[Marxism] Over 500 Hear Karpinski and Others Speak Against Torture
Brian_Shannon at verizon.net
Sun Jan 22 22:44:14 MST 2006
I know that New Yorkers on this list rested up to hear Barnes the
following day, so here is a full report.
BY MARTIN C. EVANS
NEWSDAY STAFF WRITER
January 22, 2006
England's former ambassador to Uzbekistan and a former general in
charge of the Abu Ghraib prison during the 2004 abuse scandal there
were among legal scholars and activists speaking out against the Bush
administration's handling of the war on terror yesterday at
Manhattan's Riverside Church.
Craig Murray, ousted as Britain's ambassador to Uzbekistan after he
criticized the use of intelligence gained through torture, said Uzbek
security forces supplying interrogation findings to the CIA used
torture "on an industrial scale."
"I would rather die than to have [innocent people] tortured to save
my life," Murray said, drawing applause from the crowd of more than
His appearance followed a Friday radio interview in which he said,
"We're not talking about marginal definitions of torture. The U.S.
knew this was happening and encouraged it by being prepared to accept
and give credence to the results of it."
Murray said in its quest to secure increasingly scarce oil and gas
supplies, the Bush administration is fanning anti-American sentiments
in the Islamic world. "They are making America a much more dangerous
place," he said.
The hearing was held by a panel calling itself the Bush Crimes
Commission, which has issued "indictments" against the president and
others for what it says are crimes against humanity perpetrated in
America's prosecution of the Iraq war. The commission, which has no
legal standing, said it had invited the Bush administration to rebut
A White House media officer declined comment yesterday.
Former Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski said photographs of abuse at Abu
Ghraib "opened a huge door on" America's mishandling of the war, and
that soldiers trained to handle prisoners of war were ill-suited for
running Iraq's civilian prisons.
Karpinski said as many as 85 percent of the Iraqi detainees there
were "guilty of nothing," but were not released because interrogators
"were afraid of releasing the next Osama bin Laden." In April,
Karpinski was relieved of her command and in May, Bush approved her
demotion to colonel, based on allegations not related to her position
at Abu Ghraib.
The commission was organized by Not In Our Name, a New York-based
activist group formed to challenge American military actions abroad.
A final hearing is scheduled at the church today.
Many of those who attended yesterday said it was persuasive to hear
former insiders criticize the war.
Bob Parsons, an autoworker from Detroit, said, "It's incredibly
moving for people who have served for so long to stand up and say
what is really going on."
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