Iraq Torture Scandal Commentaries
- Photos Show Rape of Iraqi Women
by US Occupation Forces
La Voz de Aztlan
[Image] Los Angeles, Alta California - May 2, 2004 -
(ACN) The release, by CBS News, of the photographs
showing the heinous sexual abuse and torture of Iraqi
POW's at the notorious Abu Ghraib prison has opened a
Pandora's box for the Bush regime. Apparently, the
suspended US commander of the prison where the worst
abuses took place, Brigadier General Janis Karpinski,
has refused to take the fall by herself and has
implicated the CIA, Military Intelligence and private
US government contractors in the torturing of POW's
and in the raping of Iraqi women detainees as well.
[Image] Brigadier General Janis Karpinski said to the
Washington Post that Military Intelligence, rather
than the Military Police, dictated the treatment of
prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison. "The prison, and that
particular cellblock where the events took place,
were under the control of the Military Intelligence
command," Brigadier General Karpinski said to the
Washington Post Saturday night in a telephone
interview from her home in Hilton Head, South
[Image] Brigadier General Karpinski, who commanded
the 800th Military Police Brigade, described a
high-pressure Military Intelligence and CIA command
that prized successful interrogations. A month before
the alleged abuses and rapes occurred, she said, a
team of CIA, Military Intelligence officers and
private consultants under the employ of the US
government came to Abu Ghraib. "Their main and
specific mission was to give the interrogators new
techniques to get more information from detainees,"
[Image] Today, new photographs were sent to La Voz de
Aztlan from confidential sources depicting the
shocking rapes of two Iraqi women by what are
purported to be US Military Intelligence personnel
and private US mercenaries in military fatigues. It
is now known that hundreds of these photographs had
been in circulation among the troops in Iraq. The
graphic photos were being swapped between the
soldiers like baseball cards.
[Image] Speaking on condition of anonymity, one
Mexican-American soldier told La Voz de Aztlan,
"Maybe the officers didn't know what was going on,
but everybody else did. I have seen literally
hundreds of these types of pictures." Many of the
pictures were destroyed last September when the
luggage of soldiers was searched as they left Iraq,
[Image] An investigation, led by Army Major General
Antonio M. Taguba, identified two military
intelligence officers and two civilian contractors
for the Army as key figures in the abuse cases at the
Abu Ghraib prison. In an internal report on his
findings, Major General Taguba said he suspected that
the four were "either directly or indirectly
responsible for the abuses at Abu Ghraib and strongly
recommended disciplinary action."
[Image] The Taguba report states that "military
intelligence interrogators and other U.S. Government
Agency interrogators actively requested that Military
Police guards set physical and mental conditions for
favorable interrogation of witnesses." The report
noted that one civilian interrogator, a contractor
from a company called CACI International and attached
to the 205th Military Intelligence Brigade, "clearly
knew his instructions" to the Military Police equated
to physical and sexual abuse. It is not known whether
these instructions included, or led to, the raping of
Iraqi women detainees as well.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
La Voz de Aztlan
WARNING: GRAPHIC RAPE PHOTOGRAPHS!
30 More Torture Scandals Probed:
The dossier of terror includes : Claims that POWs were thrown to
their deaths from a bridge. A videotape of the killings is said to
have been destroyed.
Shame Of Abuse By Brit Troops:
A HOODED Iraqi captive is beaten by British soldiers before being
thrown from a moving truck and left to die.
Punched, kicked, then left to die:
Iraqi detainee 'beaten and urinated upon' as accusations of widespread
mistreatment spread to UK forces
Seymour M. Hersh: Torture At Abu Ghraib:
American soldiers brutalized Iraqis. How far up does the
Abuse at Abu Ghraib, the Psychodynamics of Occupation:
A prisoner was tortured to death under interrogation, then his
injuries were disguised and body disposed of. The world should not
allow this be a matter for the American military alone to deal with.
General Suggests Abuses At Iraqi Jail Were Encouraged:
Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinsk, an army Reserve general whose soldiers were
photographed as they abused Iraqi prisoners 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.
Seven Iraqis die in British custody.
How many soldiers are charged? None:
This is not the first incident to involve the Queen's Lancashire
Regiment and allegations of brutality.
They tracked Saddam, only to follow in his footsteps:
The horrific pictures of Iraqi prisoners being "softened up" by
American soldiers are reminiscent of the Nazi regime's treatment of
prisoners. It is no wonder that the coalition troops are hated by the
Iraqi people and that the uprising against the coalition continues to
Excerpts from writings of accused soldier who helped run Baghdad
``Chip'' Frederick wrote an account of how the prison he helped run
treated inmates. The writings were given to The Associated Press on
Thursday by the soldier's uncle
Torture photos 'the end' for US in Iraq :
Chilling pictures of Iraqi prisoners being tortured by US soldiers
will damage Britain and signal the "end of the story" for America in
Iraq, it was claimed today.
US military in torture scandal :
According to lawyers for some of the soldiers, they claimed to be
acting in part under the instruction of mercenary interrogators hired
by the Pentagon.
Amnesty International: Iraq: 'Torture' :
"Our extensive research in Iraq suggests that this is not an isolated
incident. It is not enough for the USA to react only once images have
hit the television screens."
In case youmissed it:
War Crimes: The Evidence File
In case youmissed it:
Take No Prisoners : Another proud moment in U.S. Military History
US soldiers are seen as 'uncaring, dangerous and lacking in
An overwhelming majority of Iraqis, 71 percent (and that figure rises
to 81 percent if the Kurdish areas in the north are excluded), see
the US-led coalition as an occupying force and not as liberators.
'Americans don't know how to be peacekeepers':
Fear that ruthless United States tactics could lead to disaster in
Iraq has caused Washington's most loyal ally Britain to waver in its
support as never before.
Robert Fisk: The "Good Guys" Who Can Do No Wrong:
It's not difficult to see how some British scumbag will urinate into
the face of a hooded man, how some American sadist will stand a
hooded Iraqi on a box with wires tied to his hands.
05/02/04 "The Independent" -- Why are we surprised at their racism,
their brutality, their sheer callousness towards Arabs? Those
American soldiers in Saddam's old prison at Abu Ghraib, those young
British squaddies in Basra came -- as soldiers often come -- from
towns and cities where race hatred has a home: Tennessee and
How many of "our" lads are ex--jailbirds themselves? How many support
the British National Party? Muslims, Arabs, "cloth heads", "rag
heads", "terrorists", "evil". You can see how the semantics break
Add to that the poisonous, racial dribble of a hundred Hollywood
movies that depict Arabs as dirty, lecherous, untrustworthy and
violent people -- and soldiers are addicted to movies -- and it's not
difficult to see how some British scumbag will urinate into the face
of a hooded man, how some American sadist will stand a hooded Iraqi
on a box with wires tied to his hands.
The sexual sadism -- the bobby--sox girl soldier who points at a
man's genitals, the mock orgy in Abu Ghraib prison, the British rifle
in the prisoner's mouth -- might be a crazed attempt to balance all
those lies about the Arab world, about the desert warrior's potency,
the harem, polygamy.
Even today, we still show the revolting Ashanti on our television
stations, a feature film about the kidnapping of the wife of an
English doctor by Arab slave--traders, which depicts Arabs as almost
exclusively child--molesters, rapists, murderers, liars and thieves.
It stars -- heaven spare us -- Michael Caine, Omar Sharif and Peter
Ustinov and was made partly in Israel.
Indeed, we now depict Arabs in our films as the Nazis once depicted
Jews. But Arabs are fair game. Potential terrorists to a man -- and a
woman -- they must be softened up, "prepared", humiliated, beaten,
tortured. The Israelis use torture in the Russian Compound in
Jerusalem. Now we torture in Saddam's old jail outside Baghdad and --
for this is where British soldiers beat a young Iraqi to death last
summer -- in the former office of Saddam's most murderous chemical
warfare fascist, the awful "Chemical" Ali.
And the officers? Didn't the British lieutenants and captains and
majors in the Queen's Lancashire Regiment know that their lads were
kicking to death a young Iraqi hotel worker last summer?
That man's fate -- and the documentary evidence proving that he was
murdered -- was first revealed by The Independent on Sunday in
January. Didn't the CIA boys at Abu Ghraib know that Ivan "Chip"
Frederick and Lynddie England, two of the American soldiers in the
photographs published last week, were obscenely humiliating their
Of course they did. The last time I saw Brigadier General Janis
Karpinski, commander of the 800th Military Police Brigade in Iraq,
she told me she had visited Camp X--Ray in Guantanamo and found
nothing wrong with it. I should have guessed then that something had
gone terribly wrong in Iraq.
I remember how in Basra, on the eve of a visit by Tony Blair, I
visited the British Army's press office in the city to ask about the
death of 26--year--old Baha Mousa. The dead man's family had given me
British documents proving that he had been beaten to death in
custody, that the British Army had itself tried to pay off the family
if they would give up any legal claim against the soldiers who so
cruelly killed their son.
I was met with yawns and a total inability to furnish information
about the event. I was told to call the Ministry of Defence in
London. The officer I spoke to appeared weary, even impatient about
my inquiry. There was not a single word of compassion for the dead
Back in September last year, General Karpinski was with a small group
of journalists in Abu Ghraib -- the same ghastly prison in which
thousands were put to death by Saddam, the same jail in which
Frederick and England and their American buddies were standing their
hooded Iraqi prisoner on a box with supposed electrodes on his hands -
- and General Karpinski took some delight in escorting us to the old
Saddam execution chamber.
She led the way into the concrete room with its raised dais and
gallows, and -- in front of us all -- triumphantly pulled the gallows
lever so that the trap door clanged down. She urged us to read the
last messages scrawled on the walls of the neighbouring death row by
Iraqis awaiting Saddam's vengeance. But there was something wrong
about her prison tour.
There was no clear judicial process for the prisoners and there was
no mention -- until I brought it up -- of the mortar attack on the
American--held jail which killed six of the inmates in their tents in
August, when General Karpinski was already in command of Iraq's 8,000
prisoners. They had been given "counselling", she told us. "They
seemed to think we had been using them as some kind of sand--bag."
Abu Ghraib was then being attacked by insurgents four out of every
seven nights. Now it is attacked twice every night.
Oddly, she claimed in answer to a question of mine that there
were "six prisoners claiming to be American and two claiming to be
from the UK". But when General Ricardo Sanchez, the senior Iraqi
officer in Iraq, later denied this, no one asked how the confusion
had arisen. Was General Karpinski making it up? Or was General
Sanchez not telling us the truth? Prisoners' names were often
confused, Arabic script was mis--transliterated, men went "missing"
from the files. It spoke of a whole culture in which Iraqis --
especially Iraqi prisoners -- were somehow not worthy of the same
rights as us Westerners; which is why, I suppose, the occupying
powers in Iraq always give us the statistics of Westerners' deaths
but care not the slightest to discover the statistics of the deaths
of Iraqis, the very people they are mandated to protect and care for.
A few weeks ago, I was chatting to a young American soldier off
Saadoun Street in the centre of Baghdad. He was giving sweets to
street kids and mimicking the Arabic for "thank you": sukran. Did he
know Arabic, I innocently asked. He grinned at me. "I know how to
shout at them," he said. And there you have it.
We are all victims of our high--flown morality. "They" -- the Arabs,
Muslims, "cloth heads", "rag heads", "terrorists" -- are of a lesser
breed, of lower moral standards. They are people to be shouted at.
They have to be "liberated" and given "democracy". But we little band
of brothers, we dress ourselves up in the uniforms of righteousness.
We are marines or military police or a Queen's regiment and we are on
the side of good. "They" are on the side of "evil". So we can do no
Or so it appeared until those shameful pictures last week tore apart
the whole bandwagon and proved that race hatred and prejudice is an
old historical inheritance of ours. We used to call Saddam the Hitler
of Iraq. But wasn't Hitler one of "us", a Westerner, a citizen
of "our" culture? If he could kill six million Jews, which he did,
why should we be surprised that "we" can treat Iraqis like animals?
Last week came the photographs to prove we can.
Copyright: The Independent
Barbarians at the Gate: US Occupation Forces
Torture Iraqi P.O.W's
1,361 Iraqis Killed in April :
Volunteers hunting for bodies in Fallujah find a woman and her
daughter in their home, killed in the siege but undiscovered for
days. Chanting mourners bury two boys caught in the crossfire of a
Baghdad gunfight. A morgue in Basra overflows with torn and burned
bodies from a suicide bombing.
'It's hell...everything will be destroyed' :
The US snipers are on every roof and minaret. They don't care who
they shoot. They are shooting old people, women and children.Where is
the UN in all this?"
America's shame :
The events inside Abu Ghraib prison opens a shameful episode of US
ill-treatment of its prisoners, and has provoked worldwide
Video and text
Prisoner 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
Army secretly reports blatant abuses of Iraqi prisoners, says
The US Army has found that Iraqi detainees were subjected
to "sadistic, blatant and wanton criminal abuses" by American
military police at the Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad in a secret
And They Ask, "Why Do They Hate Us?":
Alarmingly, each crime committed against my people is beginning to
act like a vaccine booster, as if we were slowly adapting to
humiliation. Proud men getting their faces rubbed in sand is the
order of the day.
Editorial: Sheer Depravity:
What is no less shocking about the degrading photos from Abu Gharib
prison is that not a single US newspaper yesterday led its front page
with news of them. That is a further demonstration of the appallingly
limited comprehension of the Middle East that runs from the White
House down to the humblest New York burger stall.
An empire in moral crisis:
One day, he said, he was taken to a private room and sexually
assaulted. He asked me what I would have done if I were him, and I
had no answer."
Riverbend: Iraqi Girl Blog:
Seeing those naked, helpless, hooded men was like being slapped in
the face with an ice cold hand. I felt ashamed looking at them- like
I was seeing something I shouldn't be seeing and all I could think
was, "I might know one of those faceless men..."
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