Ce n’est pas une plaisanterie. Les États-Unis invoquent les précédents israéliens et les violations des Droits de l’Homme par Tel Aviv pour justifier la torture de détenus par ses propres agences de renseignement, comme cela est apparu dans un rapport publié par la Commission des Services Secrets du Sénat des États-Unis. Les médias israéliens ont repris les points les plus importants du rapport.
Nous ne sommes pas au bout des révélations au sujet de l’utilisation de la torture par la CIA (Central Intelligence Agency). Un rapport publié par la Commission des Services Secrets du Sénat des États-Unis donne une nouvelle information – reprise hier par le site Web Times of Israel – puisqu’il y est affirmé que la torture est légitime et légalement basée sur les tortures israéliennes infligées aux détenus.
Voici donc comment Israël est devenu une autorité juridique internationale à laquelle la CIA s’est rapportée afin de légitimer la torture qu’elle pratique. Selon le site Times of Israel, après les attaques du 11 septembre 2001 la CIA a commencé à chercher des justifications juridiques pour des techniques coercitives d’interrogation.
En dépit du fait que ces méthodes étaient considérées comme inefficaces parce qu’elles pouvaient « avoir comme conséquence des réponses fausses, » une note publiée en novembre 2001 par la CIA a fait référence au modèle israélien, lequel justifie la torture sous le prétexte qu’il est « nécessaire d’empêcher… un mal imminent…, quand il n’y a le pas d’autre moyen disponible pour empêcher ce mal. »
La CIA a invoqué l’acte de la Cour Suprême israélienne publié en 1999 permettant à des interrogateurs du service de la sécurité intérieure d’Israël – Israel Security Agency, appelée également Shin Bet ou Shabak – d’employer certaines techniques tant qu’elles étaient un sous-produit de l’interrogatoire et non pas des moyens en et par eux-mêmes.
En plus grave, la cour a stipulé que les interrogateurs qui dépassent les limites indiquées pendant les interrogatoires pourraient éviter les poursuites juridiques en invoquant « la nécessité de défense » qui est un principe de droit coutumier permettant à quelqu’un de violer la loi dans les situations urgentes, telles qu’une attaque imminente qui pourrait avoir comme conséquence un grand nombre de morts et blessés.
Le site Web israélien a précisé que cet acte prenait le pas sur les résultats de la Commission de Landau de 1987, qui recommandait d’autoriser les interrogateurs du Shin Bet d’employer « une mesure modérée de pression physique, » sous une surveillance et dans les cas où les interrogateurs supposeraient que les détenus avaient connaissance d’attaques imminentes.
Le site Times of Israel a ajouté qu’en 2005, faisant face à la pression du Congrès à propos des techniques d’interrogation, un juriste de la CIA travaillant à la direction du Renseignement National s’est référée à l’acte de la Cour Suprême israélienne sur la « nécessité de défense, » sous le prétexte qu’il est justifié dans le cas des scénarios d’un tic-tic de bombe [ticking-bomb].
Le site Web israélien a indiqué que deux ans plus tard, une note interne de la CIA a argué du fait que des techniques plus violentes d’interrogation « sont autorisées et justifiées par l’autorité législative, » en se basant sur des actes de justice publiés en Israël, selon le rapport du Sénat. Il a également indiqué que la CIA a étudié les précédents israéliens pour fournir une couverture juridique et législative à ces pratiques. Il a aussi argué du fait que « plusieurs… des techniques étaient probablement permises, mais que cela demande une certaine forme de sanction législative » et que le gouvernement israélien « a finalement obtenu l’autorisation législative, limitée à quelques techniques, » selon le rapport.
Voulant ajouter des justifications mais avec un angle de vue sécuritaire, le rapport a indiqué que la CIA criait à qui voulait l’entendre que l’information tirée des détenus [torturés] « avait fourni une bonne quantité d’informations au sujet des complots d’Al-Qaïda, » dont le cerveau derrière l’attaque du 11 septembre 2001 qui aurait révélé un « complot terroriste en Arabie Saoudite contre Israël. » Le site Web israélien cependant, a précisé que les enquêteurs du Sénat ont accusé la CIA de pratiquer la torture au delà des limites juridiques et de tromper la nation avec des affabulations au sujet des séances d’interrogatoire censées avoir sauvé des vies mais sans que cela soit réellement étayé, pas même par des enregistrements des services des renseignements.
D’ex-officiels de la CIA et et d’anciens élus du Parti républicain au Sénat ont contesté les conclusions du rapport et ont accusé Les Démocrates d’inexactitudes, d’analyse sans méthode et de preuves de pacotille pour arriver à une conclusion établie à l’avance.
(…)Le 9 décembre, elle fut évoquée -sous couvert d’anonymat- dans le rapport sénatorial consacré au programme de détention et d’interrogatoire dit « renforcé » (ayant conduit à produire des aveux fabriqués) de la CIA entre 2001 et 2009. Le principal grief qui lui est adressé : avoir exagéré -ou délibéremment menti- sur l’efficacité de pratiques -apparentées à de la torture- pour obtenir des informations sur la menace terroriste d’Al Qaïda. En outre, elle aurait été indirectement responsable -en 2000/2001- d’une collaboration défectueuse avec le FBI au sujet des futurs pirates de l’air présumés du 11-Septembre.
Enfin, il faut rappeler ici que le rapport de la commission d’enquête du 11-Septembre, qui entérina ce qu’il convient de dénommer factuellement la « version officielle » (en désignant Oussama Ben Laden comme le commanditaire des attentats), est principalement construit sur ces témoignages basés sur la torture. Ce détail avait été souligné en 2009 par l’auteur de ces lignes, lors d’un entretien avec Jean-Charles Brisard, consultant à la fois proche des services secrets français et des think-tanks emblématiques de la mouvance américano-sioniste.(…)
Un élément d’information n’a pas été rapporté par les médias traditionnels : sa connexion avec la faction pro-israélienne.
Le 19 janvier, le site américain Cryptocomb, spécialisé dans la divulgation de documents officiels relatifs à la CIA, publia un article consacré au passé d’AFB -dont l’identité avait déjà été divulguée, fin 2011, sur un site animé par Sibel Edmonds, ex-agente du FBI.
When the CIA looked for legal cover for its post-9/11 torture programme, it is little surprise it looked to Israel. Washington’s ally has its own Guantanamo, Camp 1391, which the Israeli Supreme Court has consistently shielded from investigation.
Footnotes in government reports are often the place where disgruntled bureaucrats leave clues. It is where bits of information that lead elsewhere are suggestively placed. Senior officials might not allow potentially controversial information into the body of a report.
In the Senate report on CIA torture there is such a footnote. Early in the report’s more than five hundred pages, footnote 51 concerns the November 26, 2001 Draft of Legal Appendix, Hostile Interrogations: Legal Consideration for CIA Officers.
US law is fairly clear: torture is illegal in all cases… The Israeli judiciary has been kinder on torture.
This draft memorandum, according to the Senate report, “cited the ‘Israeli example’ as a possible basis for arguing that ‘torture was necessary to prevent imminent, significant, physical harm to persons, where there is no other available means to prevent the harm.’”
US law is fairly clear: torture is illegal in all cases. There is no “ticking-time bomb” scenario that allows for the cruel and inhuman treatment of prisoners. If it has no basis in US law, the CIA suggests, then its officers could use Israeli practice as a precedent. The Israeli judiciary has been kinder on torture.
In 2007, the CIA was worried: could they be held accountable for the torture their officers had been conducting at the so-called “black sites”?
Correspondence between the Principal Deputy Attorney General Steven Bradbury (of the US Justice Department) and Acting General Counsel of the CIA, John Rizzo, testifies to that anxiety. Rizzo sought justification in the “Israeli example.”
The US Congress had been discussing the McCain Amendment – to prohibit the “inhumane treatment of prisoners ». Rizzo wrote there was a “striking” similarity between the US discussions and those held in Israel in 1999. Rizzo wrote the Israeli Supreme Court ruled “that several techniques were possibly permissible, but require some form of legislative sanction ». He hoped Congress would provide such sanction. If not, Rizzo invoked the “necessity defense” – imported from Israel – that if it became necessary, it was acceptable to use torture.
Why did the CIA seek justification in the Israeli example? After all, says Laleh Khalili, author of Time in the Shadows, the CIA has its own history of torture. It was used in Latin America to decisive effect and enshrined in the CIA’s 1963 KUBARK Counterintelligence Interrogation manual.
That manual is not for the faint of heart. Its style makes torture appear decidedly banal – “the electric current should be known in advance, so that transformers and other modifying devices will be on hand if needed”, it notes in a section on electric shocks.
Sections of the current Senate report on Torture could very well have been lifted from the 1963 manual: detainees should be imprisoned “in a cell which has no light”; although “an environment still more subject to control, such as water-tank or iron lung, is even more effective ». The more honest justification for CIA torture in the War on Terror should not have been in Israeli practice, but in what historian Greg Grandin calls “empire’s workshop », Latin America.
Nevertheless, Khalili notes, the CIA likely wanted legitimacy in the courts – Israeli if not American – rather than referring to its history. The Israeli Supreme Court is staffed by people who have had distinguished fellowships from Princeton and Harvard – “and whose supposedly liberal rulings nevertheless leave room for a range of methods of torture ». It seemed an ideal place to seek a precedent.
However, the 1999 Israeli Supreme Court ruling has a massive hole in it. It assumes that only in extraordinary circumstances can Israeli officials use torture. However, as lawyers for the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel confirm, there is “normal” torture and then “extraordinary” torture.
Lawyer Bana Shoughry-Badarne says that when she interviews Palestinians who have been released from Israel’s prisons, they often say that the treatment was ‘adi, normal or as usual. But what is usual for them has been described by attorney Lea Tsemel: “Almost every Palestinian who was interrogated can tell you about the sleep deprivation, the denial of access to a toilet or shower, the hunger, the physical pressures, including being made to sit tied to a small stool for days, the beatings and the kicks, the threats, the hanging, the bending, the shaking (sometimes) to death, etc.”
The sheer length of the list of routine tortures Tsemel rattles off should concern the reader.
The justification for CIA torture in the War on Terror should not have been Israel, but it’s own history in Latin America.
What is an ‘adi detention? Shoughry-Badarne tells the story of a Palestinian with Israeli citizenship held for thirty-three days in incommunicado detention. Toward the end of his time in prison, four or five members of Israeli intelligence (GSS) interrogated him, “while he was being humiliated and handcuffed painfully ». GSS officers threatened his family, told him that his twin babies would not have a father – and then told him that his father had been arrested. He was knocked about a bit. This is ‘adi.
I asked Laleh Khalili if she saw any similarities between CIA torture techniques and the ‘adi methods of the GSS. She made a list for me: “placing people inside boxes in which they have to contort their bodies to fit; sleep-deprivation; food control; extremes of cold and hot. Dogs have been used in all cases, as has loud music and darkness. A mid-1990s lawsuit by two Lebanese detainees accused their jailers of using tools to anally rape the men, which is remarkably reminiscent of the ‘rectal hydration’ torture.”
Israel has its own Guantánamo: Camp 1391 – between Hadera and Afula in northern Israel. In 2009, the UN Committee Against Torture asked for access to this Camp, but their request was summarily denied. Remarkably, the Israeli Supreme Court has prevented any investigation of Israel’s Guantánamo. Unspeakable treatment of prisoners was the norm in 1391.
Shoughry-Badarne notes that none of the seven hundred complaints of torture made to the GSS authorities have resulted in any serious investigation, let alone criminal charges. In 2009 Israel’s High Court of Justice decreed that the Supreme Court ruling of a decade earlier was unenforceable. In other words, Israel’s policy of torture could continue without any legal barrier.
No wonder the CIA lawyers salivated over the Israeli example.
The Chanukah Miracle and CIA Torture
The Guardian accusé d’antisémitisme pour avoir choisi une photo de Bush devant un chandelier de la Hannoukha pour illustrer l’approbation de la torture par l’administration Bush:
The Observer (sister site of the Guardian) published an official editorial today (The Observer view on torture, Dec. 14) in response to a report issued by the US Senate Intelligence Committee into the CIA’s interrogation of terror suspects in the years after the 9/11 attacks.
Whilst there’s nothing especially noteworthy in the editorial itself, which condemned “America’s most senior leaders, from former president George W Bush down”, for directing and condoning “the use of abhorrent illegal techniques against terrorism suspects that plainly amounted to torture”, the photo editors chose to accompany the piece is quite curious.
Guardian editors chose the photo of Bush in front of a menorah (from a 2008 White House Hanukkah ceremony) despite the absence of any references to Jews in the text, and the fact that the media group no doubt has countless other photos of the former president – which don’t include eye-catching symbols evoking one particular religion which isn’t the focus of the editorial – that they could have used instead.
No, we’re not accusing the Guardian of antisemitism, just extremely poor editorial judgment.
VIDEO – DAVID DUKE: Who Taught America to Torture? This video will shock any American and well it should. It is not the America that we middle-aged grew up in. The architects of the new America are destroying every value sacred to our Forefathers.
Cette jeune femme se doutait-elle qu’on allait faire d’elle le bouc émissaire de la torture à Abou Ghraib?
Le véritable cerveau des opérations à Abou Ghraib se nommait en fait John Israel. Ce n’est pas un nom irlandais ou italien…
What Are Those Contractors Doing in Iraq?
But Taguba’s report also mentions four civilian contractors, all of whom were assigned to the 205th Military Intelligence Brigade. Two of those civilians, Steven Stephanowicz and, John Israel, were « either directly or indirectly responsible for the abuses » at Abu Ghraib, the report says.
Contractors Implicated in Prison Abuse Remain on the Job
(…)The other contractor implicated, John Israel, identified as a civilian translator assigned to the same brigade, is described in one place in the Army report as a CACI employee and in another as an employee of Titan, which provides translators for the Army throughout Iraq.(…)
Ralph Williams, a spokesman for the Titan Corporation in San Diego, said Tuesday that John Israel, one of the contract employees implicated in the prison abuse scandal, worked for a Titan subcontractor that he would not name.
The Army’s classified report on the abuse at Abu Ghraib identifies Mr. Israel as a translator who was, with others, « directly or indirectly responsible for the abuses » at the prison and recommended « immediate disciplinary action. »
Article disparu du web: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn…-2004May8.html What Are Those Contractors Doing in Iraq?
By Deborah Avant
Sunday, May 9, 2004; Page B01 The alleged U.S. abuses at Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad, and the suggestion that contract employees may have been among those responsible, has cast a spotlight on the military’s extraordinary reliance on civilian contractors to perform even the most sensitive jobs. Consider this: During the first Gulf War, U.S. forces employed one civilian contractor in Iraq for every 60 active-duty personnel. At the start of the current Iraq war, that figure was about one in 10. Contractors, in Iraq and elsewhere, are doing a lot more than building and maintaining camps, preparing food and doing laundry for troops. They support M1 tanks and Apache helicopters on the battlefield; they train American forces, Army ROTC units and even foreign militaries under contract to the United States. And they have flooded into Iraq to provide the military with security and crime prevention services. Having closely followed this explosion of military contracting since the end of the Cold War, I thought I knew the extent of it. But I have to admit that I did not know the government was also outsourcing the interrogation of military prisoners. The information was far from secret. Indeed, CACI International, a defense firm based in Arlington whose employees were implicated in an Army investigation in February and in a subsequent report by Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba, had advertised on its Web site for interrogators in Iraq. Thousands of such contracts are issued by a long list of offices within the Pentagon, and even by the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) in Baghdad, to a wide range of companies for innocuous-sounding services. (The prisoner interrogators were hired under an « intelligence services » category.) This illustrates some of the difficulties in tracking what has become a vast web of military contracting. When the United States deploys its military forces, the process is easily understood: Active or reserve officers, who report up the chain of command to the president according to rules set by Congress and governed by the Uniform Code of Military Justice, go overseas. The media cover deployments and the public is informed. But there are no standard procedures for deploying private security workers under military contracts, which makes it far more difficult to gather information about who they are, what they’re doing and for whom. They are not part of the military command; they are not covered by the code of military justice. The events of the last few days illustrate those differences well. When reports of abuses at Abu Ghraib surfaced, it was clear that the 800th Military Police Brigade (which includes the 372nd Military Police Company, home to many of the accused) was in charge of the prison; prisoner interrogations were run by the 205th Military Intelligence Brigade. But Taguba’s report also mentions four civilian contractors, all of whom were assigned to the 205th Military Intelligence Brigade. Two of those civilians, Steven Stephanowicz and John Israel, were « either directly or indirectly responsible for the abuses » at Abu Ghraib, the report says. A third contractor, Adel Nakhla, is named as a translator — and a suspect. A fourth, Torin Nelson, was said to be a witness. Both Nakhla and Nelson are listed as employees of Titan Corp., a security contractor based in San Diego. The report identified Stephanowicz as an interrogator working for CACI; Israel, an interpreter, was also said to be working for CACI, although the company has denied that. Some news reports have identified Israel as an employee of Titan, which in turn has said he works for one of its subcontractors. So, we are not even sure for whom these contractors work or worked. Nor do we know how many other contract employees were — and may still be — working at the prison. (In his testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Friday, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld put the number of contract interrogators and linguists at Abu Ghraib at about 40; other Pentagon officials cited different figures in their testimony.) We do not know precisely what roles these contract employees had at the prison or to which group or agency they were accountable. To trace that, we would need to know the contracting agent — someone representing a group within the Army, probably, but which one? Military Intelligence? The Iraqi Survey Group (a Defense Intelligence Agency unit responsible for investigating weapons of mass destruction and reportedly in charge of the most important Iraqi prisoners)? And how would civilians such as Stephanowicz and Israel have become such a dominant force at a military facility? To whom did they answer on a daily basis? We cannot simply consider where they sat in the chain of command (as we can with military forces). We need to know who issued the contract and what it said. And that is not easy information to obtain. A General Accounting Office review of contracted military services last year cited problems stemming from this lack of information. The agency’s report, which focused on services delivered in the Balkans and Southwest Asia, found that Department of Defense management of contractors varied widely. Smooth operations require that commanders in the field be able to oversee contractors, but in fact the officer who is expected to ensure that a company meets the terms of its contract may be back in the United States. Field commanders have no easy way to find out what exactly a contractor has been sent to do. All of this makes oversight difficult even among the executive agencies that hire private security. These problems with oversight in Iraq are not limited to Abu Ghraib prison. While we know how many military forces are in the country, even the federal government doesn’t seem to know how many contractors are there. In an April 2 letter to Rumsfeld, Rep. Ike Skelton (D-Mo.) requested information about the number of private security personnel and their role in Iraq. In a May 4 letter in response, L. Paul Bremer, head of the CPA, put that number at « approximately 20,000, » most of whom, he said, were under contract to Iraqi companies or foreign private companies — not to American forces. His list of the private security companies working in Iraq, though, included neither CACI nor Titan, which suggests that the real number may be far higher. The uncertainties extend to the handling of suspected crimes. In the wake of allegations of abuse at the prison, Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, commander of the 800th MP Brigade, was admonished and suspended; six others have been reprimanded; one has been admonished; and six additional soldiers face more serious charges. We can argue about whether this is an adequate response, but at least we know what the response is. Months after Taguba issued his report to the Pentagon’s central command, we still don’t know what legal action, if any, the civilian contractors may face. CACI claims that it has not been contacted formally by the Army on this matter, and its employees are still working in Iraq. The Pentagon now says that it began an investigation of the Military Intelligence Brigade, civilian contractors and the Iraqi Survey Group — but not until April 24. What accounts for the delay? And where are these civilian contractors in the meantime? Are they still working in the prison? It is also hard to gauge how individuals employed by contracting companies might be prosecuted. (See the article below.) The government could prosecute the company or companies that employed them under the Federal Acquisition Regulations for material breach, which includes criminal behavior by employees. The companies could also be prevented from bidding on future U.S. contracts. Congress is justifiably concerned about the abuses that may have been committed by American forces. Congressional questions about the role of contractors, though, also illustrate the high hurdle Congress faces in overseeing contracts. While Congress has access to the ins and outs of the military — indeed, it passes the laws under which the military is regulated — its access to information about contracts (in Iraq and elsewhere) is more circumscribed. For example, the United States often hires contractors to train foreign militaries, but the annual consolidated report on military assistance and sales, which informs Congress about foreign training efforts, does not include information on which companies are conducting the training or what precisely they are being paid to do. This is simply the nature of contracting. Indeed, while some critics say that Congress should increase its oversight, keeping track of contracts and subcontracts among many agencies and from countless companies would be a huge job and require a dramatic (and costly) change in congressional oversight. Individual citizens have even less access to such information. Government reporting (and media coverage) on the war in Iraq focuses on military forces. The word « soldier » evokes a set of common understandings. It is harder to comprehend the structure of military contractors, their relationship with other contractors and their involvement in so many different military jobs. Even the language is confusing. When four private security contractors were brutally killed and mutilated in Fallujah, some Americans heard « contractors » and imagined that they were construction workers, not armed guards. The alleged Abu Ghraib abuses raise central questions about the training of U.S. forces and the chain of command, questions that rightly dominate the current national discussion. Yet the role of military contractors adds an important new dimension that should encourage more searching questions about this march toward privatizing military services and its implications for what is knowable about how sensitive military jobs are being performed — and whether adequate controls are in place for the innumerable private contractors who are now doing a soldier’s job.
The actual interrogators accused of encouraging U.S. troops to abuse Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib jail were working for at least one company with extensive military and commercial contacts with Israel. 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 defense minister.
According to J.P. London’s company, CACI International, the visit of London — sponsored by an Israeli lobby group and including U.S. congressmen and other defense contractors — was « to promote opportunities for strategic partnerships and joint ventures between U.S. and Israeli defense and homeland security agencies. »
The Pentagon and the occupation powers in Iraq insist that only U.S. citizens have been allowed to question prisoners in Abu Ghraib but this takes no account of Americans who may also hold double citizenship. The once secret torture report by U.S. Gen. Antonio Taguba refers to « third country nationals » involved in the mistreatment of prisoners in Iraq.
Taguba mentions Steven Stephanovic and John Israel as involved in the abuses at Abu Ghraib. Staphanovic, who worked for CACI — known to the U.S. military as « Khaki » — was said by Taguba to have « allowed and/or instructed MPs (military police), who were not trained in interrogation techniques, to facilitate interrogations by ‘setting conditions’ … he clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse. » One of Staphanovic’s co-workers, Joe Ryan — who was not named in the Taguba report — now says he underwent an « Israeli interrogation course » before going to Iraq.
We know the Pentagon asked Israel for its « rules of engagement » in the occupied West Bank and Gaza. Israeli officers have briefed their U.S. opposite numbers and, according to The Associated Press, « in January and February of 2003, Israeli and American troops trained together in southern Israel’s Negev desert … Israel has also hosted senior law enforcement officials from the United States for a seminar on counter-terrorism. »
Stephanovic of CACI, who may also be Australian, was accused by Taguba’s army report of making « a false statement to the investigation team regarding … his knowledge of abuses. » Another outside interrogator, Adel Nakhla, who may be of Egyptian origin, was a witness to the « stacking » of naked prisoners in Abu Ghraib. John Israel « misled » investigators by denying he had witnessed misconduct and did not have « security clearance. »
Israel, according to Titan — two of whose employees were mentioned in Taguba’s report — works for one of the company’s « sub-contractors. » Titan refused to name the « sub-contractor. »
Why? Among the company’s former directors is ex-CIA director James Woolsey, one of the architects of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, a friend of Ahmed Chalabi and a prominent pro-Israeli lobbyist in Washington. London says CACI « does not condone or tolerate or endorse in any fashion any illegal, inappropriate behavior on the part of its employees in any circumstances at any time anywhere. » (…)
(…) A reasonable interpretation of Taguba’s somewhat garbled answer is that, yes, the MPs and soldiers who committed sadistic outrages against detainees acted under the influence and at the instigation of those they believed to be intelligence officers, some of whom were “third country nationals.”
Senator Akaka follows up with a question for Secretary Cambone: “What kind of training,” he wanted to know, “did the U.S. civilian contractors have prior to going to Iraq?”
The look on Cambone’s face made the whole dreary procedure worth it, I thought his eyebrows were going to fly right off.
It is no secret that the Israelis have been “advising” the Americans on how to run the occupation: after all, they have so much experience in the matter, and are more than eager to impart their hard-won expertise. The methods employed by Israeli security forces are quite different from those utilized by the U.S. military: the use of “limited” torture is okay by them, and the Palestinians are no strangers to the sort of treatment meted out to the inmates at Abu Ghraib. So when Senator Akaka asked Cambone what kind of training the contractors had received, my first thought was: The very best!
The Mossad is rightly feared throughout the Middle East, and the world, as the most ruthless (and daring) intelligence agency of them all. Only the KGB ever rivaled its reputation. That they would not hesitate to employ the sort of interrogation methods used to “soften up” the prisoners of Abu Ghraib is beyond dispute: just ask the Palestinians – and Human Rights Watch. That we have imported them, along with their methods, into Iraq seems altogether likely.
But, hey, wait a minute, how is it that American soldiers were taking orders from civilian contractors, never mind “third country nationals”? Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) cleared that up when he put the question to Taguba pointblank:
SEN. GRAHAM: “Part of the defense that we’re going to be hearing about in these court martials is that the people that we’re charging are going to say this system that we see photographic evidence of, was at least encouraged if not directed by others. Do you think that’s an accurate statement?”
GEN. TAGUBA: “Sir, I would say that they were probably influenced by others –”
SEN. GRAHAM: “Okay –”
GEN. TAGUBA: ” – if not necessarily directed specifically by others.”
As U.S. and, in all likelihood, Israeli intelligence officers looked on approvingly, Trailer-Park Lynndie and her ex-prison guard boyfriend, with the active collaboration of the other MPs, systematically abused and degraded the inmates. So much of this nightmare scenario – the hooded prisoners forced to engage in behavior looked on with utter horror in Muslim society – seems like such a gift to Osama bin Laden that the revelation of Israeli involvement gives the whole affair a surreal quality.
(…) »Unlike the seven reservist guards facing criminal trials and military intelligence officers under investigation, interrogator Steven Stefanowicz and translator John Israel face no accountability, let alone punishment. Being civilians, they are not subject to military law nor to the Geneva Convention.
By Pratap Chatterjee and A.C. Thompson May 7, 2004
(…) »According to the Army report: « Stephanowicz, a CACI interrogator, « [m]ade a false statement to the investigation team regarding the locations of his interrogations, the activities during his interrogations, and his knowledge of abuses. » Further, investigators found, Stephanowicz encouraged Military Police to terrorize inmates, and « clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse. »
« Israel, apparently misled investigators, denying that he witnessed any misconduct. The report says that Israel should not even have been in the place because, he « [d]id not have a security clearance. » (It’s not clear whether Israel works for CACI or Titan but CACI officials have denied employing Israel.)
Israeli link possible in US torture techniques In exchange for interrogation training, did Washington award security contracts? By Ali Abunimah Special to The Daily Star
CHICAGO, Illinois: The head of the American defense contracting firm implicated in the torture of Iraqis at Abu Ghraib prison has close ties to Israel and visited an Israeli « anti-terror » training camp in the occupied West Bank earlier this year.
Their treatment does not reflect the nature of the American people. That’s not the way we do things in America.
APART from the failings of the senior officers who should have done more to prevent the abuse, General Taguba names four individuals as key suspects.
« Specifically, » Taguba wrote, « I suspect that Col. Thomas M. Pappas, LTC Steve L. Jordan, Mr. Steven Stephanowicz, and Mr. John Israel were either directly or indirectly responsible for the abuses at Abu Ghraib and strongly recommend immediate disciplinary action. »
Jordan is former director of the Joint Interrogation and Debriefing Center and Liaison Officer to the 205th MI Brigade.
Stephanowicz is a « civilian interrogator » employed by CACI International of Chantilly, Va., and
« John Israel » is said to be a « civilian interpreter. »
Both were working with the 205th MI Brigade at the time of the abuse. According to the report these private contractors were at times supervising the interrogations.
« In general, » Taguba wrote, « U.S. civilian contract personnel (Titan Corp., CACI, etc.) third country nationals, and local contractors do not appear to be properly supervised within the detention facility at Abu Ghraib. »
The third country nationals are not identified in the report.
Although Stephanowicz and Israel are both named as being « directly or indirectly responsible for the abuses at Abu Ghraib, » very little has been said about either of them in the mainstream media. Why are they being overlooked?
Jack London, chairman, president and CEO of CACI International Incorporated, traveled to Israel in January this year  as part of a high-level delegation of US Congressmen, defense contractors and pro-Israel lobbyists, sponsored and paid for in part by the Jerusalem Fund of Aish HaTorah, a pro-Israel lobbying and fundraising group, and Greenberg Traurig, LLP, a prominent Washington law and lobby firm.
The purpose of the visit, according to a CACI press release, was
« to promote opportunities for strategic partnerships and joint ventures between US and Israeli defense and homeland security companies. »
As one of the highlights of the visit, London was presented with the Albert Einstein Technology Award by Israeli Defense Minister [Lieutenant-General] Shaul Mofaz (above right, with friend) at a gala dinner at Jerusalem city hall, for « achievements in the field of defense and national security. »
Delegates also spent several hours in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights with Housing and Construction Minister Effie Eitam, a former Israeli general, who is notorious for his view that Israel should « transfer » — that is, expel — all the Palestinians.
According to the official itinerary for the Jan. 11-17 Defense Aerospace Homeland Security Mission, obtained from the Jerusalem Fund of Aish HaTorah, London’s trip included a visit to Beit Horon, « the central training camp for the anti-terrorist forces of the Israeli police and the border police, » in the occupied West Bank. The visitors were also « briefed by top experts, » and were able to « witness exercises related to anti-terror warfare. »
Two CACI employees, Steven Stephanowicz and John Israel, were named in the leaked report [download pdf] by US Major General Antonio M. Taguba (above) on the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison. Taguba wrote that Stephanowicz, a « contract US civilian interrogator, »
« allowed and/or instructed MPs (military police), who were not trained in interrogation techniques, to facilitate interrogations by ‘setting conditions’ which were neither authorized or in accordance with applicable regulations/policy. He clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse. »
John Israel, an interpreter, did not have the appropriate security clearance, according to Taguba.
Although Taguba recommended that Stephanowicz be terminated and his security clearance revoked, a May 5  statement from CACI confirmed, « at present, all CACI employees continue to work on site providing the contracted for services to our clients in that location. » It added: « We have not received any information to stop any of our work, to terminate or suspend any of our employees. »
Although no evidence has emerged directly linking CACI’s involvement in the Abu Ghraib atrocities to Israel, it has long been known that the US military has been interested in « learning » from Israel’s experience attempting to suppress the Palestinian uprising. In March 2003, for example, the AP reported that the « the (US) military has been listening closely to Israeli experts and picking up tips from years of Israeli Army operations in Palestinian areas and Lebanese towns. »
This cooperation has included briefings of US personnel by Israeli officers, and, according to AP,
« In January and February (2003), Israeli and American troops trained together in southern Israel’s Negev Desert … Israel has also hosted senior law enforcement officials from the United States for a seminar on counterterrorism. »
Meanwhile, more evidence has emerged undermining the US thesis that the abuses at Abu Ghraib was the work of a « few bad apples. » The Guardian reported that the « sexual humiliation of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison was not an invention of maverick guards, but part of a system of ill-treatment and degradation used by special forces soldiers that is now being disseminated among ordinary troops and contractors. »
This system, known to insiders as « R2I, » short for resistance to interrogation, also includes such methods as « hooding, sleep deprivation, time disorientation and depriving prisoners not only of dignity, but of fundamental human needs, such as warmth, water and food. » These are all techniques long employed by Israel.
The visit of the US delegation that included the CACI head exposes a rarefied web of influence sharing in which US government officials and congressmen, defense contractors and lobbyists parcel out huge contracts, and siphon significant portions off to Israel.
As Batya Feldman of Israel’s Globes financial news service put it, the visit provided Israeli companies with « an excellent opportunity to encounter big bucks in homeland security. »
To help Israeli companies pry some of these « big bucks » loose, the visit included seminars for Israeli companies given by US pro-Israel lobbyists called « How to Approach the Homeland Security Department, » and « How to Sell to the US Defense Department. »
Israeli participants would have had a chance to test the helpful tips, since present on the trip were Assistant Secretary for Homeland Security Robert Liscouski and many leading US legislators, including top members of the US House and Senate Armed Services Committees, which jointly oversee tens of billions of dollars in military spending.
By Dr. David Duke, Probably no event in recent history has been more damaging to the image of America than the tortures that occurred at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. President Bush claimed that one of the justifications of attacking Iraq, was that people were being tortured by Saddam Hussein in that country.
Now that the graphic, disgusting pictures of Abu Ghraib reveal unspeakable tortures of Iraqi men and women in American custody (and the world only saw a very small portion of them), it is certain that America’s enemies will use Bush’s own logic to inspire and justify murderous attacks on Americans.
What happened at Abu Ghraib is as unAmerican and as damaging to America as any attack by al-Qaeda . The tortures that occurred there are symbolic of the fact that America has lost its way and that those in control of our nation have no sense of American justice or our honorable traditions.
No appeal to patriotism is any excuse for the tortures. I am a Patriot. I love America. I even instructed anti-Communist officers for the U.S. Government in Laos during the Viet Nam War. But, what happened at Abu Ghraib is symbolic that America has lost her heart and soul, and I grieve for our lost sense of morality and justice. Any government that would spawn those kinds of injustices on other peoples will someday commit them on its own. Once the line is crossed, there is no going back.
From the beginning of the Abu Ghraib scandal (which we came perilously close to not even finding out about), I was shocked by the sickening sexual nature of the tortures: anal and oral rape of male prisoners, vaginal and oral rape of girls and women, helpless nude Iraqi males tying to protect their genitals from vicious police dogs. Can there be a more horrible image of Americans than what these photos reveal? The whole sordid tale seems like something from the pen of the Marquis de Sade.
The abuse at Abu Ghraib is certainly foreign to traditional concepts of American justice, so how did it come about? After sifting through mountains of evidence, I believe that question can be definitively answered: The same Jewish supremacist forces that orchestrated the Iraq War also brought to Iraq the torture methods of the Israeli State. The tortures of Abu Ghraib are completely consonant with the history of Jewish supremacism. As Jewish manipulators exercise their supremacy over our political and media establishment, America becomes more and more their agent in these crimes. We do so at the risk of all we hold dear.
War has frequently brought horrendous consequences on prisoners of war, but in American history most of those consequences were due to the poor conditions of prison camps, not on a purposeful implementation of tortures. In the War for Southern Independence, both Northern and Southern prisoners of war suffered terrible loses from malnutrition and disease in the prison camps of both sides.
It wasn’t until the aftermath of the Second World War that America suffered the scandal of prison torture. The Jewish media supremacy makes few Americans of today aware of the scandals surrounding the Nuremberg and other war crimes tribunals against the Germans. Sen. Robert Taft of Ohio held congressional hearings that documented the widespread torture of German detainees long after the ending of hostilities.
Army investigators discovered, for instance, that in a group of 139 German detainees, 137 had endured testicular damage at the hands of their interrogators. An American judge who was a member of the Simpson Army Commission that investigated the methods used at the Dachau Concentration Camp spoke out against these policies. In the January 9, 1949, Washington Daily News and in the January 23, 1949, London Sunday Pictorial he told of some examples of the use of torture.
. . .The investigators, he said, “would put a black hood over the accused’s head and then punch him in the face with brass knuckles, kick him and beat him with rubber hoses. . . . All but two of the Germans, in the 139 cases we investigated, had been kicked in the testicles beyond repair.”
John F. Kennedy talks about Sen. Taft in his bestselling book, Profiles in Courage. A widely popular Senator and the front runner for nomination to President of the United States, Taft risked and ultimately sacrificed his own presidential ambitions to stand up on what he felt was a vital principle of American morality, and it earned him a place in Kennedy’s popular book. Taft ‘s congressional inquiries made very obvious the Jewish elements behind these outrages.
Iowa Supreme Court justice Charles F. Wenersturm resigned his appointment in the War Crimes Tribunal in disgust at the proceedings. He contended that Jews, many of whom were refugees from Germany and newly made “naturalized” American citizens, dominated the staff of the Nuremberg apparatus and were more interested in revenge than justice.
The entire atmosphere is unwholesome. . . . Lawyers, clerks, interpreters and researchers were employed who became Americans only in recent years, whose backgrounds were embedded in Europe’s hatreds and prejudices.
Even American military hero George S. Patton weighed in on the whole process saying:
I am frankly opposed to this war criminal stuff. It is not cricket and is Semitic. I am also opposed to sending POW’s to work as slaves in foreign lands, where many will be starved to death. (The Patton Papers by Blumenthal)
Prolific use of torture by Jewish supremacists is easy to historically document. For instance, in the early days of the Soviet secret police, the Jews thoroughly dominated the greatest torture and mass murder machine in the history of mankind, one that claimed at least 15 million victims and easily eclipsed the alleged Nazi crimes. The fact that every American is extremely cognizant of the “Holocaust” but profoundly ignorant of Soviet mass murder and torture is another fact that pointedly reveals Jewish press power.
Israeli historian Louis Rapaport in his popular book,Stalin’s War Against the Jews, casually admits what we Gentiles are not supposed to know:
Under Lenin, Jews became involved in all aspects of the Revolution, including its dirtiest work. Despite the Communists’ vows to eradicate Anti-Semitism, it spread rapidly after the revolution — partly because of the prominence of so many Jews in the Soviet administration, as well as in the traumatic, inhuman Sovietization drives that followed. Historian Salo Baron has noted that an immensely disproportionate number of Jews joined the new Soviet secret police, the Cheka…. And many of those who fell afoul of the Cheka would be shot by Jewish investigators.
When one fast forwards to the State of Israel, from its very beginning torture has been an integral part of the Jewish state. One of the factors that drove the British from Palestine was the torture and murder of British soldiers. Even at present, there is copious evidence that the relatively small populated nation of Israel is the biggest violator of human rights in the world and has one of the highest prison populations in the world. Torture is accepted as a perfectly legal routine against Palestinians.
A feature article by Joel Greenburg in the very pro-Israel New York Times titled “Israel Rethinks Interrogation of Arabs”, stated matter-of-factly that Israel tortures 500 to 600 Palestinians every month. That figure, which is probably too low as it comes from the pro-Israel New York Times, means that each year at least 6,000 Palestinians are tortured in Israel. Torture of Palestinians has been going on in Israel since 1948. Even if one uses just one-half of the number of Palestinians that Mr. Greenburg says suffer torture each year — at least 150,000 human beings have been tortured in Israeli jails since the founding of the Jewish state, and likely the numbers are a lot higher.
Two years before the Abu Ghraib abuses came to light I wrote an article about how the Israelis force Palestinians, under the coercion of torture, to sexually abuse each other, including the rape of young Palestinian girls. They photograph the outrages so as to blackmail the detainee when he is released. If the Palestinian will not become an agent for Israel, the Israelis will circulate photos showing him engaged in homosexuality. If he has been forced to rape a Palestinian girl, they will threaten to send pictures of the rape to her family. Such pictures would result in disgrace and probably even death for the offender in the strongly religious Palestinian community.
This established Israeli tactic answers the question of why the thousands of photos were taken at Abu Ghraib. The Israeli interrogators (contractors) at Abu Ghraib instructed our soldiers to commit sexual perversions and to photograph these sordid crimes.
There is clear and ample evidence of direct Israeli involvement at Abu Ghraib. A courageous journalist of the CBC National News did a report showing Israel’s connection to the abuses.
On the May 4 2004, a broadcast of CBC TV’s National News correspondent Neil Macdonald delivered the lead story from Washington:
the occupation of Iraq and George Bush’s unprecedented alliance with the right wing government of Israel has placed Americans overseas in danger.
Macdonald then focuses the camera on a retired US diplomat, Eugene Bird, who makes the suggestion that the Mossad was behind the tortures:
We know that the Israeli intelligence was operating in Baghdad after the war was over. The question should be: Were there any foreign interrogators among those that were recommending very, very bad treatment for the prisoners?
The key figure at Abu Ghraib is a shadowy, “third country national” named John Israel. Have any guess as to what nationality he is? Here are excerpts from an article by Robert Fisk of Britain’s The Independent titled The re-writing of Iraqi history is now going on at supersonic speed – 26 May 2004:
And let’s cast our eyes upon that little, all-important matter of responsibility. The actual interrogators accused of encouraging U.S. troops to abuse Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib jail were working for at least one company with extensive military and commercial contacts with Israel. 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 defense minister…
In the torture report by U.S. Gen. Antonio Taguba refers to “third country nationals” involved in the mistreatment of prisoners in Iraq.
Taguba mentions Steven Staphanovic and John Israel as involved in the abuses at Abu Ghraib. Staphanovic, who worked for CACI — known to the U.S. military as “Khaki” — was said by Taguba to have “allowed and/or instructed MPs (military police), who were not trained in interrogation techniques, to facilitate interrogations by ‘setting conditions’ … he clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse.” One of Staphanovic’s co-workers, Joe Ryan — who was not named in the Taguba report — now says he underwent an “Israeli interrogation course” before going to Iraq…
In a July 3, 2004 report by Britain’s BBC entitled Israeli interrogators ‘in Iraq’ and subtitled The US officer at the heart of the Abu Ghraib prison scandal says she has evidence that Israelis helped to interrogate Iraqis.
The American in charge of Abu Ghraib itself, Gen. Janis Karpinski, claimed that Israeli interrogators were in Iraq
In a detailed article titled “WHO IS JOHN ISRAEL? THE MASTERMIND BEHIND THE ABU GHRAIB OUTRAGE”, Justin Raimondo gives detailed reporting on the Senate hearings on the Abu Ghraib scandal which clearly point to Israeli involvement at every level and the figure of John Israel who has now fled from investigators (to the nation of his surname presumably).
Now in the latest story we learn from morally responsible FBI agents of the torture and abuse of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba
FBI agents back up abuse allegations
December 21, 2004 in the Detroit Free Press
BY CAROL ROSENBERG and FRANK DAVIES
KNIGHT RIDDER NEWSPAPERS
MIAMI — FBI agents in the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, witnessed abuses of prisoners that included being left in their own feces, chained in ice-cold or super-hot cells and other interrogation techniques that caused one prisoner to pull his hair from his head, documents released Monday show…
The agents’ accounts, contained in e-mails to their superiors to distance the FBI from the behavior, are the first by U.S. officials confirming Guantanamo prisoners’ complaints of sleep deprivation, temperature manipulations, strobe lights and loud music…
Yet on July 30, in one of the e-mails the American Civil Liberties Union made available Monday, an FBI agent wrote that he had seen an almost identical event at the prison, describing, among other things, a prisoner draped in an Israeli flag…
In August, a Boston-based agent described incidents such as this: “I entered interview rooms to find a detainee chained hand and foot in a fetal position on the floor, with no chair, food or water. Most times, they had urinated or defecated on themselves and had been left there for 18-24 hours or more.
Torture victims wrapped in the Israeli flag is very appropriate symbol, for our policies in the Mideast and elsewhere are actually Israeli policies rather than truly American ones. We are spending a king’s ransom in Iraq, we are losing the lives and limbs of thousands of our military personnel, we are making the terrorists around the world more popular than ever. We are endangering America. And, for what? For Israel, that’s what.
And now with the irreparable harm done by the Israeli-orchestrated tortures in Iraq, when will the American people realize that unless we remove these Israeli fifth columnists in government and media we and our children will pay a horrendous price?
Former “civil rights activist,” Jewish supremacist Alan Dershowitz, now has gone beyond his advocacy of torture for those pesky little Palestinians. Now he wants it for American citizens too. In the cosmic scheme of things perhaps every people pays for its sins. What happened at Abu Ghraib, any way you cut it, is evil. If Americans continue to let themselves be used to do evil to others at the behest of Israel, who is to say that the evil won’t eventually fall back upon ourselves and our own children. Look at what is happening to the land of our founding fathers. Every good foundation of our European American forebears is being eroded. Who is to say that the cosmic wheel is not turning right now.
The American people can still avoid being crushed by that wheel. But to survive and thrive will take a great love of truth and a great deal of courage. We must begin by standing up for what is right and good. And that means we must stand up forthrightly against the Jewish supremacists and their pariah state of Israel and tell them that we won’t do their bidding any more!