from the diaries. Read it all and let it sink in your mind — Jérôme

I often write about energy. This is about the energy of outrage. It’s renewable, and I want you to have some too.

There isn’t enough outrage about torture, not to my estimation. After all, we only see a few stories about it every month. It’s not like it’s happening in our country. And the stock market is up, gas prices are falling, the Republicans are on the ropes, and its Christmas shopping season. Perhaps if we saw all those headlines at one time…

So I tried the new Guardian search engine this morning. I put in three keywords: torture, Iraq, and US. The results included exactly 911 articles. Is that karma or what? I went through every one of those 911 Guardian articles and selected the highlights. The results are below the fold.

Please excuse that I did not link each article. All can easily be found by searching the Guardian site by date. Bold text is not in the original. Some of the following are from articles, some from editorials, and one from a letter. This diary is very long. But so is a torture session, I imagine.

Please excuse that I did not link each article. All can easily be found by searching the Guardian site by date. Bold text is not in the original. Some of the following are from articles, some from editorials, and one from a letter. This diary is very long. But so is a torture session, I imagine.

February 4, 2002
‘It’s interrogation, not torture’

Yesterday, the row over Camp X-Ray was reignited by pictures of a wounded Afghan being taken for questioning on a trolley. What’s wrong with that, says America’s leading political commentator

December 1, 2002
No justice in Guantanamo Bay

Two Britons held in Guantanamo Bay will petition the federal appeals court in Washington DC on Tuesday. Our clients are Asif Iqbal and Shafiq Rasul, both from Tipton in the West Midlands. Our proposition sounds a modest one: that they should not be held forever on Cuba without being charged, without a lawyer, without a trial, and without a semblance of due process. Perhaps they should even be allowed to see their mothers once in a blue moon.

April 11, 2003
UK troops ‘break law’ by hooding Iraqi prisoners

…what we have seen on our screens are pictures of hooded and bound individuals, many of who were obviously terrified by such treatment, being pushed around by British soldiers. Hooding – the placing of a bag or sack over an individual’s head and securing it so that it cannot be removed – is a practice with an ugly history. It is not only inhuman and illegal; it is also often the harbinger of further rough treatment.

May 17, 2003
Iraqi PoWs tell Amnesty they were tortured

Former Iraqi prisoners of war have accused British and American troops of torturing them in custody, blindfolding them before kicking and beating them with weapons for long periods.

Investigators for the human rights group Amnesty International said statements taken from 20 former detainees even included one claim, made by a Saudi man, that he had been subjected to electric shocks by his US captors.  

May 31, 2003
Soldier arrested over Iraqi torture photos

Military police are questioning a British soldier about photographs of alleged “torture” of Iraqi prisoners of war, including one gagged and bound, and dangling in netting from a fork-lift truck.

Other photos allegedly show soldiers commiting sex acts in front of captured Iraqis.

July 23, 2003
Amnesty accuses US-led forces of abuses

…The allegations include the shooting of a 12-year-old boy during house-to-house searches by US troops, and reports of Iraqis detained by coalition forces being subjected to torture.

December 3, 2003
People the law forgot

“They would just pick us up and throw us out [of the plane],” says Saghir. “Some people were hurt, some quite badly.” Mohammed says: “They kicked us out of the plane and threw us on the ground.” -snip-

‘If they kept me for 18 months and sent me a letter to certify I’m innocent, then why did they keep me there for 18 months?’ asks Shah Mohammed. ‘Don’t they have any duty or obligation to me?’

January 10, 2004
Guantanamo Bay: a global experiment in inhumanity

Worldwide, the experiment is becoming the norm. It has been estimated that at least 15,000 people are being held without trial under the justification of the “war on terrorism”. They include more than 3,000 detained in Iraq after the war, of whom at least 1,000 are still in detention; an estimated further 1,000 to 3,000 detained at Bagram airbase in Afghanistan; and an unknown number being held on the British territory of Diego Garcia.

April 23, 2004
Torture claims mark US media campaign in Iraq

The al-Jazeera cameraman, a 33-year-old father of two, is recounting his tale of incarceration in a soft and matter-of-fact tone…

…he was greeted by US soldiers who sang “Happy Birthday” to him through his tight plastic hood, stripped him naked and addressed him only as “al-Jazeera”, “boy” or “bitch”. He was forced to stand hooded, bound and naked for 11 hours in the bitter autumn night air; when he fell, soldiers kicked his legs to get him up again.

In the morning, Hassan says, he was made to wear a dirty red jumpsuit that was covered with someone else’s fresh vomit and interrogated by two Americans in civilian clothes.

Down the tier from him was an old woman who sobbed incessantly and a mentally deranged 13-year-old girl who would scream and shriek until the American guards released her into the hall, where she would run up and down; exhausted, she would eventually return to her cell voluntarily. Hassan says that all other prisoners in the unit, mostly men, were ordered to remain silent or risk being punished with denial of food, water and light.

April 30, 2004
Blair ‘appalled’ by Iraq prison torture

No 10 said the behaviour shown – with Iraqis stripped naked and hooded and being tormented by their captors – were in “direct contravention of all policy under which the coalition operates”.

April 30, 2004
Bush ‘disgusted’ at torture of Iraqi prisoners

The US president was asked about a series of photographs, one showing Iraqi prisoners naked except for hoods covering their heads, stacked in a human pyramid, which have led to criminal charges being brought against six US soldiers.

April 30, 2004
US military in torture scandal

Graphic photographs showing the torture and sexual abuse of Iraqi prisoners in a US-run prison outside Baghdad emerged yesterday from a military inquiry which has left six soldiers facing a possible court martial and a general under investigation. -snip-

But this is the first time the privatisation of interrogation and intelligence-gathering has come to light. The investigation names two US contractors, CACI International Inc and the Titan Corporation, for their involvement in the functioning of Abu Ghraib.

April 30, 2004
BBC: ‘negligible’ reaction to torture images

The BBC said today it had received a “negligible” response from viewers after it decided to broadcast disturbing pictures showing the torture and sexual abuse of Iraqi prisoners in a US-run prison outside Baghdad.

May 1, 2004
British troops in torture scandal

The photographs were given to the Mirror newspaper by serving soldiers from the Queen’s Lancashire Regiment, who told the paper that such acts of brutality against prisoners in Iraq were widespread.

May 2, 2004
Warnings of abuse in Iraq’s prisons that were ignored

‘He was missing teeth. All his mouth was bleeding and his nose was all over the place. He couldn’t talk, his jaw was out … he was on his way to being killed.’

May 2, 2004
Shock new details of torture by US troops

Chilling new evidence of the torture and sexual abuse of Iraqi prisoners by American soldiers emerged last night in a secret report accusing the US army leadership of failings at the highest levels.

Detainees were subjected to ‘sadistic, blatant and wanton criminal abuses’, according to a military investigation suggesting that last week’s photographs of US soldiers humiliating their naked captives may only have been the tip of the iceberg.

May 3, 2004
Torture commonplace, say inmates’ families

“He told me: ‘Mum, they are taking our clothes off. We are nude all the time. They are getting dogs to smell our arses. They are also beating us with cables.’

May 6, 2004
New Iraq abuse photos published

The Washington Post today published a new batch of photos showing abuse of Iraqi prisoners by the American military, just hours after George Bush appeared on Arab television apologising for previous abuses.

The photos, from the Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad, show naked Iraqi men in a range of humiliating poses, including a naked detainee attached to a leash by a prison guard and a group of naked men lying handcuffed to each other with soldiers standing around them.

May 6, 2004
Pleading prisoners and families outside protest at the horrors of Abu Ghraib jail

“Even Saddam didn’t do this,” Mohammed Ahmed, 37, said yesterday, as the demonstrators arrived outside Abu Ghraib’s main gate, shouting in English: “Down, down, USA”.

May 7, 2004
Torture as pornography

Furthermore, the pornography of pain as shown in these images is fundamentally voyeuristic in nature. The abuse is performed for the camera. It is public, theatrical, and elaborately staged. These obscene images have a counterpart in the worst, non-consensual sadomasochistic pornography. The infliction of pain is eroticised.

May 8, 2004
British soldiers accused of beating Basra man to death

An Iraqi who survived the incident, Kifah Taha al-Mutari, alleges in a witness statement that he and others were “beaten, hooded, and our hands were wired”.

May 10, 2004
Red Cross report details alleged Iraq abuses

An Iraqi hotel receptionist who died after being beaten by troops in a British-controlled area of Iraq is among the victims of abuse allegations highlighted in a leaked Red Cross report, published in full today.

May 12, 2004
American beheaded in revenge for torture

A US hostage in Iraq was pictured being beheaded by Islamic militants in a video released yesterday that said that the grisly act was revenge for the abuse of Iraqi detainees by US troops.

May 13, 2004
US accused of abusing and beating Afghan detainees

The US military prison torture scandal widened further yesterday as new evidence emerged of beatings and sexual abuse of detainees in army jails in Afghanistan.

May 13, 2004
1,800 new pictures add to US disgust

Images of guard dogs snarling at cowering prisoners and Iraqi women being forced to expose their breasts were among the 1,800 new pictures and video stills depicting abuse at the Abu Ghraib jail shown to members of the US Congress yesterday.  


May 14, 2004
US forces were taught torture techniques

They called it “bitch in a box”. On a baking hot day last August, a black Mercedes sedan pulled up at the US army base in Ramadi and two US interrogators dragged an Iraqi man out of the boot. He was gasping for air.

May 16, 2004
‘They tied me up like a beast and began kicking me’  

‘I was in extreme pain and so weak that I could barely stand. It was freezing cold and I was shaking like a washing machine. They questioned me at gunpoint and told me that if I confessed I could go home.

May 19, 2004
Soldiers accused of abusing journalists

The top US general in Iraq, Ricardo Sanchez, was last night facing serious embarrassment after exonerating soldiers who apparently abused and sexually humiliated three staff working for the international news agency Reuters.

May 19, 2004
Abu Ghraib soldier gets one year in jail

A US soldier was today sentenced to one year in prison and discharged from the army in the first court martial relating to events at Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad.

May 20, 2004
The other prisoners

“She was the only woman who would talk about her case. She was crying. She told us she had been raped,” Swadi says. “Several American soldiers had raped her She had tried to fight them off and they had hurt her arm. She showed us the stitches. She told us, ‘We have daughters and husbands. For God’s sake don’t tell anyone about this.'”

May 24, 2004
Rape in Iraq

Yet the photos of rape and other sexual torture of women at Abu Ghraib prison have still not been released to the public (The other prisoners, G2, May 20). Evidence of the widespread rape of women soldiers within the US military has similarly been ignored. Yet US National Public Radio mentioned 10 days ago that 100 US women soldiers claim to have been raped by their colleagues in Iraq. Why is this not pursued and reported here?

May 24, 2004
Commander of coalition forces witnessed prisoner abuse, lawyer claims

A military lawyer involved in the investigation into the Abu Ghraib prison scandal testified that the commander of coalition forces in Iraq, General Ricardo Sanchez, was present at some prisoner interrogations at the jail and witnessed some of the abuse, it was reported yesterday.

May 26, 2004
Prisoner abuse ‘on wider scale’, US report says

An official US army overview of the deaths and alleged abuse of prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan has revealed a wider scale of mistreatment than has so far come to light, it was reported today.

June 8, 2004
Blair urged to protest at ‘legalisation’ of US torture

Amnesty International today called on Tony Blair to protest against the US administration’s “supposed legalisation of torture” when he meets the US president, George Bush, at the G8 summit.

June 13, 2004
Secret world of US jails

In the past three years, thousands of alleged militants have been transferred around the world by American, Arab and Far Eastern security services, often in secret operations that by-pass extradition laws. The astonishing traffic has seen many, including British citizens, sent from the West to countries where they can be tortured to extract information.

June 21, 2004
UK troops accused of mutilating Iraqi bodies

Seven of the certificates state that corpses handed over to hospital authorities by British troops showed signs of “mutilation” and “torture”.

June 23, 2004
Afghan detainees routinely tortured and humiliated by US troops

“At the end of my time in Guantánamo, I had to sign a paper saying I had been captured in battle, which was not true,” he said. “I was stopped when I was in my taxi with four passengers. But they told me I would have to spend the rest of my life in Guantánamo if I did not sign it, so I did.”

July 29, 2004
Iraqi witness tells of torture

Mr Mutari said the detainees had been hooded, deprived of sleep, had freezing water poured over them and became the victims of “soldiers’ games”, including a version of kickboxing in which troops would compete “as to who could kickbox one of us the furthest”. One soldier “asked us to dance like Michael Jackson,” he said.

August 25, 2004
Pentagon blamed over jail ‘sadism’

“We believe there is institutional and personal responsibility right up the chain of command as far as Washington is concerned,” James Schlesinger, a former defence secretary who chaired the panel, told reporters yesterday.

September 10, 2004
Iraqi ‘ghost detainees’ could number 100

“The number is in the dozens, to perhaps up to 100,” General Paul Kern told the senate armed services committee. General George Fay put the figure at “two dozen or so”, but both officers said they could not give a precise number because no records were kept on most of the CIA detainees. -snip-
Around 300 allegations of detainee deaths, torture or other mistreatment were uncovered, but neither report found evidence that the abuse had resulted from military policies.

September 13, 2004
Bush team ‘knew of abuse’ at Guantánamo

Evidence of prisoner abuse and possible war crimes at Guantánamo Bay reached the highest levels of the Bush administration as early as autumn 2002, but Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, chose to do nothing about it, according to a new investigation published exclusively in the Guardian today.

September 14, 2004
US troops face new torture claims

Allegations that American soldiers routinely tortured and maltreated detainees have emerged from a third Iraqi city, renewing fears that abuse similar to that inflicted in Abu Ghraib jail in Baghdad has been systematic and widespread.

American soldiers in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul beat and stripped detainees, threatened sexual abuse and forced them to listen to loud western music, according to statements seen by the Guardian.

November 14, 2004
British guard firm ‘abused scared Iraqi shepherd boy’

Pictures obtained by The Observer show two employees of Erinys restraining the 16-year-old Iraqi with six car tyres around his body. The photographs, taken last May, show the boy frozen with fear in a room where the wall appeared to be marked by bullet holes.
This newspaper was told he was left immobile and without food or water for more than 24 hours.

December 21, 2004
US faces new torture claims

The revelations came in US government documents released yesterday by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The group got the documents – some dated after the Abu Ghraib prison scandal – as part of a lawsuit accusing the government of being complicit in torture.

FBI agents witnessed prisoners being beaten, choked and having lit cigarettes placed in their ears, the New York Times reported.

January 2, 2005
Guantanamo Briton ‘in handcuff torture’

A British detainee at Guantanamo Bay has told his lawyer he was tortured using the ‘strappado’, a technique common in Latin American dictatorships in which a prisoner is left suspended from a bar with handcuffs until they cut deeply into his wrists.
The reason, the prisoner says, was that he was caught reciting the Koran at a time when talking was banned.

He says he has also been repeatedly shaved against his will. In one such incident, a guard told him: ‘This is the part that really gets to you Muslims, isn’t it?’ *

January 7, 2005
*US doctors accused over Guantánamo abuse

Doctors at Guantánamo Bay and Abu Ghraib used their medical knowledge to help devise coercive interrogation methods for detainees including sleep deprivation, stress positions and other abuse, it was reported yesterday.

An article in the New England Journal of Medicine provides the most authoritative account so far that doctors were active participants in the abuse of prisoners in America’s “war on terror”.

January 9, 2005
Soldiers accused of abuse in Iraq

According to those who have seen the grainy images, one reveals a soldier standing on an Iraqi who appears to be lying in a pool of blood. Another picture allegedly captures a troop aiming a kick at the head of one Iraqi stretched out on the ground. The roll of 25 pictures taken by Bartlam apparently also features* a gagged Iraqi dangling from a fork lift truck operated by a smiling British squaddie. Later, the same Iraqi prisoner is cut down from the truck, falling heavily to the ground.

January 11, 2005
*Abu Ghraib inmates ‘like cheerleaders’.

Iraqi detainees who were stacked naked on top of each other in a now infamous Baghdad jail were no worse off than performing cheerleaders, a US court heard yesterday.
The lawyer defending him at the court martial in Texas, Guy Womack, said: “Don’t cheerleaders all over America make pyramids every day?” He added: “It’s not torture.”

January 17, 2005
US to try 20 more troops for Iraq abuse

The Pentagon plans to put at least 20 more US troops before military courts for abuse of detainees in the wake of last week’s high profile trial of the ringleader in the Abu Ghraib scandal, military spokesmen said yesterday.

The various prosecutions of soldiers accused of mistreating and, in some cases, murdering detainees in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantánamo Bay have been in the works for months, but have been largely overshadowed by the trial of the man who became known as the “primary torturer” of the notorious Baghdad prison.

January 25, 2005
Iraqis abusing detainees, says report

Iraqi security forces are committing systematic torture and ill-treatment of detainees who are denied access to their families, lawyers and healthcare, a leading human rights group says today.

“They poured cold water over me and applied electric shocks to my genitals. I was also beaten by several people with cables on my arms and back,” said a 21-year-old man arrested in July 2004 and accused of links with the Mahdi Army.

February 18, 2005
Papers reveal Bagram abuse

New evidence has emerged that US forces in Afghanistan engaged in widespread Abu Ghraib-style abuse, taking “trophy photographs” of detainees and carrying out rape and sexual humiliation. -snip-

“After they tied me up in the chair, then they dislocate my both arms. He asked to admit before I kill you then he beat again and again,” the prisoner says in his statement. “He asked me: Are you going to report me? You have no evidence. Then he hit me very hard on my nose, and then he stepped on my nose until he broken and I started bleeding.”

Wednesday March 2, 2005
US state department slams Iraqi government’s human rights record

The US state department has criticised the Iraqi government for serious human rights abuses including extra-judicial killings, torture, rape and illegal detentions, with some of the worst violations committed in Basra.

March 21, 2005

Family’s torture fear for Briton held in Iraq

The family of a British man held in a US detention centre in Iraq are calling for him to be handed over to the UK authorities because they fear he is being tortured by American soldiers. -snip-

Mr Muneef has now been in US custody for three and a half months. He was initally taken to Balad military base, briefly transferred to Abu Ghraib for a couple of days before Christmas, and has been in Bucca, a desert detention camp on the Kuwaiti border, ever since. He has had no legal representation, nor any independent medical assessment, and just two visits from British Foreign Office staff.

April 24, 2005
Top US officers cleared of Abu Ghraib abuse

The US army investigation into the torture of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib has cleared four out of five top officers of any responsibility for the scandal that shocked America and the world.

The probe has effectively exonerated Lieutenant-General Ricardo Sanchez, the US senior commander in Iraq at the time of the abuse. It also cleared three of Sanchez’s deputies.

May 19, 2005
Fresh claims about abuse of Iraqis by British troops

“Here there is the clearest evidence that the military are incapable of prosecuting and investigating themselves … Clearly here something has gone badly wrong; officers were involved and a whole lot of people were abused.”

The Plaid Cymru MP Adam Price said: “The allegations and evidence are far too numerous and serious to allow the government to get away with the ‘a few bad apples’ argument.” There was a “systematic breakdown in the chain of command”.

May 20, 2005
US abuse of Afghan prisoners ‘widespread’

US soldiers carried out widespread abuse of detainees at the US-run Bagram prison camp in Afghanistan, according to a confidential US army report revealed today in the New York Times.

Seven soldiers have been charged in connection with abuse at Bagram, where the paper reports that harsh treatment by some interrogators was routine, prisoners were shackled in painful fixed positions, and guards could strike shackled detainees with virtual impunity.

May 26, 2005
Guantánamo is gulag of our time, says Amnesty

As the unrivalled political, military and economic hyper-power, the US sets the tone for governments’ behaviour worldwide, said Ms Khan. “When the most powerful country in the world thumbs its nose at the rule of law and human rights, it grants a licence to others to commit abuse with impunity,” she said. “From Israel to Uzbekistan, Egypt to Nepal, governments have openly defied human rights and international humanitarian law in the name of national security and ‘counter-terrorism’.”

July 1, 2005
Italy demands US explanation over kidnapped cleric

taly’s relations with the US took a further blow yesterday when Silvio Berlusconi’s conservative government said it was summoning the American ambassador in Rome to explain the disappearance of a radical Muslim cleric, who was snatched from a Milan street two years ago.

Links between the traditionally close allies had already been strained by the shooting in March of an Italian intelligence officer by American troops in Iraq.
Last Friday, a judge in Milan ordered the arrest of 13 Americans – purported to be CIA agents – on charges of kidnapping. She was responding to a request from prosecutors who found evidence that the cleric, Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, was sent via two American military bases to his native Egypt for imprisonment and interrogation.

July 3, 2005
Revealed: grim world of new Iraqi torture camps

A little lower are a series of horizontal welts, wrapping around his body and breaking the skin as they turn around his chest, as if he had been beaten with something flexible, perhaps a cable. There are other injuries: a broken nose and smaller wounds that look like cigarette burns.

An arm appears to have been broken and one of the higher vertebrae is pushed inwards. There is a cluster of small, neat circular wounds on both sides of his left knee. At some stage an-Ni’ami seems to have been efficiently knee-capped. It was not done with a gun – the exit wounds are identical in size to the entry wounds, which would not happen with a bullet. Instead* it appears to have been done with something like a drill*.
What actually killed him however were the bullets fired into his chest at close range, probably by someone standing over him as he lay on the ground. The last two hit him in the head.

July 3, 2005
UK aid funds Iraqi torture units

The investigation revealed:

· A ‘ghost’ network of secret detention centres across the country, inaccessible to human rights organisations, where torture is taking place.

· Compelling evidence of widespread use of violent interrogation methods including hanging by the arms, burnings, beatings, the use of electric shocks and sexual abuse.

· Claims that serious abuse has taken place within the walls of the Iraqi government’s own Ministry of the Interior.

· Apparent co-operation between unofficial and official detention facilities, and evidence of extra-judicial executions by the police.

July 13, 2005
Ten Iraqis suffocate in police lorry

Iraq’s leading Sunni Muslim groups reacted angrily yesterday to reports that 10 Sunni Arab men suffocated to death in the back of a police lorry in Baghdad’s sweltering summer heat.

The men are alleged to have died after being arrested by Iraqi anti-terrorist special forces on Sunday as they visited relatives at a hospital in the mainly Shia neighbourhood of Shula in north-western Baghdad.

July 24
Lawyers ‘besiege’ army over Iraq abuse

One man, Kifah Taha al-Mutari, alleges up to eight soldiers took it in turns to abuse him. ‘The soldiers would compete as to who could kickbox one of us the furthest. The idea was to make us crash into the wall,’ al-Mutari claims in a sworn testimony.

Shiner is also bringing a case on behalf of nine men who allege they were abused at Camp Breadbasket, the food depot near Basra in southern Iraq which was subjected to looting after the end of the Iraq war. One of the nine claims * he was given a knife and ordered to chop off the finger of another detainee. *

November 3, 2005
East Europe ‘has secret CIA jails for al-Qaida’

The CIA has been interrogating al-Qaida prisoners at a Soviet era compound in eastern Europe as part of a covert jail system set up after the September 11 attacks, according to the Washington Post. The secret facility is part of a network of “black sites” spanning eight countries, the existence and locations of which are known only to a handful of US officials and usually only the president and a few top intelligence officers in the host countries.

November 15, 2005

The US used chemical weapons in Iraq – and then lied about it

Did US troops use chemical weapons in Falluja? The answer is yes. The proof is not to be found in the documentary broadcast on Italian TV last week, which has generated gigabytes of hype on the internet. It’s a turkey, whose evidence that white phosphorus was fired at Iraqi troops is flimsy and circumstantial. But the bloggers debating it found the smoking gun.

November 16, 2005

173 prisoners found beaten and starved in Iraq government bunker

“I’ve never seen such a situation like this during the past two years in Baghdad. This is the worst,” he told CNN. “I saw signs of physical abuse by brutal beating, one or two detainees were paralysed and some had their skin peeled off.”

November 18, 2005
More than 80,000 held by US since 9/11 attacks

The US has detained more than 80,000 people in facilities from Afghanistan to Cuba since the attacks on the World Trade Centre four years ago, the Pentagon said yesterday. The disclosure comes at a time of growing unease about Washington’s treatment of prisoners in its “war on terror” and Europe’s unknowing help in the CIA’s practice of rendition.

November 18, 2005
UN official calls for inquiry into Iraq torture

The UN high commissioner for human rights today called for an international investigation into Iraqi detainees who showed signs of torture.

November 19, 2005
Phosphorus and secret flights keep spotlight on Iraq

From secret CIA flights transporting detainees to interrogation centres to the discovery of beaten and starved prisoners in a Baghdad bunker and the row over the use of white phosphorus in Falluja – the fallout from the Iraq war continued to dominate a week which ended with another huge bombing blitz.
Spanish police said they had traced 42 suspected CIA operatives believed to have taken part in secret flights of kidnapped terror suspects that landed in Mallorca in 2003 and 2004 on their way to countries not covered by US human rights rules on torture.

November 20, 2005
This is not the country that I once knew, by Jimmy Carter

Of even greater concern is that the US has repudiated the Geneva accords and supported the use of torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo, and secretly through proxy regimes elsewhere with the so-called extraordinary rendition programme. It is embarrassing to see the President and Vice President insisting that the CIA should be free to perpetrate ‘cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment’ on people in US custody.

November 20, 2005
Frontline police of new Iraq are waging secret war of vengeance

Baghdad’s Medical Forensic Institute – the mortuary – is a low, modern building reached via a narrow street. Most days it is filled with families of the dead. They come here for two reasons. One group, animated and noisy in grief, comes to collect its dead. The other, however, returns day after day to poke through the new cargoes of corpses ferried in by ambulance, looking for a face or clothes they might recognise. They are the relatives and friends of the ‘disappeared’, searching for their men.
And when the disappeared are finally found, on the streets or in the city’s massive rubbish dumps, or in the river, their bodies bear the all-too-telling signs of a savage beating, often with electrical cables, followed by the inevitable bullet to the head.
In a new twist in the ongoing brutality of this country, Iraqi-on-Iraqi violence is escalating dramatically.

November 27, 2005
Abuse worse than under Saddam, says Iraqi leader

Human rights abuses in Iraq are now as bad as they were under Saddam Hussein and are even in danger of eclipsing his record, according to the country’s first Prime Minister after the fall of Saddam’s regime.
‘People are doing the same as [in] Saddam’s time and worse,’ Ayad Allawi told The Observer. ‘It is an appropriate comparison. People are remembering the days of Saddam. These were the precise reasons that we fought Saddam and now we are seeing the same things.’

And there you have it. We have seen the enemy, and it is us. What are you going to do about it?

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