[Marxism] Newsweek expose follows torture trail to White House

Fred Feldman ffeldman at bellatlantic.net
Mon May 17 05:42:47 MDT 2004


I am including introductory comments by Prof. Mark Jensen, a leader of
United for Peace of Pierce County (Seattle, Washington area) and
moderator of the Snow-News list.
Fred Feldman 
 
[Clearly, events have overtaken the Pentagon.  While it issues denials
and 
prepares to court-martial underlings, there is now abundant evidence
that the 
responsibility for the universally condemned abuse at Abu Ghraib prison
lies 
very high up the chain of command -- very likely, all the way up.  --
On 
Sunday, *Newsweek International* posted an investigation into "The Roots
of 
Torture" to be printed in its May 24 number.  What it all boils down to
a 
determination on the part of the administration to ignore the Geneva 
Conventions, thus taking a giant step back toward the dark ages.  --  
 
Playing 
a key role:  White House counsel Alberto Gonzales.  In a Jan. 25, 2002
memo to 
Bush, Gonzales essentially led the George W. Bush to believe that he
could 
legally do anything to anyone, under the cover of the war on terrorism.
"As 
you have said, the war against terrorism is a new kind of war," Gonzales

wrote.  "In my judgment, this new paradigm renders obsolete Geneva's
strict 
limitations on questioning of enemy prisoners and renders quaint some of
its 
provisions."  Colin Powell of the Dept. of State resisted, but succeeded
only 
minimally in impeding developments.  --  
 
At this point, things have gone so 
far in the development of a secret web of torturers that the U.S. is now

"running a covert charter airline moving CIA prisoners from one secret 
facility to another."  Covert, because it is considered "impolitic (and
too 
traceable) to use the U.S. Air Force."  --  There seems to be
considerable 
momentum for deep investigations into these horrors.  *Newsweek
International* 
concludes:  "Today there is no telling where the scandal will bottom
out."  
--Mark]

 
<http://www.ufppc.org/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=586&Itemid=2
>
http://www.ufppc.org/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=586&Itemid=2

A NEWSWEEK investigation

THE ROOTS OF TORTURE
By John Barry, Michael Hirsh, and Michael Isikoff

** The road to Abu Ghraib began after 9/11, when Washington wrote new
rules to 
fight a new kind of war. **

Newsweek International
May 24, 2004 [posted May 16]

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.  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."

Who might have taught them?  Almost certainly it was their superiors up
the 
line.
 
Rest of article:  
 <http://msnbc.msn.com/id/4989481/> http://msnbc.msn.com/id/4989481/






More information about the Marxism mailing list