23rd May 07:51
Hundreds of new Abu Ghraib photos and videos
Salon.com publishes hundreds of new Abu Ghraib
photos and videos
The Abu Ghraib files
279 photographs and 19 videos from the Army's internal
investigation record a harrowing three months of detainee
abuse inside the notorious prison -- and make clear that
many of those responsible have yet to be held accountable.
Editor's note :
The 10 galleries of photo and video evidence appear
chronologically in the left column, followed by an
additional Salon report on prosecutions for abuse
and an overview of Pentagon investigations and other
resources. The nine essays accompanying the photo
compiled by Page Rockwell. Additional research,
reporting and writing for "The Abu Ghraib Files"
were contributed by Jeanne Carstensen, Mark Follman,
Page Rockwell and Tracy Clark-Flory.
14 March 2006 By Joan Walsh
The Abu Ghraib files
The human rights scandal now known as "Abu Ghraib" began its
journey toward exposure on Jan. 13, 2004, when Spc. Joseph Darby
handed over horrific images of detainee abuse to the Army's Criminal
Investigation Command (CID). The next day, the Army launched
a criminal investigation. Three and a half months later, CBS News
and the New Yorker published photos and stories that introduced
the world to devastating scenes of torture and suffering inside
the decrepit prison in Iraq.
Today Salon presents an archive of 279 photos and 19 videos of Abu
Ghraib abuse first gathered by the CID, along with information drawn
from the CID's own timeline of the events depicted. As we reported
Feb. 16, Salon's Mark Benjamin recently acquired extensive
do***entation of the CID investigation -- including this photo archive
and timeline -- from a military source who spent time at Abu Ghraib
and who is familiar with the Army probe.
Although the world is now sadly familiar with images of *****,
hooded prisoners in scenes of horrifying humiliation and abuse,
this is the first time that the full dossier of the Army's own
evidence of the scandal has been made public. Most of the photos
have already been seen, but the Army's own ****ysis of the story
behind the photos has never been fully told. It is a shocking,
night-by-night record of three months inside Abu Ghraib's notorious
cellblock 1A, and it tells the story, in more graphic detail than
ever before, of the rampant abuse of prisoners there. The annotated
archive also includes new details about the role of the CIA, military
intelligence and the CID itself in abuse captured by cameras in
the fall of 2003.
The Bush administration, which recently announced plans to shut
the notorious prison and transfer detainees to other sites in Iraq,
would like the world to believe that it has dealt with the abuse,
and that it's time to move on. But questions about what took place
there, and who was responsible, won't end with Abu Ghraib's closure.
In fact, after two years of relative silence, there's suddenly new
interest in asking questions. A CID spokesman recently told Salon
that the agency has reopened its investigation into Abu Ghraib
"to pursue some additional information" after having called the case
closed in October 2005. Just this week, one of two prison dog
handlers accused of torturing detainees by threatening them with
dogs went on trial in Fort Meade, Md. Lawyers for Army Sgt.
Michael J. Smith argue that he was only implementing dog-use
policies approved by his superiors, and Col. Thomas M. Pappas,
the former commander of military intelligence at Abu Ghraib, was
granted immunity from prosecution in exchange for his testimony
at Smith's trial.
Meanwhile, as Salon reported last week, the Army blocked the
retirement of Major Gen. Geoffrey Miller, the former Guantánamo
interrogation commander who allegedly brought tougher intelligence
tactics to Abu Ghraib, after two senators requested that he be kept
on active duty so that he could face further questioning for his role
in the detainee abuse scandal. Miller refused to testify at the
dog-handler trials, invoking the military equivalent of the Fifth
Amendment to shield himself from self-incrimination, but Pappas
has charged that Miller introduced the use of dogs and other harsh
tactics at the prison. Also last week, Salon revealed that US Army
Reserve Capt. Christopher R. Brinson is fighting the reprimand
he received for his role in the abuse. Brinson, currently an aide
to Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Ala., supervised military police Cpl.
Charles A. Graner Jr. and some of the other guards who have been
convicted in the scandal. Now Brinson joins a growing chorus
of Abu Ghraib figures who blame the higher command structure
for what happened at the prison.
Against this backdrop of renewed scrutiny, we think the CID
photo archive and related materials we present today merit close
examination. In "The Abu Ghraib Files," Salon presents an annotated,
chronological version of these crucial CID investigative do***ents
-- the most comprehensive public record to date of the military's
attempt to ****yze the photos from the prison. All 279 photos and
19 videos are reproduced here, along with the original captions
created by Army investigators. They have been grouped into
chapters that follow the CID's timeline, and each chapter has
been narrated with the facts and findings of the Taguba, Schlesinger,
Fay-Jones and other Pentagon investigations (see sidebar).
But the do***entation in "The Abu Ghraib Files" also draws from
materials that have not been released to the public. Among these
is the official logbook kept by those military soldiers who
committed the bulk of the photographed abuse. Salon has also
acquired an April 2005 CID interview with military police Cpl.
Charles A. Graner Jr., one of the ringleaders of the abuse.
(One hundred seventy-three of the 279 photos in the archive
were taken with Graner's Sony FD Mavica camera.)
The interview was conducted several months after Graner
was court-martialed and sentenced to 10 years in prison.
He received a grant of immunity against further prosecution
for anything he revealed. The do***entation also draws from
the unpublished testimony of Brinson to the CIA's Office of
Inspector General about the death of a prisoner at the hands
of the CIA.
Thanks in part to that additional sourcing, "The Abu Ghraib
Files" sheds new light on the 3-year-old prison abuse scandal.
While many of the 279 photos have been previously released,
until this point no one has been able to authenticate this number
of images from the prison, or to provide the Army's own
do***entation of what they reveal. This is the Army's forensic
report of what happened at the prison: dates, times, places,
cameras and, in some though not all cases, identities of the
detainees and soldiers involved in the abuse. (Salon has chosen
to withhold detainee identities not previously known to the public,
and to obscure their faces in photographs, to protect the victims'
Some of the noteworthy revelations include :
The prisoner in perhaps the most iconic photo from Abu Ghraib,
the hooded man standing on a box with electrical wires attached
to his hands, was being interrogated by the CID itself for his
alleged role in the kidnapping and murder of two American soldiers
in Iraq. As noted in Chapter 4, "Electrical Wires," a CID spokesman
confirmed to Salon that a CID agent was suspended in fall 2004
pending an investigation and later found "derelict in his duties"
for his role in prisoner abuse. Salon could not confirm whether
the agent was punished for his role in the abuse of the hooded
man connected to electrical wires, known to military personnel
The CID do***entation, as well as other reporting, confirmed that
a March 11 New York Times article identifying the prisoner in
the iconic photo as Ali Shalal Qaissi, a local Baath Party member
under Saddam Hussein and now a prisoners' rights advocate in
Jordan, was incorrect. The CID photo archive confirms that a
prisoner matching Qaissi's description -- he has a deformed left
hand -- and known by the nickname "The Claw" was held at the
prison and photographed by military police on the same night as
the mock electrocution, but he was not the one standing on the box
and attached to wires. The CID materials say all five photos of
the hooded man were the prisoner known as "Gilligan." It remains
possible that Qaissi received similar treatment, but there is
no record of that abuse.
Chapter 5, "Other Government Agencies," tells the story behind
photos of the mangled corpse of Manadel al-Jamadi, known as
the "Ice Man," who died during interrogation by a CIA officer.
No one at the CIA has been prosecuted, even though al-Jamadi's
death was ruled a homicide. The chapter adds new detail about
the CIA's role in the prison drawn from Christopher Brinson's
testimony to CIA investigators.
As explained in Chapter 1, "Standard Operating Procedure,"
some of the 279 photos and 19 videos in the archive depict
controversial interrogation tactics employed in cellblock 1A.
Among the examples of abuse on display in the photos were
techniques sanctioned by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld
for use on "unlawful enemy combatants" in the "war on terror."
These include forced nudity, the use of dogs to terrorize prisoners,
keeping prisoners in stress positions -- physically uncomfortable
poses of various types -- for many hours, and varieties of sleep
deprivation. Some of these techniques migrated from Guantánamo
and Afghanistan to Iraq in 2003. (The abuse depicted in the Abu
Ghraib photos did not occur during interrogation sessions, but
in some cases military guards allege they were encouraged to
"soften up" detainees for interrogation by higher-ranking military
Military intelligence personnel and civilian contractors employed
by the military appear in some of the photographs with the military
guards, and entries from a prison logbook captured in the archive
show that in some cases military police believed their tough tactics
were being approved by -- and in some cases ordered by -- military
intelligence officers and civilian contractors. The logbook also
do***ents prisoner rioting and the regular presence of multiple
OGA (other government agency) detainees held in the military
Three years and at least six Pentagon investigations later, we now
know that many share the blame for the outrages that took place
at Abu Ghraib in the fall of 2003. The abuse took place against
the backdrop of rising chaos in Iraq. In those months the US military
faced a raging insurgency for which it hadn't planned. As mortar
attacks rained down on the overcrowded prison -- at one point
there were only 450 guards for 7,000 prisoners -- its command
structure broke down. At the same time, the pressure from
the Pentagon and the White House for "actionable intelligence"
was intense, and harsh interrogation techniques were approved
to obtain it. Bush administration lawyers, including Alberto
Gonzales and John Yoo, had already created a radical post-9/11
legal framework that disregarded the Geneva Conventions and
other international laws governing the humane treatment of
prisoners in the "war on terror." Intelligence agencies such as
the CIA were apparently given the green light to operate by their
own set of secret rules.
But while the Pentagon's own probes have acknowledged that
military commanders, civilian contractors, the CIA and government
policymakers all bear some responsibility for the abuses, to date
only nine enlisted soldiers have been prosecuted for their crimes
at Abu Ghraib (see sidebar). An additional four soldiers and eight
officers, including Brinson, Pappas and Army Reserve Brig. Gen.
Janis Karpinski, who was in charge of military police at Abu
Ghraib, have been reprimanded. (Pappas and Karpinski were also
relieved of their posts.) To date no high-level U.S. officials have
been brought to justice in a court of law for what went on at Abu
Our purpose for presenting this large catalog of images remains
much the same as it was four weeks ago when we first published
a much smaller number of Abu Ghraib photos that had not previously
appeared in the media. As Walter Shapiro wrote, Abu Ghraib
symbolizes "the failure of a democratic society to investigate
well-do***ented abuses by its soldiers." The do***entary record
of the abuse has come out in the media in a piecemeal fashion,
often lacking context or description. Meanwhile, our representatives
in Washington have allowed the facts about what occurred to fester
in Pentagon reports without acting on their disturbing conclusions.
We believe this extensive, if deeply disturbing, CID archive of
photographic evidence belongs in the public record as do***entation
toward further investigation and accountability.
While we want readers to understand what it is we're presenting,
we also want to make clear its limitations. The 279-photo CID
timeline and other material obtained by Salon do not include the
agency's conclusions about the evidence it gathered. The captions,
which Salon has chosen to reproduce almost verbatim (see
methodology), contain a significant number of missing names of
soldiers and detainees, misspellings and other minor discrepancies;
we don't know if the CID addressed these issues in other drafts or
do***ents. Also, the CID materials contain two different forensic
reports. The first, completed June 6, 2004, in Tikrit, Iraq, ****yzed
a seized laptop computer and eight CDs and found 1,325 images
and 93 videos of "suspected detainee abuse." The second report,
completed a month later in Fort Belvoir, Va., ****yzed 12 CDs
and found "approximately 280 individual digital photos and 19
digital movies depicting possible detainee abuse." It remains
unclear why and how the CID narrowed its set of forensic evidence
to the 279 images and 19 videos that we reproduce here.
Although the photos are a disturbing visual account of particular
incidents inside Abu Ghraib prison, they should not be viewed as
representing the sum total of what occurred. As the Schlesinger
report states in its convoluted prose: "We do know that some of
the egregious abuses at Abu Ghraib which were not photographed
did occur during interrogation sessions and that abuses during
interrogation sessions occurred elsewhere." Also, the do***entation
doesn't include many details about the detainees who were abused
and tortured at Abu Ghraib. While the International Committee of
the Red Cross report from February 2004 cited military intelligence
officers as estimating that "between 70 to 90 percent of persons
deprived of their liberty in Iraq had been arrested by mistake," much
remains unknown about the detainees abused in the "hard site"
where the Army housed violent and dangerous detainees and
where much of the abuse took place.
Finally, it's critical to recognize that this set of images from Abu
Ghraib is only one snapshot of systematic tactics the United States
has used in four-plus years of the global war on terror. There have
been many allegations of abuse, torture and other practices that
violate international law, from holding prisoners without charging
them at Guantánamo Bay and other secretive US military bases
and prison facilities around the world to the practice of "rendition,"
or the transporting of detainees to foreign countries whose regimes
use torture, to ongoing human rights violations inside detention
facilities in Iraq. Abu Ghraib in fall 2003 may have been its own
particular hell, but the variations of individual abuse perpetrated
appear to be exceptional in only one way: They were photographed
"As democracy is perfected, the office of president
represents, more and more closely, the inner soul
of the people. On some great and glorious day the
plain folks of the land will reach their heart's
desire at last and the White House will be adorned
by a downright moron." --- H.L. Mencken (1880 - 1956)
"Ignorance is an evil weed, which dictators may cultivate among their
dupes, but which no democracy can afford among its citizens."
- William H. Beveridge, 1944
"The power of accurate observation is called cynicism
by those who have not got it." - G. B. Shaw
Want to know what's really going on in Iraq?
The Rise and Fall of the Holy Roller Empire
The God-Awful Truth about Christian Zionism
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23rd May 07:51
Hundreds of new Abu Ghraib photos and videos
The pictures will be featured in next months copy of Asslifters
...........as per usual.....only a jew could attempt to draw attention
away from the grvity of torture by US forces and be so un empathetic to
the victims of torture. Simply because it does not support the facsist
jew zionist agenda of destroying all muslims and turning a blind eye to
nazi behavior when its against the muslims. I would have expected jews
to know better given the holocaust but then everyone always says the
oppressed usually always become the next generation of oppressors.
congratulations for showing people on usenet how zionists are fascists
to the bone and what is their real mentallity......