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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Britain is in the hot seat now! They deserve a thread of their own as Americans did. I just think it's horrible a few bad apples can make it so much more dangerous for troops in Iraq! I just think everyone needs to get out of Iraq as soon as humanly possible! Things like this abuse just fuel the Iraqis anger and hatred!

Blair says abuse photos 'shocking'
Iraq images being seen as 'Britain's Abu Ghraib
'
Wednesday, January 19, 2005 Posted: 10:13 AM EST (1513 GMT)

LONDON, England -- British Prime Minister Tony Blair described pictures of Iraqis apparently being abused by British soldiers as "shocking and appalling."

But he said the vast majority of the 65,000 British troops who had served in Iraq had done so with "distinction, courage and great honor." (Same with our Americans!)

Blair was quizzed at Prime Minister's Question Time Wednesday on the photographs, published by British newspapers under "Shame" and "Shock" headlines, which were being described as "Britain's Abu Ghraib" scandal.

Blair said the difference between democracy and tyranny was that in a democracy when "bad things happen" the perpetrators were held to account.

He said the photos should not be allowed to tarnish the good reputation -- fully deserved -- of British soldiers.

Opposition Conservative leader Michael Howard also branded the photographs "appalling" and said they bought shame on the country. But they did not reflect the true character of the majority of the British armed forces, he said.

As the storm grew, the head of the British army made a rare public statement as the photos were used as evidence at a court martial in Germany.

Some of the front-page pictures showed naked Iraqi prisoners appearing to be forced to simulate anal and other sexual acts, while in another a soldier had his fist raised above a bound detainee who had a net over his torso.

"Brute Camp," read a headline in Britain's biggest selling tabloid, The Sun. "Shocking... appalling," said the Daily Mirror.

"Britain's Shame" read the headline in the Daily Mail
.

The Times said the pictures would "provoke outrage in the Arab world and sully the reputation of the British Army."

Many predicted Blair, U.S. President George W. Bush's closest ally on Iraq, though currently well ahead in opinion polls, could be hit politically as he prepares to call a general election, widely expected in May.

CNN's European Political Editor Robin Oakley said the photos highlighted the issue of Iraq again just as the British political parties were moving into election mode.

"It has dominated the media," said Oakley. "There is deep worry about the image of the British army and deep worry about the effect on Iraqi elections."

He said that parallels were being drawn with abuse by U.S. solders at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib jail.

"Really there has been a smugness here -- a feeling that we the Brits don't do this kind of thing, our army is well enough disciplined -- but it has been a huge shock
."

Army Reserve Spc. Charles Graner Jr., was last week sentenced to 10 years in a military prison for his role in abusing detainees at Abu Ghraib.

Oakley added that at the time of the Abu Ghraib allegations, Blair was at the lowest point of his premiership -- having felt shame at photos of abuse by U.S. soildiers -- and that was the time aides said he thought of quitting.

The emergence of the British pictures prompted Britain's most senior general, Sir Mike Jackson, to make a rare public statement in which he said: "We condemn utterly all acts of abuse. Where there is evidence of abuse, this is immediately investigated."

Court martial

The pictures, released by prosecutors at the court martial at a British military base in Germany on Tuesday, were discovered when laboratory technicians phoned police after a soldier took them to be developed.

The three British soldiers pleaded not guilty to numerous counts of abuse, although one admitted assaulting a man.

Taken just weeks after the March 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq toppled Saddam Hussein, one of the 22 pictures showed an Iraqi man trussed up in a net and suspended from the prongs of a fork-lift truck.

Another showed a soldier apparently simulating a kick on a bound Iraqi lying in a patch of water
.

Prosecutors say the soldiers carried out offences during an operation code named "Ali Baba" to stop looting at an aid food depot in the chaotic weeks after the U.S.-led invasion.

The trial is the latest in a series of hearings against U.S. and British soldiers after photographs of abuse by U.S. troops at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib jail emerged last year, sparking worldwide outrage.

Print and broadcast media across the Arab world also carried the latest photographs and analysts said they were sure to sully the reputation of the British army in Iraq.

Ahmed Versi, editor of the London-based Muslim News, told the UK's Press Association that said reports on Arabic channels such as Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya had made the abuse charges a talking point across the Gulf region.

He said: "The reaction in the Arab and Muslim world, and even here, has been of shock and also surprise because until very recently the British troops were considered to be much better in their conduct in Iraq than the Americans."

Michael Stent, managing editor of Gulf News, the biggest English language newspaper in the Middle East, told PA: "One of the particular points is that so far the American trials have been extremely lenient from where I sit. It will be very interesting to see how Britain reacts to similar allegations."

Anger

Some British newspapers said the case could put Britain's 9,000 troops in southern Iraq at risk by fueling anger as the country prepares to hold elections on January 30.

Some observers said the photos could help al Qaeda recruit.

"There will be such anger against the coalition, and against Britain in particular, that there is no way cooperation and goodwill can prevail," Tam Dalyell, a member of Blair's Labour Party, told Sky television.

That view was echoed in Baghdad.

"Now I'm starting to hate the British: they are worse than the Americans, they are dogs," Safaa Hadi, a 16-year old on a Baghdad street, told Reuters.

"They haven't been attacked much, so you can't explain the torture as revenge, it's just racism," said Hadi.

The mainly Shi'ite south has been more peaceful than central areas but guerrillas from the Sunni Arab minority and foreign Islamic militants have been stepping up bombings and assassinations to sabotage the ballot.

*****

The attached photo:

An image allegedly showing Lance Corporal Mark Cooley simulating a punch to an Iraqi detainee.
 

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Problem is getting out quick as is deriliction of duty. We are in there and we had better get it sorted, otherwise it is just plain aggression. It is shamefull that a few bad apples have spoilt the reputation of the best and most respected army in the world. It is unfortunatley going to take a very long time to repair the damage, if in fact it can be. If these individuals are found guilty I hope they lock 'em away for a very very long time indeed.
 

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Let's not jump to conclusions. Surely the pictures depict mistreatment, same as Abu Graib, but most of what was shown of Abu Graib was no more than the hazing fraternaties have been subjecting their recruits to for years. If the treatment was against orders, punish them, but have some perspective. They are not going to volunteer information just by our asking for it, coercive methods must be used (not torture). Where the line is drawn between coercion and torture is the point for debate. The truth is that now our ability to obtain information from the detainees has all but dried up because they now know we cannot do anything to them to get the information. Threats of torture do not constitute torture, and I see nothing wrong with making them believe that they will be tortured if they don't tell us the truth. It beats the h*ll out of lopping off hands, heads and full scale torture that Saddam perpitrated on his own people for decades.

Ascotta is correct, if we leave now, it will be for naught and the terrorists will have a fine victory. This will be a long drawn out process, but it is the right thing to do, free people from despots if possible. Yes, I do mean that eventually we will have to deal with Iran, Syria, N. Korea, et.al. Hopefully, some if not most will choose the path of Lybia and give up without a fight.

I hope that the British soldiers that disobeyed orders are dealt with appropriately with a punishment that truely fits the crime.
 

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I am shocked and saddened by the acts of these idiots. I hope they are sent to prison for a very long time. I think there can be no doubt that the pictures are genuine becasue the MOD would not be taking the claims so seriously unlike the previous photos of British Troops abusing prisoners, which were proved to be fake.

These people have seriously damaged the reputation of one of the most respected army's in the world.

I hope they realise what they have done.

I hope the Iraqi people can see that this was a stupid act by a few morons and does not reflect the feeling of our nation. I fear that this will not be the case and it will be used to fuel hate against both British and American troops.

Chris.
 

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linskyjack said:
Anyone who calls this mere "hazing" is really not a member of the human race--It's disgusting.
Sorry, got my membership card the same place you did, except I stayed for the brain implant. :D
 

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Linsky, when we invade North Korea, could you join a human shield group and link arms with people blocking the beachhead? Then I'm sure us chickenhawks most gladly would lead the landing party :D :D

I'm sure the koreans would show you a very good time in Pyongyang. I hear the slave labor camps for political dissidents are to die for! Liberating those would sure be travesty.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
UPDATE

Iraqis to seek fresh Basra abuse inquiry

Press Association

Wednesday May 18, 2005

Eight Iraqi men who claim to be victims of torture by British soldiers will today set out their case for an independent inquiry in a move that could lead to legal action against the government.

At two courts martial in Germany earlier this year four servicemen were jailed for their part in abuses at Camp Breadbasket, an aid camp outside Basra, in May 2003, shortly after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime.

The mistreatment of civilian detainees at the camp emerged in "trophy" photographs that included images of sexual humiliation.

The photographs were taken by soldier Gary Bartlam, 20, who then took them to be developed at a shop in his home town of Tamworth, Staffordshire, where an assistant called the police.

Bartlam was ordered to be detained at a youth detention facility for 18 months and was disgracefully discharged from the army.

In one photograph Lance Corporal Mark Cooley was shown driving a forklift truck with a bound Iraqi prisoner suspended from the prongs; another showed him kneeling and pretending to punch a prostrate prisoner.

Cooley, 25, from Newcastle upon Tyne, was jailed for two years after being found guilty of two charges: disgraceful conduct of a cruel kind and prejudicing good order and military discipline.

Corporal Daniel Kenyon, also from Newcastle, was imprisoned for 18 months after he was convicted of three charges, including failing to report the abuse and aiding and abetting another soldier, Darren Larkin, in an assault on a prisoner.

Kenyon was cleared of a further two charges of aiding and abetting unknown persons to force the detainees to simulate a sex act. Larkin from Oldham, Greater Manchester, was jailed for 140 days after pleading guilty to assault.

A photograph showed him, dressed in boxer shorts and flip-flops, standing on top of a prone detainee who was tied in a cargo net.

None of the alleged victims gave evidence at the court martial. The Royal Military Police claimed attempts to find them had been unsuccessful.

However, solicitor Phil Shiner says he was instructed by three victims, including the man suspended from the forklift truck, during the court martial proceedings.

He quoted this man as claiming to have been at the Breadbasket camp lawfully in order to distribute food from the UN oil-for-food programme when he was placed on the forklift after refusing to sever a fellow Iraqi's finger. Another man claimed to have been so badly injured that he was subsequently unable to have sexual intercourse, he said.

Mr Shiner has now been instructed by eight men who claim to have been victims at Breadbasket. Lawyers acting for the eight alleged victims are expected to give details of their call for an inquiry at a press conference in central London at 2pm. Such an inquiry could pave the way for the men to sue the British government.

The group will allege that women were involved in the torture, that officers presided over it and that the court martial proceedings at a British base in Osnabruck, in Germany, were a "farce".

Kenyon and Cooley, who served with the 1st battalion the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, are appealing against their convictions and sentences.

In Germany, defendants claimed abuse was widespread at Breadbasket and stemmed from an illegal order given by the commanding officer, Major Dan Taylor, to "work hard" looters detained in the course of an operation codenamed Ali Baba.

Major Taylor was not prosecuted for breaking the Geneva convention; nor were any other senior soldiers despite claims that Iraqis had been beaten and forced to run in blistering heat with heavy boxes above their heads.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1486732,00.html?gusrc=rss
 

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Any British military personnel involved in the abuse of prisoners should be in court regardless of rank,and they are the minority, and the majority of people in this country are appalled by there behavior . :down:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Dude: Exactly how I feel about we in the US! :up:
 

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Found this posting on another website.

'Insensitive' Atlanta Lady Put's Terrorism into Perspective

The lady who wrote this letter is Pam Foster of Pamela Foster and Associates in Atlanta. She's been in business since 1980 doing interior design and home planning. She recently wrote a letter to a family member serving in Iraq.
Read it.

WHAT'S ALL THE FUSS?

"Are we fighting a war on terror or aren't we? Was it or was it not started by Islamic people who brought it to our shores on September 11, 2001? Were people from all over the world, mostly Americans, not brutally murdered that day, in downtown Manhattan, across the Potomac from our nation's capitol and in a field in Pennsylvania? Did nearly three thousand men, women and children die a horrible, burning or crushing death that day, or didn't they?

And I'm supposed to care that a copy of the Koran was "desecrated" when an overworked American soldier kicked it or got it wet? Well, I don't. I don't care at all.

I'll start caring when Osama bin Laden turns himself in and repents for incinerating all those innocent people on 9/11.

I'll care about the Koran when the fanatics in the Middle East start caring about the Holy Bible, the mere possession of which is a crime in Saudi Arabia.

I'll care when Abu Musab al-Zarqawi tells the world he is sorry for hacking off Nick Berg's head while Berg screamed through his gurgling, slashed throat.

I'll care when the cowardly so-called "insurgents"
in Iraq come out and fight like men instead of disrespecting their own religion by hiding in mosques.

I'll care when the mindless zealots who blow themselves up in search of nirvana care about the innocent children within range of their suicide bombs.

I'll care when the American media stops pretending that their First Amendment liberties are somehow derived from international law instead of the United States Constitution's Bill of Rights.

I'll care when Clinton-appointed judges stop ordering my government to release photos of the abuses at Abu Ghraib, which are sure to set off the Islamic extremists just as Newsweek's lies did a few weeks ago.

In the meantime, when I hear a story about a brave marine roughing up an Iraqi terrorist to obtain information, know this: I don't care.

When I see a fuzzy photo of a pile of naked Iraqi prisoners who have been humiliated in what amounts to a college hazing incident, rest assured that I don't care.

When I see a wounded terrorist get shot in the head when he is told not to move because he might be booby-trapped, you can take it to the bank that I don't care.

When I hear that a prisoner, who was issued a Koran and a prayer mat, and fed "special" food that is paid for by my tax dollars, is complaining that his holy book is being "mishandled," you can absolutely believe in your heart of hearts that I don't care.

And oh, by the way, I've noticed that sometimes it's spelled "Koran" and other times "Quran." Well, Jimmy Crack Corn and -- you guessed it -- I don't care!" -


Submitted by Paul S
 
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