May 11, 2004
Sen. Inhofe (R-OK): As I watch this outrage that everyone seems to have about the treatment of these prisoners I have to say and I’m probably not the only one up at this table that is more outraged by the outrage than we are by the treatment.From the ICRC report:
The idea that these prisoners, they’re not there for traffic violations. If they’re in cell block 1A or 1B, these prisoners, they’re murderers, they’re terrorists, they’re insurgents, and many of them probably have American blood probably on their hands and here we’re so concerned about the treatment of those individuals.
Allegations collected by the ICRC indicated that numerous people had been handed over to the [Coalition forces] on the basis of unfounded accusations (of hostility against the CF, or belonging to opposition forces) because they were unable or unwilling to pay bribes to the police. Alleged ill-treatment during arrest and transportation included hooding, tight handcuffing, verbal abuse, beating with fists and rifle butts, and kicking. During interrogation, the detaining authorities allegedly whipped persons deprived of their liberty with cables on the back, kicked them in the lower parts of the body, including in the testicles, handcuffed and left them hanging from the iron bars of the cell windows or doors in painful positions for several hours at a time, and burned them with cigarettes (signs on bodies witnessed by ICRC delegates). Several persons deprived of their liberty alleged that they had been made to sign a statement that they had not been allowed to read. These allegations concerned several police stations in Baghdad including Al-Qana, Al-Jiran Al-Kubra in al-Amriyya, Al-Hurriyyeh in Al Doura, Al-Salhiyye in Salhiyye, and Al-Baiah. Many persons deprived of their liberty drew parallels between police practices under the occupation with those of the former regime.Via Mark Kleiman, who points out that there’s no excuse for being unaware that our forces were being used as a tool in the cops’ protection racket—the ICRC report was submitted to the CPA three months ago.
Yet according to Senator Inhofe this morning, “If they’re in cell block 1A or 1B, these prisoners, they’re murderers, they’re terrorists, they’re insurgents.”
Not to put too fine a point on it, Senator Inhofe is a disgrace to the Senate, to his party, and to the United States of America. [02:52 PM]