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Amnesty International warns U.S. leaders

Newsday and the L.A. Times highlight one of the reasons why we didn't sign on to the International Criminal Court:

Amnesty International yesterday called the U.S. military's anti-terror prison at Guantánamo Bay the "gulag of our times" and warned that U.S. leaders may face international prosecution for mistreating prisoners.

...If U.S. officials don't act, other countries will, warned Amnesty's U.S. director, William Schultz. "The apparent high-level architects of torture should think twice before planning their next vacation to places like Acapulco or the French Riviera because they may find themselves under arrest," he said.
I almost wish I had been in the Gulag at some point, just so I could say, "Mr. Schultz, I know the Gulag. I've been in the Gulag. And Guantanamo is no Gulag."

Still, I'd like to see France place a senior U.S. official under arrest. It would be fun to watch them deal with the consequences, non?

FOLLOW-UP:
Rusty at The Jawa Report has the definitive post on Gitmo vs. the Gulag.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Amnesty International has gone hysterical. My mouth is hanging open at this un-be-liev-ably childish agitprop  tantrum. 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

Re: AP 5/25/06 article published May 26, 2005; 2:12 AM at WashingtonPost.com  via Drudge.

Despite its deceptive title, it reports facts disproving the Koran abuse allegation against the US. Shows some detainees did it themselves to incite riots amongst other detainees at Gitmo, and later after being released from detention, to stir up further trouble for the US. Clearly shows Newsweek lied when Isikoff reported that Koran desecration by US guards at Gitmo would be admitted in an "upcoming US Southern Command in Miami report" (in Paragraph 2 of his Periscope item in Newsweek's 5/9/05 edition that set off riots and death in Afghanistan and "Death to America" demonstrations worldwide.) 

Posted by BR

BR said...

Since AP re-writes articles within minutes or hours, I've saved the entire 2:12 AM version of 5/26/05. Here are some excerpts:

" The conflicting accounts of how U.S. military guards handled Muslim prisoners' Qurans at Guantanamo Bay show two sides of a psychological war between the terror suspects and their holders."



"'Their behavior is bad,' one detainee is quoted as saying of his guards during an interrogation by an FBI special agent on July 22, 2002. 'About five months ago the guards beat the detainees. They flushed a Quran in the toilet.'

"Lawrence Di Rita, chief spokesman for Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, said Wednesday that U.S. military officials at Guantanamo Bay had recently found a separate record of the same allegation by the same detainee, and he was re-interviewed on May 14. 'He did not corroborate his own allegation,' Di Rita said."

[Poorly written by AP, but the gist of it is that the accuser has contradicted himself once, maybe twice.]

BR said...

More excerpts:

"Di Rita said U.S. commanders have documented a number of cases in which detainees tore pages out of a Quran, or ripped off the cover, and then blamed the guards. This was designed, he said, to stir outrage among other detainees and disrupt the order imposed by the guards."

"The statements about guards disrespecting the Quran echo public allegations made many months later by some detainees and their lawyers after the prisoners' release from Guantanamo Bay."

[My comment: With this sloppy MSM writing, one can't tell if these detainees were the same ones who made the allegations while detained. And if the May 14 interview was of one of these now-released detainees.]

Anonymous said...

Last of the excerpts, and my conclusion. (Sorry for this long post, I wish it could be done in one sentence. Probably the US military experiences the same exasperation, having to do hundreds of investigations of scurrilous accusations to satisfy the likes of Amnesty International.)

"Indeed, the FBI records cite at least one instance in which a detainee is said to have falsely claimed that a guard had dropped a Quran. 'In actuality the detainee dropped the Quran and then blamed the guard. Many other detainees reacted to this claim,' the FBI document said, and that sparked an uprising 'on or about 19-20 July 2002.' "


"Di Rita said the charges of deliberate Quran desecration by U.S. military personnel were… 'not credible on their face' because U.S. commanders were careful not to inflame passions among the detainees."

"…Pentagon officials have said repeatedly that they have turned up no credible, substantiated claims that U.S. military guards had deliberately treated the Muslim holy book with disrespect."

******

So, whether one believes the abuse allegations or not, the above certainly discredits Isikoff writing: "These findings [referring to admission of abuses detailed in Paragraph 1 of his Periscope  item], expected in an upcoming report by the U.S. Southern Command in Miami…" ]

Since investigators didn't report wrongdoing, then no such "findings" would be in (Isikoff's phantom?) "upcoming report".  Gee, these liberals make things complicated! 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

Amnesty  has destroyed whatever shred of legitimacy they had remaining with their clearly politicized 'dog & pony show'. Their anti-American bias has been clouding their judgement for years now. Anyone with any objectivity knows this, and as a result no one but the media & intellectual 'establishment' & college students (a/k/a "progressives") listens to them anymore.

This collective myopia of Amnesty is astounding, especially in light of the real abuses  that are left unacknowledged in their so-called report. In their hatred for America and President Bush, they have committed organizational seppuku (sp?). Congrats, a**holes! 

Posted by langtry

Anonymous said...

Wow! So there you have it. It looks quite like the Newsweek story was accurate. The Koran flush may well have taken place. All the nutty right-wing fulminating rests on the hilarious notion that if the military says it did no wrong, it did no wrong. Keep in mind, Newsweek did not report that it could confirm the flush took place, it merely said the incident would be in a report. Moreover, while it has been pointed out that some terrorists are trained to lie (most humans come by it quite naturally), it is official U.S. military policy to lie, so anyone who takes statements by the alleged perpetrators at face value is being moronically naive. And...Since Amnesty has been "biased" for years, perhaps Langtry and/or BR could provide some examples. Is there a human rights organization that's more objective than Amnesty? Do tell us, langtry? What is it's name?  

Posted by bunkerbuster

Anonymous said...

Hee, B-Buster, are you parodying Maureen Dowd or MIchael Moore? 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

Try as you might, feverish seekers of nationalist self-esteem, but you have yet to disprove any allegations about Koran abuse. And you never will. It is impossible to prove a negative.
We do have photographic evidence of U.S. soldiers committing sexual perversions and sadistic torture on inmates at Abu Grahib. We have video of soldiers shooting unarmed, wounded Iraqis.
The math tells us that what we've seen on film and photos is a tiny fraction of what is actually happening. Clearly, the safest assumption is that the level of torture and abuse is MORE not LESS than what we can prove with photographic and other evidence.
Given that we have people raping and fatally beating inmates, how can anyone believe that interrogators would not also try to push the religious hot button by abusing the Koran?
U.S Col., or is he Gen.? Boykin flatly declared that the Christian God is real and the Islamic one isn't. Why would anyone believe that there are not more than a few Boykins wearing a U.S. military uniform. And if he feels comfortable as a leader saying something like that, and manages to keep his job, why wouldn't the inevitable wack jobs find themselves blaspheming a religion (Islam) they consider to be "evil."?
Sure, there is a small chance that no Koran abuse has ever taken place. There is a HUGE chance that many or most of the allegations are false. But why would anyone want to dismiss the allegations, given all the stone cold, rock hard evidence of all manner of other abuses? 

Posted by bunkerbuster

Anonymous said...

Hee, now he's parodying Fareed Zakariah on Boykin.

Editor of Newsweek International, Fareed Zakaria , called for Gen. Boykin's firing in the U.S. Edition of Newsweek, 10/27/03, reprinted at his site, fareedzakaria.com and fisked here at captainsquarters.

Fareed Zakaria's article is titled: "And He's Head of Intelligence?" and starts out with these 2 paragraphs:

"President Bush's commission on public diplomacy recently noted that in nine Muslim and Arab nations only 12 percent of respondents surveyed believed that 'Americans respect Arab/Islamic values.' Such attitudes, the commission argued, create a toxic atmosphere of anti-Americanism that cripples U.S. foreign policy and helps terrorists. To address the problem the commission suggested a major reorganization of the American government, hundreds of millions of dollars of funding and the creation of a new cabinet position. I have a simpler, more urgent suggestion: fire William Boykin."

"William Boykin is the general who has recently been appointed to a senior Defense Department post. Over the last two years the general has given dozens of addresses to evangelical Christian groups in which, describing his battle with a Somali (Muslim) warlord, he has said: 'I knew that my God was bigger than his God. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol.' … A few more of these and Osama bin Laden won't need to make videos anymore. He can just put together the greatest hits of Boykin, Franklin Graham, Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell and they will make his point nicely—that Americans see all Muslims as enemies. Oh, and here is a quick refresher course for the Pentagon intelligence chiefs: Islam was founded, in part, as a reaction against idol worship and rigorously prohibits any graven images…."

[Note - Zakaria never published a transcript of Boykin's speech, so we don't even know what the general really said. Like with Eason Jordan, transcripts are hidden when convenient.]
 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

Interesting writing from a Newsweek editor. "Idol worship" - Hm. As in worshipping a book? Fire a US General? Hm, wouldn't OBL love that. Fire a US General who had then been promoted to a high post in intelligence? Hm, wouldn't Russia, China and their satellites like North Korea be delighted!

I wonder how the Muslim street got to know of Gen. Boykin's private speech in his church? Could it be that the MSM, even Newsweek, put a wired megaphone out to the world?

Nope, Osama bin Laden doesn't need to make videos anymore, Mr. Zakaria. Why would he, when he's got Newsweek doing it for free… or was it free?
 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

More info on Fareed Zakaria here , here, here, and in the "Newsweek: America is Dead" thread at 5/28/2005 12:03:44 AM and on Tabassum Zakaria of Reuters, right after it. 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

Boykin hasn't denied saying the things he's been accused of saying, so who, other than the tin-foil hatted denizens of Planet BR would need to see a transcript.

Could BR possibly be any more paranoid? He suggests that because Zakaria didn't publish the Boykin transcript, he's guilty of concealing it. What's stopping Boykin from publishing it himself? Later, he suggests that Newsweek is somehow wrong to have published Boykins comments at all. Weird stuff. Somehow, the idea that Osama bin Laden would be happy that Boykin was fired should have some relevance? Since when did bin Laden's insanities determine what's good or bad for the U.S.? This is the conclusion of classic right-wing paranoid thinking. 

Posted by bunkerbuster

Anonymous said...

Hee, B-Buster, if a pajamagirl like me can scare you so, look out when the men arrive :) 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

Arguing on the Internet is like competing in the Special Olympics. Even if you win, you're still retarded... 

Posted by bunkerbuster

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the good laugh, Busted Bunker! Okay, I'll share with you: you get the last word, and I get the last laugh :) 

Posted by BR

Anonymous said...

``He who laughs last probably didn't get the joke in the first place.'' --Rodney Dangerfield 

Posted by bunkerbuster

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