Saturday, October 23, 2010
IRAQ - Murder and Torture
U.S. cover up Iraqi torture
Al-Jazeera gains access to nearly 400.000 Wikileaks' files
forming part of the biggest military leak in history. Those
files, covering the 2004-2009 war period in Iraq, reveal
1.300 recent cases of abuse and torture of Iraqi prisoners.
Obviously, U.S. military authorities of the Bush era ordered
troops not to intervene in cases of prisoner abuse by Iraqi
forces. The documents show that Iraqi forces sodomised and
electrocuted prisoners. According to Amnesty International,
no Iraqi personnel have been jailed for abusing prisoners.
U.S. units reporting probable detainee abuse by Iraqi police or army
(2006/2009) [Names of civilians and military units have been omitted]:
US shooting Iraqi civilists
Wikileaks now revealed the facts: Hundreds of unarmed civilians
have been shot at different checkpoints in Iraq. Al-Jazeera is
citing the up-to-now secret U.S. documents.
UPDATE, 25 Oct. 2010:
Wikileaks: Prime Minister Maliki abused power
Report on harassment of business owner
and family by local Iraqi authorities
Names of civilians and military units involved
in this case have been omitted by Wikileaks.
Barack Obama - Iraqi Memories
In January 2006, Barack Obama, then Senator of Illinois,
made a short visit to Baghdad. Here, an excerpt of what
Obama wrote about that trip in his book "The Audacity of
Hope". I think this might be an adequate add to the
Wikileak documents we are just facing:
"And now, three years later [after the toppling of Saddam
Hussein] - as the number of American deaths passed two
thousand and the number of wounded passed sixteen
thousand; after $250 billion in direct spending and
hundreds of billions more in future years to pay off
the resulting debt and care for disabled veterans;
after two Iraqi national elections, one Iraqi constitutional
referendum, and tens of thousands of Iraqi deaths; after
watching anti-American sentiment rise to record levels
around the world and Afghanistan begin to slip back into
chaos - I was flying into Baghdad as a member of the
Senate, partially responsible for trying to figure out just
what to do with this mess.
That night, our delegation accompanied Ambassador
Khalilzad for dinner at the home of Iraqi interim President
Jalal Talabani. ... where we were greeted by the president
and several members of the Iraqi interim government. They
were all heavyset men, most in their fifties or sixties, with
broad smiles but eyes that betrayed no emotion. I recognized
only one of the ministers - Mr. Ahmed Chalabi, the Western-
educated Shi'ite who, as a leader of the exile group the
Iraqi National Congress, had reportedly fed U.S. intelligence
agencies and Bush policy makers some of the prewar information
on which the decision to invade was made - information for
which Chalabi's group had received millions of dollars, and
that had turned out to be bogus. Since then Chalabi had fallen
out with his U.S. patrons; there were reports that he had
steered U.S. classified information to the Iranians, and that
Jordan still had a warrant out for his arrest after he'd been
convicted in absentia on thirty-one charges of embezzlement,
theft, misuse of depositor funds, and currency speculation.
But he appeared to have landed on his feet; immaculately
dressed, accompanied by his grown daughter, he was now
the interim government's acting oil minister.
I didn't speak much to Chalabi during dinner. Instead I
was seated next to the former interim finance minister.
He seemed impressive, speaking knowledgeably about Iraq's
economy, its need to improve transparency and strengthen
its legal framework to attract foreign investment. At the
end of the evening, I mentioned my favorable impression
to one of the embassy staff.
"He's smart, no doubt about it," the staffer said . "Of
course, he's also one of the leaders of the SCIRI Party.
They control the Ministry of the Interior, which controls
the police. And the police, well ... there have been problems
with militia infiltration. Accusations that they're grabbing
Sunni leaders, bodies found the next morning, that kind of
thing ..." The staffer's voice trailed off, and he shrugged.
"We work with what we have."
I had difficulty sleeping that night ...
The following morning, we took a Black Hawk to the Marine
base in Fallujah, out in the arid, western portion of Iraq
called Anbar Province. Some of the fiercest fighting against
the insurgency had taken place in Sunni-dominated Anbar, and
the atmosphere in the camp was considerably grimmer than in
the Green Zone; just the previous day, five Marines on patrol
had been killed by roadside bombs or small-arms fire. The
troops here looked rawer as well, most of them in their early
twenties, many still with pimples and the unformed bodies of
The general in charge of the camp had arranged a briefing,
and we listened as the camp's senior officers explained the
dilemma facing U.S. forces: With improved capabilities, they
were arresting more and more insurgent leaders each day,
but like street gangs back in Chikago, for every insurgent
they arrested, there seemed to be two ready to take his
place. Economics, and not just politics, seemed to be feeding
the insurgency - the central government had been neglecting
Anbar, and male unemployment hovered around 70 percent.
"For two or three dollars, you can pay some kid to plant
a bomb," one of the officers said. "That's a lot of money
out here." ..... "
For recent information on AFGHANISTAN, like BAGS OF MONEY
from IRAN and about KARZAI'S DEAL with TALIBAN members
and Afghan WARLORDS, please, refer to another blog of mine
Afghanistan and Iraq - The Beginning of the End
that contains further information adds about both countries.