[R-G] New Claims of Serious Abuses at Abu Ghraib Surface

Tim Murphy info at cinox.demon.co.uk
Sun Jul 18 05:38:32 MDT 2004

Friday July 16, 2004

Contact: Jessica Smith or Bess Bezirgan
Fenton Communications, (202) 822-5200


Leading investigative journalist Seymour Hersh has told the American Civil
Liberties Union (ACLU) that videotapes were made of young boys being
sodomized at Abu Ghraib prison.  The Bush administration is holding
videotapes of these acts, said Hersh, a regular contributor to the New
Yorker and other publications and who spoke this week at the ACLUs annual
membership conference.

"The worst is the soundtrack of the boys shrieking," Hersh told the group,
adding that there was "a massive amount of criminal wrongdoing that was
covered up at the highest command out there, and higher."

President Bush has claimed that the prison abuse scandal in Iraq was just
"conduct by a few American troops."  But new reports of abuse provide
evidence that the controversial intimidation tactics and inhuman treatment
may have been approved at the highest levels of government.  Congress is
continuing to investigate the scandal.

Hershs latest information comes on the heels of a newly released 2002
Pentagon memo detailing that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld personally
authorized the use of controversial prisoner interrogation tactics,
including the use of dogs for intimidation, stripping prisoners of clothes
and hooding them. Rumsfeld also ordered military officials to hold prisoners
but not list them on prisoner rolls requested by the International Red
Cross. And according to Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, who was the head of
detention operations at Abu Ghraib, Rumsfeld "approved tactics at the
prison" directly. As Newsweek reports, these memos and orders were signed
off on by Rumsfeld, President Bush and Attorney General John Ashcroft and
were part of a "secret system of detention and interrogation that opened the
door to such methods" of abuse as seen in Iraq.

To see video of Hersh's speech before the ACLU, go to www.misleader.org


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