Iraq’s Humiliation, America’s Disgrace
By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
May 1, 2004
Seeing humiliating images of Iraqi prisoners, in shape of a pyramid, hooded, naked, images of explicit sexual acts performed by the captives while the thumbs up sign of prison guards in military or private contractor’s uniforms, pointing towards manhood of tied prisoners in obscene gesture, expose clearly what this war is about.
What wars are all about?
This war is about complete destruction of dignity of a nation.
War is such.
It is for dehumanization of the opponents, like the “termite” comparison invoked by a guest in a CNN news event just a few days back. Like these shocking images, comparison between insects and Iraqi “insurgents”, the resistance fighters, de-bubbles Bush’s lofty proclamation of bringing “democracy” and “civilization” to Iraq.
It is the grizzly butcheries on display on the streets of Fallujah where thousand pounds bomb from a safe distance demolishes buildings, incinerating occupants in so-called “precision” attacks. It is the demotion of “civilization” into a world of hellish darkness in remonstration against all those feel-good publicity of this gruesome war.
“I share a deep disgust that those prisoners were treated the way they were treated. Their treatment does not reflect the nature of the American people. That’s not the way we do things in America. I didn’t like it one bit,” Mr. Bush said.
Agreed. The nature of the American people does not conform to the revolting treatments of Iraqi prisoners. And Bush perhaps is indeed disgusted seeing these graphic images. After all he is from Texas. He was proud to enforce capital punishment in record number when he was the governor there. But in southern hospitality, there is no place for flagrant brutality. Millions can attest to this self-evident truth.
However, there is a catch. Lethal injections are allowed in so posh cordial and air-conditioned environment that death signatory felt in delusion that prisoners die happy, free from burden of crime, wiggling to doggy heaven.
The relevant questions are: was there no one from the medium to the upper echelon of American civil and military leadership who were aware of these shameful human rights violations, in American military run prison camp in Abu Ghraib? These violations captured in images reportedly occurred months ago. Just when the images surfaced, then comes the condemnation. Why not before?
How many other not-so-isolated incidents are buried in other prison camps? How many Iraqi pyramids are occupying dark prison cells? And how many prisoners are duped, terrorized in the name of “compassionate” interrogations, standing on a box, holding wire, told bluntly that they would be electrocuted if they fell off the box?
Amnesty International says: "There must be a fully independent, impartial and public investigation into all allegations of torture. Nothing less will suffice. If Iraq is to have a sustainable and peaceful future, human rights must be a central component of the way forward. The message must be sent loud and clear that those who abuse human rights will be held accountable. Our extensive research in Iraq suggests that this is not an isolated incident. It is not enough for the USA to react only once images have hit the television screens".
Abu Ghraib has that notorious reputation from Saddam’s oppressive rule when reports of tortures and killings of prisoners were plenty that still haunt many Iraqis. And now the occupiers, the “liberators” have become the oppressors, “losing their moral strength” into frenzied decadence.
One prison guard was forthcoming in his CBS interview. He said, “We had no support, no training whatsoever. And I kept asking my chain of command for certain things...like rules and regulations,” says Frederick. “And it just wasn't happening."
Why is it so? Are the Iraqi prisoners so dehumanized that they don’t deserve rules and regulations sanctioned under international laws? Is it their religion on trial? Is it the vengeance for 911?
What is it? Are these questions unfair to ask?
When fairness itself is stripped, shaped naked in a pyramid form, is it too impolite to ask: what is the real purpose of this unjustified war?
Iraq’s humiliation is America’s disgrace.
The leader article of United Kingdom’s the Guardian used John Stuart Mill’s “insight that civilized societies succumb to their previously vanquished opponents only after losing their moral strength. “If this be so, the sooner such a civilization receives notice to quit the better,” Mill warned.”
This is the time for quitting unlawful occupation. This fabricated war has caused so much deaths and destructions, on both sides, for a cause that is based on deception and falsity. This war has achieved nothing but invigorating murderous tensions between East and the West, clearly preparing for the promised Armageddon and numerous more deaths and destructions to follow.
Maiming, killing and humiliating a nation and its occupants are deemed to meet defeat in the end.
Sadly, it is the defeat of humanity in the shape of a death pyramid eclipses civilization, once for all.
Mahbubul Karim (Sohel) is a freelance writer. His email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org.