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Inside America's secret Afghan gulag
June 23, 2004 3:31 AM   Subscribe

Bumper-size Guardian investigation into routine abuse of US prisoners in Afghanistan.
posted by Pretty_Generic (20 comments total)

 
maybe all this torture and abuse is some weird psychological plan trying to tell people not to mess with us? (nothing would surprise me anymore coming from the feverish--and tortured--brains of this administration)
posted by amberglow at 5:08 AM on June 23, 2004


I don't think there is any plan. It's ignorance, and probably frustration. Interrogation is usually reserved for people that you know they know. This is not the case in Afganistan or in Iraq. And the administration wants results, at any cost. And the top brass think "I'll be damned if I am going to risk promotion for some innocent asses". So you end up saying "ok, round up some (hundreds, thousands) people, squeeze them and they're gonna give something. They're all guilty for not standing still to get screwed anyway". And that's when all the nasty elements in the military have a field day. And that's how you become hated, and when you realise you've failed it's already too late. And their blood will be upon you and upon your children. Yep. Nasty bit of business.
posted by acrobat at 6:50 AM on June 23, 2004


I wonder where the bumper-size Guardian investigation into routine torture/mutilation/murder of citizens in Saddam's prisons in Iraq is...
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 9:17 AM on June 23, 2004


Torture is a form of terrorism, IMO, in that it uses fear as a means to a political end. Its arbitrariness is a central part of its strategy, not knowing who will be the next victim makes everybody equally scared.
And it's not "weird", it's common practice by oppressive regimes the world over.
The idea that systematic torture is just something misguided grunts come up with rather than a deliberate policy is naive, at best.
posted by signal at 9:18 AM on June 23, 2004


"I wonder where the bumper-size Guardian investigation into routine torture/mutilation/murder of citizens in Saddam's prisons in Iraq is..." - Steve_at_Linnwood

Roughly once a week through most of the eigthties and nineties Steve. Of course those reports don't count because Saddam was a good back guy then ...
posted by thatwhichfalls at 9:25 AM on June 23, 2004


"good back guy then" = "good guy back then"
posted by thatwhichfalls at 9:27 AM on June 23, 2004


You mean, back in the nineties, when the Guardian thought there was a Saddam link to Bin Laden?
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 9:33 AM on June 23, 2004


"Saddam Hussein's regime has opened talks with Osama bin Laden, bringing closer the threat of a terrorist attack using chemical, biological or nuclear weapons, according to US intelligence sources and Iraqi opposition officials."

I know, poor deluded Guardian, to trust those unscrupulous US intelligence sources and Iraqi opposition officials (whose names might begin with a "Ch" sound perhaps?).
Just as well we know better than to trust such tainted sources eh?
posted by thatwhichfalls at 9:39 AM on June 23, 2004


I wonder where the bumper-size Guardian investigation into routine torture/mutilation/murder of citizens in Saddam's prisons in Iraq is...

I wonder why Steve doesn't want to be any better than Saddam.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 9:39 AM on June 23, 2004


I get the feeling that Steve's point is that if he could choose, he'd rather be tortured by Americans than Iraqis. At least their dogs have had all their shots, right?
posted by signal at 9:59 AM on June 23, 2004


Cool. Saddam. Abu Ghraib. "Strip Them And Use The Dogs" Rumsfeld, and "Laws Against Torture Don't Apply If We Decide They Don't" "Bush.

The ethically-challenged right wing's cognitive dissonance is a stark wonder to behold.
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 11:53 AM on June 23, 2004


How many Americans read the Guardian before 1999?

I'm guessing not many, apart from those who subscribed to the Guardian Weekly or those who lived in the UK.
posted by davehat at 11:59 AM on June 23, 2004


Woof woof.
posted by ed at 1:52 PM on June 23, 2004


I do love the foetid smell of moral equivalency in the morning. Especially when mixed with the state reek of ignorance.
posted by riviera at 2:14 PM on June 23, 2004


Saddam Hussein's regime has opened talks with Osama bin Laden, bringing closer the threat of a terrorist attack using chemical, biological or nuclear weapons, according to US intelligence sources and Iraqi opposition officials.
So the Guardian isn't worth trusting, because they reported what US intelligence officials told them? Is that the point that Steve is trying to make? I don't get it.
posted by mosch at 2:22 PM on June 23, 2004


Not to join the pile-on, but I also hate this moral equivacy bullshit.

Some poor guy's head is cut off in Iraq, and people say yeah well what about America?

Then America tortures, rapes, and kills a bunch of prisoners, and people are all like "well what about Saddam".

It's so lame.
posted by chaz at 2:27 PM on June 23, 2004


A US soldier has told of being bashed by fellow guards while posing as a prisoner at Guantanamo Bay. (scroll down)
posted by emf at 10:56 PM on June 23, 2004


emf: What are you trying to link? I see nothing relating to what you wrote.
posted by Goofyy at 6:00 AM on June 24, 2004


Sorry, it worked when I posted it. Wayback doesn't help, either.

It wasn't just text - there was video of said US soldier on the TV news. Strange.
posted by emf at 9:32 PM on June 24, 2004


From here.

US SECRET MEMOS DETAIL TORTURE METHODS

The White House has released more than a dozen formerly secret memos to show that limits were set on the treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay. But one American soldier, formerly based at Guantanamo Bay, has told how he was bashed by fellow guards while posing as a prisoner.

Specialist Sean Baker says he was asked to pose as an uncooperative detainee. Dressed in an orange jumpsuit, he lay immobile under a bed. The military police then sent to retrieve him mistook him for a real inmate. Specialist Baker says they bashed and choked him.

SPECIALIST SEAN BAKER, 438TH MILITARY POLICE UNIT: The individual that was behind me slammed my head against the steel floor a few times, several times, and split my head over the top of my right eye.

The beating stopped when Sean Baker was able to alert his attackers to his real identity. Medical records show he suffered a traumatic brain injury and ongoing seizures. A criminal investigation is under way.

SPECIALIST SEAN BAKER: I'm going to say it, they used excessive force on me. I don't know if they had ever done that before, but I just know what I think and it was excessive.

Specialist Baker's account contradicts memos released today by the White House.
posted by emf at 10:19 PM on June 24, 2004


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