammed against the wall in his cell;

g. Sodomizing a detainee with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick.

h. Using military working dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees with threats of attack, and in one instance actually biting a detainee.


(T)he intentional abuse of detainees by military police personnel included the following acts:

a. Punching, slapping, and kicking detainees; jumping on their naked feet;

b. Videotaping and photographing naked male and female detainees;

c. Forcibly arranging detainees in various sexually explicit positions for photographing;

d. Forcing detainees to remove their clothing and keeping them naked for several days at a time;

e. Forcing naked male detainees to wear women’s underwear;

f. Forcing groups of male detainees to masturbate themselves while being photographed and videotaped;

g. Arranging naked male detainees in a pile and then jumping on them;

h. Positioning a naked detainee on a MRE Box, with a sandbag on his head, and attaching wires to his fingers, toes, and penis to simulate electric torture;

i. Writing “I am a Rapest” (sic) on the leg of a detainee alleged to have forcibly raped a 15-year old fellow detainee, and then photographing him naked;

j. Placing a dog chain or strap around a naked detainee’s neck and having a female Soldier pose for a picture;

k. A male MP guard having sex with a female detainee;

l. Using military working dogs (without muzzles) to intimidate and frighten detainees, and in at least one case biting and severely injuring a detainee;

m. Taking photographs of dead Iraqi detainees.


These findings are amply supported by written confessions provided by several of the suspects, written statements provided by detainees, and witness statements.

The various detention facilities operated by the 800th MP Brigade have routinely held persons brought to them by Other Government Agencies (OGAs) without accounting for them, knowing their identities, or even the reason for their detention. The Joint Interrogation and Debriefing Center (JIDC) at Abu Ghraib called these detainees “ghost detainees.” On at least one occasion, the 320th MP Battalion at Abu Ghraib held a handful of “ghost detainees” (6-8) for OGAs that they moved around within the facility to hide them from a visiting International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) survey team. This maneuver was deceptive, contrary to Army Doctrine, and in violation of international law.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4894033/

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Iraqi women raped at Abu Ghraib jail
First Published 2004-05-29, Last Updated 2004-05-29 11:09:38


Can’t talk
 
Human rights groups: Iraqi women raped at Abu Ghraib jail
 
Closed nature of Iraqi society made claims difficult to verify, women prefer to die rather than talk.
 
By Rouba Kabbara – BAGHDAD
Iraqi women who were held at Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad have complained of rape by both US and Iraqi jailers, according to human rights groups citing alleged victims.

Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt, chief military spokesman for the US-led coalition in Iraq, told AFP the prisons department was "unaware of any such reports at Abu Ghraib," and the cases were not confirmed first-hand by AFP.

Kimmitt said there were at present no female prisoners at Abu Ghraib, which has become notorious after evidence of abuse of male inmates by US military police guards.

According to the International Committee of the Red Cross, Abu Ghraib held some 30 women in October last year. According to the prison management, there were five at the beginning of this month.

Iman Khamas, head of the International Occupation Watch Center, a non-governmental organisation which gathers information on human rights abuses under coalition rule, said one former detainee had recounted the alleged rape of her cellmate in Abu Ghraib.

According to Khamas, the prisoner said her cellmate had been rendered unconscious for 48 hours. "She claimed she had been raped 17 times in one day by Iraqi police in the presence of American soldiers."

Mohammed Daham al-Mohammed said the Iraqi group he heads, the Union of Detainees and Prisoners, had been told of a mother of four, arrested in December, who killed herself after being raped by US guards in front of her husband at Abu Ghraib.

The account came from the woman's sister who said she had helped in the suicide.

According to the sister, the woman had told of "being taken into a cell where she saw her husband attached to the bars.

"An American soldier held her by the hair to force her to look at her husband while he stripped her," Mohammed said.

She was then raped, while her husband cried out "Allahu akbar" (God is greatest), he added, quoting the sister. After her release the woman had begged her sister to help her die so she would not have to face her husband when he was freed.

One former male prisoner, Amer Abu Durayid, 30, who was released from Abu Ghraib on May 13, told AFP he had seen women being taken into a room. "They had to pass in front of our tent and cried out, 'Find a way to kill us'" he said.

Human rights groups point out that in a conservative society like Iraq women feel that rape dishonours their whole family.

"A woman would prefer to die," Khamas said.

She added that one single woman, an economics teacher, had whispered her story of being raped at Abu Ghraib in Khamas's ear, even though there was no one else in the room.

"The next day, she came back with her brother and asked me to tear up her statement," Khamas said.

Khamas, Mohammed and Hoda Nuaimi, a politics professor at Baghdad University, all separately said that three young rural women from the Sunni Muslim region of Al-Anbar, west of Baghdad, had been killed by their families after coming out of Abu Ghraib pregnant.

Nuaimi said that in the case of another such woman, who was four months pregnant, her brother had been reluctant to kill his sister because he considered her a victim.

"He was extremely disturbed and went to see a tribal sheikh, who forbade him to kill her," Nuaimi said, while admitting that she did not know what had happened to the woman.

Khamas also said in a report that a middle-aged woman had been sexually assaulted after she was detained at Baghdad airport in September 2003.

Most of the women arrested by coalition forces are accused of holding senior positions in ousted Iraqi president Saddam Hussein's Baath party or assisting the resistance against the occupation forces. http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=10096

Kimmitt said the "total present female criminal population" in Iraq stood at 78, but there were none at Abu Ghraib.

While the coalition prisons department was "unaware" of reports of rape at Abu Ghraib, "there have been reports of abuses by Iraqi police in their jails," he said.

A spokeswoman for Amnesty International said the London-based human rights group had not received any such reports of rape, and added that the closed nature of Iraqi society made them very difficult to verify.

http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=10096

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Amnesty: Torture pattern in Iraq

 

Sunday, May 2, 2004 Posted: 1259 GMT (2059 HKT)
 

An Egyptian taxi driver reads a newspaper report about the alleged abuse of Iraqi prisoners.

LONDON, England -- A leading human rights group has said graphic pictures shown on TV and in newspapers of alleged abuse of Iraqi prisoners by coalition soldiers are the tip of the iceberg and that it has uncovered widespread torture.

London-based Amnesty International said it hoped the images apparently showing detainees being mistreated would force the U.S. and British governments to launch an independent investigation into the abuse claims.

The allegations surfaced Wednesday when the American network CBS broadcast images allegedly showing Iraqis stripped naked, hooded and being tormented by their U.S. captors at an Iraqi prison.

And on Saturday a newspaper in London published photos it said were of British troops kicking, stamping and urinating on a hooded Iraqi in Basra, southern Iraq, where Britain has about 7,500 soldiers.

The images have sparked anger among Muslims across the world while both U.S. President George W. Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair said they were appalled by them.

But Nicole Choueiry, Amnesty's Middle East spokeswoman, said the group had detailed "scores" of reports of ill-treatment over the past year but the U.S.-led Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq had ignored them.

"We have said there are patterns of torture by coalition forces," Choueiry told CNN on Sunday.

"The only good thing to come out of this would be if the pictures forced the coalition to launch an independent investigation and for its findings to be published in full."

Choueiry said the authenticity of images published by the Daily Mirror on Saturday was largely irrelevant. "These pictures are certainly not the only evidence of abuse. They are just the tip of the iceberg."

Newspapers across the Muslim world have been running the photographs of U.S. soldiers apparently humiliating detainees at Abu Ghraib prison on their front pages. Those in Iraq did not carry the photos.

Activists in Southeast Asia's two largest Muslim countries, Indonesia and Malaysia, condemned the alleged abuse as a "despicable" show of Western hatred towards Muslims, and demanded the coalition leave Iraq immediately.

"Such despicable acts prove the double standards of America, a country that always preaches about human rights to the rest of the world," said Nasharuddin Isa, secretary general of the fundamentalist Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party, the country's largest opposition political group.

Nasharuddin said the images showed "an unforgivable violation" of the Geneva Conventions, which govern the handling of captives.

"The U.S. and British troops must leave Iraq immediately," Nasharuddin told The Associated Press.

"Their actions have clearly shown the hatred of their countries toward Islamic people. How can they continue to say that their intention all this time has been to liberate the Iraqis?"

The U.S. military said six soldiers had been charged with criminal offenses for abusing inmates at Abu Ghraib prison, which was infamous under Saddam Hussein's reign.

"It would appear to us that if, in fact, the pictures are what they appear to be, they will face a court of law, a criminal court of law, and they will have to face a judge and a jury for their actions," Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt said.

European newspapers featured pictures that purportedly show abuse of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. jailers.

President Bush Friday expressed disgust at the images, saying the apparent mistreatment of the Iraqi prisoners "does not reflect the nature of the American people. That's not the way we do things in America." (Full story)

British Prime Minister Tony Blair said any abuse of Iraqi prisoners was "completely and totally unacceptable" and, if the photographs proved to be genuine, he would "condemn it utterly."

"We went to Iraq to get rid of that sort of thing, not to do it," Blair said.

"I think in fairness however, we should say, that there are thousands of British troops in Iraq doing a very brave, extraordinary job on behalf of the Iraqi people and on behalf of our country to make the country better," he added.

British Army commander Gen. Michael Jackson, speaking on behalf of Britain's minister of defense, said he was aware of the allegations regarding British troops and that the Ministry of Defense had launched an investigation.

"If proven, not only is such appalling conduct clearly unlawful, but it also contravenes the British Army's high standards of conduct," Jackson said in a statement. (Full story)

Anger in Arab capitals

A government-leaning newspaper in Egypt, Akhbar el-Yom, showed the photographs of U.S. soldiers posing by naked, hooded inmates, under the banner "The Scandal". Al-Wafd, an opposition paper, displayed similar photos beneath the words "The Shame," reported The Associated Press.

In Cairo, a spokesman for the Arab League said it had complained of abuses by U.S.-led forces after a mission to Iraq in December. The League feared more cases of ill-treatment were going unnoticed, he said.

"It is beyond the words of despicable acts and disgust that we feel at watching such photographs," Hossam Zaki told Reuters.

"The irony of it is that Saddam Hussein never really held a banner of spreading freedom...He was an autocratic ruler, a dictator, a repressive ruler, whatever you want to call him. It was expected to witness such atrocities under his rule.

In one of the images broadcast on "60 Minutes II" a person who appears to be a female soldier is seen with a hooded, naked prisoner.

"But to have the American soldiers supposedly bringing freedom and democracy and the American way of life to this part of the world, spreading this kind of shameful misconduct, that is an irony that to my taste is very sickening."

Zaki said the Arab League mission had heard similar accounts of abuse in Iraqi prisons, but did not have supporting evidence. But he said the mission had raised its concerns with the Iraqi Governing Council and the U.S. embassy on its return to Cairo.

"(It) is most likely that there are other cases that have not been photographed," he said.

"Shame on America. How can they convince us now that it is the bastion of democracy, freedoms and human rights? Why do we blame our dictators then?" asked Mustafa Saad, who was reading morning papers in a downtown Cairo cafe, the AP reported.

Mohammed Hassan Taha, an editor at Nile Sports News Television, said Arabs should not allow the matter to pass quietly, according to the AP report. "This is not humiliation of Iraqis, it is humiliation of all Arabs," said Taha, while buying a newspaper with the photos on its cover.

Dara Nor al-Din, a former judge and member of the U.S.-appointed Iraqi Governing Council, said the torture of prisoners and detainees or showing them naked contradicts principles of human rights.

"We used to criticize Saddam's regime regarding the beating of detained people, so why should we accept to repeat the same tragedy. This is not acceptable," Nor al-Din told AP.

At Baghdad's Mustansiriyah University, student Ahmad Taher, 24, asked, "Is this the way the Americans treat prisoners?"

"Americans claim that they respect freedom and democracy, but only in their country," Taher, 24, added.

Hussein al-Saeedi, spokesman for Kuwait's al-Salaf radical Islamic group, said the images "make every sensible person doubt all the principles Western democracies are offering" and show the need for an end to the U.S. occupation.

"America justified its invasion of Iraq by saying the country was under a dictatorship. Unfortunately, Americans are now torturing the Iraqi people in the same place Saddam tortured them," he said.

Copyright 2004 CNN. All rights reserved.

‘It Was Disgusting’
Former Iraqi Prisoners Recount Mistreatment by U.S. Soldiers


By Bill Redeker


B A G H D A D, Iraq, May 3 — As the scandal surrounding alleged U.S. abuse of Iraqi prisoners grows, former detainees are coming forward with stories of being beaten, forced to pose naked and otherwise humiliated by captors who became "more and more like Saddam."


The U.S. military said today it has reprimanded seven officers for the alleged abuse of inmates at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib prison, officials said.
Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, who oversaw the prison, told ABCNEWS' Good Morning America she did not know about the "despicable acts" while they were happening. She also said more Americans at the prison may have been involved.
Most of the prisoners detained at Abu Ghraib who are picked up in random military sweeps turn out to be innocent. They are released within three months and given $10 as spending money.
But some of those who were charged with insurgency and held longer told ABCNEWS they were subjected to lengthy interrogations, torture, and humiliation.
"They made us crawl around the floor naked and rode us like donkeys," Hashem Muhsen, speaking through a translator, told ABCNEWS in his native Arabic. Muhsen was arrested last August for carrying a gun in the opposition stronghold of Sadr City.
He produced a release document to help prove he had indeed been a prisoner at Abu Ghraib.
Muhsen said he was one of the prisoners forced to pose naked in a human pyramid, as photographed by American soldiers.
"They wanted to humiliate us. It was disgusting," he said. "Women soldiers took pictures of naked men and didn't care."
A Wave of Anger
Pictures of Iraqi soldiers, naked except for hoods over their heads, being tormented by Americans were first broadcast in the United States last week. An internal U.S. Army report found that Iraqi prisoners were subjected to "sadistic, blatant and wanton criminal abuses," according to The New Yorker magazine.
Now the story of alleged abuse at the hands of the Americans is everywhere, especially on television. It has unleashed a tidal wave of resentment and anger.
Abu Ghraib prison, located about 20 miles west of Baghdad, is where former members of Saddam Hussein's regime oversaw the torture and execution of thousands of political prisoners. It was seized and later renovated by coalition forces during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The American-run prison is now considered by many to be as notorious as it was when it was known as "Saddam's Torture Central."
"They have treated us worse than the pictures shown on TV," said former prisoner Ala al-Duleimi. "They beat us, humiliated us. I can't repeat what they did to us."
The accounts of humiliation and degradation are turning more Iraqis against the United States.
"When the U.S. liberated us, we were happy and welcomed them," said Muhsen. "Now they are getting more and more like Saddam."
The U.S. military's own investigation reveals more than 60 percent of civilians detained at Abu Ghraib were found to pose no threat to Iraqi security.
Hashem Muhsen was one of those prisoners. He became a police officer after his release in January.
On Tuesday, another group of prisoners will be released from Abu Ghraib. No one doubts lots of people will want to hear their stories.
http://www.abcnews.go.com/sections/WNT/World/abu_ghraib_prisoner_040503-1.html
 
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 Editorial: Iraq prisons/Another mess within a mess
May 4, 2004ED0504
Somehow the United States has managed to create in Iraq the military and political equivalent of a perfect storm. Most Iraqis now despise the United States. In Fallujah, the Marines can't even pick a former Iraqi military officer to lead the "Fallujah Brigade" without choosing the wrong guy. American soldiers continue to die by the dozens each week. Now comes the uproar over American abuse of Iraqi prisoners at the infamous Abu Ghraib prison. If anything was guaranteed to further inflame anti-American sentiment everywhere, this is it.
As the furor began to build following the display of brutality photos on CBS' "60 Minutes" last week, President Bush sought to portray the problem as an isolated incident. It was, he implied, a case of a few bad apples. General Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, expressed the same notion: "A handful of people" were to blame. Yet an Army report implicates interrogators at the prison and cites serious command deficiencies. Something more systemic is at work here, and punishing a few low-ranking soldiers, while necessary and deserved, won't cut it as a response.
The military police troops immediately responsible for the brutalization of Iraqi prisoners weren't acting out, and they didn't think up this torture regime on their own. As Seymour Hersh wrote in The New Yorker, and as Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba wrote in a 53-page report submitted to the Pentagon in February, the MPs were doing what they were encouraged to do by intelligence officers and civilian interrogators. The MPs had virtually no training in running a prison, and virtually no supervision from higher up the chain of command. Rather than simply being jailors, they allowed their job to morph into one of softening up prisoners for interrogation by the intelligence officers.
Thus the abuses Taguba reported: parading male detainees around naked and posing them in suggestive postures with each other, then photographing them; forcing them to masturbate in front of others; sodomizing at least one detainee; beating prisoners with fists, a broom handle and a chair; leaving prisoners for days without clothing, latrine, ventilation and running water.
Just as bad, it turns out that probably a majority of the detainees had no useful information and posed no threat to American forces. Requirements for quickly releasing such people were ignored.
When the abuses at Abu Ghraib came to light, Iraqis previously held in other places also began coming forward to accuse their captors of abuse as well.
Yet Myers said on Sunday that he hadn't read the explosive Taguba report, three months after it was submitted to the Pentagon. That raises a powerful question: When would the American people have been informed of all this, had it not been for someone sharing photos with CBS and the Taguba report with Hersh?
What you have at Abu Ghraib is another horrible consequence of failing to plan for post-Saddam Hussein Iraq. When Bush and his team decided to go to war, they could not have foreseen this specific abuse of prisoners. But they had an obligation to think through all the contingencies, all the requirements that flow from a decision to employ military force and take over a country. In Iraq, we have instance after instance of people up and down the chain of the command -- from Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld to the MPs at Abu Ghraib -- demonstrating extremely poor judgment.
The MPs will be disciplined. They're not the only ones who should be held accountable.
http://www.startribune.com/stories/561/4756780.html 
 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
US officer says prison guards tried to cover up abuse of Iraqi prisoners

Julian Borger in Washington
Monday May 3, 2004
The Guardian

US prison guards and interrogators attempted to cover up the systematic abuse of Iraqi inmates from the international Red Cross according to a US general dismissed after evidence surfaced of torture at a jail near Baghdad.
The claims add weight to a growing body of evidence that the reports of torture at Abu Ghraib prison reflect a pattern of abuse which goes far beyond the six guards now facing possible court martial.
The former head of US military prisons in Iraq, Brigadier General Janis Karpinski, who was relieved of her command earlier this year, yesterday alleged that military intelligence officers discouraged her from entering the cell block at Abu Ghraib where they interrogated prisoners. They also went "to great lengths to try to exclude" the International Red Cross from their prison wing.
A US military investigation, carried out by Major General Antonio Taguba, uncovered evidence of war crimes against the inmates, including: breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees; pouring cold water on naked detainees; beating detainees with a broom handle and a chair; threatening male detainees with rape; sodomising a detainee with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick.
The New Yorker magazine, which obtained a complete copy of the report, observed: "General Taguba saved his harshest words for the military intelligence officers and private contractors."
The Taguba report urged disciplinary action against two employees of a Virginia-based firm, CACI International, hired to carry out interrogations. A company spokeswoman said that its employees had volunteered to be interviewed by investigators but she was unaware of any charges against them.
It is unclear what, if any, legal jurisdiction such contractors operate under while on assignment in Iraq and observers of the rapidly growing private security industry have warned that they are dangerously unregulated.
Six guards from the 800 Military Police Brigade stationed at Abu Ghraib face charges and possible court martial for the physical and sexual abuse of prisoners. More senior officers face further disciplinary action and Gen Karpinski was quietly sent home early this year.
The Taguba report described Gen Karpinski as extremely emotional.
There was a case of physical abuse of Iraqi inmates at another prison camp under her command last year. In that instance, at Camp Bucca in southern Iraq, four soldiers were discharged but claimed that they had been acting in self-defence and blamed chaotic conditions at the camp. However Gen Karpinski insisted to journalists at the time that Iraqi prisoners were being treated humanely and fairly.
In an interview with the Washington Post, the general sought to distance herself from the prison scandal.
"The prison, and that particular cell block where the events took place, were under the control of the MI [military intelligence] command," she said.
She conceded that she "probably should have been more aggressive" about visiting the cell block, particularly after military intelligence officers went "to great lengths to try to exclude the ICRC (International Committee for the Red Cross) from access to that interrogation wing".
Major General Geoffrey Miller, a former commanding officer at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp for non-American suspected terrorists, has been reassigned to Iraq in an attempt to overhaul the prison system left behind by Gen Karpinksi.
He is conducting a review that will embrace interrogation procedures and the role played by private contractors.
The scandal at Abu Ghraib, coupled with the revelations over the weekend of alleged brutality against Iraqi inmates by British soldiers, has provoked worldwide outrage, and added to already boiling Middle Eastern resentment of the occupation.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1208332,00.html 
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Torturing Iraq in an Unnecessary War

by Ivan Eland

The humiliation, abuse, torture and perhaps even murder of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. and British forces have enormous implications—if the American and British publics choose not to deny them. In the “us” versus “them” climate that wars often bring, however, excusing or downplaying abuses by “our team” is quite common. In the current Iraq prison scandal, many American newspapers—including the flagship New York Times—buried the shocking photos of Iraqi prisoners being humiliated and tortured in their interior pages. American newspapers and media outlets, conscious of the bottom-line, know that their readers and viewers feel uncomfortable when being exposed to gross misconduct by “Team USA,” especially when many prisoners should already have been released in accordance with the Fourth Geneva Convention. A U.S. Army report noted that more than 60 percent of the civilian inmates at the Abu Ghraib prison were deemed to be no threat to society. Unfortunately for the Anglo-American war cause, the rest of the world’s newspapers and media outlets showcased the story of prisoner abuse rather than burying it.

The British and American governments attempted to quell the uproar by deeming the abuse an isolated incident among the many valiant Anglo-American military men and women of high ethical standards. But Brigadier General Mark Kimmit, the spokesman for U.S. forces in Iraq, said that he couldn’t rule out such abuses in other U.S.-operated prisons in Iraq. After all, the entire Iraqi prison system was supervised by one person—Brigadier General Janis Karpinsky—who was relieved of her command by the Army. And undoubtedly U.S. military intelligence and CIA interrogators frequented most or all of the prisons—trolling for information that would be of help furthering the counterinsurgency.

Seymour Hersh, a journalist who exposed the My Lai massacre in Vietnam and has investigated the abuses in Iraq’s prisons for the New Yorker, concluded, “The 372nd’s [a reserve military police unit] abuse of prisoners seemed almost routine—a fact of Army life that the soldiers felt no need to hide.” Hersh’s statement is dramatically illustrated by the photos taken of Iraqi prisoners being tortured and humiliated. It was conscientious British soldiers who gave photos to the British press of their fellow soldiers beating an Iraqi prisoner with rifle butts. The soldiers said that the horrific treatment of Iraqi prisoners was widespread, and that the coalition was fighting a losing war because of the fierce opposition such abuse generated in Iraq. Now the photos have circled the globe, acting as a magnet to recruit jihadists—inflamed by the sexually explicit humiliation of prisoners in a conservative Islamic culture—to the fight in Iraq.

For the sake of argument, however, let’s assume that the U.S. and British governments are correct that the Abu Ghraib incident is an aberration, not the rule. Are the top echelons of the U.S. and British governments absolved of guilt? Quite the contrary. In any unnecessary war, the leaders of the attacking side are morally responsible for all deaths in the enemy military: accidental killings of civilians (the military euphemism is “collateral damage”) as well as abuses by rogue elements of those same groups toward enemy prisoners. The military leaders set up the situation in which the deaths and abuse occurred.

And there is little doubt that this war was unnecessary. After no “weapons of mass destruction” were found and allegations arose that the Bush administration had twisted and exaggerated intelligence to make its case for war, the administration’s changing emphasis on its justifications for the invasion should be a hint that the invasion of Iraq was a “war of choice”—a euphemism for an unnecessary war. Already, the sins of this quagmire are many. The moral bankruptcy of torturing and abusing Iraqi prisoners, many of whom may have done nothing wrong, can be added to the ever-growing pile.  http://www.antiwar.com/eland/?articleid=2467

===============================================
Military Intel & CIA Ordered
Abuses At Abu Gharib Prison

Aftermath News Service
Special Report By Paul Walker
5-2-4
"My vision of a New World Order foresees a U.N. with a revitalized peacekeeping function. It is the sacred principles enshrined in the U.N. Charter to which we henceforth pledge our allegiance."
- President George Bush, ex-CIA director, Knights of Malta, Skull & Bones, Trilateral Commission, addressing the General Assembly of the U.N., February 1,1992.
"The Bush Administration, would like to make the U.N. a cornerstone of its plans to construct a New World Order"
- Time Magazine, September 17, 1990
"The Persian Gulf crisis is a rare opportunity to forge new bonds with old enemies [the Soviet Union]...Out of these troubled times a New World Order can emerge under a United Nations that performs as envisioned by its founders."
- President George H. W Bush in a speech to Congress on SEPTEMBER 11, 1990, exactly 11 years before Operation 9/11
"What is at stake is more than one small country [Iraq], it is a big idea - a New World Order."
- George HW Bush, January 29, 1991, State of the Union address
"I hope history will record that the Gulf crisis was the crucible of the New World Order."
- National Security Strategy issued by the White house and personally signed by George Bush, Sr.
Sodomizing female prisoners, documented on camera, is not to "extract information". It was ordered and condoned by the intelligence agencies, not only to defile and humiliate the prisoners--and defile the soldiers themselves--but engineered to severely tarnish the reputation of America (even more than it already was) with the help of 60 Minutes, the general media and all involved in now suddenly exposing it.
Torture has been exposed in Guantanamo Bay for over 2 years now. Torture and other abuses of prisoners in Iraq by coalition forces has been known for over a year since the invasion. Yet, all have been downplayed by the mainstream media. Until now. Why? Think about it.
In other words, this latest round of abuse was all staged and meticulously documented, and now heavily hyped in the media as part of the overall plan to make America into the Bad Cop Evil Empire which will have to be brought down to heel by the global system Good Cops.
Hegelian Bonesman hierarch, George Bush Sr stated that Iraq was the "Crucible of the New World Order", the vessel wherein the alchemical process of creating a world government tyranny under the thoroughly corrupt UN would occur. The whole mess there is called "Managed Chaos" or Order Out of Chaos, i.e., the Masonic Ordo Ab Chao. A set up. A totally staged event.
They create the Hegelian crisis to divide and conquer populations and then offer their pre-conceived "solutions". Even the war crimes going down as we watch them unfold are engineered, designed, condoned and even ordered by the intelligence agencies...to damage the reputation of this great country of ours, to foment the Arab world for WWIII and drag to us through the mud internationally in order to bring us down and make us the bad guys, the Evil Empire--SO THAT--so that the "International Community", i.e. the UN World Government can step in as the savior and be the good guys to "save the day" and thenceforth America will become just another province of the global neo-feudal system just as Nazi Germany became absorbed in the new European Community, and now the vastly expanding EU Soviet.
Got that?
So THIS is Bush's true agenda, as well as Kofi Annan's and all the other globalists as well. This is essentially how American might and resources are being used to spearhead the globalists agenda worldwide, but to end up by being swallowed up in it, spread thin, corrupted, destroyed and assimilated itself.
This globalist bait-and-switch, more than oil or juicy contracts or "Pax Americana", is at the root of it all. But even deeper down the rabbit hole, you will find a Masonic occult agenda behind all of it to create the worldwide satanic system of mind-control, for the globalists to set themselves up as living gods ruling over the slave drones serving the New World Order in a global Big Brother high-tech "Hive Mind" police-state system which we see rapidly unfolding in the Trilateralist regions of Europe, Asia and in the Americas.
Unless...we wake up to these Hegelian machinations--which I do not see happening anytime soon.
Too many people are too brainwashed by either the Right or the Left sides of the false paradigm, or too stupid to see, or too morally bankrupt to care I do hope this horrible state of affairs will change for the better. I myself will keep hoping and keep fighting for the truth till the very end
Paul Walker
Agence France Presse - May 2, 2004
US general suggests military intelligence had role in abuses
Brigadier General Janis Karpinski
WASHINGTON: A US Army Reserve general whose soldiers were photographed abusing Iraqi prisoners said Saturday the prison cellblock involved was under the tight control of military intelligence, which may have encouraged the abuse, according to the New York Times.
Brigadier General Janis Karpinski told the newspaper in a telephone interview that the special high-security cellblock at the Abu Gharib prison outside Baghdad had been under the direct control of Army intelligence officers, not the reservists under her command.
Her comments follow a report in The New Yorker magazine, which indicated that abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Gharib may have been ordered by US military intelligence to extract information from the captives.
Seymour Hersh, investigative reporter for The New Yorker, said that Staff Sergeant Ivan Frederick, one of six US military policemen accused of humiliating Iraqi prisoners wrote home in January that he had "questioned some of the things" he saw inside the prison, but that "the answer I got was, 'This is how military intelligence wants it done'."
Karpinski was formally admonished in January and "quietly suspended" from commanding the 800th Military Police Brigade while under investigation.
The Times quotes Karpinski as saying she believed military commanders were trying to shift the blame exclusively to her and other reservists and away from intelligence officers still at work in Iraq.
"We're disposable," she is quoted as saying. "Why would they want the active-duty people to take the blame? They want to put this on the MPs and hope that this thing goes away. Well, it's not going to go away."
Karpinski said the special cellblock, known as 1A, was one of about two dozen cellblocks in the large prison complex and was essentially off limits to soldiers who were not part of the interrogations, including virtually all of the military police under her command, the paper said.
She said she was not defending the actions of the reservists who took part in the brutality, who were part of her command.
But she added she was also alarmed that little attention has been paid to the Army military intelligence unit that controlled Cellblock 1A, where her soldiers guarded the Iraqi detainees between interrogations, The Times said.
She said military intelligence officers were in and out of the cellblock "24 hours a day," often to escort prisoners to and from an interrogation center away from the prison cells.
"They were in there at two in the morning, they were there at four in the afternoon," said General Karpinski is quoted as saying. "This was no nine-to-five job"
Karpinski also said that CIA employees often participated in the interrogations at the prison complex, according to the report.
- AFP
US general suggests military intelligence had role in abuses A US Army Reserve general whose soldiers were photographed abusing Iraqi prisoners said Saturday the prison cellblock involved was under the tight control of military intelligence, which may have encouraged the abuse, according to the New York Times.
http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_world/view/82809/1/.html 

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RELATED

Abuse may have been 'order'

Abuse of Iraqi prisoners that sparked worldwide condemnation may have been ordered by US military intelligence to extract information from the captives, and was possibly more cruel than officially acknowledged, The New Yorker magazine and Britain's daily Guardian reported on Saturday Seymour Hersh, investigative reporter for The New Yorker, said that Staff Sergeant Ivan Frederick, one of six US military policemen accused of humiliating Iraqi prisoners at the Abu Gharib prison outside Baghdad, wrote home in January that he had "questioned some of the things" he saw inside the prison, but that "the answer I got was, 'This is how military intelligence wants it done'."

http://www.news24.com/News24/World/Iraq/0,,2-10-1460_1520513,00.html 

CIA behind Iraqi prisoner abuse

A US Army Reserve general whose soldiers were photographed abusing Iraqi prisoners has said the prison cellblock involved was under the tight control of military intelligence, which may have encouraged the abuse. Brigadier General Janis Karpinski told The New York Times in a telephone interview that the special high-security cellblock at the Abu Ghraib prison outside Baghdad had been under the direct control of army intelligence officers, not the reservists under her command.

http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/A88B5EC6-9FCC-49D8-9215-99C91D2BD048.htm  

The Truth About Abu Ghraib

Comments from Abuzaid in Iraq, Bush, and the Pentagon, all express disgust over the abuse (I'd call it torture) of prisoners being held at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. We are told it is "under investigation." Actually, it has been "under investigation" since January. The US public is being led to believe that this is an isolated incident by some rogue US soldiers. The story emerging paints a very different picture. Virtually missing from all US reports is that the CIA, military intelligence, and private contractors were hired at the prison to direct "interrogation," and that US soldiers most likely were following their orders in torturing the prisoners.

http://www.correspondences.org/archives/2004_05.html 

I was left bloody and bruised. Now we've become the torturers In the 1991 Gulf war John Nichol, an RAF navigator, was shot down over Iraq, beaten up and paraded on TV. He gives his reaction to the images of allied brutality.

They are the images I thought I would never have to see again, sickening pictures of Iraqi prisoners, naked, tortured and humiliated. Surely liberation from Saddam Hussein's brutal, evil regime had seen an end to all of that? Yet here they are, photographs of American soldiers abusing prisoners in Iraq's notorious Abu Ghraib's dungeon and of British servicemen brutalising captives in Basra.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1208019,00.html 

Arab League: Iraqi Prison Photos 'Beyond Disgust'
The Arab League said on Saturday photos showing U.S. soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners were "beyond disgust" and that such acts might have been expected from Saddam Hussein, but not those claiming to bring freedom. Hossam Zaki, spokesman for the Cairo-based body, said the League had complained of abuses by U.S.-led forces after a mission to Iraq in December. The League feared more cases of ill-treatment were going unnoticed, he said. The CBS News program "60 Minutes II" on Wednesday aired photos taken at the Abu Ghraib prison last year showing U.S. troops abusing Iraqis held at what was once a notorious center of torture and executions under ousted President Saddam Hussein. "It is beyond the words of despicable acts and disgust that we feel at watching such photographs," Zaki told Reuters.

http://www.rense.com/general52/militaryintelandCIA.htm

Warning!

These are some of the most graphic photos on the net of U.S. and British abuse of prisoners. Includes many photos of rape and sodomy by US forces.

60 Minutes II talked about the prison and shared pictures of what Americans did there with two men who have extensive interrogation experience: Former Marine Lt. Col. Bill Cowan and former CIA Bureau Chief Bob Baer. "I visited Abu Ghraib a couple of days after it was liberated. It was the most awful sight I've ever seen. I said, 'If there's ever a reason to get rid of Saddam Hussein, it's because of Abu Ghraib,'" says Baer. "There were bodies that were eaten by dogs, torture. You know, electrodes coming out of the walls. It was an awful place." "We went into Iraq to stop things like this from happening, and indeed, here they are happening under our tutelage," says Cowan.

The Abu Ghraib Prison Photos
It's the "liberation" of the Iraqi people

These are just some of the photos that led to an investigation into conditions at the Abu Ghraib prison, now run by the occupation authorities, as revealed in a shocking report broadcast by CBS on 60 Minutes II.

http://www.albasrah.net/images/iraqi-pow/iraqi-pow1.htm 
http://www.rense.com/general52/militaryintelandCIA.htm

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Monday, May 3, 2004 12:15 AM

‘CIA agents ordered Iraq abuses’

By PHILIP SHENON
NY Times News Service

WASHINGTON - An Army Reserve general whose soldiers were photographed as they abused Iraqi prisoners said Saturday that she knew nothing about the abuse until weeks after it occurred and that she was “sickened” by the pictures. She said the prison cellblock where the abuse occurred was under the tight control of Army military intelligence officers who may have encouraged the abuse.

The suggestion by Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski that the reservists acted at the behest of military intelligence officers appears largely supported in a still-classified Army report on prison conditions in Iraq that documented many of the worst abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison, west of Baghdad, including the sexual humiliation of prisoners.

The New Yorker magazine said in its new edition that the report by Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba found that reservist military police at the prison were urged by Army military officers and CIA agents to “set physical and mental conditions for favorable interrogation of witnesses.”

According to the New Yorker article, the Army report offered accounts of rampant and gruesome abuse from October to December of 2003 that included the sexual assault of an Iraqi detainee with a chemical light stick or broomstick.

While reports of abuse of Iraqi prisoners by American and British soldiers have come to light in the last several days, the report cited by The New Yorker indicates a far more wide-ranging and systematic pattern of cruelties than previously reported.

Karpinski was formally admonished in January and “quietly suspended” from commanding the 800th Military Police Brigade, the New Yorker article reports while under investigation.

In a phone interview from her home in South Carolina in which she offered her first public comments about the growing international furor over the abuse of the Iraq detainees, Karpinski said the special high-security cellblock at Abu Ghraib had been under the direct control of Army intelligence officers, not the reservists under her command.

She said that while the reservists involved in the abuses were “bad people” who deserved punishment, she suspected that they were acting with the encouragement, if not at the direction, of military intelligence units that ran the special cellblock used for interrogation. She said that CIA employees often joined in the interrogations at the prison, although she said she did not know if they had unrestricted access to the cellblock.

According to the New Yorker article, by the investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, one of the soldiers under investigation, Staff Sgt. Ivan Frederick II, an Army reservist who is a prison guard in civilian life, may have reinforced Karpinski’s contention in e-mails to family and friends while serving at the prison.

In a letter earlier this year, Frederick wrote, “I questioned some of the things that I saw.” He described “such things as leaving inmates in their cell with no clothes or in female underpants, handcuffing them to the door of their cell.” He added, “The answer I got was, ‘This is how military intelligence wants it done.”’Prisoners were beaten and threatened with rape, electrocution and dog attacks, witnesses told Army investigators, according to the report obtained by The New Yorker. Much of the abuse was sexual, with prisoners often kept naked and forced to perform simulated and real sex acts, witnesses testified. Hersh notes that such degradations, while deeply offensive in any culture, are particularly humiliating to Arabs because Islamic law and culture so strongly condemn nudity and homosexuality.

Karpinski said she was speaking out because she believed that military commanders were trying to shift the blame exclusively to her and other reservists and away from intelligence officers still at work in Iraq.

“We’re disposable,” she said of the military’s attitude toward reservists. “Why would they want the active-duty people to take the blame? They want to put this on the MPs and hope that this thing goes away. Well, it’s not going to go away.”

The Army’s public affairs office at the Pentagon referred calls about her comments to military commanders in Iraq.

Karpinski said in the interview that the special cellblock, known as 1A, was one of about two dozen cellblocks in the large prison complex and was essentially off limits to soldiers who were not part of the interrogations, including virtually all of the military police under her command at Abu Ghraib.

She said repeatedly in the interview that she was not defending the actions of the reservists who took part in the brutality, who were part of her command. She said that when she was first presented with the photographs of the abuse in January, they “sickened me.”

“I put my head down because I really thought I was going to throw up,” she said. “It was awful. My immediate reaction was: These are bad people, because their faces revealed how much pleasure they felt at this.”

But she said the context of the brutality had been lost, noting that the six Army reservists charged in the case represented were only a tiny fraction of the nearly 3,400 reservists under her command in Iraq, and that Abu Ghraib was one of 16 prisons and other incarceration centers around Iraq that she oversaw.

“The suggestion that this was done with my knowledge and continued with my knowledge is so far from the truth,” she said of the abuse. “I wasn’t aware of any of this. I’m horrified by this.”

She said she was also alarmed that little attention has been paid to the Army military intelligence unit that controlled Cellblock 1A, where her soldiers guarded the Iraqi detainees between interrogations.

She estimated that the floor space of the two-story cellblock was only about 60 feet by 20 feet, and that military intelligence officers were in and out of the cellblock “24 hours a day,” often to escort prisoners to and from an interrogation center away from the prison cells.

“They were in there at 2 in the morning, they were there at 4 in the afternoon,” said Karpinski, who arrived in Iraq last June and was the only woman to hold a command in the war zone. “This was no 9-to-5 job.”

She said that CIA employees often participated in the interrogations at Abu Ghraib, one of Iraq’s most notorious prisons during the rule of Saddam Hussein.

Karpinski noted that one of the photographs of abused prisoners also showed the legs of 16 American soldiers -- the photograph was cropped so that their upper bodies could not be seen -- “and that tells you that clearly other people were participating, because I didn’t have 16 people assigned to that cellblock.” The photographs of American soldiers smiling, laughing and signaling “thumbs up” as Iraqi detainees were forced into sexually humiliating positions provoked outrage just as the American military was trying to pacify a rising insurgency and gain the trust of more Iraqis before turning over sovereignty to a new government on June 30.

Karpinski, who has returned home to South Carolina and her civilian life as a business consultant, said she visited Abu Ghraib as often as twice a week last fall and had repeatedly instructed military police officers under her command to treat prisoners humanely and in accord with international human rights agreements.

“I can speak some Arabic,” said Karpinski, a New Jersey native who spent almost a decade as an active duty soldier before joining the Army Reserve in 1987. “I’m not fluent, but when I went to any of my prison facilities, I would make it a point to try to talk to the detainees.”

But she said she did not visit Cellblock 1A, in keeping with the wishes of military intelligence officers who, she said, worried that unnecessary visits might interfere with their interrogations of Iraqis.

She acknowledged that she “probably should have been more aggressive” about visiting the interrogation cellblock, especially after military intelligence officers at the prison went “to great lengths to try to exclude the ICRC from access to that interrogation wing.”

She was referring to the International Committee of the Red Cross, which has been given access over time to Iraqi detainees at the prison.

Karpinski’s lawyer, Neal Puckett, a former military trial judge, said he believed that she was being made a scapegoat for others in the military, especially for military intelligence officers who knew what was going on in Cellblock 1A.

He said Karpinski had repeatedly insisted that troops under her command in Iraq receive instruction in proper treatment of detainees, but that despite her best efforts, some reservists joined in the abuse at Abu Ghraib. “All you can do is give training, give guidance and assume that your soldiers are going to follow orders and are not going to become sick bastards,” he said.

After the first allegations of abuse circulated earlier this year, Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, the senior American commander in Iraq, ordered sweeping inquiries into whether any commanders -- including Karpinski -- should be held responsible. He also ordered a review of policies and procedures at all of the prisons controlled by occupation forces in Iraq.

Please send your comments or feedback to newsfeedback@abs-cbn.com

http://www.infowars.com/print/iraq/abuse_ordered.htm

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US general suggests military intelligence had role in abuses
Posted: 02 May 2004

Brigadier General Janis Karpinski

WASHINGTON: A US Army Reserve general whose soldiers were photographed abusing Iraqi prisoners said Saturday the prison cellblock involved was under the tight control of military intelligence, which may have encouraged the abuse, according to the New York Times.

Brigadier General Janis Karpinski told the newspaper in a telephone interview that the special high-security cellblock at the Abu Gharib prison outside Baghdad had been under the direct control of Army intelligence officers, not the reservists under her command.

Advertisement


Her comments follow a report in The New Yorker magazine, which indicated that abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Gharib may have been ordered by US military intelligence to extract information from the captives.

Seymour Hersh, investigative reporter for The New Yorker, said that Staff Sergeant Ivan Frederick, one of six US military policemen accused of humiliating Iraqi prisoners wrote home in January that he had "questioned some of the things" he saw inside the prison, but that "the answer I got was, 'This is how military intelligence wants it done'."

Karpinski was formally admonished in January and "quietly suspended" from commanding the 800th Military Police Brigade while under investigation.

The Times quotes Karpinski as saying she believed military commanders were trying to shift the blame exclusively to her and other reservists and away from intelligence officers still at work in Iraq.

"We're disposable," she is quoted as saying. "Why would they want the active-duty people to take the blame? They want to put this on the MPs and hope that this thing goes away. Well, it's not going to go away."

Karpinski said the special cellblock, known as 1A, was one of about two dozen cellblocks in the large prison complex and was essentially off limits to soldiers who were not part of the interrogations, including virtually all of the military police under her command, the paper said.

She said she was not defending the actions of the reservists who took part in the brutality, who were part of her command.

But she added she was also alarmed that little attention has been paid to the Army military intelligence unit that controlled Cellblock 1A, where her soldiers guarded the Iraqi detainees between interrogations, The Times said.

She said military intelligence officers were in and out of the cellblock "24 hours a day," often to escort prisoners to and from an interrogation center away from the prison cells.

"They were in there at two in the morning, they were there at four in the afternoon," said General Karpinski is quoted as saying. "This was no nine-to-five job."

Karpinski also said that CIA employees often participated in the interrogations at the prison complex, according to the report.
http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_world/view/82809/1/.html

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US officer says prison guards tried to cover up abuse of Iraqi prisoners



Julian Borger in Washington
Monday May 3, 2004
The Guardian

US prison guards and interrogators attempted to cover up the systematic abuse of Iraqi inmates from the international Red Cross according to a US general dismissed after evidence surfaced of torture at a jail near Baghdad.
The claims add weight to a growing body of evidence that the reports of torture at Abu Ghraib prison reflect a pattern of abuse which goes far beyond the six guards now facing possible court martial.

The former head of US military prisons in Iraq, Brigadier General Janis Karpinski, who was relieved of her command earlier this year, yesterday alleged that military intelligence officers discouraged her from entering the cell block at Abu Ghraib where they interrogated prisoners. They also went "to great lengths to try to exclude" the International Red Cross from their prison wing.

A US military investigation, carried out by Major General Antonio Taguba, uncovered evidence of war crimes against the inmates, including: breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees; pouring cold water on naked detainees; beating detainees with a broom handle and a chair; threatening male detainees with rape; sodomising a detainee with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick.

The New Yorker magazine, which obtained a complete copy of the report, observed: "General Taguba saved his harshest words for the military intelligence officers and private contractors."

The Taguba report urged disciplinary action against two employees of a Virginia-based firm, CACI International, hired to carry out interrogations. A company spokeswoman said that its employees had volunteered to be interviewed by investigators but she was unaware of any charges against them.

It is unclear what, if any, legal jurisdiction such contractors operate under while on assignment in Iraq and observers of the rapidly growing private security industry have warned that they are dangerously unregulated.

Six guards from the 800 Military Police Brigade stationed at Abu Ghraib face charges and possible court martial for the physical and sexual abuse of prisoners. More senior officers face further disciplinary action and Gen Karpinski was quietly sent home early this year.

The Taguba report described Gen Karpinski as extremely emotional.

There was a case of physical abuse of Iraqi inmates at another prison camp under her command last year. In that instance, at Camp Bucca in southern Iraq, four soldiers were discharged but claimed that they had been acting in self-defence and blamed chaotic conditions at the camp. However Gen Karpinski insisted to journalists at the time that Iraqi prisoners were being treated humanely and fairly.

In an interview with the Washington Post, the general sought to distance herself from the prison scandal.

"The prison, and that particular cell block where the events took place, were under the control of the MI [military intelligence] command," she said.

She conceded that she "probably should have been more aggressive" about visiting the cell block, particularly after military intelligence officers went "to great lengths to try to exclude the ICRC (International Committee for the Red Cross) from access to that interrogation wing".

shalbi.com
Major General Geoffrey Miller, a former commanding officer at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp for non-American suspected terrorists, has been reassigned to Iraq in an attempt to overhaul the prison system left behind by Gen Karpinksi.

He is conducting a review that will embrace interrogation procedures and the role played by private contractors.

The scandal at Abu Ghraib, coupled with the revelations over the weekend of alleged brutality against Iraqi inmates by British soldiers, has provoked worldwide outrage, and added to already boiling Middle Eastern resentment of the occupation. http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1208332,00.html

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George Bush as Saddam Hussein
Abuse Photos Prompt Comparison to Former Iraqi Leader
Monday, May 3, 2004; 2:06 PM

Comparing George Bush to Saddam Hussein is an increasingly common theme in the international online media's outraged reaction to photographs showing U.S. military police humiliating Iraqi prisoners. The anger generated by the photographs, first shown on CBS's "60 Minutes II" last week, was compounded by additional photographs published Friday in the Daily Mirror, a London tabloid, which showed a British guard urinating on an Iraqi prisoner and jabbing him in the groin with a rifle butt.
After British military officials questioned the authenticity of the photos, the Daily Mirror ran another story quoting two unnamed soldiers who said, "We stand by every word of our story."

While U.S. and British coverage has focused on President Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair's denunciations of the abuses, many foreign commentators are starting to compare the U.S.-led occupation to Hussein's tyranny.

The oft-published picture of the hooded Iraqi prisoner standing on a box, electrodes attached to fingers and genitals, is "an image that would do Saddam proud," said the Sunday Herald in Glasgow, Scotland.

Many observers emphasized the fact that the abuses occurred in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison where Iraqis were tortured under Hussein's regime.

The English language Web site of Al Jazeera quotes Saudi commentator Dawud Shiryan as saying, "Abu Ghraib prison was used for torture in Saddam's time. People will ask now: 'What's the difference between Saddam and Bush?' Nothing!" Shiryan said the photographs "will increase the hatred of America, not just in Iraq but abroad."

In a front page story, the Yemen Times reports that many Yemenis "argue that even though Saddam Hussein was a brutal dictator, the crimes carried out by US soldiers are viewed very much the same."

The Bahrain Tribune, a daily newspaper in the oil-rich Persian Gulf emirate, says: "Bush seized all Saddam's properties and inherited everything Saddam had, including his torturing tools and methods."

"The cells, which were criticized by Bush and his mouthpieces, are now used by Bush for jailing Iraqis who oppose the plundering and looting of the wealth of their country. The torturing rooms, which were exposed to the whole world to highlight Saddam's barbaric behavior are now used by Bush and his soldiers to exercise their sick, sadistic and inhuman behavior."

The paper said the scenes in the photographs cannot be treated as "rare incidents."

"We are talking about the nature of an imperialist, immoral, racist and crusader President who should be driven out of Iraq and a corrupted, immoral, barbaric and impure army that should be forced to end its occupation of a sacred Islamic territory," the paper said.

But Musa Keilani, writing in the Jordan Times, sees an element of hypocrisy in the Arab reaction.

When Hussein was in the power, he writes, "the overriding feeling among the Arabs" was that the "the Arab world needed a leader like Saddam to challenge the West, particularly the US, and, of course, Israel. In the bargain, we all simply forgot that Saddam's continued survival in power in Iraq was at the expense of the basic human rights and well-being of the people of Iraq -- or most of the people of Iraq. Therefore, few wanted to focus attention on what was going on in Abu Ghraib and other prisons in Iraq."

The photos of U.S. prisoner abuses at Abu Ghraib "brought back memories of the Saddam era to many, and thus the basic question was immediately raised: Is this the way the US, the country which boasts of a great record of respect for human rights and dignity, treats its prisoners?"

Keilani says yes.

"The US, having invaded Iraq in the name of non-existent weapons of mass destruction and connections with international terrorism and then having shifted the argument to 'democracy' and human rights, is now kicking around the people of Iraq, whether in prison or otherwise. They have no respect for the people of Iraq and they consider every Iraqi as an enemy until proven otherwise."

Ehsan Ahrari, columnist for the Hong Kong-based Asia Times, says the photos of Abu Ghraib undermine the Bush administration's only remaining justification for the war.

"Once it could not find weapons of mass destruction to justify its invasion of Iraq, the administration of U.S. President George W Bush claimed that the liberation of Iraqis from the most inhumane rule of a dictator was a good enough reason for taking military action against that country. Now reports of the U.S. military's abuse of Iraqi prisoners in that notorious prison threaten to deprive the United States of even that wobbly claim."

 

http://www.mindfully.org/Reform/2004/Abu-Ghraib-Bush-Hussein3may04.htm

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Torture pics damage US credibility

May 04 2004 at 01:36AM

By Magan Crane

Washington - Shocking photographs of Iraqi prisoners naked, hooded and humiliated, taken as trophies by United States forces holding them and shown via news outlets around the world, have damaged US credibility and may pose political problems for the Bush administration, analysts said on Monday.

"I'm afraid that this is, in a sense, the last nail in the coffin in the raft of arguments for the Iraq war," said Rashid Khalidi, director of the Middle East Institute at Columbia University. "We started with nuclear weapons, then democratisation, then de-Baathification, then to stopping torture and really, in the matter of a few months, every one of these has fallen away.

"The United States looks increasingly foolish," he said.

'That's not the way we do things in America'
But Robert Leiber, professor of government and foreign service at Georgetown University said that he hoped the abuse by US forces would be kept in perspective.

"The photographs and, more importantly, the acts themselves are harmful to the cause of helping the Iraqis form a stable and democratic country," Leiber said, but he noted that such treatment is contrary to US policy.

"We must keep in mind that, although this has been an ugly business, it pales in comparison to what Saddam (Hussein) did to his own people over 30 years," he said.

"This is vastly different than Saddam's murder of millions of his own people, including "feeding people into plastic shredders and torturing children in front of their parents."

US and international media last week showed pictures of Iraqi prisoners being mistreated at Abu Gharib, a prison outside Baghdad where former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's regime tortured and executed opponents.

'There will be an investigation and they'll be taken care of'
One photograph showed a prisoner standing on a box with a hood over his head and wires attached to his hands. CBS news, which first showed the pictures, said he had been told he would be electrocuted if he fell off.

Other pictures showed nude prisoners stacked on each other and simulating sex acts as smiling US troops pointed and laughed.

Khalidi said US credibility had already been damaged with the invasion and occupation of Iraq and that the scandal about prison mistreatment was just "sort of icing on the cake."

"I think the United States is less respected at the end of these 13 months than it has ever been," he said. "Never has a country with such unlimited power been so pitifully unable to affect outcomes. Ruthless, murderous terrorists can strike at will in the United States and the US can't take Fallujah?"

The mistreatment earned sharp responses from US officials, with Secretary of State Colin Powell Monday calling them "despicable acts," that do not "reflect on all of our troops." On Friday, President George Bush said he shared "a deep disgust that those prisoners were treated the way they were treated."

"Their treatment does not reflect the nature of the American people," he said. "That's not the way we do things in America. There will be an investigation and they'll be taken care of."

But on Sunday, Senator Joe Biden, the senior democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee called for a stronger response.

"Everybody understands the phenomenal damage this accusation has caused in that part of the world," he said. He urged a "much higher profile, in terms of the indignation, anger, and an explanation of the process that's under way," in order to temper the "rage" sparked by international media coverage.

Khalidi said there may be domestic political consequences for such abuses under Bush's watch.

"I think it leaves a lot of Americans very puzzled," he said. "Americans are going to be grappling with how we can say we're going to be liberating Iraq and then subject them to sexual and other tortures."

The latest poll on US sentiment about the war, taken before the pictures were released, showed a dramatic drop in support for the invasion.

In the New York Times/CBS poll released on Thursday, showed 47 percent of Americans believing the war was justified, down from 58
percent a month ago and 63 percent in December. Forty-six percent said the United States should have stayed out of Iraq, up from 37
percent a month ago.

Bush's approval rating for his handling of the Iraqi occupation has dropped to 41 percent from 49 percent last month and 59 percent in December.

Bush's overall approval rating has dropped to 46 percent, the lowest of his entire presidency. -
Sapa-AFP  http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?click_id=123&art_id=qw10836273606B262&set_id=1
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Experts agree: Geneva rules broken
http://www.apfn.org/apfn/POW5.htm

=====================================

(Excerpt) -

The Geneva Convention:

Article 17

No physical or mental torture, nor any other form of coercion, may be inflicted on prisoners of war to secure from them information of any kind whatever. Prisoners of war who refuse to answer may not be threatened, insulted, or exposed to any unpleasant or disadvantageous treatment of any kind.

Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War
http://www.apfn.org/apfn/prisoners.htm

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