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> Torture, Abuse, and Response, ...on the west as a whole.
turnea
post May 10 2005, 06:50 PM
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QUOTE(Asia Africa Intelligence Wire @ July 24, 2002)
If you think UN peacekeepers are angels read on:[...]The blue helmets put hoods over Somali heads, then tied their legs and hands, and left them in the scorching sun without food or water for God knows how long. 
 
If the International Criminal Court had been there the so-called peacekeepers would have been charged. 
 
Luckily, a clever lawyer said that the UN was not a signatory to the Geneva Convention on war crimes and the soldiers were tried in their respective countries with little coverage of the cases and few got to know about them. 
 
There was also the case of two Belgian paratroopers - privates Claude Baert and Kurt Coelus - who were caught on camera roasting a Somali youth over a flaming brazier. There were also reports that at a UN base in southern Somalia some Belgian troops locked a child in a metal container, in the blazing sun, after he was caught stealing food from the base. The child did not survive the ordeal.


Prisoner abuse and torture are nothing new. We have an excellent contemporary example in the UN peacekeeping mission in Somalia in the mid nineties.
Photo's Reveal Belgian Paratroopers' Abuse
In the most publicized case we have a lot of the same factors.
QUOTE(Maclean's; 3/28/94 @ Vol. 107 Issue 13, p24)
For Canadians, torture is something that happens in Chile, or Iran, or almost anywhere else. The idea that young men with Maple Leaf shoulder patches on their khaki jackets would systematically beat and burn a bound and helpless youth for hours, while others watched and did nothing to protest, violates the country's strongest images of itself. The fact that the torture and death of 16-year-old Shidane Arone on the night of March 16, 1993, was the most serious blemish on Canada's long and much-cherished record of peacekeeping only made it worse.

The story was broken by the media, not the military, there are allegations of coverup and scapegoating. Low-ranking soldiers were the only parties convicted etc...
Commission Report on Somalia Abuse
Sentencing was rather light, Elvin Kyle Brown served one third of his five year sentence for manslaughter and torture. That was the longest sentence. The main soldier in the incident was found unfit to be tried after suffering brain damage from a suicide attempt while in custody.

In comparison Staff Sgt. Ivan "Chip" Frederick of Abu Ghraib infamy was sentenced to eight years Charles Graner caught ten years.
... and they didn't kill anybody...
The details of the murder of Arone and the situation surrounding it put Abu Ghraib to shame.
Questions that arise include:

Are parallels between Somali and Iraqi prisoner abuse useful?

Is even that enough? Is the US too lenient on abuses in the military?


Finding information of these cases was more difficult that it should have been. There were a deluge of stories on Abu Ghraib which leads me to ask
Did the international press unevenly target the US in comparison which the abuses by Canadian, Belgian, and Italian troops in Somalia?

It is often argued that prisoner abuse could not have taken place without sanction from above.

Did the UN sanction or at best overlook torture by peacekeepers in Somalia?

Given the current allegations of sexual abuse in Congo and Liberia are they doing so now?


This post has been edited by turnea: May 10 2005, 07:17 PM
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DaffyGrl
post May 11 2005, 02:34 PM
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QUOTE(aevans176)
We didn't kill anyone, sir.

Absolutely wrong! As I pointed out here. (Oh, and check out some of the victims' ages.) I agree with Vermillion. The Canadians took far more decisive action than the US has taken on any of the abuse/torture/murder cases in Iraq. Have any US units been disbanded in Iraq? No. Have any high-rankiing officers been held to account for abuse/torture/murder in Iraq? No, with the except of Karpinski.

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Lesly
post May 11 2005, 02:37 PM
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Turnea, I wish I shared your optimism.

QUOTE(turnea @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
QUOTE(Lesly @ May 10 2005, 06:28 PM)
When is beaten to death not painful, and how can dying during interrogations be anything except painful? At least in Arone's case we have the grisly details that led to disbanding a regiment. As for sensational appeal, maybe you're right, though I doubt we'll be "lucky" enough to come across grisly details in our own investigations. However, since we're not on a peace keeping mission, it's an all out good guy v. bad guy, you're with us or against us war, I'm not sure an American Arone would have the same impact.

Actually the last straw against the regiment was a videotaped hazing scandal which again wasn't lacking in sensational appeal. Racial overtones violence, the whole nine yards.

...and I think if US soldiers beat a 16 year old boy to death for stealing and took pictures posing with his bloodied body is would have the same impact, yes.
*


We’ve had incidents of hazing and rape in the mlitary. The Navy’s crossing-the-line ceremony may’ve been what gave officers the idea of groping women filing down the Las Vegas Hilton hallway. We (hopefully) prosecute everyone responsible, retire or demote a few officers.

But you can’t be certain we’d go as far as dismissing a regiment. Our culture is pro-military. We’d rather prosecute peons and replace officers than shut down the Air Force Acadamy. We’d weigh the good against the bad and salvage the good.

QUOTE(turnea @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
You assume that grisly details are being hidden o[r] at best overlooked in our own investigations, if your going to accuse Americans of like behavior we'll need evidence.
*


I don’t assume everything is being overlooked thanks to anti-American figures like Moore, the ACLU, and others. This ties in with what I said about transparency. Hateful talking heads may be, but even (gag) Coulter servers a purpose when the opposition has control of government.

However, it’s not in the military’s/intelligence agencies’ best interests to keep the public abreast of the details.

QUOTE(turnea @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
QUOTE(Lesly)
I like giving people the benefit of the doubt but not when it comes to charging someone with the care of others--especially when the others are trying to kill you and your friends. The U.S. military does go through pains to minimize casualties, but the main objectives of war and peace keeping have never and never will perceive the care of insurgents and criminals as high priority items. Without public pressure/transparency exemplary and unbecoming service are possible.

Did you mean impossible?

The fact is that the "extenuating circumstances" are just an excuse. Military discipline is worthless if it cannot prevent such behavior.
*


You’d be correct if everyone was shaped out of the same mold, held themselves to the same standards when no one is looking, and share the same convictions/beliefs. Discipline doesn’t have the same impact on every soldier or there wouldn’t exist a need for NJP and three different types of court martial. Extenuating circumstances isn’t an excuse, but bad civilians aren’t reborn into good military people when they leave Paris Island or the Marine I was sharing a beer with at my first duty station wouldn’t have stupidly admitted to raping a passed out girl in high school and laughed.
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Mrs. Pigpen
post May 11 2005, 02:51 PM
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QUOTE(DaffyGrl @ May 11 2005, 07:34 AM)
QUOTE(aevans176)
We didn't kill anyone, sir.

Absolutely wrong! As I pointed out here. (Oh, and check out some of the victims' ages.) I agree with Vermillion. The Canadians took far more decisive action than the US has taken on any of the abuse/torture/murder cases in Iraq. Have any US units been disbanded in Iraq? No. Have any high-rankiing officers been held to account for abuse/torture/murder in Iraq? No, with the except of Karpinski.
*


Exactly how would disbanding an entire Military Intelligence unit or Military Police unit do anything but make the problem worse? These abuses took place in large part due to drastic undermanning of those facilities. Are you interested in combatting the actual problem or making things infinitely worse? I see little difference in the levels of accountability between the Canadian military and ours, with the exception of dispanding the entire unit, which they had the luxury of being able to do and we do not.

Edited to add: I disagree with Lesly about the Airforce academy incidences. The vast majority of those involved extremes of alcohol and fraternization, both of which are absolutely prohibited at the academy.

This post has been edited by Mrs. Pigpen: May 11 2005, 03:06 PM
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aevans176
post May 11 2005, 02:54 PM
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QUOTE(DaffyGrl @ May 11 2005, 09:34 AM)
QUOTE(aevans176)
We didn't kill anyone, sir.

Absolutely wrong! As I pointed out here. (Oh, and check out some of the victims' ages.) I agree with Vermillion. The Canadians took far more decisive action than the US has taken on any of the abuse/torture/murder cases in Iraq. Have any US units been disbanded in Iraq? No. Have any high-rankiing officers been held to account for abuse/torture/murder in Iraq? No, with the except of Karpinski.
*



Wow.
I applaud your fervor, but disagree completely with your logic. You're comparing apples to grapefruit.
Firstly, the Canadians tortured and killed a young boy. This is no where similar to captives dying in the hands of Americans. Secondly, your post doesn't deliniate how the captives died. If these men were wounded, resisted arrest, etc... we don't know according to the short account of men that have died in American custody. Finally, but most importantly, known murderers of a young boy only got a few years in prison. Can you imagine what a media blitz it would've been had these been Americans?

Your references to superior officers, responsibility, etc are pure conjecture. We weren't there. And... if you remember... I'm a Marine reservist and an officer. I can tell you with complete assuredness that there may not be culpability at the officer level. There undoubtedly is an NCO somewhere that isn't being prosecuted, as it's their job to run units at the operational level. Do you really think that these things were happening while Colonels were walking around? I sincerely doubt it... abuses were happening during late hours of the night, when boredom and frustration set in. Consider how you would feel in their shoes... sleeping in cots, eating awful food, being hot during the day and cold at night. Thousands of miles away from loved ones, and now everyone expects us to treat insurgent captives as expected guests. It's hard not to dehumanize the enemy. How else do you think soldiers are able to pull the trigger when necessary?

I'm not condoning the actions. I'm just stating that Canadians torturing and killing a child is nowhere nearly as benign as some harassment to muslims. (and yes... ref your post a thousand times... it's completely non-objective and doesn't discuss details in any form/fashion)
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Erasmussimo
post May 11 2005, 03:05 PM
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QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 07:20 AM)
I disagree, my disgruntled Canadian friend.
One tenth the seriousness? A boy was totured then killed... none the less by your country men, and you denounce this as 1/10 as serious as some Muslims being harassed? We didn't kill anyone, sir.

On the contrary, a previous correspondent has listed 23 deaths of Muslims in US custody, so if those are the only deaths that actually occurred, then the ratio should be 1/23 as serious, not 1/10 as serious. It's even worse than he stated it to be.

QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 07:20 AM)
Secondly, the prisoners at Abu Gharib were captive insurgents. These men and their associates had killed Americans, etc.

You don't know that. The process that brought people to Abu Ghraib was not the strictest of judicial processes; people were picked up for all manner of reasons, and many were released for lack of any evidence of any wrongdoing. And indeed, most who did have some evidence against them were accused of car theft and other civilian crimes. Moreover, to justify torture and murder on the grounds that the victims were criminals is a fundamental rejection of the very concept of justice. It is revenge, not justice.

QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 07:20 AM)
They were only humiliated... not killed or physically tortured. Finally, they were grown men as opposed to a young boy.

Again, there have been many deaths and injuries in US custody. And at least one of the victims listed above was 16 years old -- the same age as the victim of the Canadians.

QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 07:20 AM)
Your "Canadian-ness" sir, does not make you a pillar of moral fortitude, nor does it insert logic into your post.


That's a cheap shot. Shame on you.
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aevans176
post May 11 2005, 03:12 PM
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QUOTE(Erasmussimo @ May 11 2005, 10:05 AM)
QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 07:20 AM)
I disagree, my disgruntled Canadian friend.
One tenth the seriousness? A boy was totured then killed... none the less by your country men, and you denounce this as 1/10 as serious as some Muslims being harassed? We didn't kill anyone, sir.

On the contrary, a previous correspondent has listed 23 deaths of Muslims in US custody, so if those are the only deaths that actually occurred, then the ratio should be 1/23 as serious, not 1/10 as serious. It's even worse than he stated it to be.
[


I deplore your lack of objectivity. Frankly, your citing one of Daffy's posts, which does not deliniate the terms of the deaths. Did they die of polio or at the hands of the soldiers? hmmm... we don't know. Were they wounded prior to us taking them into custody? Did they attack soldiers while in custody? Talking points don't prove anything. Arguments like these are what make people like Ann Coulter famous. If the post showed a report of how the soldiers took a defenseless boy and beat him to death unbeknownst of his superiors, then we're talking. Give me an objective story... like "Canadian soldiers beat defenseless boy to death and get just a couple of years in the clink"
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DaffyGrl
post May 11 2005, 03:27 PM
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QUOTE
Exactly how would disbanding an entire Military Intelligence unit or Military Police unit do anything but make the problem worse? These abuses took place in large part due to drastic undermanning of those facilities. Are you interested in combatting the actual problem or making things infinitely worse? I see little difference in the levels of accountability between the Canadian military and ours, with the exception of dispanding the entire unit, which they had the luxury of being able to do and we do not.

I never said that it would; I merely stated that the Canadians took far more drastic steps than the Americans. As for what I’m interested in; I’m interested in not making our young men and women into sadistic thugs whose abhorrent behavior is not only tolerated, it’s encouraged.
QUOTE
Edited to add: I disagree with Lesly about the Airforce academy incidences. The vast majority of those involved extremes of alcohol and fraternization, both of which are absolutely prohibited at the academy.

I disagree with your assessment of the incidents at the AFA. I started a thread about the problems at the USAFA, but it didn’t generate much interest.
QUOTE
Abuse of power was a major factor in the sexual assaults. According to the director of clinical services at the Colorado Springs rape crisis center, several cadets were ordered out of bed at night by upperclassmen, who have command authority over younger cadets, and then gang-raped. One alleged rapist was a priest serving as a counselor at the academy; another worked as a counselor on the academy’s hot line for reporting sexual assaults.

How would you feel if this were your sister/daughter/friend?
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Erasmussimo
post May 11 2005, 03:30 PM
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QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
QUOTE(Erasmussimo @ May 11 2005, 10:05 AM)
On the contrary, a previous correspondent has listed 23 deaths of Muslims in US custody, so if those are the only deaths that actually occurred, then the ratio should be 1/23 as serious, not 1/10 as serious. It's even worse than he stated it to be.
[


I deplore your lack of objectivity.

That's a cheap shot. Shame on you.

QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
Frankly, your citing one of Daffy's posts, which does not deliniate the terms of the deaths. Did they die of polio or at the hands of the soldiers? hmmm... we don't know. Were they wounded prior to us taking them into custody? Did they attack soldiers while in custody?

The deaths listed were being investigated as involving criminal homicide or abuse by US personnel. The sources for that list were US government documents. I really don't think that the Army is stupid enough to launch a criminal investigation into a polio death. And DaffyGrl adds that there is also a long list of "justified homicides". If the two lists are separate, then clearly the government does not consider the first list to be "justified homicides".

QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
Talking points don't prove anything. Arguments like these are what make people like Ann Coulter famous.

Please speak to the points rather than provide gratituitous labels.

QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
If the post showed a report of how the soldiers took a defenseless boy and beat him to death unbeknownst of his superiors, then we're talking. Give me an objective story... like "Canadian soldiers beat defenseless boy to death and get just a couple of years in the clink"
*


If you need reports of American personnel torturing people to death, there are plenty of those available. If your concern is that the boy was defenseless, may I ask as to whether any prisoner in US custody is not defenseless? And lastly, your final sentence spins the truth. The Canadian soldier who beat the boy to death got a very severe comeuppance. The soldier who observed got the prison term. Your representation of the events is deceitful.
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aevans176
post May 11 2005, 03:45 PM
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QUOTE(Erasmussimo @ May 11 2005, 10:30 AM)
QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 08:12 AM)
Frankly, your citing one of Daffy's posts, which does not deliniate the terms of the deaths. Did they die of polio or at the hands of the soldiers? hmmm... we don't know. Were they wounded prior to us taking them into custody? Did they attack soldiers while in custody?

The deaths listed were being investigated as involving criminal homicide or abuse by US personnel. The sources for that list were US government documents. I really don't think that the Army is stupid enough to launch a criminal investigation into a polio death. And DaffyGrl adds that there is also a long list of "justified homicides". If the two lists are separate, then clearly the government does not consider the first list to be "justified homicides".


**Urg**!!
The reality is that many of the deaths listed on Daffy's post happened over 3 years ago (if not longer). If the media makes a newsworthy story about naked muslims lying in a pile, then don't you think American soldiers torturing prisoners would be on CNN 24/7? These actions were probably swept under the rug, lacked sufficient evidence, or decided to be justified.

Being a Military officer, I understand that American soldiers abroad walk a fine line. If one whistle blower comes up with a statement about abuse, it's very similar to a discrimination or sexual harassment suit in the civilian world.... nearly guilty until proven innocent. The military sends plain-clothed investigators in and all of a sudden you're arguing actions in a war zone. You'd be hard pressed to find a field officer that feels differently.

Daffy's post doesn't discuss any convictions, deliniate objective accounts of the deaths, doesn't have eye-witness accounts, etc. If we treated minority youths in urban settings this way in reference to crimes, liberal organizations would have republican heads on sticks... and if you don't think that a man standing by while a young boy is murdered is nearly as culpable, then your understanding of at least American justice is skewed. 5 Years for a soldiers actions is a far cry from what an American would've gotten in Leavenworth. Not to mention what would've happened to the man while in prison...

The bottom line is that the world wants to hold American military to the fire now that Bush is in office. They seem to have an innate need to lay blame. The irony is that while Clinton was in office... things like Asprin factories in the Sudan were bombed and nothing happened. It didn't even make network news. A few people die in a war zone while in US custody, without specific accounts, and people are up in arms... go figure.



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Dontreadonme
post May 11 2005, 03:55 PM
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QUOTE(DaffyGrl @ May 11 2005, 10:27 AM)

I never said that it would; I merely stated that the Canadians took far more drastic steps than the Americans. As for what I’m interested in; I’m interested in not making our young men and women into sadistic thugs whose abhorrent behavior is not only tolerated, it’s encouraged.

I feel safe in saying that I'm firmly in the camp of wanting justice dealt to those who abuse and torture. The actions at Abu Ghraib are abhorrent in the fact that they did not occur under fire, or in the confusing, emotional period following battle, but were in my view, symptoms of power-mad-lust committed by young, undersupervised and immature soldiers.
But can you, since you seem to make the charge, exhibit exactly where and how abhorrent behavior is systematically encouraged in the military?
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turnea
post May 11 2005, 04:39 PM
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QUOTE(Vermillion @ May 11 2005, 09:09 AM)
 
The reality is, two men on their own initiative captured and tortured to death a young boy they found creeping around inside the base. There was no 'interrogation', there was no military policy or command, this was two guys getting their kicks by torturing a young boy for fun. They did not even report the captive, the intrusion or the incident to their supreriors. It was in every way a case of two evil men acting entirely on their own initiative. One did the majority of the torturingm the other took pictures and watched.

That doesn't mesh with the reports I've read on the incident. First of all Arone was captured by an eight-man patrol wandering around the base. According to Sgt. Joseph Hillier (The leader of the patrol that captures Arone) Capt. Micheal Sox (a platoon leader) told soldiers earlier that very day that beating intruders was acceptable.

he was quote as saying:
QUOTE
If you have to, you can beat the *expletive* out of them


Sox, of course, denies this but in turn claims a senior officer told him soldiers could abuse intruders.

While Master Cpl. Clayton Matchee, did the majority of the damage the other (Pte. Elvin Kyle Brown) was convicted of manslaughter and torture.


Not only was the patrol aware of Arone's presence his screams were heard by other soldiers. Master Cpl. Jaques Alarie also witnessed some of the abuse he remarks "You've got a good trophy there."

Cpl. Lee Bibby who gave Brown the film for the photos witnessed some of the beating as well.

The list goes on and on. For a play-by-play try Maclean's story "A night of terror". (Maclean's, March 28, 1994 v107 n13 p26)

It was hardly just two men....
QUOTE
While the military initially claimed Matchee and Brown had acted alone, it was later revealed that sixteen others had visited the tent while Arone was captive, including superior officers. Also, Arone's screams were revealed to have been sufficiently loud as to be audible throughout the camp.

Shidane Arone

QUOTE(Vermillion)
 
The two men were arrested and brought to trial. The main torturer hanged himself in his cell, unsuccessfully, but the attempt left him with severe brain damage resulting in the IQ of a 4 to 5 year old and extremely limited motor control of his limbs. Given his condition, his prosecution was halted. The other man was given 5 years in military prison then kicked out of the military.

He served only a third of that sentence of course.

QUOTE(Vermillion)
 
The commander of the unit, even though it was demonstrated in the inquiry that he had no knowledge of the events as they ocured was given a reprimand and reduced in rank regardless, for failing to properly command his troops, for whose actions he is in the end responsible as their commander. The mission leader in Somalia was removed from his post and sent back to Canada, his career essentially over. The government then DISBANDED THE ENTIRE COMMANDO UNIT and retired the name, stating that the shame of this group had shames the entire Canadian military.

The dissolution of the unit did not come directly after the murder of Arone....
QUOTE( World Press Review @ April 1995 v42 n4 p18)
Canadians were horrified in November by photographs, taken during the 
Canadian Airborne regiment's 1993 mission in Somalia, that showed "elite" 
soldiers at their base torturing a teenage intruder to death. As that scandal 
seemed to die down, chilling videotapes surfaced this year that appeared to 
testify to endemic brutality in the regiment. After months of controversy, it 
was disbanded in January[...] 
[...] 
t might have ended there--a brief burst of appalling footage, followed by 
promises of an inquiry by military authorities--but the story got bigger and 
uglier. The national news aired portions of a second videotape. This one 
showed a hazing ritual of the regiment's 1 Commando unit, taken at a base in 
Petawawa, Ontario, shortly before the group was shipped out to Somalia. If the 
first tape had been disturbing and offensive, the second was stomach-churning. 
 
Troops were shown vomiting or being forced to eat the vomit of their fellows; 
being fed bread soaked in urine; being smeared with feces. The lone black 
soldier in the group was seen on all fours, being led around on a makeshift 
leash. "I love the KKK" was written on his back in excrement. These were the 
images Canadian Television (CTV) producers felt they could air in good 
conscience, along with a suitably strenuous warning to viewers. Not shown was 
footage of soldiers defecating or simulating sodomy. [Canada's Prime Minister 
Jean Chretien, questioned about the regiment, told reporters: "If we have to 
dismantle it, we'll dismantle it. I have no problem with that at all." WPR

That is what killed the regiment.
QUOTE(Vermillion)
 
So you were saying something about it not being taken too seriously? One can only wish that the US military had treated the Abu Graib scandals with one-tenth the seriousness that Canada did when dealing with a scandal of one-onehundreth the importance. 
*
 

Oh but it gets worse....

The Minster of Defense resigned after admitting to doctoring documents related to the murder. The commission of the incident was hampered left and right by deliberate cover-ups...
QUOTE(Commission Report)
It is clear that rather than assisting with the timely flow of information to our Inquiry, SILT adopted a strategic approach to deal with the Inquiry and engaged in a tactical operation to delay or deny the disclosure of relevant information to us and, consequently, to the Canadian public. 
 
Perhaps the most troubling consequence of the fragmented, dilatory and incomplete documentary record furnished to us by DND is that, when this activity is coupled with the incontrovertible evidence of document destruction, tampering, and alteration, there is a natural and inevitable heightening of suspicion of a cover-up that extends into the highest reaches of the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Forces.


The Commission was, inexplicably, cut short. shifty.gif

As I was saying....
Edited to Add:
Note to self.. always check Wikipedia....
Somalia Affair

This post has been edited by turnea: May 11 2005, 05:59 PM
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DaffyGrl
post May 11 2005, 06:50 PM
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QUOTE(Erasmussimo )
The deaths listed were being investigated as involving criminal homicide or abuse by US personnel. The sources for that list were US government documents. I really don't think that the Army is stupid enough to launch a criminal investigation into a polio death. And DaffyGrl adds that there is also a long list of "justified homicides". If the two lists are separate, then clearly the government does not consider the first list to be "justified homicides".

QUOTE(Aevans176)
The reality is that many of the deaths listed on Daffy's post happened over 3 years ago (if not longer). If the media makes a newsworthy story about naked muslims lying in a pile, then don't you think American soldiers torturing prisoners would be on CNN 24/7? These actions were probably swept under the rug, lacked sufficient evidence, or decided to be justified.

The two lists are indeed separate. I didn’t want to post the entire article because of AD restrictions on copyrighted material, so a visit via the link provided will display them. And as for the torture being on CNN, please. Our media is so cowed it only airs pabulum it is sure won’t offend anyone’s tender sensibilities.

From the proverbial “horse’s mouth”:

US Army CID Report
Navy NCIS Reports*

(*Fear not, ACLU-phobics, it isn’t “ACLU propaganda”, but links to the actual NCIS documents. thumbsup.gif )
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turnea
post May 11 2005, 07:01 PM
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QUOTE(DaffyGrl @ May 11 2005, 01:50 PM)
The two lists are indeed separate. I didn’t want to post the entire article because of AD restrictions on copyrighted material, so a visit via the link provided will display them. And as for the torture being on CNN, please. Our media is so cowed it only airs pabulum it is sure won’t offend anyone’s tender sensibilities.
*


Which is why the coverage of Abu Ghraib was so minimal... huh.gif

If you implying that the US media wouldn't run stories of abuse by American troops evidence is going to be needed to buy that line.

That view doesn't even consider the international press which also has every opportunity to air stories on American torture.
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moif
post May 11 2005, 11:12 PM
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turnea

QUOTE(turnea)
...and who pray tell, "gave the orders for the abuse?"
Exactly thumbsup.gif


QUOTE(turnea)
I hope you don't think that's what I'm doing here....

As I explained before I do not blame he media for reporting on Abu Ghraib, I applaud it.

I do blame them for what I see as undereporting abuses against Somalis and I suspect it is because the prospect of (justifiably) criticizing America was much more attractive.
You ask very good questions turnea and I do not mean you at all. I think I agree with you in the regard of the media and its base motivations.

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aevans176

QUOTE(aevans176)
Wow.
I applaud your fervor, but disagree completely with your logic. You're comparing apples to grapefruit.
Firstly, the Canadians tortured and killed a young boy. This is no where similar to captives dying in the hands of Americans. Secondly, your post doesn't deliniate how the captives died. If these men were wounded, resisted arrest, etc... we don't know according to the short account of men that have died in American custody. Finally, but most importantly, known murderers of a young boy only got a few years in prison. Can you imagine what a media blitz it would've been had these been Americans?
In my opinion what happened at Abu Graib was far worse than the Canadian incident on every level but the personal.

Abu Graib is but one symptom in an American disease that now stretches far across the globe, from Cuba to Afghanistan and while your president makes bold statements regarding freedom and democracy in Georgia, US soldiers, under his command, are detaining human beings without legal rights at Guantanamo Bay.


QUOTE(aevans176)
Your references to superior officers, responsibility, etc are pure conjecture. We weren't there. And... if you remember... I'm a Marine reservist and an officer. I can tell you with complete assuredness that there may not be culpability at the officer level. There undoubtedly is an NCO somewhere that isn't being prosecuted, as it's their job to run units at the operational level. Do you really think that these things were happening while Colonels were walking around? I sincerely doubt it... abuses were happening during late hours of the night, when boredom and frustration set in.
Then why did Rumsfeld offer his resignation?


QUOTE(aevans176)
Consider how you would feel in their shoes... sleeping in cots, eating awful food, being hot during the day and cold at night. Thousands of miles away from loved ones, and now everyone expects us to treat insurgent captives as expected guests. It's hard not to dehumanize the enemy. How else do you think soldiers are able to pull the trigger when necessary?
These people volunteered for their military service. Every single last American in Iraq put him/ herself in that nation and yet you expect me, or any one else to feel sorry for them because it turns out that Iraq is hot!?

Well I'm sorry, but I have no sympathy for them or the predicament they placed themselves into. If they were/are unable to deal with the reality of their situation then they should have considered this before they signed the dotted line!

That the USA might place them in the line of fire, in a hostile and dangerous place, far removed from their families can hardly have come as a surprise given the US military track record of the last sixty years.

There is no excuse for what the US military and government has done with regards to human rights violations, up to and including kidnapping, blackmail and murder by torture and no amount of clever wording regarding obscure or contested details is going to change the fact that over 11,000 people are currently detained in Iraq by US forces without trial or that tens of thousands of Iraqi's have died in a war that serves no purpose but the promotion of US global authority.


QUOTE(aevans176)
The bottom line is that the world wants to hold American military to the fire now that Bush is in office. They seem to have an innate need to lay blame. The irony is that while Clinton was in office... things like Asprin factories in the Sudan were bombed and nothing happened. It didn't even make network news. A few people die in a war zone while in US custody, without specific accounts, and people are up in arms... go figure.
I can assure you that it most certainly did make the head line news and was debatted at length by most western media.

That you did not see it in the USA makes no difference to what the rest of us saw.

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turnea

QUOTE(turnea)
That view doesn't even consider the international press which also has every opportunity to air stories on American torture.


It does.



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ralou
post May 12 2005, 02:17 AM
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I think now would be an appropriate time to add:

My tax dollars didn't pay for the torture of that boy (or not as directly as my tax dollars paid for Abu Ghraib). I have no control over the UN. But darned if I wasn't raised with the delusion that the power in America is with the people. And somewhere, deep down in my American child heart, where reality hasn't reached, apparantly, I believe that we the people do have the power, and therefore, when these things are condoned, permitted, ignored, or carelessly not noticed by our public servants, we are the ones with the blood on our hands.

If all that happened was the humiliation of a few Iraqis, why haven't the other thousands of photos and videos been released? And why did officials permitted to see more than what we, the oh so powerful people, were allowed to see, say:

QUOTE
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told reporters, "The American public needs to understand we're talking about rape and murder here. we're not just talking about giving people a humiliating experience." He did not elaborate.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/05/08/...ain616338.shtml



The UN criminals who carried this out and those who covered it up deserve far worse than demotion or five years in prison. So do every last one of the officials and soldiers who are carrying out or covering up the war crimes my tax dollars paid for. That goes doubly for the ones at the top, especially everyone involved in the rendering of captives for torture in other countries. That is the most horrendous disgrace I can imagine, and it is on our hands, thanks to the war criminals who order and carry it out.

Regime change begins at home. We can deal with the UN after we have dealt with our own. And the Canadians who are horrified by the behavior of some of their people can, of course, bring their own to heel, as well.

This post has been edited by ralou: May 12 2005, 02:18 AM
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turnea
post May 12 2005, 12:40 PM
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QUOTE(ralou @ May 11 2005, 09:17 PM)

Regime change begins at home.  We can deal with the UN after we have dealt with our own.  And the Canadians who are horrified by the behavior of some of their people can, of course, bring their own to heel, as well.
*


First of all this is a debate site, not a political action group, we don't have to pick our battles. We can, quite easily, criticize the UN the US at once.


Secondly you do have some measure of control over the UN as a citizen of the most powerful member state.


To the larger question:

I still see the assumption that the abuses at Abu Ghraib must have resulted from some order from an official. Why insist on such an assumption?


Another reason for the comparison is that the Somali incident did not uncover higher up ordering violence against intruders. Certainly not to the highest levels of the ministry of defense.



Accusations are still being made without proof, if this is Rumsfeld's or Bush's fault, if you believe they ordered the abuse, then provide some evidence or solid reasoning to that effect.
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moif
post May 12 2005, 01:01 PM
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turnea


QUOTE
I still see the assumption that the abuses at Abu Ghraib must have resulted from some order from an official. Why insist on such an assumption?
Because there is a clear pattern of human rights violations being carried out that extends beyond just the known incidents at Abu Graib. People have been detained in Cuba, kidnapped from Europe and 'disapeared' in Afghanistan, and yet the US military/ government, and its ever loyal supporters would have us believe that Graner & co. despite their testimony, acted on their own impulses.

How does any one expect us to believe that this abuse continued from months without any sort of control or sanction? Especially given that those few soldiers held to account have all indicated that they were following orders, and especially in that the US military has taken special steps to exonerate its officers.

The assumption is clear. In any military organisation, systematic practice can only come about as a direct result of the command structure.


QUOTE
Another reason for the comparison is that the Somali incident did not uncover higher up ordering violence against intruders. Certainly not to the highest levels of the ministry of defense.
The 'Somali incident' did not happen against the background of a far larger pattern of events that involved the entire Canadian military & government.

Canada has not started any wars in foreign countries, nor maintains any concentration camps where human beings are held, illegally, without trial. Canada does not abduct people and usbject them to torture in third party nations with dubious human rights records.

Canada is not subjagating the rest of the planet to its political will for its own reasons, or expanding its military resources to do so.


QUOTE
Accusations are still being made without proof, if this is Rumsfeld's or Bush's fault, if you believe they ordered the abuse, then provide some evidence or solid reasoning to that effect.
What do you want? a signed confession?

Rumsfeld already indicated that he himself understood the part he played in the chain of responsibility by offering his resignation. That he was then let off the hook by GW Bush doesn't change the fact that he made the offer and thus must have had a clear understanding of his own share in the burden of responsibility.

That GW Bush has a moral code that allows him to disassociate himself and his government from the actions it carries out doesn't change the nature of hose actions.

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Vermillion
post May 12 2005, 02:42 PM
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QUOTE(aevans176 @ May 11 2005, 02:20 PM)

I disagree, my disgruntled Canadian friend.
One tenth the seriousness? A boy was totured then killed... none the less by your country men, and you denounce this as 1/10 as serious as some Muslims being harassed? We didn't kill anyone, sir. Not to mention one of the men that killed a young boy and hid it from his officers only got a few years in jail. Had this soldier been American... I'm confident that a child murderer in a American federal prison would've proven fatal in itself.


The fact that you refer to the incident as 'some Muslims being harassed' speaks volumes, as though the US had forgotten to deliver their newspaper or something. Torture is not 'harassment', it is far worse. And as to claims that 'you did not kill anyone', you should keep up on the news. At the moment there are 37 suspicious deaths under investigation by US troops and interrogators in prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan.

One of the men did not participate directly in the killing, just witnessed it and did not intervene, and so recieved 5 years in prison, perhaps too light I might even agree, but hardly vastly so.

Lastly, you entirely missed my point. The US military courts may take this very seriously, we don;t know until some of these suspicious deaths cases finish. They may take it just as seriously as the Canadian military did. However the US GOVERNMENT has done its best to dissemble, ignore and diminish the problem, while the Canadian government felt this incident was such a stain on our honour that the entire unit was disbanded and anyone in the chain of command, directly involved or not was reprimanded.

QUOTE
Frankly, if your logic applies to two Canadian soldiers, then it would apply to a handful of American soldiers. Secondly, the prisoners at Abu Gharib were captive insurgents. These men and their associates had killed Americans, etc.


Really? After their interrogation, most of these men were released without charge. Are you SURE they 'killed and tortured Americans', or is that something you just made up?

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turnea
post May 12 2005, 02:51 PM
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QUOTE(Vermillion @ May 12 2005, 09:42 AM)

One of the men did not participate directly in the killing, just witnessed it and did not intervene, and so recieved 5 years in prison, perhaps too light I might even agree, but hardly vastly so.

Not exactly. Again he was convicted of manslaughter and torture the trial found he did kick the prisoner several time along with Matchee.

..and of course many of his fellow soldiers witnessed the abuse.

QUOTE(Vermillion)
Lastly, you entirely missed my point. The US military courts may take this very seriously, we don;t know until some of these suspicious deaths cases finish. They may take it just as seriously as the Canadian military did. However the US GOVERNMENT has done its best to dissemble, ignore and diminish the problem, while the Canadian government felt this incident was such a stain on our honour that the entire unit was disbanded and anyone in the chain of command, directly involved or not was reprimanded.

It is quite possible you overlooked my post, things got a little hectic in between so I don't blame you.

But as I've said before this is categorically untrue. The Canadian government participated in an active coverup that resulted in the resignation of the head of defense.

The Somalia inquiry noted all of this.

The US government handled the problem much more openly.

A link to the previous post below.
Link


Edited to Add: Link fixed! biggrin.gif

This post has been edited by turnea: May 12 2005, 04:11 PM
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Erasmussimo
post May 12 2005, 05:45 PM
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QUOTE(turnea @ May 12 2005, 05:40 AM)
I still see the assumption that the abuses at Abu Ghraib must have resulted from some order from an official. Why insist on such an assumption?

Another reason for the comparison is that the Somali incident did not uncover higher up ordering violence against intruders. Certainly not to the highest levels of the ministry of defense.

Accusations are still being made without proof, if this is Rumsfeld's or Bush's fault, if you believe they ordered the abuse, then provide some evidence or solid reasoning to that effect.
*


Your case rests on the use of the term "orders". You are correct that President Bush did not sign any order requiring US personnel to rape prisoners, threaten them with electrocution, force them to pile naked into human pyramids, feign sodomy, and so forth. He did, however, approve broad policies recommending the denial of the protection of US law or the Geneva Conventions to prisoners. He also approved broad policies recommending the use of harsh treatment of prisoners. Moreover, he did not accompany these policy directives with provisos against the use of raping prisoners, threatening them with electrocution, forcing them to naked into human pyramids, feign sodomy, and so forth.

The administration explicitly encouraged its personnel to engage in immoral behavior. It failed to provide any explicit limitations on that immoral behavior. When it emerged that personnel engaged in grossly immoral behavior, the administration disclaimed all responsibility. I consider that disclaimer to be morally disingenuous. It's rather like the mob boss who tells his lieutenant, "Explain it to him, Vito" and then feigns innocence when Vito beats the victim to a pulp.
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