Monday, January 23, 2006

As Rush says just normal hijinks

Former Abu Ghraib Guard Calls Top Brass Culpable for Abuse
Stepping into the Abu Ghraib prison for the first time, Megan Ambuhl was stunned. There were naked men in dusty cells, male prisoners wearing women's underwear, others hooded and shackled in contorted positions to metal railings.

An enlisted officer giving her a tour of the U.S. facility in October 2003 pointed to a group of detainees chained to a cell. He said the bars had often "been decorated like a Christmas tree," with prisoners as ornaments.

Ambuhl says she and other MPs used aggressive techniques against detainees because that is what military intelligence soldiers and civilian interrogators told her to do.

She described a "roster board" that included which military intelligence "treatment" to give to certain detainees and said trainers from the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, taught the MPs how to put detainees in "stress positions." She said military intelligence officials told them to keep detainees naked, embarrass them or make them exercise until they reached exhaustion.

Military officials "have been trying to conceal that it was a policy that spiraled out of control," Ambuhl said, a rare moment of anger rising in her voice. "They made us out to be the cause of every ill in Iraq."

UK Guardian - "Widespread Abuse":
The sexual humiliation of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison was not an invention of maverick guards, but part of a system of ill-treatment and degradation used by special forces soldiers that is now being disseminated among ordinary troops and contractors who do not know what they are doing, according to British military sources.

The techniques devised in the system, called R2I - resistance to interrogation - match the crude exploitation and abuse of prisoners at the Abu Ghraib jail in Baghdad.

One former British special forces officer who returned last week from Iraq, said: "It was clear from discussions with US private contractors in Iraq that the prison guards were using R2I techniques, but they didn't know what they were doing."

"The crucial difference from Iraq is that frontline soldiers who are made to experience R2I techniques themselves develop empathy. They realize the suffering they are causing. But people who haven't undergone this don't realize what they are doing to people. It's a shambles in Iraq".

The British former officer said the dissemination of R2I techniques inside Iraq was all the more dangerous because of the general mood among American troops.

"The feeling among US soldiers I've spoken to in the last week is also that 'the gloves are off'. Many of them still think they are dealing with people responsible for 9/11".

ABC NEWS has removed this but I can track people referring to it:
The photographs show a 52-year-old former Baath Party official, Nadem Sadoon Hatab, who died at the detention center last June after a three-day period in which he was allegedly subjected to beatings and karate kicks to the chest and left to die naked in his own feces.

RUSH LIMBAUGH - Abu Ghraib: Fraternity 'Hazing', a.k.a. 'Not as Bad as Saddam'
"Hours before President George W. Bush announced plans to address the Arab world to condemn the abuse of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. military personnel at the Abu Ghraib prison, Rush Limbaugh justified the U.S. guards' mistreatment of the Iraqis, stating that they were just 'having a good time,' and that their actions served as an 'emotional release'."


The Practice of Torture by the American Army Was Widespread

Military reports, cited by Human Rights Watch, detail the treatment undergone by two Afghan prisoners who died in December 2002 at Baghram. The same interrogation techniques were then applied to detainees in Abu Ghraib prison.

Mullah Habibullah died of a pulmonary embolism apparently linked to the presence of clots formed in his legs following blows received to them, according to a June 1, 2004 report.

Among the other soldiers under indictment, one "put his penis alongside the face" of a prisoner" and "simulated sodomization."

We had to cut his penis in order to save America
An Ethiopian student who lived in London claims that he was brutally tortured with the involvement of British and US intelligence agencies.

Binyam Mohammed, 27, says he spent nearly three years in the CIA's network of 'black sites'. In Morocco he claims he underwent the strappado torture of being hung for hours from his wrists, and scalpel cuts to his chest and penis and that a CIA officer was a regular interrogator.

'They took a scalpel to my right chest. It was only a small cut. Then they cut my left chest. One of them took my penis in his hand and began to make cuts. He did it once, and they stood still for maybe a minute watching. I was in agony, crying, trying desperately to suppress myself, but I was screaming... They must have done this 20 to 30 times in maybe two hours. There was blood all over.'

Benyam (Benjamin) Mohammed al Habashi is currently still detained in Guantanamo Bay prison.

In an article like this I could go on and on, Perhaps I could simply give previous links I carried. Perhaps I should trace the roots of this torture to the training we gave soldiers on how to withstand communist interrogation, which we would never do, and how a new batch of people just copied the communist interrogation techniques when they were looking for inspiration. The role of the CIA and military intel in this is deep and extensive and pretty covered up as well. I just don't think torturing to preserve America preserves America. I think those who advocate it are un-American cowards. Our standard should not be Rush's and Bush's standard - that we are not as bad as Saddam.

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