Israel To Abu Ghraib: Globalisation Of Torture
By Ghali Hassan
12 August, 2004
horror of abuse, torture and executions of Iraqi prisoners by the Anglo-American
occupation soldiers are not "few isolated incidents" by "few
bad apples". It is the tip of the iceberg of a wide spread systemic
torture and violation of human rights of Iraqi citizens, including women
and children, all over Iraq. The system is modelled on Israel's vicious
system of Palestinians torture.
Torture has been
routinely practised in Israeli prisons against Palestinian detainees
since 1967 occupation of Palestine. Israel's Supreme Court, with the
full knowledge and approval of the American and British Administrations,sanctioned
the so-called "lite torture" and electric shocks torture in
Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians have been imprisoned in Israeli
prisons and torture centres since 1967. Many of these prisons and torture
centres are well known to the West, and have been visited by the Red
are modelled on the prisons of the Gulag, such as the "secret"
Facility 1391, Jerusalem's notorious Moskobiyya, Gush Etzion and Ashkelon
are just a few, where Palestinian youth and Palestinian resistants have
been tortured by Israeli Security Service (SS) and Shin Bet or Shabak.
Israeli interrogators have murdered many innocent Palestinians. Most
of the interrogators are migrants from Russia, well known for their
brutality against Palestinian detainees.
A 15-years old Palestinian
boy recounted his ordeal with the Israelis as follow: "They handcuffed
and beat me during the journey to Fara'a [Israel prison in Nablus].
Once we arrived, they took me to a 'doctor' for a 'check-up.' I found
out later that this 'check-up' is to locate any physical weakness to
concentrate on during torture. They paid particular attention to my
leg, which was once injured and was still sensitive. Before they began
interrogation, they asked me if I was ready to confess. They then hanged
me by my wrists, naked, outside in the cold, and gave me hot and cold
showers alternatively. A hood covered in manure was put over my head".
The victims of Israeli
occupation were innocent Palestinian teen-agers arrested randomly. Children
are arrested "at checkpoints, on the street, or at their homes
by heavily armed Israeli soldiers in the middle of the night. The soldiers
take them to detention centres in Israeli settlements or military camps...
the children are interrogated. This almost always involves some form
of torture or abuse, including sleep and food deprivation, threatening
language, beatings with heavy batons, being punched and kicked,
as well as being tied in painful and contorted positions for long periods
showed similarities between Israel SS interrogation methods and the
US torture of Iraqi civilians in Iraq. These include sleep deprivation,
severe beating, sexual abuse, forced to stand in painful positions for
long period of time and violent shaking. An Israeli Knesset member told
Al-Jazeera.net: "there are many Israeli experts on torture in Iraq
who are transferring to the Americans their accumulative experience
of thirty-seven years of torturing and mistreating Palestinians".
Similar reports of Israeli involvement in torture of Iraqi prisoners
have been reported in the Daily Star of Lebanon.
According to Robert
Fisk of The Independent, "the head of an American company whose
personnel are implicated in the Iraqi tortures, it now turns out, attended
an 'anti-terror' training camp in Israel and, earlier this year, was
presented with an award by Shaul Mofaz, the right-wing Israeli defence
for preaching human rights has been the subject of Professor Noam Chomsky
careful analysis. Chomsky has noted, if we don't believe in justice
for those we despise, then we don't believe in it at all. The US, Israel
and Britain, the real "axis of evil", have been the most violators
of human rights of victims of their brutal and illegal occupations of
sovereign nations. In the case of Britain, torture has been used on
activists in Northern Ireland, and the same atrocities continue to be
committed by British soldiers in southern Iraq on the Iraqi people.
The U.S. is the master of torture perpetuated on the victims of its
own prisons population.
US and Britain have consistently hindered the application of International
law to their actions, and cover up crimes perpetuated by Israel against
the Palestinian people. Israel is not only the largest recipient of
American weapons and aids for its occupation of Palestinian land; most
Western governments support Israel's policy against the Palestinians.
Indeed, Israel is the darling of the West.
of South Africa Mr. Nelson Mandela, who was himself the subject of prison's
abuse and torture during the long apartheid regime of South Africa,
had this to say to those who preach democracy and human rights: "[those]
powerful countries, so-called democracies manipulate
multilateral bodies to the great disadvantage and suffering of poorer
developing nations". Western hypocrisy for preaching human rights
and democracy to the rest of the world is sickening propaganda and should
be condemned by every democratic nation. The moral credential of Blair
"messianic mission" is dead in Iraq and beyond.
According to Mr.
Rumsfeld testimony: "the worst was yet to come" out of Iraq.
"There are other photos that depict incidents of physical violence
towards prisoners, acts that can only be described as blatantly sadistic,
cruel and inhumane," he said. "It's going to get a good deal
more terrible, I'm afraid". Mr. Rumsfeld is the moral guru of the
Pentagon and has been praised by Western leaders for his horrendous
abuse of power.
Add what has been
revealed so far and you have a global system of injustice and torture,
purposely mounted in the moral and legal darkness, beyond reach or oversight
of anyone but those in the highest levels within the U.S. and British
governments. Soldiers behave according to their training and the instruction
of their superior officers.
are paying for the horror inflicted on the people of Palestine and the
people of Iraq by America's reckless and inhumane colonial policy. American
citizens should not allow these crimes to be committed in their names.
Americans can stop their government crimes and interference in the affairs
of nations around the world.
Ghali Hassan lives
in Perth, Western Australia. He can be contacted on: G.Hassan@exchange.curtin.edu.au