Baghdad, Iraq — Taleb al-Maleji sits on the carpet and concentrates on smoking a cigarette and not biting himself. The sleeves of his checkered shirt end just above his thin wrists — shiny black and purple in spots where the skin has repeatedly been bitten off and healed over. The scars are not from the year he spent in Abu Ghraib prison but from compulsively biting his wrists and fingers when he thinks about it. In , Maleji was a labourer having trouble with his marriage. When he left Baghdad to ask a Sunni uncle in Ramadi to talk to his wife, he was arrested by US forces along with a group of neighbourhood men; hooded, bound and placed in the back of a military Humvee.
Iraqi prisoners 'treated no worse than cheerleaders'
Photos of Naked Iraqi Prisoners Outrage Arabs - Los Angeles Times
Interrogators at Abu Ghraib routinely told female soldiers to ridicule naked Iraqi detainees and encouraged military police to rough up prisoners, say witnesses. This happened "fairly often" and also involved other female MPs, she said at the prison abuse court-martial of Specialist Charles Graner, widely seen as the instigator of the abuses. Ambuhl was called to the witness stand in Fort Hood, Texas, by defence lawyers, who have now rested their case after struggling to demonstrate that Graner was merely following orders while at Abu Ghraib in late The witness admitted she did not want Graner to go to prison, acknowledging he was a close friend and that she had a brief sexual relationship with him. Graner also had an affair with Private Lynndie England, another MP charged in the scandal and whose child he fathered.
The scars of Abu Ghraib
As many as fifty thousand men and women—no accurate count is possible—were jammed into Abu Ghraib at one time, in twelve-by-twelve-foot cells that were little more than human holding pits. The coalition authorities had the floors tiled, cells cleaned and repaired, and toilets, showers, and a new medical center added. Abu Ghraib was now a U. Most of the prisoners, however—by the fall there were several thousand, including women and teen-agers—were civilians, many of whom had been picked up in random military sweeps and at highway checkpoints. Last June, Janis Karpinski, an Army reserve brigadier general, was named commander of the th Military Police Brigade and put in charge of military prisons in Iraq.
Arab outrage flashed across the Middle East on Friday as TV stations showed graphic images of naked Iraqi prisoners being humiliated by smiling U. The photographs, shown on Dubai-based Al Arabiya and Qatar-based Al Jazeera, included pictures of prisoners naked except for the hoods that covered their heads. The Arab TV stations led news bulletins with the photos of hooded prisoners piled on top of each other in a human pyramid and simulating sex acts, with their genitals blurred. Two U. But many in the Middle East saw the mistreatment as the latest example of American disregard for Arabs.