The following is an archived copy of a message sent to the CASI Analysis List run by Cambridge Solidarity with Iraq.

Views expressed in this archived message are those of the author, not of Cambridge Solidarity with Iraq (CASI).

[Main archive index/search] [List information] [CASI Homepage]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[casi-analysis] casi-news digest, Vol 1 #97 - 3 msgs

[ This message has been sent to you via the CASI-analysis mailing list ]

This is an automated compilation of submissions to

Articles for inclusion in this daily news mailing should be sent to 
Please include a full reference to the source of the article.

Today's Topics:

   1. From Riverbend (Hassan)
   2. GI: Boy mistreated to get dad to talk (Hassan)
   3. Sergeant `flagged' for telling news media about prison abuses (Hassan)


Message: 1
Date: Sun, 23 May 2004 08:53:53 -0700 (PDT)
From: Hassan <>
Subject: From Riverbend
To: CASI newsclippings <>,
  IAC discussion <>

[ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ]

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Back in Iraq...
Chris Albritton is back in Iraq- check out his site. Check out his reportin=
g on the Chalabi debacle.

- posted by river @ 5:23 PM

En Kint Tedri...

Remember your first box of crayons? Probably not. Ok- remember your first b=
ox of REAL crayons- you know, not the silly eight colors, but the first rea=
l BIG box of crayons with four bewildering rows colors and six different sh=
ades of brown that you never needed? Well, can you remember that mysterious=
 color- burnt sienna- that was never brown enough for trees, and never real=
ly orange enough for flowers? That was the color of Chalabi's tie yesterday=
 as he gave his phenomenal post-raid interview on Al-Arabia.

He sat, looking smug and supercilious, in a grayish suit with a tie that co=
uld only be described as "burnt sienna". During the duration of the intervi=
ew, a silly little smile played on his thin lips and his eyes flashed with =
a combination of indignation and impatience at the questions.

I always enjoy a good Chalabi interview. His answers to questions are alway=
s so completely antagonistic to Iraqi public opinion that the whole thing m=
akes a delightful show- rather like a vicious Chihuahua in the midst of a d=
ozen bulldogs. There were several amusing moments during the interview. He =
kept waving around his arms and made numerous flourishing movements with hi=
s hands to emphasize some key points. A few interesting things I noted abou=
t the interview: he was suddenly using the word 'occupation'. During past i=
nterviews, he would never use the word 'occupation'. He used to insist on c=
alling the invading army et al. 'coalition' and the whole fiasco was persis=
tently labeled a 'liberation' by him and his cronies.

He made several insipid comments about the raid and his falling out with Br=
emer and the rest. My favorite comment was his "I've won the prize! I've wo=
n the Iraqi nationality prize=85" Followed by a large grin (with several ga=
ps between the teeth). The prize he was so proudly referring to was the dis=
approval of the CIA and 'occupation'. Apparently, he thinks that now that h=
e has been blacklisted by the CPA, he will be enfolded by the tender arms o=
f the Iraqi public. It's almost exhausting to see his endless optimism. At =
the same time, it's amazing to see his 'about-face' regarding his American =
popularity. A few months ago, his value to the Bush administration was the =
personal achievement he was proudest of- he never failed to flaunt his Amer=
ican connections.

Of course, several things occurred to us, after hearing of the raid. The fi=
rst thing I thought was, "Well, it's about time=85" Then, as the news began=
 to sink in, it made less since. Chalabi was America's lapdog- why is he su=
ddenly unsuitable for the new Iraq? He was convicted in Jordan several year=
s ago and everyone knows he's a crook and a terrible politician=85 I'm also=
 convinced that the Bush administration knew full well that he was highly u=
npopular in Iraq. He's not just a puppet- he's a mercenary. He encouraged t=
he sanctions that killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and maimed the cou=
ntry itself. He supported the war and occupation vehemently and fabricated =
lies about weapons and threats to further his cause. He's a criminal- and a=
 lousy one at that.

In the end, America had to know that Chalabi was virtually useless. Why thi=
s sudden change of heart towards Mercenary #1? People are saying that it is=
 a ploy to help him rise in popularity, but I can hardly believe that. Coul=
d the decision-makers currently mulling over the Iraq situation be so ridic=
ulously optimistic? Or could they have really been so wrong in the past? We=
 have a saying in Arabic, "En kint tedri, fe tilk musseeba=85 in kint la te=
dri, fa il musseebatu a'adham" which means, "If you knew, then that was a c=
atastrophe=85 and if you didn't know, then the catastrophe is greater."

Meanwhile, a couple of days ago, 40 people were murdered in western Iraq wh=
ile they were celebrating a wedding- an American helicopter fired at the ci=
vilians, killing women and children. Apparently, the guests at the wedding =
were shooting klashnikovs into the air. You'd think that the Americans woul=
d know by now that shooting klashnikovs into the air is a form of celebrati=
on and considering the fact that the party was far from any major town or c=
ity, the shots were virtually harmless. No one did anything about the shots=
 being fired when Saddam was caught- in spite of the fact that Baghdad was =
a virtual firestorm of bullets for several hours. That was ok- that was 'ac=
ceptable' and even amusing to the 'authorities'. I can see how dozens of wo=
men, children and celebrating men would be a 'threat' though. Yes, it makes=
 perfect sense.

"In a written statement the Pentagon said last night: "Our report is that t=
his was not a wedding party, that these were anti-coalition forces that fir=
ed first..."

No. Of course not- it couldn't have been a wedding party. It was a resistan=
ce cell of women and children (one deviously dressed in a wedding gown!). I=
t wasn't a wedding party just as mosques aren't mosques and hospitals are n=
ever hospitals when they are bombed. Celebrating women and children are not=
 civilians. 'Contractors' traveling with the American army to torture and k=
ill Iraqis ARE civilians. CIA personnel are 'civilians' and the people who =
planned and executed the war are all civilians. We're not civilians- we are=
 insurgents, criminals and potential collateral damage. Check out
m to read some thought-provoking commentary on the whole sadistic incident.

In conclusion, some words of advice to Chalabi- you are a mercenary to be b=
ought and sold... it's time to put you up on the market again and hope for =
bidders. Get the car ready, make the trunk as comfortable as possible and h=
ead for the borders.

- posted by river @ 5:16 PM

Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Domains - Claim yours for only $14.70/year


Message: 2
Date: Sun, 23 May 2004 08:54:41 -0700 (PDT)
From: Hassan <>
Subject: GI: Boy mistreated to get dad to talk
To: CASI newsclippings <>,
  IAC discussion <>

[ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ],1,4673476.stor=

GI: Boy mistreated to get dad to talk
Says 16-year-old was stripped naked

By Mike Dorning
Washington Bureau
Published May 20, 2004

WASHINGTON -- A military intelligence analyst who recently completed duty a=
t Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq said Wednesday that the 16-year-old son of a de=
tainee there was abused by U.S. soldiers to break his father's resistance t=
o interrogators.

The analyst said the teenager was stripped naked, thrown in the back of an =
open truck, driven around in the cold night air, splattered with mud and th=
en presented to his father at Abu Ghraib, the prison at the center of the s=
candal over abuse of Iraqi detainees.

Upon seeing his frail and frightened son, the prisoner broke down and cried=
 and told interrogators he would tell them whatever they wanted, the analys=
t said.

The new account of mistreatment came as Army Spec. Jeremy Sivits was senten=
ced in Iraq to a year in prison Wednesday and a bad-conduct discharge after=
 pleading guilty in the first court-martial stemming from the abuses at Abu=

In Washington, top commanders for U.S. forces in Iraq told senators they ne=
ver approved abusive techniques for interrogating prisoners. But they also =
promised that investigators would scrutinize everyone in the chain of comma=
nd, including the generals themselves.

Sgt. Samuel Provance, who maintained the 302nd Military Intelligence Battal=
ion's top-secret computer system at Abu Ghraib prison, gave the account of =
abuse of the teenager in a telephone interview from Germany, where he is no=
w stationed. He said he also has described the incident to Army investigato=

Provance's account of mistreatment of a prisoner's son is consistent with c=
oncerns raised by the International Committee of the Red Cross, which had r=
eceived reports that interrogators were threatening reprisals against detai=
nees' family members.

Provance already has been deemed a credible witness by Maj. Gen. Antonio Ta=
guba, who included the Army sergeant in a list of witnesses whose statement=
s he relied on to make his findings of prisoner mistreatment at Abu Ghraib.

Although Pentagon officials have portrayed the abuses at the prison as the =
isolated conduct of a few out-of-control guards, Provance's account offers =
fresh evidence of broader participation. He said members of Abu Ghraib's mi=
litary intelligence unit were well aware that prisoners were subjected to s=
exual humiliation and other abuse.

One female interrogator told him of forcing detainees to wear nothing but w=
omen's underwear and questioning a male prisoner who was kept naked during =
interrogation, Provance said. He said he overheard colleagues in the milita=
ry intelligence battalion laughing as a soldier in the unit described watch=
ing MPs use two detainees as "practice dummies," first knocking one prisone=
r unconscious with a blow and then doing the same to the other.

Account is 2nd-hand

Provance, 30, said he was not present for the mistreatment of the detainee'=
s son, which he said occurred in December or possibly January. But he said =
an interrogator described the incident to him shortly afterward. When conta=
cted by the Tribune on Wednesday, that soldier declined to comment.

Provance said he escorted the boy from the interrogation cellblock to the p=
rison's general population immediately after the encounter between the teen=
ager and his father.

"This kid was so frail. He was shaking like a leaf," he said.

Provance said he urged the interrogators not to put the teenager in the pri=
son's unruly, poorly supervised general population, but was rebuffed.

"I even went inside and said, `This kid is scared for his life. He's probab=
ly going to be raped. He can't be put in general population,'" Provance sai=

He said he did not know the identity of either the father or son but said t=
he father was described to him as a "high-level individual" who had not pro=
vided useful intelligence in previous questioning.

Army spokesman Col. Joseph Curtin said he could not comment on the incident=
s described by Provance because they are part of an investigation. But Curt=
in said, "We are working very hard to get to the truth."

Maj. Paul Karnaze, a spokesman for the Army Intelligence School at Ft. Huac=
huca, Ariz., said Army policy forbids any abuse or threats of abuse against=
 family members during interrogations. "That's just so far from the Army va=
lues we train," Karnaze said.

Provance said he described the incidents to investigators, most recently in=
 an interview this month with Maj. Gen. George Fay, who is overseeing the A=
rmy's investigation of military intelligence officials' involvement in pris=
oner abuse.

Concerns over a cover-up

Provance said he became concerned about a possible cover-up of the role of =
military intelligence officials after receiving written instructions shortl=
y after the interview telling him not to discuss Abu Ghraib.

In addition, Provance said, Fay warned that he likely would recommend admin=
istrative action against Provance for not reporting abuses before his first=
 sworn statement, made in January. The administrative action would effectiv=
ely bar promotions for Provance.

"I felt like I was being punished for being honest," Provance said.

An Army official said it was routine procedure for military investigators t=
o instruct witnesses not to discuss events that are under examination.

Provance said he questioned treatment of prisoners several times last fall =
without effect.

"I would voice my opinion . . . and they would say, `What do you know? You'=
re a system administrator,'" he said. Among the interrogators "there's a ce=
rtain cockiness," he added.

Provance said his duties recently were switched from a computer systems adm=
inistrator to a military intelligence analyst but he remains on duty with h=
is unit, which returned from Iraq in February. He is now stationed in Heide=
lberg, Germany, he said.

Copyright =A9 2004, Chicago Tribune

Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Domains - Claim yours for only $14.70/year


Message: 3
Date: Sun, 23 May 2004 08:55:24 -0700 (PDT)
From: Hassan <>
Subject: Sergeant `flagged' for telling news media about prison abuses
To: CASI newsclippings <>,
  IAC discussion <>

[ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ]

Sergeant `flagged' for telling news media about prison abuses

By Mike Dorning Washington Bureau

The Army on Friday disciplined a military intelligence analyst who told The=
 Tribune about the mistreatment of a 16-year-old boy and other abuses by in=
terrogators at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq (news - web sites).

Sgt. Samuel Provance, 30, said his battalion commander instructed him to tu=
rn in his top-secret clearance and was informed he would be reassigned.

Provance said he also was told his record is "flagged," meaning he cannot r=
eceive promotions, awards or honors. He added that he was warned he might b=
e subject to further disciplinary action for discussing abuses at the priso=
n with the news media.

"It's in reference to what's happened--for going public," the sergeant said=
. "It's not unexpected."

Now stationed in Germany, Provance recently completed an assignment at Abu =
Ghraib, outside of Baghdad. He also gave on-the-record interviews describin=
g interrogators' roles in the abuses to ABC News, the Washington Post and T=
he Associated Press.

A lawyer familiar with the case said Provance also was ordered Friday not t=
o discuss abuses at the prison with other government agencies, which the la=
wyer said appeared intended to bar him from giving information to congressi=
onal investigators.

Army spokesman Paul Boyce said he could not discuss the sanctions, saying t=
hat Pentagon (news - web sites) policy is to keep personnel actions private=

But he said Provance is considered a material witness in the investigation =
of abuses at Abu Ghraib prison and has been admonished not to discuss matte=
rs that could come up in future testimony to a court-martial.

This week Provance described how interrogators abused the 16-year-old to en=
d his father's resistance to questioning. The teen was stripped naked, thro=
wn in the open back of a truck, driven around on a cold night, splattered w=
ith mud and then presented to his father, he said.

The father then broke down and cried after the incident, and told interroga=
tors he would tell them what they wanted, Provance said.

Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Domains - Claim yours for only $14.70/year

End of casi-news Digest

Sent via the CASI-analysis mailing list
To unsubscribe, visit
All postings are archived on CASI's website at

[Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]