Nasty Letters To Crooked Politicians

As we enter a new era of politics, we hope to see that Obama has the courage to fight the policies that Progressives hate. Will he have the fortitude to turn the economic future of America to help the working man? Or will he turn out to be just a pawn of big money, as he seems to be right now.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Just When You Thought The Prison Torture, Anal Rape, and Beatings were over...

TNS: Abuse, Torture and Rape Reported at Unlisted U.S.-run Prisons in Iraq
by Lisa Ashkenaz Croke (bio)
Huntington Woods, Michigan , Sep 23

American legal investigators have discovered evidence of abuse, torture and rape throughout the US-run prison system in Iraq. A Michigan legal team meeting with former detainees in Baghdad during an August fact-finding mission gathered evidence supporting claims of prisoner abuse at some 25 US-run detention centers, most of them so far not publicly mentioned as being embroiled in the Iraq torture scandal.

"That list was something that we came back with -- we only knew of three prisons going there," investigator Mohammed Alomari told The NewStandard, referring to the few detention centers in Iraq where concerns over treatment of prisoners have already been raised publicly.

The list includes some actual prisons, such as Al-Salihiya Prison in Baghdad, the notorious prison in Abu Ghraib, and a prison at Camp Bucca, a Coalition-built POW camp in the southern port city of Um-Qasr. Other detention centers have been established at military bases, such as the US Military compound at Al-Dhiloeia, north of Baghdad; a US base outside Fallujah; and the Hilla military compound, a joint US-Polish base where Alomari said he has recently been informed of allegations against US and Polish personnel.

"Nobody talks about it. All everyone talks about is Abu Ghraib because of the pictures," said Alomari. "But in these other places, there's tons of acts of torture, abuse, rape."

During an interview with Alomari and attorney Shereef Akeel, TNS reviewed documentation the men accumulated covering 53 separate cases of former detainees alleging gross mistreatment at the US-run prisons in Iraq. All of the witnesses have been vetted, said Akeel, their presence at various detention centers corroborated by official, US military-issued paperwork and identification information.

Some of the plaintiffs allege US captors committed severe abuses against them as recently as this summer, challenging the widely-held assumption that the military has put an end to the violations.

A steady stream of reports from a contact in Iraq has kept new cases crossing Akeel's desk almost daily since the team returned from Iraq over a month ago. Cases raised since the team's return stateside will be verified and investigated in the future.

Akeel says he learned of the horrible conditions and practices at Abu Ghraib almost a month before the rest of the American public, when a man he calls "Saleh" came into his Huntington Woods, Michigan office with an ID bracelet from Abu Ghraib and a horrific story of his rape and abuse at the infamous US-run prison.
"I said, 'Abu what?'" recalled Akeel. "I didn't even know about Abu Ghraib. I couldn't believe it. I mean, I didn't -- it was so outlandish.

"Then the pictures came out," Akeel said.

While many of the detention centers where Akeel's clients say abuses took place were established under Saddam Hussein, most appear to be facilities put to use as prisons during the US-led occupation.

A group called the Committee for the Release of Hostages and Detainees in Iraq (CROHDI), a Saddam-era human rights group based in Scotland, counted over 50 known prisons and detention centers in Iraq. CROHDI's list includes the airport near the Al-Habbaniya Resort Island and various places now used as military bases where the American investigative team uncovered cases of prisoner abuse last month.

Shortly after the invasion in 2003, the US Army established Camp Cropper, a massive, mostly outdoor facility located at Baghdad International Airport. Camp Cropper was mentioned in a Red Cross report leaked to the press last spring and received some press attention after the US military banned Amnesty International from visiting prisoners there last summer.

During their trip, the American investigators heard accounts of abuse from former Camp Cropper and Abu Ghraib detainees, but also from released inmates held at another airport camp in Baqouba, an hour Northeast of Baghdad.
Link to balance of story...


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