And then there was Abu Ghraib.
Our "war president" may have been justified in his assumption that Americans are a warrior people.
He pushed the envelope in thinking we'd be content as an occupying power, but he was sadly mistaken if he thought that ordinary Americans would tolerate an image of themselves as torturers.
To be fair, the torture was meant to be secret.
So were the memos justifying such treatment that had floated around the White House, Pentagon, and Justice Department for more than a year before the first photos came to light.
The neocons no doubt appreciate that few of us have the stones to practice the New Warfare.
Could you slip a pair of women's panties over the head of a naked, cowering stranger while forcing him to masturbate?
What would you say while sodomizing him with a toilet plunger?
Is keeping someone awake till he hallucinates inhumane treatment or merely "sleep management"?
Ron Reagon son of Ronald Reagon — Esquire   July 31, 2004


Slide cursor underneath or side of photos
"There was no evidence of a wedding: no decorations, no musical instruments found, no large quantities of food or leftover servings one would expect from a wedding celebration," US Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt said on Saturday.
"There may have been some kind of celebration.    Bad people have celebrations, too."
When the musicians, well-known in Baghdad, did not return, it was discovered they had been killed by the U.S. along with the wedding party

Slide cursor underneath or side of photos
 
 Haleema was asleep when U.S. helicopters fired on her house
She ran with her youngest child in her arms and her two other boys close behind.
A shell exploded next to her killing her two sons
US taxpayers paid for the killing
The body of an Iraqi prisoner, wrapped in cellophane and packed in ice.
This photo is part of the collection of the New Yorker magazine photographs of death, torture and humiliation that has taken place over the past year by US military personnel.
Washington Post May 22, 2004:  Davis [one of the MP's] said Graner told him “the agents and MI soldiers would ask him to do things, but nothing was ever in writing, he would complain."
Special visitors frequented the wing at night, Davis said.   They included representatives from the military's Criminal Investigation Division (CID) and other government agencies (OGA), a common expression for the CIA.
“On the night shift, FBI, OGA, CID, MI would be in and out of the wing interrogating prisoners, bringing them in, or taking them away to the wood hut behind the hard site or away period," Davis said.   “Someone was always there from the other agencies or military personnel, it seemed.”
He said he was disgusted by the treatment of the detainees.
“You mentioned you saw various things you thought were immoral,” one investigator asked him.   “What things are you referring to?”
“The sleep and food plan that was the majority of the crap,” Davis said.   “You see inmates stand all day and not get food until they are scheduled to sleep.   They stand for three to four hours. . . .”
“Why did you not inform your chain of command about this abuse?”
“Because I assumed that if they were doing anything out of the ordinary or outside the guidelines, someone would have said something," Davis said.   “Also, the wing belongs to MI and it appeared MI personnel approved of the abuse.”
Abu Ghraib abuse

Iraq men, one hooded, being forced into a sexual position so that one man is seen to be leaned up against the other man's penis, an attempt to force the one man to take the other man's penis into his mouth.

US soldiers standing around watching.

Abu Ghraib horrifying pictures.

Photo: New Yorker magazine
In questioning about the abuses taking place at Abu Ghraib and other prisons controlled by the US, MG Miller's team stated that the function of Detention Operations is to provide a safe, secure, and humane environment that supports the expeditious collection of intelligence.
However, it also stated "it is essential that the guard force be actively engaged in setting the conditions for successful exploitation of the internees."
Specialist Sabrina Harman is quoted in the Washington Post as saying in an e-mail that the aim was to break down the prisoners for interrogation.
"If the prisoner was co-operating, then the prisoner was able to keep his jumpsuit, mattress, and was allowed cigarettes on request or even hot food.   But if the prisoner didn't give what they wanted, it was all taken away until [military intelligence] decided," she wrote.
Abu Ghraib abuse

Iraq men, one hooded, being forced into bending postion for long periods of time.

US soldiers standing around watching, some taking photos.

Abu Ghraib horrifying pictures.

Photo: Washington Post
          
US army medics 'aided' Abu Ghraib abuses
Friday 20 August 2004
courtesy of the Washington Post
Army doctors 'falsified records and allowed abuses to occur'
US army doctors working at the notorious Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq helped design abusive interrogations and failed to report homicides, says a British medical journal.
Citing government documents including sworn testimony of detainees and troops, the respected Lancet weekly in its latest issue (published on Saturday) outlined a disturbing litany of failures to safeguard detainees' human rights at the prison.
It said that the failures in some instances constitute serious breaches of international law, providing a further embarrassment for the military, which has already been rocked by documented abuses of Iraqi prisoners by its troops.
"Medical personnel evaluated detainees for interrogation, and monitored coercive interrogation, allowed interrogators to use medical records to develop interrogation approaches, falsified medical records and death certificates, and failed to provide basic health care," it said.
One of the most startling charges in the article by Steven H Miles of the University of Minnesota was that medical personnel collaborated with the military in "designing and implementing psychologically and physically coercive interrogations".
It also gave an example where a detainee collapsed and was apparently unconscious after a beating. Medical staff then revived the detainee and left, and the abuse continued.
Death certificates faked
Miles said that the medical system failed to report illnesses and injuries accurately at the prison, where US soldiers were photographed abusing and sexually humiliating naked Iraqi prisoners.
Medics 'failed to report inmates'
illnesses and injuries accurately'
Death certificates of prisoners held in US custody in both Iraq and Afghanistan have been falisified or their completion delayed for months, he said.
In one case "a medic inserted a intravenous catheter into the corpse of a detainee who died under torture in order to create evidence that he was alive at the hospital."
A surgeon stated that the death of Iraqi Major-General Muhush was of natural causes after his head was pushed into a sleeping bag while interrogators sat on his chest.
"Six months later, the Pentagon released a death certificate calling the death a homicide by asphyxia."
Untreated torture victims
According to a prisoner's sworn testimony, a festering hand wound caused by torture went untreated.
The described offences do not merely fall short of medical ideals; some constitute grave breaches of international or US law
Steven Miles,
University of Minnesota
The study concluded that although the US army's medical services are mainly staffed by humane personnel, "the described offences do not merely fall short of medical ideals; some constitute grave breaches of international or US law".
By the standards of the Geneva Convention on the treatment of prisoners of war, "the moral advocacy of military medicine for the detainees of the war on terror broke down".
It also laments that army medics failed to report the use of abuses at Abu Ghraib even though knowledge of torture and degrading treatment was widespread within the system there.
It also cited isolated reports that medical personnel directly abused detainees.
"Two detainees' depositions describe an incident where a doctor allowed a medically untrained guard to suture a prisoner's laceration from being beaten," it said.
                  AFP
< DOUGLAS JEHL and ERIC SCHMITT     New York Times  
May 26 — The questioning of hundreds of Iraqi prisoners last fall in the newly established interrogation center at Abu Ghraib prison yielded very little valuable intelligence, according to civilian and military officials.
The interrogation center was set up in September to obtain better information about an insurgency in Iraq that was killing American soldiers almost every day by last fall.   The insurgency was better organized and more vigorous than the United States had expected, prompting concern among generals and Pentagon officials who were unhappy with the flow of intelligence to combat units and to higher headquarters.
But civilian and military intelligence officials, as well as top commanders with access to intelligence reports, now say they learned little about the insurgency from questioning inmates at the prison.
Most of the prisoners held in the special cellblock that became the setting for the worst abuses at Abu Ghraib apparently were not linked to the insurgency, they said.
All of the prisoners sent to Abu Ghraib had already been questioned by the troops who captured them for urgent information about roadside bombs, imminent attacks and the like.
The officials could not say whether the harsh interrogation methods used at Abu Ghraib were counterproductive.
But they said few if any prisoners there had been able to shed light on questions to which Gen. John P. Abizaid, the top American commander for the Middle East, and his deputies had assigned highest priority, including the whereabouts of Saddam Hussein and the nature of the insurgency's leadership.
"Most of our useful intelligence came from battlefield interrogations, and at the battalion, brigade and division-level interrogation facilities," said a senior military intelligence officer who served in Iraq.   Once prisoners were sent on to Abu Ghraib, the officer said, "we got very little feedback."
One American general who recently returned from Iraq put the concerns of many senior officers about what happened to the detainees this way:  "There was a sense when someone was sent down there, they went into a black hole and never came out."
In Senate testimony last week, General Abizaid defended interrogation practices used in Iraq, saying the information obtained served to save American lives.   But he made no specific mention of Abu Ghraib, and military officers said the kind of intelligence he was referring to, about the location of hidden explosives or the details of planned attacks, had been obtained more often by soldiers in the field.
General Abizaid made clear in his testimony that the intelligence-gathering effort that he and Lt. Gen. Ricardo S. Sanchez, the top American commander in Baghdad, set in motion late last summer had fallen short of its intended goal of getting a clear picture of the insurgency.
...The Tier 1 cellblock at Abu Ghraib was set aside from the rest of the prison to house as many as 600 prisoners designated as "security detainees" because of their suspected involvement in or knowledge about attacks on American troops.   This designation set them apart from the thousands of Iraqis imprisoned as criminals, who were held in less-secure sections of Abu Ghraib, and the 100 or so former top Iraqi officials designated as "high-value detainees" because of their suspected knowledge about Iraq's weapons programs or other such issues, and who were held in a special facility on the outskirts of the Baghdad airport.
In practice, however, many of the "security detainees" fell into a vague middle ground, between what Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld described this month as "high-value targets," who were "much more interesting from the standpoint of the interrogation process," and "a simple low-level person" who is "simply being kept off the street for a period."
In general, said a senior Army officer who served in Iraq, many of the prisoners held in the isolation wing at Abu Ghraib were kept there long beyond any period of usefulness because "no one wanted to be responsible for releasing the next Osama bin Laden."
< DOUGLAS JEHL and ERIC SCHMITT     New York Times  
Interviews and documents obtained by The New York Times depict the interrogation center as a home to intimidating practices, including the use of dogs in interrogation rooms, some of which were constructed from shipping containers.
People who served there described a range of interrogation tactics, including interrogators' breaking tables as a show of force.   One interrogation area, known as "Steel," was assembled in November from the shipping containers.   Another, called "Wood," was built from that material in October, according to a former officer at the prison.
In some ways, the cellblock was much more tightly controlled than the rest of the prison.
An undated list of "operational guidelines" for the cellblock directs, among other things, that the officers overseeing the interrogation center "will provide Segregation M.P.'s with an access roster of persons allowed to access the cells and walkways in Areas 1A and 1B."
"Additionally," the document says, "it is recommended that all military personnel in the segregation area reduce knowledge of their true identities to those specialized detainees.
The use of sterilized uniforms" — uniforms without insignia — "is highly suggested and personnel should NOT address each other by true name and rank in the segregation area."
No one from the interrogation center has been charged with crimes in connection with the abuses, several weeks after an initial Army inquiry suggested that Colonel Jordan, among three other senior officers and civilian contractors, was "directly or indirectly" culpable in the abuses.
General Sanchez and other Army officials have said broader control of Abu Ghraib was not transferred from a military police unit, under Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, to an Army intelligence unit, under Col. Thomas M. Pappas, until Nov. 19, when the intelligence unit was put in charge of protecting the prison against attack and of the inmates' safety.
By then, abusive practices had been photographed in the prison for about a month, and the International Committee of the Red Cross had already filed an official complaint about the practices.
But the documents and interviews suggest that de facto control of the isolation cellblock had been given to the Joint Interrogation and Debriefing Center by mid-October.
A classified memorandum issued by General Sanchez on Oct. 12, outlining a new "interrogation and counter-resistance policy," directs that "the interrogator should appear to be the one who controls all aspects of the interrogation . . . as well as food, clothing, and shelter given to the security internee," according to a briefing provided to Senate staff members last week by two senior Army officers.
...At the opposite end of the cellblock compound from the "Steel" interrogation site were the "Wood" interrogation rooms, according to Army officers who served at the prison.
The rooms in both sites included two-way mirrors, chairs and a table, but interrogations were also sometimes conducted in the showers, stairwells and other sections of the cellblock's isolation area, according to statements given to military investigators and included in the documents obtained by The Times.
The rooms in both sites included two-way mirrors, chairs and a table, but interrogations were also sometimes conducted in the showers, stairwells and other sections of the cellblock's isolation area, according to statements given to military investigators and included in the documents obtained by The Times.
...One civilian interrogator, identified as Daniel E. Johnson, an employee of the Virginia-based CACI Premier Technology, is described in a Jan. 23 statement to an investigator as acknowledging that "he is aggressive in an interview, he generally yells in their face, and throws the table in the room."
Another civilian interrogator from the same company, whose employees were working in the interrogation center, was described as being known for breaking tables during interrogations.
In interviews, several Army officers, including General Karpinski, said Colonel Jordan had received broad direction from General Fast, director of intelligence for occupation forces in Baghdad, who had been responsible for setting up the interrogation center.
< Washington Post May 22, 2004
England told investigators that not all of the photos are what they appear to be.   She said the photo of a soldier cocking his fist was a ruse.
"Graner and Frederick told me to grab the camera and get some pictures of them pretending to hit the prisoners," England said in her statement.   "While I was taking the pictures at no time did they actually hit the prisoners."
Davis [one of the MP's] said he became emotional when dealing with some of the detainees.
"I did step on the inmates' hands and feet on purpose and not on purpose," Davis said.
"I was very upset at the inmates for wanting to kill some of my fellow soldiers from my company.   I wanted to scare them."
Shalan Said Alsharoni, a detainee at Abu Ghraib, told investigators that the beatings were commonplace, intertwined with "torture" that included soldiers hitting prisoners' genitals with gloved hands.
Alsharoni recalled an incident that appeared very similar to the image depicted in the photo, when he said a group of detainees resisted being placed naked next to each other.
"And when they refused, Graner beat them up until they put them on top of each other and they took pictures of them," Alsharoni said, according to the documents.   "After they brought six people, and they beat them up until they dropped on the floor and one of them his nose was cut and the blood was running from his nose and he was screaming but no one responded."
In a series of photographs, one soldier is seen with a pile of detainees.   In one picture, he is cocking his fist while holding the detainee in a headlock; in another, he is posing on top of them, flexing his muscles for the camera.
The scene was one that several soldiers recounted in statements, and one that appeared to echo other, and similar, attacks on detainees.
It was late October or early November, and the alleged abuses were escalating.   According to soldiers, detainees and dozens of photographs, the physical violence included shoves into walls, slaps, punches and karate-style kicks to the head.
Some prisoners needed stitches; one was hit so hard in the chest that he stopped breathing; another was knocked unconscious by a single punch to the temple.
< Los Angeles Times: May 14, 2004
As the prisoner screamed, "Mister, Mister, please stop!" Military Police Spc. Charles A. Graner struck him twice with a police baton, fellow guard Spc. Jeremy Sivits told military investigators.
Sivits, whose statements are contained in investigative records obtained by The Times, provided the most detailed account to become public by one of the defendants in the abuse scandal.
He described an atmosphere in which several military policemen repeatedly laughed, joked and mocked Iraqi detainees as they stripped them naked, struck and kicked them and forced them to hit each other.
Sivits said he first became aware of the abuse, and began photographing much of it, on Oct. 3, 2003, a month earlier than Nov. 7, the date previously thought to have marked the beginning of harsh treatment in the overcrowded and often-chaotic prison outside Baghdad.
Sivits recalled that the prisoners usually were reluctant to strip in front of each other, and that Graner forced them to do so anyway.
He said Graner once punched a detainee in the head so hard the man fell unconscious.   "His eyes were closed and he was not moving," Sivits said.
"A couple of the detainees kind of made an 'ah' sound as if this hurt them or caused them some type of pain when Davis would land on them," he said.  
"After Davis had done this, Davis then stomped on either the fingers or toes of the detainees.   When he stomped the detainees, they were in pain, because the detainees would scream loudly."
Sivits said Frederick forced naked detainees to masturbate, showing them how to move their hands back and forth until "one of them did it right."   Then, Sivits said, "Harman and England would put their thumbs up and have the picture taken."
Another, he said, was handcuffed to a bed, with wounds on his legs from where "he had been shot with buckshot."   He said Graner did not care, and instead would wield a police baton and "strike the detainee with a half baseball swing."
Reuters: May 14, 2004
Danish troops serve under British command in southern Iraq, where two unnamed medics said that last September in Basra two Iraqi prisoners were brought in with signs of having suffered "rough treatment during an unauthorized interrogation in the field by a British unit," said a ministry statement.
The incident was reported to British officials in September 2003.
"According to the information, one of the Iraqis was later to die of his injuries," the ministry said.
< As stated in a BBC article by Paul Reynolds:
"The UK army put into practice so-called "sensory deprivation" techniques designed to break down a prisoner's resistance before and during interrogation of IRA prisoners.
Those techniques involved isolation, subjection to white noise, hooding, sleep deprivation and physical hardship, such as being kept standing or keeping arms spread out.
When news of these methods came out, as they did quite quickly, there was an uproar and the IRA was handed a new recruiting sergeant.
The CIA and the US military developed similar coercive techniques.   An American manual describing some of them and called "Human Resource Exploitation Training Manual — 1983"  was released under the US Freedom of Information Act in 1997.
The methods included the threat of force on relatives, blindfolding and the stripping of prisoners naked.
The methods used in Abu Ghraib have added in sexual humiliation, presumably regarded by the guards as particularly effective in the Arab world.
US and UK soldiers are regularly subjected to the techniques themselves to help enable them to resist interrogation.
It is known in the trade as R2I — resistance to interrogation."
The Iraqi young men who have been forced to strip, in some instances their clothes cut away from them, stand and kneel now, the sacks over their heads not only making them completely blind, but thick enough to force difficulty in breathing.
They stand and choke here while military and paid civilian men and women hurl abuse at them — and cameras click.
Abdul-Qader Abdul-Rahman al-Ani, 47 explains to the media how he was beaten by U.S soldiers who picked him up last month.

He is showing the scars he received from beatings during a press conference held by human rights groups in Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday May 9, 2004.  

Numerous former prisoners came forward to tell of abuse — beatings by soldiers and sleep deprivation.

Picture: AP/Muhammed Muheisen
The New Yorker Magazine — article Chain of Command — writer Seymour M. Hersh, describes this picture.

“I was given another set of digital photographs, which had been in the possession of a member of the 320th.    

According to a time sequence embedded in the digital files, the photographs were taken by two different cameras over a twelve-minute period on the evening of December 12, 2003, two months after the military-police unit was assigned to Abu Ghraib.

One of the new photographs shows a young soldier, wearing a dark jacket over his uniform and smiling into the camera, in the corridor of the jail.

In the background are two Army dog handlers, in full camouflage combat gear, restraining two German shepherds.

The dogs are barking at a man who is partly obscured from the camera’s view by the smiling soldier. 

Another image shows that the man, an Iraqi prisoner, is naked.

His hands are clasped behind his neck and he is leaning against the door to a cell, contorted with terror, as the dogs bark a few feet away. 

Other photographs show the dogs straining at their leashes and snarling at the prisoner. 

In another, taken a few minutes later, the Iraqi is lying on the ground, withering in pain, with a soldier sitting on top of him, knee pressed to his back. 

Blood is streaming from the inmate’s leg. 

Another photograph is a closeup of the naked prisoner, from his waist to his ankles, lying on the floor. 

On his right thigh is what appears to be a bite or a deep scratch. 

There is another, larger wound on his left leg, covered in blood.”

Picture: New Yorker Magazine
<(left)  Abdul-Qader Abdul-Rahman al-Ani, 47 explains to the media how he was beaten by U.S soldiers who picked him up last month.
He is showing the scars he received from beatings during a press conference held by human rights groups in Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday May 9, 2004.
Numerous former prisoners came forward to tell of abuse — beatings by soldiers and sleep deprivation.
<(right) The New Yorker Magazine — article Chain of Command — writer Seymour M. Hersh, describes this picture.
“I was given another set of digital photographs, which had been in the possession of a member of the 320th.   
According to a time sequence embedded in the digital files, the photographs were taken by two different cameras over a twelve-minute period on the evening of December 12, 2003, two months after the military-police unit was assigned to Abu Ghraib.
One of the new photographs shows a young soldier, wearing a dark jacket over his uniform and smiling into the camera, in the corridor of the jail.   In the background are two Army dog handlers, in full camouflage combat gear, restraining two German shepherds.   The dogs are barking at a man who is partly obscured from the camera’s view by the smiling soldier.
Another image shows that the man, an Iraqi prisoner, is naked.   His hands are clasped behind his neck and he is leaning against the door to a cell, contorted with terror, as the dogs bark a few feet away.
Other photographs show the dogs straining at their leashes and snarling at the prisoner.
In another, taken a few minutes later, the Iraqi is lying on the ground, withering in pain, with a soldier sitting on top of him, knee pressed to his back.
Blood is streaming from the inmate’s leg.
Another photograph is a closeup of the naked prisoner, from his waist to his ankles, lying on the floor.
On his right thigh is what appears to be a bite or a deep scratch.
There is another, larger wound on his left leg, covered in blood.”
Photos: AP/Muhammed Muheisen, New Yorker Magazine
al-Sadr city — a suburb of Baghdad
Baghdad
The cover of a copy of the leaked February 4, 2004 International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) report into the treatment by coalition forces of prisoners in Iraq.

Photo:  REUTERS/Matt Dunham
The ICRC 'International Committee of the Red Cross says it reported extensive abuse.
The ICRC agency says U.S. was given details of mistreatment.
A copy of the leaked February 4, 2004 International Committee of the Red Cross report appeared on the Wall Street Journal website, May 10, 2004.
The Red Cross witnessed U.S. troops keeping Iraqi prisoners naked for days in complete darkness at the Abu Ghraib jail in Iraq last October, and was told by the intelligence officer in charge it was 'part of the process', the report said on Monday.
The International Committee of the Red Cross also described UK troops forcing Iraqi detainees to kneel and stomping on their necks in an incident in which one prisoner died.
kewe note: The International Committe of the Red Cross, unlike the ‘Red Cross’ and the ‘Red Crescent’ works only with situations of war.
It’s premise is to contact those parties of power in a conflict and attempt to resolve the conflict, or ameliorate conditions, behind the scenes.
This likely works with small armies and nations.  It obviously does not work with the world’s most powerful nation, the world's largest producer of war.
From May 2003, to November 2003 the International Red Cross attempted to bring the national leaders' attention to abuses being perpetrated in the name of ‘extinguishing terrorism.’   
Nothing happened.
MSNBC May 10, 2004:
The International Red Cross saw U.S. military intelligence officers mistreating prisoners under interrogation and heard allegations of abuses during arrests of Iraqis, up to 90 percent of whom were detained by mistake, according to a report by the agency disclosed Monday....
“ICRC delegates directly witnessed and documented a variety of methods used to secure the cooperation of the persons deprived of their liberty with their interrogators,” said the confidential report.
The delegates saw how detainees were kept “completely naked in totally empty concrete cells and in total darkness,” the report said.
It said it found evidence supporting prisoners’ allegations of other forms of abuse during arrest, initial detention and interrogation.
Among the evidence were burns, bruises and other injuries consistent with the abuse prisoners alleged, it said.
The 24-page document, confirmed by the ICRC as authentic after it was published by the Wall Street Journal on Monday, said the abuses were primarily during the interrogation stage by military intelligence....
Pattern?
The report cites abuses — some “tantamount to torture” — including brutality, hooding, humiliation and threats of “imminent execution.”
“These methods of physical and psychological coercion were used by the military intelligence in a systematic way to gain confessions and extract information and other forms of cooperation from person who had been arrested in connection with suspected security offenses or deemed to have an ‘intelligence’ value....”
“Arresting authorities entered houses usually after dark, breaking down doors, waking up residents roughly, yelling orders, forcing family members into one room under military guard while searching the rest of the house and further breaking doors, cabinets and other property,” the report said.
“Sometimes they arrested all adult males present in a house, including elderly, handicapped or sick people,” it said.
“Treatment often included pushing people around, insulting, taking aim with rifles, punching and kicking and striking with rifles.”
It said some coalition military intelligence officers estimated “between 70 percent and 90 percent of the persons deprived of their liberty in Iraq had been arrested by mistake.  They also attributed the brutality of some arrests to the lack of proper supervision of battle group units.”
U.S. told over time.
Pierre Kraehenbuehl, ICRC director of operations, said Friday that the report had been given to U.S. officials last February, but that it only summarized what the agency had been telling U.S. officials in detail between March and November 2003 “either in direct face-to-face conversations or in written interventions.”
Kraehenbuehl said the abuse of prisoners represented more than isolated acts, and that the problems were not limited to the Abu Ghraib prison.
“We were dealing here with a broad pattern, not individual acts.   There was a pattern and a system,” he said, declining to give further details.
The report described how male prisoners were forced to parade around in women’s underwear.
It said the information obtained “suggested the use of ill-treatment against persons deprived of their liberty went beyond exceptional cases and might be considered a practice tolerated by” coalition forces.
< Reuters Thursday May 20, 2004
By Mike Collett-White
PUL-I-CHARKI, Afghanistan:   Inmates at the imposing Pul-i-Charki jail east of Kabul may well wonder at the international outcry over U.S. military abuses at prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan, having been badly mistreated themselves.
Most of the 1,244 men at the fortress-like prison have just been moved from Shiberghan jail in the north belonging to General Abdul Rashid Dostum, a presidential adviser and key ally of U.S. forces during the war against the Taliban in 2001.
There they were beaten and underfed, slept 26 to a cell and cooped up for months, and contracted tuberculosis due to the overcrowding, prisoners at Pul-i-Charki told Reuters on Thursday.
“For the first four months at Shiberghan we were not allowed outside,” said Shah Akbar, a Pakistani who was fighting with the Taliban when they surrendered to Dostum's U.S.-backed forces near Kunduz, in the north, late in 2001.
“There were 26 of us in a small cell, sleeping on our sides on the bare floor.   I was beaten several times with a chain,” said the skull-capped, bearded 25-year-old from Pakistan's southern port city of Karachi.   He suffers from tuberculosis.
...Many wonder why their basic rights were neglected for so long by the international community, including the United States.
“We had no rights at that jail (Shiberghan) and the United States should have done more to take care of us,” Akbar said.
...Dostum has faced no serious scrutiny for his treatment of prisoners at Shiberghan, and the international community shied away from a full probe into allegations his forces let hundreds of Taliban suffocate in containers on their way to jail in 2001.
"The government should put Dostum on trial," said Akbar, speaking in Urdu.
...On Thursday, bearded men wearing skull caps or turbans played volleyball in a dusty courtyard outside their cells or sat in groups talking.
Inmates said they had two hours' exercise every two days, and agreed that conditions at Pul-i-Charki were an improvement on Shiberghan.   Food was better, medical treatment quicker and families were allowed to visit.
But five prisoners are still crammed in each small cell, there is no running water leading to poor sanitation and some of the more than 100 tuberculosis sufferers have yet to be treated.
< New York Times:
In a visit to the Abu Ghraib prison last October, Red Cross inspectors were so unsettled by what they found that they broke off their visit and demanded an immediate explanation from military prison authorities.
The report said that as far back as last May, the Red Cross reported to the military about 200 allegations of abuse, and that in July it complained about 50 allegations of abuse at a detention site called Camp Cropper — including one case of treatment that included being deprived of sleep, kicked repeatedly and injured, and having a baseball tied into the prisoner’s mouth.
Medical examinations supported the prisoner’s account.
An aide to Wolfowitz said that Kellenberger briefly mentioned a forthcoming report about problems at the Iraqi prisons.
Charley Cooper, special adviser to Wolfowitz, said, “No mention was made of any specific allegations of abuse or mistreatment of prisoners at any of the facilities housing detainees inside Iraq.”
< CBS News Afghanistan:
Sayed Nabi Siddiqui, 47, claims that, in a series of different prisons, he was kicked, beaten, sexually taunted and also repeatedly photographed while naked.
The New York Times quoted Siddiqui as saying he was wrongly detained on July 15 after he reported police corruption and that someone then accused him of being a member of the Taliban.   He said he was held for about 40 days at three different U.S. bases: at Gardez, Kandahar in southern Afghanistan, and Bagram.
He described being humiliated repeatedly during his detention in all three places.
Siddiqui told the Times that for the 12 days he was in Kandahar, detainees were packed into wire cages, forced to use a bucket as a toilet in front of other detainees, and said soldiers threw stones and bottles at detainees.
“It was like stoning monkeys at the zoo," Siddiqui told the New York Times.
“They brought buckets of stones and they were laughing as they did it.”
“I have in the past spoken to people who have claimed to have had family members who were arbitrarily arrested and taken away and kept for months,” says CBS News Correspondent Lara Logan, also in Kabul.
“Because there's no judicial process involved, these detainees do not go to trial, they do not have lawyers, they're not represented in any way, by anyone other than the International Committee of the Red Cross, and they do not make their findings public.”
The U.S. military opened a formal investigation into the deaths of two Afghans at Bagram's closely guarded jail in December 2002, but says it has had trouble gathering evidence and has yet to release results.
Military autopsies found that both men died of blunt force injuries.
BBC Kosovo:
Amnesty says girls as young as 11 from eastern European countries are being sold into the sex slavery.
Girls and women from countries such as Moldova, Bulgaria and the Ukraine are moved illegally across borders and sold in “trading houses," where they are sometimes drugged and “broken in” before being sold from one trafficker to another for prices ranging from 50 to 3,500 euros ($60 - 4,200).
The Amnesty report: “So does that mean I have rights?” includes harrowing testimonies of abduction, deprivation of liberty and denial of freedom of movement, torture and ill-treatment, including psychological threats, beatings and rape.
The report says that after 40,000 K-For troops and hundreds of Unmik personnel were sent to Kosovo in 1999, a “small-scale local market for prostitution was transformed into a large-scale industry based on trafficking run by organised criminal networks.”
Amnesty International UK Director Kate Allen said: “The international community in Kosovo is now adding insult to injury by securing immunity from prosecution for its personnel and apparently hushing up their shameful part in the abuse of trafficked women and girls.”
See Amnesty Kosovo report below.
A summation of the News.Scotsman.com article by Bill Jacobs Westminster Editor:
The UK Army was facing further damaging allegations today after being accused of killing more than 30 civilians in Iraq, including an eight-year-old girl, unnecessarily.
Kate Allen director of Amnesty International said today it knew of 37 killings up to February of which just 18 had been investigated.
She said decisions on whether to investigate were made by commanding officers, who were not impartial, and the actual investigations were held by the Royal Military Police, who also were not unbiased.
The organisation said although it knew of at least 37 cases, it was unable to estimate the total number of deaths which could be attributed to UK personnel.
Killings by UK forces, in situations where they should not be using lethal force, are examined in secrecy behind closed doors.
Ms Allen said:  “We are told in the UK that southern Iraq is comparatively safe and secure.   Yet Iraqis on the ground have painted a very different picture.”
< The Washington Post - ORLANDO, May 12:   By Jim VandeHei     Thursday, May 13, 2004; Page A01
Sen. John F. Kerry, blasted President Bush on Wednesday for running an “extraordinarily mismanaged and ineptly prosecuted war” and strongly suggested Bush is partly to blame for abuses at Abu Ghraib prison.
“They dismiss the Geneva Conventions, starting in Afghanistan and Guantanamo, so that the status of prisoners both legal and moral becomes ambiguous at best,” the senator from Massachusetts told radio host Don Imus.
In his most expansive comments on U.S. mistreatment of Iraqis at Abu Ghraib, the presumptive Democratic nominee said this amounts to “major failures in command.”
Asked if Kerry is assessing partial blame to Bush in the prison scandal, Rand Beers, a Kerry foreign policy adviser, said in an interview, “Undoubtedly, that kind of ambiguity, yes, is a failure of leadership”....
In Washington, Kerry campaign manager Mary Beth Cahill said the senator would continue to speak out on Iraq but would not be pressured into doing so, given how rapidly the story is unfolding.
“We're watching this, we're trying to find out as much about this as possible,” she said, “but we're not going to rush into commenting on a national crisis.”
The Bush campaign has repeatedly accused the senator of “politicizing” Iraq.
Bush-Cheney chairman Marc Racicot told reporters Wednesday that Kerry is relentlessly “playing politics” and exploiting tragedy for political gain.
Racicot, for instance, told reporters that Kerry suggested that 150,000 or so U.S. troops are “somehow universally responsible” for the misdeeds of a small number of American soldiers and contractors.   Racicot made several variations of this charge.   But Kerry never said this, or anything like it.
As evidence, Racicot pointed to the following quote Kerry made at a fundraiser on Tuesday:   “What has happened is not just something that a few a privates or corporals or sergeants engaged in.   This is something that comes out of an attitude about the rights of prisoners of war, it's an attitude that comes out of America's overall arrogance in its policy that is alienating countries all around the world.”
What Racicot did not mention was that Kerry preceded this remark by saying, “I know that what happened over there is not the behavior of 99.9 percent of our troops.”
< Reuters May 20, 2004:
BAGHDAD — Iraqi politician Ahmad Chalabi launched a bitter attack on his former U.S. mentors and on Iraq's U.S.-appointed police commander after U.S. troops and police raided his home and offices on Thursday.
It was time U.S. occupying troops left Iraq, said Chalabi, who lost U.S. funding for his political party earlier this week.
“They invaded the home of a Governing Council member a few days after the president of the Governing Council was blown up by terrorist actions at an American checkpoint,” a clearly livid Chalabi told a hastily arranged news conference.
Brandishing a framed picture on which the glass was shattered, he accused troops and police of rousing him from his bed, ransacking his office, removing documents and a valuable copy of the Koran and “vandalizing” his belongings.
Baby killed by a US air raid on Fallujah
American warplanes fired missiles on neighborhood
A wealthy businessman who lived in exile in the West during Saddam Hussein's rule, Chalabi was once seen in the Pentagon as a future leader of Iraq, despite his lack of popular support.
But he has become deeply critical of U.S. strategy, accusing U.S. governor Paul Bremer of allowing former senior members of Saddam's Baath party to return to positions of power, including in the police and interior ministry structures.
“The Baathists are coming here to attack us under American supervision,” he said.
He said U.S. officials disliked his opposition to Baathists, his efforts to investigate kickbacks paid by foreigners to Saddam under the U.N. oil-for-food program and his demands for full Iraqi control over the armed forces after a U.S. handover of limited sovereignty, planned for June 30.
“Let my people go.   Let my people be free.   It is time for the Iraqi people to run their affairs,” Chalabi said.
“If the (U.S. occupation authority) CPA finds it necessary to direct an armed attack on my home you can see the state of relations between the CPA and the Iraqi people.”
< The Seattle Times   May 22, 2004:
Iran is now being accused of supplying the Iraqi National Congress with disinformation to funnel to the United States and to collect highly sensitive American secrets from the INC, according to intelligence sources.
“Iranian intelligence has been manipulating the United States through Chalabi by furnishing through his Information Collection Program (ICP) information to provoke the United Sates into getting rid of Saddam Hussein,” said an intelligence source who was briefed on the conclusions of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).
< Reuters   May 23, 2004:
TEHRAN, Iran — Iran said Sunday it had sent a formal message of warning to the United States about its actions in neighboring Iraq.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi also denied suggestions made by some U.S. officials in recent days that Iraqi Governing Council member Ahmad Chalabi had passed sensitive U.S. intelligence about Iraq to Iran.
“We have warned the Americans about Iraq,” Asefi told a weekly news conference.   “It is natural for two countries which do not have diplomatic relations to exchange messages.”
Asefi did not comment on the contents of the warning, but officials and religious leaders in Shi'ite Muslim Iran have expressed outrage in recent weeks about the presence of U.S.-led forces in the holy Shi'ite Iraqi cities of Najaf and Kerbala.
Asefi said the diplomatic message was sent via the Swiss Embassy in Tehran, which represents U.S. interests in Iran. Washington broke ties with Iran in 1980.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
Asefi described as “baseless” accusations made by unnamed U.S. officials in some U.S. media that Chalabi — whose Baghdad headquarters were raided by U.S. troops and Iraqi police last week — had leaked information to Iran that the officials said could “get Americans killed.”
“We have not received any classified information, neither from Chalabi nor any member of the Iraqi Governing Council,” he said.
“What is going on between us and members of the Iraqi Governing Council and all groups in Iraq is negotiation, the exchange of views and clear and transparent cooperation.”
Asefi said the accusations against Chalabi, a former favorite of the Pentagon, were part of an effort to deflect attention away from Washington's problems in Iraq.
“The Americans have in recent months lied about several issues and failed to prove them,” he said.   “It seems that lying is becoming institutionalized in American policy.”
< Reuters Amsterdam   May 22, 2004
Number two OPEC producer Iran said it will not oppose the Saudi plan to increase oil output, but warned that factors beyond OPEC's control were driving oil prices.
“I don't object to it,” Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh told Reuters.   “It's good to send a signal to consumers ... but not everything is in our hands.”
OPEC President Purnomo Yusgiantoro said refinery bottlenecks, geopolitics, rising world demand and heavy speculation on crude futures by investment hedge funds have combined to drive up oil prices.
< MalaysiaKini   June 3, 2004
An all together too wickedly a delicious story to believe; Iranians leading the Americans by the nose into invading Iraq.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
And now Washington has launched an urgent probe into the probability that Iran really did so by passing bogus intelligence through the Iraqi National Congress (INC), according to UK’s Guardian publication (May 25).
The man who allegedly clipped on the nose-ring was the Pentagon’s favourite Ahmad Chalabi, of the Iraqi Governing Council, now disgraced for allegedly selling US secrets to Iran.   The Iranians apparently sold the weapons of mass destruction mirage to the Republic Party’s neo-conservatives (neo-cons) through Chalabi and the INC.
Some intelligence officials now believe that Iran used the hawks in the White House and the Pentagon to get rid of their arch enemy, Saddam Hussein, to pave the way for a Shiite-ruled Iraq.
Newsweek:
May 24 - It's not easy to get a member of Congress to stop talking.   Much less a room full of them.   But as a small group of legislators watched the images flash by in a small, darkened hearing room in the Rayburn Building last week, a sickened silence descended.
There were 1,800 slides and several videos, and the show went on for three hours.
The nightmarish images showed American soldiers at Abu Ghraib Prison forcing Iraqis to masturbate.
Born deaf and mute, Ibtihal lost her right leg in US bombing
She also lost seven members of her family in the bombing
American soldiers sexually assaulting Iraqis with chemical light sticks.  
American soldiers laughing over dead Iraqis whose bodies had been abused and mutilated.  
There was simply nothing to say.   “It was a very subdued walk back to the House floor,” said Rep. Jane Harman, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee.   “People were ashen.”
The White House put up three soldiers for court-martial, saying the pictures were all the work of a few bad-apple MPs who were poorly supervised.   But evidence was mounting that the furor was only going to grow and probably sink some prominent careers in the process.
Senate Armed Services Committee chairman John Warner declared the pictures were the worst “military misconduct” he'd seen in 60 years, and he planned more hearings.   Republicans on Capitol Hill were notably reluctant to back Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
And NEWSWEEK has learned that U.S. soldiers and CIA operatives could be accused of war crimes.
Among the possible charges: homicide involving deaths during interrogations.
“The photos clearly demonstrate to me the level of prisoner abuse and mistreatment went far beyond what I expected, and certainly involved more than six or seven MPs,” said GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham, a former military prosecutor.
He added: “It seems to have been planned.”
Indeed, the single most iconic image to come out of the abuse scandal—that of a hooded man standing naked on a box, arms outspread, with wires dangling from his fingers, toes and penis—may do a lot to undercut the administration's case that this was the work of a few criminal MPs.
That's because the practice shown in that photo is an arcane torture method known only to veterans of the interrogation trade.
“Was that something that [an MP] dreamed up by herself?
Think again,” says Darius Rejali, an expert on the use of torture by democracies.
“That's a standard torture.
It's called 'the Vietnam.'
But it's not common knowledge.
Ordinary American soldiers did this, but someone taught them.”
Abuse of Reuters journalists — transcripts of interviews and US Army summary as response.
Pelosi criticises until she has some ability to stop the war
Then she lobbies fellow Democratic legislators to continue funding
NBC May 20, 2004:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi lashed out at President Bush on Thursday, saying his Iraq policies show incompetence and the only conclusion to draw is that "the emperor has no clothes."
"I believe that the president's leadership and the actions taken in Iraq demonstrate an incompetence in terms of knowledge, judgment and experience," the California Democrat told reporters at a Capitol Hill news conference.
Republicans swiftly responded by defending the president and assailing Pelosi for crossing the line for political gain.
"This president should have known ... when you decide to go to war you have to know what the consequences of your action are and how you can accomplish the mission," Pelosi said.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
"There was plenty of intelligence to say there would be chaos in Iraq following the fall of Baghdad."
Bush's policy "of ignoring his own State Department about what would happen after the fall of Baghdad and ignoring the intelligence as to the chaotic situation that would exist ... carries with it a responsibility for all of the costs of war," she said.
"And that's not only the president, that is all of us any time we vote to send our young people into harm's way.
"The results of his action are what undermine his leadership, not my statements," she said.
"The emperor has no clothes. When are people going to face the reality?"
Rep. Tom Reynolds, R-N.Y., chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, said if all Pelosi could offer is taunting U.S. troops "by saying they are dying needlessly and are risking their lives on a shallow mission, then she should just go back to her pastel-colored condo in San Francisco and keep her views to herself."
A Pelosi spokeswoman said that the congresswoman lives in a red-brick house.
 
< The New Yorker:
Rumsfeld approved “a highly secret operation” last year, which “encouraged physical coercion and the sexual humiliation of Iraqi prisoners in an effort to generate more intelligence about the growing insurgency in Iraq.”
Rules were:  ‘Grab whom you must.    Do what you want’
News24.com:   May 23, 2004
Cannes — The decision by the Cannes film festival jury to give its top prize to Fahrenheit 9/11, an unrelenting critique of US President George W Bush and the invasion of Iraq by provocative filmmaker Michael Moore, created a stir around the world on Sunday.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
It was the first time a documentary had won the Palme d’Or since the venerable Cannes film festival created the top prize in 1975.
France’s Le Parisien called it a “shock for George Bush”, while Canada’s Toronto Star saw the awards ceremony as “atypically politicised”.
Moore’s documentary savages Bush, portraying him as a dumb president hopelessly out of his depth and only keen to further his family ties to Saudi oil money — including the relatives of Osama bin Laden.
Throughout it all, it takes the position that Bush and his officials deliberately misled the United States to start the Iraq war for their own ends.
The US director had to wait until long applause died down to accept the award, finally telling the jury that he believed their decision “will ensure that the American people will see this movie”.
He dedicated the honour to his 22-year-old daughter and “to all the children in America, and in Iraq and around the world who have suffered from our actions.”
During the festival, he made it clear he hoped his film would prompt US voters to oust Bush from office.
“These people (Bush and his officials) have been out of control from the get-go and we as Americans have been responsible for letting that happen,” he said after receiving the award.
Mail&Guardian online — Sapa-AFP
Financial Times:  Bush is not up to the job
Britain's influential Financial Times newspaper on Wednesday demanded the resignation of US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld over the abuse and torture of Iraqi prisoners and issued a stinging criticism of his boss, George Bush.
"Donald Rumsfeld professes to take responsibility for the outrages at Abu Ghraib prison [near Baghdad].   But nobody will believe it until he and others at the top of the command chain are fired," the FT said in an editorial.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
The paper gave a damning assessment of the US-led occupation of Iraq, which it called "a seamless catalogue of errors and misjudgements, of arrogance and ignorance", and said Bush should take the blame for the failure.
"If he cannot take the essential minimum of measures to restore his country's reputation, he does not deserve to stay in the White House," the daily said.
"He [Bush] is not up to the job.   This is not a moral judgment, but a practical one.   The world is too complex and dangerous for the pious simplicities and arrogant unilateralism of George W. Bush," the FT said in a separate article.
Los Angeles Times:  Thread of Abuse Runs to the Oval Office
Someone’s lying — big-time — and neither Congress nor the media have begun to scratch the surface.   Clearly we now know enough ...
Don't forget Gore as Vice President broke the Senate deadlock
voting as Vice-President, a tie-breaking vote, for NAFTA
Hillary Clinton, Obama and Gore are not fit to be president
Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore — Foreign policy address at New York University May 26, 2004
...In December of 2000, even though I strongly disagreed with the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to order a halt to the counting of legally cast ballots, I saw it as my duty to reaffirm my own strong belief that we are a nation of laws and not only accept the decision, but do what I could to prevent efforts to delegitimize George Bush as he took the oath of office as president.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
I did not at that moment imagine that Bush would, in the presidency that ensued, demonstrate utter contempt for the rule of law and work at every turn to frustrate accountability…
So today, I want to speak on behalf of those Americans who feel that President Bush has betrayed our nation’s trust, those who are horrified at what has been done in our name, and all those who want the rest of the world to know that we Americans see the abuses that occurred in the prisons of Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantanamo and secret locations as yet undisclosed as completely out of keeping with the character and basic nature of the American people and at odds with the principles on which America stands.
I believe we have a duty to hold President Bush accountable — and I believe we will.
As Lincoln said at our time of greatest trial,  “We — even we here — hold the power, and bear the responsibility.”
Don't forget Gore as Vice President broke the Senate deadlock
voting as Vice-President, a tie-breaking vote, for NAFTA
Hillary Clinton, Obama and Gore are not fit to be president
“But here's a revealing fact:  In early 1968, the Boston Globe conducted a survey of 39 major U.S. daily newspapers and found that not a single one had editorialized in favor of U.S. withdrawal from Vietnam.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
While millions of Americans were demanding an immediate pullout, such a concept was still viewed as extremely unrealistic by the editorial boards of big daily papers — including the liberal New York Times and Washington Post.
Yes, some editorials fretted about a quagmire.
But the emphasis was on developing a winnable strategy — not ending the war.
Pull out the U.S. troops?
The idea was unthinkable.”
 
Basra
 
Unfortunate pick — some elected, some chosen, some not
 
Cleric Moqtada al-Sadr
 
Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr is the son of Muhammad Sadiq al-Sadr, a snowy bearded Ayat Allah who launched a revolutionary Shia movement in the 1990's
Aljazeera.net interviewing Shaikh Abd al-Zahra states the following:
Muhammad Sadiq al-Sadr called for the formation of a just Islamic state.   He won support from the impoverished people of Baghdad because he called the clergy to a leading role against social injustice.
Most importantly, he dared to stand up to Saddam Hussein.
“Al-Sadr demanded the government release prisoners, because many of our youth and men of religion were just rotting in jail and no one knew their fate,” says Shaikh Abd al-Zahra.
Loved ones
US attacked Fallujah November 2004
“He called state ministers to ask for forgiveness.   He used to chant:  'No, no to Satan, no, no to the unjust one!’   And everyone knew that what he meant by Satan was Saddam.”
In 1999, Ayat Allah Muhammad Sadiq al-Sadr was assassinated after Friday prayers in the city of Najaf.
As news reached al-Sadr’s loyalist enclave in Baghdad, tens of thousands of poor Shia converged on al-Muhsin mosque in al-Sadr City in mourning.   Security agencies fired into the air to break up the crowd, and mourners turned into an enraged mob, attacking them with rocks and their bare hands.
Before long, more than 1000 Baath party and security forces were on the scene with tanks and APCs, firing randomly on the mostly unarmed crowds.
Security forces closed al-Muhsin mosque, welded its doors shut and launched a massive campaign of arrests and executions.
No one knows how many died overall but residents say the events touched all families and left victims in every street of the city.   Similar scenes were repeated in Najaf and other cities of southern and central Iraq.
After Baghdad’s fall last year, Muqtada al-Sadr emerged as a militant voice against the occupation.
Though most viewed him with scepticism, in al-Sadr City the mantle of his father slipped easily to his shoulders.
Along with Muqtada, another child of the protests and long years of Baath rule surfaced — Jaish Al-Mahdi, the thousands-strong militia of the poor, unemployed soldiers and religious students fiercely loyal to al-Sadr family.
A few of the dead and injured
 
 
...Ten years ago democratic South Africa celebrated its ceremonial birth with the inauguration of its first President and two Deputy Presidents.   We recall the joy and excitement of a nation that had found itself....
The national climate was one of magnanimity and a great generosity of spirit.   As a people we were enormously proud of what we had achieved, negotiating amongst ourselves a peaceful resolution to what was regarded as one of the most intractable situations of conflict in the world....
Allow us, Madam Speaker to congratulate you, the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces and your deputies on your election to these important and prestigious positions in our democracy.   Parliament is the voice of the people and you, the presiding officers, bear a heavy responsibility in ensuring that that voice is clearly heard in national affairs and that its role be protected and defended.
Similarly, our congratulations to all the members of parliament in whom the nation has put its trust.   Yours is the almost sacred duty to ensure government by the people under the Constitution.
Let us never be unmindful of the terrible past from which we come — that memory not as a means to keep us shackled to the past in a negative manner, but rather as a joyous reminder of how far we have come and how much we have achieved.   The memory of a history of division and hate, injustice and suffering, inhumanity of person against person should inspire us to celebrate our own demonstration of the capacity of human beings to progress, to go forward, to improve, to do better....
My wish is that South Africans never give up on the belief in goodness, that they cherish that faith in human beings as a cornerstone of our democracy.   The first value mentioned under the founding principles of our Constitution is that of human dignity.
We accord persons dignity by assuming that they are good, that they share the human qualities we ascribe to ourselves.   Historical enemies succeeded in negotiating a peaceful transition from apartheid to democracy exactly because we were prepared to accept the inherent capacity for goodness in the other.
We live in a world where there is enough reason for cynicism and despair.   We watch as two of the leading democracies, two leading nations of the free world, get involved in a war that the United Nations did not sanction; we look on with horror as reports surface of terrible abuses against the dignity of human beings held captive by invading forces in their own country.
We see how the powerful countries — all of them democracies — manipulate multilateral bodies to the great disadvantage and suffering of the poorer developing nations.   There is enough reason for cynicism and despair....
In a cynical world we have become an inspiration to many.   We signal that good can be achieved amongst human beings who are prepared to trust, prepared to belief in the goodness of people....
May God protect our people.   Nkosi sikelel'i Afrika.   Morena boloka setjhaba sa heso.   God seen Suid-Afrika.   God bless South Africa.   Mudzimu thatutshedza Afurika.   Hosi katekisa Afrika.
US destroyed Fallujah as it tries to destroy the rest of Iraq
Published on Monday, July 4, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
by Sheldon Drobny
Justice O'Connor's decision in Bush v. Gore led to the current Bush administration's execution of war crimes and atrocities in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places in the Middle East that are as egregious as those committed by the Third Reich and other evil governments in human history.
The lesson is clear.
Those people who may be honorable and distinguished in their chosen profession should always make decisions based upon good rather than evil no matter where their nominal allegiances may rest.
Justice O'Connor was quoted to have said something to the affect that she abhorred the thought of Bush losing the 2000 election to Gore.
She was known to have wanted to retire after the 2000 election for same reason she is now retiring.
She wanted to spend more time with her sick husband.
Unfortunately, she tarnished her distinguished career with the deciding vote in Bush v. Gore by going along with the partisan majority of the Court to interfere with a democratic election that she and the majority feared would be lost in an honest recount.
She dishonored herself and the Supreme Court by succumbing to party allegiances and not The Constitution to which she swore to uphold.
And the constitutional argument she and the majority used to justify their decision was the Equal Protection Clause.
The Equal Protection Clause was the ultimate basis for the decision, but the majority essentially admitted (what was obvious in any event) that it was not basing its conclusion on any general view of what equal protection requires.
The decision in Bush v Gore was not dictated by the law in any sense—either the law found through research, or the law as reflected in the kind of intuitive sense that comes from immersion in the legal culture.
The Equal Protection clause is generally used in matters concerning civil rights.
The majority ignored their basic conservative views supporting federalism and states' rights in order to justify their decision.
History will haunt these justices down for their utter lack of justice and the hypocrisy associated with this decision.
Sheldon Drobny is Co-founder of Air America Radio.
Unspeakable grief and horror
                        ...and the circus of deception continues...
— 2017
— 2016
— 2015
— 2014
— 2013
— 2012
— 2011
— 2010
— 2009
— 2008
— 2007
— 2006
— 2005
— 2004
— 2003
Circus of Torture   2003 — now
He says, "You are quite mad, Kewe"
And of course I am.
Why, I don't believe any of it — not the bloody body, not the bloody mind, not even the bloody Universe, or is it bloody multiverse.
"It's all illusion," I say.   "Don't you know, my lad, my lassie.   The game!   The game, me girl, me boy!   Takes on interest, don't you know.   T'is me sport, till doest find a better!"
Pssssst — but all this stuff is happening down here
Let's change it!
Mother her two babies killed by US
More than Fifteen million
US dollars given by US taxpayers to Israel each day for their military use
4 billion US dollars per year
Nanci Pelosi — U.S. House Democratic leader — Congresswoman California, 8th District
Speaking at the AIPAC agenda   May 26, 2005
There are those who contend that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is all about Israel's occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.   This is absolute nonsense.
In truth, the history of the conflict is not over occupation, and never has been:  it is over the fundamental right of Israel to exist.
The greatest threat to Israel's right to exist, with the prospect of devastating violence, now comes from Iran.
For too long, leaders of both political parties in the United States have not done nearly enough to confront the Russians and the Chinese, who have supplied Iran as it has plowed ahead with its nuclear and missile technology....
In the words of Isaiah, we will make ourselves to Israel 'as hiding places from the winds and shelters from the tempests; as rivers of water in dry places; as shadows of a great rock in a weary land.'
Pelosi
Afghanistan Most Recent
NATO's silent toxic air-spraying planes
HAARP
Weather Warfare
Full Spectrum Dominance
Elana Freeland on Buzzsaw with Sean Stone
Download audio mp3 from thewe.cc server      right click here
Chemtrails HAARP and the full spectrum dominance of planet earth.

Image: internet
Climate engineering weather warfare collapse of civilization

Image: internet
“I had a Sunday dinner a few weeks ago at the house of my dad’s and stepmom’s neighbors.
The man and woman of the house are in their 60’s and both proud liberals.
The man said he was a ‘Berkley liberal.’ He supports Hillary, she supports Bernie Sanders.
Towards the end of the dinner he expressed the opinion that a few nuke bombs on some of the major cities in Iraq would be a good idea.
Previous to that, he defended the dropping of nuke bombs on Japan.
The guy’s wife, the Bernie supporter, added something about the barbarous tribal nature of Iraqi society.
She quoted Deepak Chopra on the [evil] nature of Mohamed.
Their son is a fighter pilot who is thinking about joining the top gun program.
He is gay but is too scared to come out to his work colleagues.”
Bi-Polar Disorder: Obama’s Bait-and-Switch Environmental Politics — click here
P.S. from Kewe to the above article written by Paul Street.
I accept the sun is a much greater factor in global weather than human-made activity.
That it is possible climate change will become a bigger problem but also more probable the sun is presently taking us into a mini-cold period.
That the increase in human-made carbon dioxide combined in the stratosphere with other Earth-releasing-of-warmth blocking chemicals is causing a wave of new tree/plant growth in areas not seen for many millennium.
That seeding of the clouds being done by NATO with its toxic compounds is completely destructive to the soil, seas and inland waters beneath, and many vulnerable humans and varied life, and that the politicians responsible for this NATO destructive activity should be held accountable for such as being enemies of Earth's eco-structure and livability.
From the video 'Holes in Heaven' — Brooks Agnew, Earth Tornographer
In 1983 I did radio tornography with 30 watts looking for oil in the ground.
I found 26 oil wells over a nine state area.
100 hundred percent of the time was accurate, which is just 30 watts of power beaming straight into solid rock.
HAARP uses a billion watts beamed straight into the ionosphere for experiments.
Picture these strings on the piano as layers of the Earth, each one has its own frequency.
What we used to do is beam radio waves into the ground and it would vibrate any 'strings' that were present in the ground.
We might get a sound back like ___ and we would say, that's natural gas.
We might get a sound back like ____ and we'd say that's crude oil.
We were able to identify each frequency.
We accomplished this with just 30 watts of radio power.
If you do this with a billion watts the vibrations are so violent that the entire piano would shake.
In fact the whole house would shake.
In fact the vibrations could be so severe under ground they could even cause an earthquake.
Download or watch movie on HAARP — Advanced US Military research weapon on behaviour modification
weather change, ionesphere manipulation — click here
Download or watch audio of Dr. Nick Begich talking on HAARP
— The 2006 update to 'Angels Don't Play This HAARP'.
'Angels Still Don't Play This HAARP: Advances In Tesla Technology'.
Planet Earth Weapon by Rosalie Bertell
ozone, HAARP, chemtrails, space war — click here
What HAARP Is.. And Everything Its Used For
Full HAARP Documentary — click here
Angels Dont Play This HAARP weather manipulation
1 hour 36 minutes video — click here
(poor quality to watch but well worth listening)
Dr. Nick Begich, his book and his articles can be found here
       http://www.earthpulse.com/      
Article on Chemtrails — unusual cloud formations in the US.
Published on Monday, July 4, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
by Sheldon Drobny
Justice O'Connor's decision in Bush v. Gore led to the current Bush administration's execution of war crimes and atrocities in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places in the Middle East that are as egregious as those committed by the Third Reich and other evil governments in human history.
US destroyed Fallujah as it tries to destroy the rest of Iraq
The lesson is clear.
Those people who may be honorable and distinguished in their chosen profession should always make decisions based upon good rather than evil no matter where their nominal allegiances may rest.
Justice O'Connor was quoted to have said something to the affect that she abhorred the thought of Bush losing the 2000 election to Gore.
She was known to have wanted to retire after the 2000 election for same reason she is now retiring.
She wanted to spend more time with her sick husband.
Unfortunately, she tarnished her distinguished career with the deciding vote in Bush v. Gore by going along with the partisan majority of the Court to interfere with a democratic election that she and the majority feared would be lost in an honest recount.
She dishonored herself and the Supreme Court by succumbing to party allegiances and not The Constitution to which she swore to uphold.
And the constitutional argument she and the majority used to justify their decision was the Equal Protection Clause.
The Equal Protection Clause was the ultimate basis for the decision, but the majority essentially admitted (what was obvious in any event) that it was not basing its conclusion on any general view of what equal protection requires.
The decision in Bush v Gore was not dictated by the law in any sense—either the law found through research, or the law as reflected in the kind of intuitive sense that comes from immersion in the legal culture.
The Equal Protection clause is generally used in matters concerning civil rights.
The majority ignored their basic conservative views supporting federalism and states' rights in order to justify their decision.
History will haunt these justices down for their utter lack of justice and the hypocrisy associated with this decision.
Sheldon Drobny is Co-founder of Air America Radio.
U.S. Bombing of Fallujah
— the Third World War continued: Chechnya, North Ossetia, Ingushetia
More atrocities - Ahmed and Asma, story of two children dying
al-Sadr City
Iraq's real WMD crime - the effects of depleted uranium
World War Two soldiers did not kill Kill ratio Korea, Vietnam. Iraq.
Afghanistan - Terror?
Photos over past three months.
Aid agencies compromised by US actions
US soldiers committing suicide Afghanistan Iraq — Most Recent
Psychologist Pete Linnerooth was one of three who were part of a mental health crew in charge of the US 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division in the Baghdad area of Iraq.   Pete Linnerooth committed suicide by turning a gun upon himself in January of 2013
Veterans kill themselves at a rate of one every 80 minutes.   More than 6,500 veteran suicides are logged every year — more than the total number of soldiers killed in Afghanistan and Iraq combined since those wars began.
Mary Coghill Kirkland said she asked her son, 21-year-old Army Spc. Derrick Kirkland, what was wrong as soon as he came back from his first deployment to Iraq in 2008.   He had a ready answer: "Mom, I'm a murderer."
A military base on the brink
As police agents watched he shot himself in the head
Murders, fights, robberies, domestic violence, drunk driving, drug overdoses
US soldiers committing suicide Afghanistan Iraq II
U.S. Soldier Killed Herself After Objecting to Interrogation Techniques
Private Gary Boswell, 20, from Milford Haven, Pembrokeshire, was found hanging in a playground in July
She is Jeanne "Linda" Michel, a Navy medic.   She came home last month to her husband and three kids ages 11, 5, and 4, delighted to be back in her suburban home of Clifton Park in upstate New York.   Two weeks after she got home, she shot and killed herself.
Peterson refused to participate in the torture after only two nights working in the unit known as the cage
     United States Numb to Iraq Troop Deaths       
     All papers relating to the interrogations have been destroyed     
      We stripped them and were supposed to mock them and degrade their manhood     
US soldiers committing suicide Iraq Vietnam
The Iraq War - complete listing of articles, includes images
The House of Saud and Bush
       All with U.S. Money:       
       US and Israel War Crimes       
All with U.S. Money:
Israel agents stole identity of New Zealand cerebral palsy victim.
(IsraelNN.com July 15, 2004) The Foreign Ministry will take steps towards restoring relations with New Zealand. New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark today announced she was implementing diplomatic sanctions after two Israelis were sentenced on charges of attempting to obtain illegal passports. Despite Israeli refusal to respond to the accusations, the two are labeled in the New Zealand media as Mossad agents acting on behalf of the Israeli intelligence community.

Foreign Ministry officials stated they will do everything possible to renew diplomatic ties, expressing sorrow over the "unfortunate incident".
Projected mortality rate of Sudan refugee starvation deaths — Darfur pictures
Suicide now top killer of Israeli soldiers
Atrocities files - graphic images
'Suicide bombings,' the angel said, 'and beheadings.'
'And the others that have all the power - they fly missiles in the sky.
They don't even look at the people they kill.'
       The real Ronald Reagan       
       — Nicaragua, Guatemala, El Salvador, South Africa        
Follow the torture trail...
       Cowardly attacks by air killing men women and children in their homes, often never seeing those they kill as the drones or aircraft fly back to the cowardly bases       
       If they kill only the husband, see how they care for the family they have destroyed       
       Afghanistan — Western Terror States: Canada, US, UK, France, Germany, Italy       
       Photos of Afghanistan people being killed and injured by NATO     
        When you talk with God        
         were you also spending your time, money and energy, killing people?         
       Are they now alive or dead?       
Photos July 2004
US Debt
Photos June 2004
Lest we forget - Ahmed and Asma, story of two children dying
Photos May 2004
American military: Abu Gharib (Ghraib) prison photos, humiliation and torture
- London Daily Mirror article: non-sexually explicit pictures
Photos April 2004
The celebration of Jerusalem day, the US missiles that rained onto children in Gaza,
and, a gathering of top articles over the past nine months
Photos March 2004
The Iraq War - complete listing of articles, includes images
Photos February 2004
US missiles - US money - and Palestine
Photos January 2004
Ethnic cleansing in the Beduin desert
Photos December 2003
Shirin Ebadi Nobel Peace Prize winner 2003
Photos November 2003
Atrocities - graphic images...
Photos October 2003
Aljazeerah.info
Photos September 2003
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