Summary executions in Bush’s ‘new’ Iraq

This video from the USA is the trailer of the film The Ghosts of Abu Ghraib.

From The Independent daily in Britain:

Secrets of Iraq’s death chamber

Prisoners are being summarily executed in the government’s high-security detention centre in Baghdad. Robert Fisk reports

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Like all wars, the dark, untold stories of the Iraqi conflict drain from its shattered landscape like the filthy waters of the Tigris. And still the revelations come.

The Independent has learnt that secret executions are being carried out in the prisons run by Nouri al-Maliki’s “democratic” government.

The hangings are carried out regularly – from a wooden gallows in a small, cramped cell – in Saddam Hussein‘s old intelligence headquarters at Kazimiyah. There is no public record of these killings in what is now called Baghdad’s “high-security detention facility” but most of the victims – there have been hundreds since America introduced “democracy” to Iraq – are said to be insurgents, given the same summary justice they mete out to their own captives.

The secrets of Iraq‘s death chambers lie mostly hidden from foreign eyes but a few brave Western souls have come forward to tell of this prison horror. The accounts provide only a glimpse into the Iraqi story, at times tantalisingly cut short, at others gloomily predictable. Those who tell it are as depressed as they are filled with hopelessness.

“Most of the executions are of supposed insurgents of one kind or another,” a Westerner who has seen the execution chamber at Kazimiyah told me. “But hanging isn’t easy.” As always, the devil is in the detail.

“There’s a cell with a bar below the ceiling with a rope over it and a bench on which the victim stands with his hands tied,” a former British official, told me last week. “I’ve been in the cell, though it was always empty. But not long before I visited, they’d taken this guy there to hang him. They made him stand on the bench, put the rope round his neck and pushed him off. But he jumped on to the floor. He could stand up. So they shortened the length of the rope and got him back on the bench and pushed him off again. It didn’t work.”

There’s nothing new in savage executions in the Middle East – in the Lebanese city of Sidon 10 years ago, a policeman had to hang on to the legs of a condemned man to throttle him after he failed to die on the noose – but in Baghdad, cruel death seems a speciality.

“They started digging into the floor beneath the bench so that the guy would drop far enough to snap his neck,” the official said. “They dug up the tiles and the cement underneath. But that didn’t work. He could still stand up when they pushed him off the bench. So they just took him to a corner of the cell and shot him in the head.”

5 thoughts on “Summary executions in Bush’s ‘new’ Iraq

  1. Robin Long to be court martialed Friday

    the first objector
    to be deported from Canada, will be tried this
    for "desertion" at Fort Carson, Colorado. He faces three years
    in prison. Attend the trial and/or join the vigil. Donate to help defend Robin!
    Jeremy Hinzman facing deportation

    Jeremy was the first
    resister to
    apply for refugee status in Canada after arriving in January 2004. Last
    week he got an order to leave by September 23.
    –>Sign the
    letter, "Canada: Let Jeremy Hinzman

    Skyler James
    resists war, harassment

    Courage to Resist audio interview: An out lesbian,
    Skyler joined the Army
    at her parents
    urging. After a year of
    harassment, Skyler went AWOL prior to deployment.
    Tim Richard
    turns against Iraq War

    Courage to Resist audio interview:
    enlisted in the Iowa National Guard
    in 1999. "I thought we would be doing disaster relief–"
    Tim now lives in Canada.

    Robin Long to face

    "desertion" trial Friday
    Courage to Resist.
    July 19, 2008
    <please donate to
    Robin's legal defense. We are currently $1,200 short of the projected
    total expenses. Luckily, that is only a dozen supporters like you who might
    give $100 each.

    Last month 25-year-old U.S. Army PFC Robin Long became the first war
    resister since the Vietnam War to be forcefully deported from Canadian
    soil and handed over to military authorities. Robin is currently being
    held in the El Paso County Jail, near Colorado Springs, Colorado,
    awaiting a military court martial for resisting the unjust and illegal
    war against and occupation of Iraq.
    Robin will be court martialed
    on Friday for desertion “with intent to remain away
    permanently”–Article 85 of
    the Uniform Code of Military Justice. The
    maximum allowable penalty for a guilty verdict on this charge is three
    years confinement, forfeiture of pay, and a dishonorable discharge from
    the Army. If convicted, Robin is expected to be transferred to the Army's
    stockade at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.

    Download, print, and distribute the Free Robin Long action leaflet!

    At 19, the Boise,
    Idaho native joined the Army on the promise
    that he would not be deployed to Iraq.  However, in April 2005 Robin
    was ordered to Fort Carson
    in preparation for deployment to Iraq. Robin recounted, “My
    superiors were telling me; ‘You're going to the desert to fight rag
    heads’.  It wasn't like I was going to Iraq to
    liberate the people.” After his Army “battle buddy”
    didn’t report for
    deployment by leaving for Canada,
    Robin also went AWOL and hitchhiked to Canada, eventually settling down
    with help of the War Resisters Support Campaign.
    Send a letter to Robin
    Robin Long, CJC

    2739 East Las Vegas
    Colorado Springs CO
    updates on Robin’s case

    Hinzman family faces
    Canada deportation
    U.S. Iraq
    War resister Jeremy Hinzman and his wife and two children have been
    ordered to
    leave Canada by September 23rd.

    Sign the
    letter–"Dear Canada: Let Jeremy Hinzman and all war resisters
    We'll mail the letters for you.

    Watch Jeremy's
    appeal to
    Prime Minister Harper

    In spite of Hinzman’s four and
    a half years living, working and raising a family in Canada, the Harper
    plans to deport him to the United States where he will likely face a court
    and a potential military jail sentence and felony conviction. This flies
    in the
    face of democracy and the will of Canadians: Parliament passed a motion in
    of war resisters June 3rd, 82% of Canadians oppose the Iraq war (Strategic
    poll), and 64% of Canadians support war resisters (Angus Reid poll).
    In July, while Courage to Resist joined Veterans for Peace to stage 14
    delegations at Canadian consulates across the U.S., a Canadian Federal
    Court granted Corey Glass a last minute reprieve of at least several months
    while his lawyers appeal earlier negative rulings. We are hoping that
    another judge will do the same for Jeremy and his family.

    Corey’s victory was related to a similar win for Iraq War vet
    Joshua Key. According to the Federal Court in Joshua’s recent ruling,
    the regular abuse of Iraqi civilians at the hands of the U.S. military are
    systematic violations of the Geneva Conventions, and a basis for granting
    refugee status.
    On June 3rd, Canadian Parliament made an historic vote in favor of
    anyone seeking refuge from fighting in the unjust and illegal occupation of
    Iraq. While this is an amazing victory, the motion is non-binding. The
    Conservative government led by Stephen Harper–a close ally of the
    Bush-Cheney endless war agenda–continues to move forward with
    deportations of war resisters.
    Email and phone Minister Finley and Prime Minister Harper. Ask them to
    fully implement the June 3rd Parliament resolution to allow Jeremy and all
    war resisters to remain in Canada.
    Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Diane

    Phone 613.996.4974; finley.d@…
    Prime Minister Stephen Harper
    Phone 613.992.4211; pm@…

    War Resisters Support
    (Canada) contributed to this update.

    Courage to Resist rallies outside of San Francisco
    Canadian Consulate in support of war
    resisters seeking refuge in Canada. July 9, 2008. Photo: Jeff Paterson /
    Courage to Resist


  2. Last Spring, Iraq Veterans Against the War organized a massive hearing designed to expose the realities of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. We called it "Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan, Eyewitness Accounts of the Occupations" after the landmark 1971 action organized by Vietnam Veterans Against the War that helped crystallize US opposition to the war.


    During our event, over 60 veterans came forward and broke the military code of silence. We testified on the systematic atrocities that have been largely absent from mainstream reporting: torture, killing of innocent civilians, corporate plundering, racism, and the betrayal of our nation's veterans. We believe that these are stories every American needs to hear. While "Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan" was extensively covered by international, independent, and military press, it received little exposure in US mainstream media. As we move into the sixth year of this war and an unprecedented election season, most Americans still haven't heard these devastating narratives of the war on the ground.

    To further publicize these stories, we worked with journalist Aaron Glantz to release a book of the testimony, "Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan: Eyewitness Accounts of the Occupations," published by Haymarket. It is essential that we get this book into as many hands as possible, and we need your help.

    Here are three things you can do right now to help our stories reach a broader audience:
    1. Buy the book here. Order through and we will receive all proceeds, which will in turn go towards our efforts to build a stronger GI resistance movement.

    2. Use the book: "Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan: Eyewitness Accounts of the Occupations." We encourage all peace activists to use our stories in their own efforts to end the war. For example, the personal accounts of veterans can be one of the strongest tools available for countering the lies of military recruiters. Purchase a book or books for a local high school, youth center, reading group, or library. Talk to teachers and professors about incorporating Winter Soldier into their classes. Alternatively, try giving a copy of the book to your local elected representative and demanding a response. It is high time that politicians, not rank and file soldiers, be held accountable for the atrocities of these wars.

    3. Spread the word. Look at our press release to local media, write an op/ed, and please tell your friends. You could also write a review online or put a link to the book on your website. Please let us know what you are doing to help publicize the book by emailing us at the address below.

    4. Support an event. IVAW chapters will be holding book release parties and local Winter Soldier events. Contact your local IVAW chapter or visit our website to find a chapter near you.

    Thank you for all your work,

    The Winter Soldier Committee
    Iraq Veterans Against the War


  3. Posted by: “frankofbos”

    Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:48 pm (PDT)

    George ‘Stay the Course’ Bush Says “We’ve never been stay the course” –
    Bush History,10/11

    George ‘Stay the Course’ Bush says “We’ve never been stay the course”.
    Really? About a zillion speeches prove the President wrong. Also,
    champagne corks must have popped at the White House on this date as the
    Bush admin. celebrates deceiving Congress over WMDs; the Senate votes
    to back Bush’s Iraq invasion, not knowing just how weak his
    WMD ‘evidence’ is.

    Poor George’s Almanac: 365 Reasons to Fight Against McBush’s 3rd Term!

    Today’s category: Iraq


  4. Posted by: “frankofbos” frankofbos
    Sat Oct 11, 2008 11:38 pm (PDT)
    Bush Admin “paid little or no attention” to CIA warnings & Gen Calls
    Bushies “incompetent” – Bush History,10/12

    A CIA study concludes that the Bush administration “apparently paid
    little or no attention” to CIA warnings about post invasion violence in
    Iraq. Also a top general calls the administration’s Iraq
    effort “incompetent” And some related Bushisms.

    Poor George’s Almanac: 365 Reasons to Fight Against McBush’s 3rd Term!

    Today’s category: Bushisms, Ignoring Experts, Incompetence, Iraq,
    Revolt of the Generals


  5. Pingback: NATO’s ‘new’ Libya bloodbath of civilians, militia men | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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