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September 24, 2005

Abuse Rampant by US Soldiers in Iraq

Human Rights Watch released a 30 page report based on interviews with three members of the Army's 82nd Airborne Division, documenting rampant abuse of prisoners in Camp Mercury - a holding place before transfer to Abu Ghraib - and other places. Prisoners were humiliated, beaten, bones broken, for the amusement of bored soldiers and to increase their usefulness during intelligence briefings.

The three soldiers came forward after 17 months trying to get someone within the Army to open an investigation. One soldier, Captain Ian Fishback came forward and spoke with aides to two Republican Senators, chairman of the Armed Services Committe Jack Warner and senior member of that committee John McCain.

In one incident, the Human Rights Watch report states, an off-duty cook broke a detainee's leg with a metal baseball bat. Detainees were also stacked, fully clothed, in human pyramids and forced to hold five-gallon water jugs with arms outstretched or do jumping jacks until they passed out, the report says. "We would give them blows to the head, chest, legs and stomach, and pull them down, kick dirt on them," one sergeant told Human Rights Watch researchers during one of four interviews in July and August. "This happened every day."
From: "3 in 82nd Airborne Say Beating Iraqi Prisoners Was Routine," by Eric Schmitt in NYT

I believe that even though these men came forward to shed light on this situation, that should not keep them from being prosecuted by an international court. If a criminal admits a "regular" crime, he does not get off without punsihment, correct?

We must also stop expecting the criminals in charge of this country to uphold the law. They have no respect for international law or human rights; they must be held accountable by the citizens in the U.S. and the world.

More info: "More Iraqis Tortured, Officer Says: The 82nd Airborne is accused of abuses in 2003 and early 2004. A criminal inquiry begins." by Richard A. Serrano in the LAT

Posted by cj at September 24, 2005 12:35 PM


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