The Guardian May 5, 2004


Horrendous crimes against humanity

Some of the realities of the so-called civilising mission of 
the US, Britain and Australia in Iraq have been exposed with the 
publication of pictures of American soldiers in horrendous acts 
of bestiality and torture performed on Iraqi prisoners.

It is hard to find words to describe one's feelings on seeing the 
pictures, a few of which have made it into the Australian media.

There are a number of websites where they can be viewed 
including: www.albasrah.net/images/iraqi-pow/iraqi-pow
Readers are warned that they are extremely disturbing
images, certainly not for weak stomachs.

Other, less disturbing, pictures can be viewed at: 
www.informationclearinghouse.info/article6106.htm
(click onto "World enraged by US torture of Iraqi prisoners").

The depravity, degeneracy, barbarism and immorality beggar 
description. The pictures shown on Australian TV and in the media 
are only a few of the less disgusting images that have now 
circled the world and which show the depths to which the US armed 
forces have sunk. There are also allegations of torture committed 
by British troops.

Shots were taken of prisoners stacked in a pyramid, one with a 
slur written on his skin in English. There are rape scenes. And 
in most of the pictures, the Americans are laughing, posing, 
pointing or giving the camera a thumbs-up.

One of the prison officers implicated is reported as telling the 
US 60 Minutes program that: "Military intelligence has 
encouraged and told us, 'Great job'. We help getting them [the 
prisoners] to talk with the way we handle them. We've had a very 
high rate with our style of getting them to break. They usually 
end up breaking within hours."

Bush, Blair, Howard and US military commanders have expressed 
their shock and horror but it is their policies, their armed 
forces and their war that are directly responsible. Their 
expressions of shock and the court-marshalling of a few officers 
will never wash away the crimes that are being committed by their 
occupying armies in Iraq.

The leaders of the "Coalition of the Willing" are responsible for 
this illegal war and occupation. It is their militarism and 
repeated lying that have produced the immorality and disgusting 
degeneracy that now have been shown to the world. The troops 
involved are merely following their leadership.

These leaders must answer for these crimes. For justice to be 
done they ought to be arrested be arrested and arraigned before 
the International Court of Justice as war criminals. As a first 
step in a campaign for justice, the people of Australia, Britain 
and the US should vote them out of office.

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