Thursday, March 27, 2008

Abu Graib - Iraqi Style: Even the Guards Have to Beg for Food!

What?! No Beer?!!

It's 9:45PM (PT) and I'm beat, but in my email was a release from Wikileaks Press. It hasn't been verified and I've scoured the news and blogosphere and haven't seen anything remotely related to it. Hell, maybe it happened several months ago, but I sure as hell didn't see anything about it, so here goes:

Wikileaks Press Release
Thu Mar 27 00:00:00 GMT 2008

Excerpts (my own editing) from a memo by Maj. Gen. John Kelly:

I spent the entire day inspecting the Fallujah city jail. I found the conditions there to be exactly (unbelivable over crowding, total lack of anything approaching even minimal levels of hygiene for human beings, no food, little water, no ventilation) to those described in the recent (18 February) FOX news artickle by Michael Totten entitled the "Dungeon of Fallujah".

...First, there is zero support from the government for any of the jails in Anbar. No funds, food or medical support has been provided from any ministry.

...Second, the police that run Anbar's jails are the same personnel responsable for investigating crimes. These jailer/investigators are undermanned and more often than not spend most of their time out begging and scavenging for food than investigating crimes. (It is unlik ely the prisoners will eat today).

... Third, Anbar lacks trained Iraqi correctional officers (ICOS) to run the jails in Anbar. The development and employment of trained ICOS would enable the IP to focus on criminal investigation rather then jail supervision. I believe the Iraqi police are doing the best they can, and they literally begged me on humanitarian, moral and religious grounds to help them help the prisoners by somehow moving the government to action.

No, it's not Abu Graib, but let's just say it's the Iraqi version. It smacks of the time those orphans were shown under abused circumstances, remember? No, it's not exactly torture, but it's quintessentially neglect. I wonder how the Iraqi government will react to this one. Will Al Jazeera have a conservative talk show host telling people that it's no moe than some wierd college initiation prank?

Remember Rush Limbaugh on Abu Graib:

"This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation, and we're going to ruin people's lives over it, and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You [ever] heard of need to blow some steam off?"

Of course, starvation and neglect are not the kind of pranks you do to "blow off steam" unless it takes you a very very long time to party. Now here's a thought: will the Bush administration slap the wrists of the Iraqi government?

Doubt it. George needs a more diplomatic legacy.

Good night.

Send In Condi!!
11:45 update:
This jail has supposedly been "fixed". Check it out:
Why didn't the military report it? (well, duh!)
More to the point: Why don't I believe it? And why did it (again) take a journalist to point it out?