Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Please Support CounterPunch’s Annual Fund Drive
We don’t run corporate ads. We don’t shake our readers down for money every month or every quarter like some other sites out there. We only ask you once a year, but when we ask we mean it. So, please, help as much as you can. We provide our site for free to all, but the bandwidth we pay to do so doesn’t come cheap. All contributions are tax-deductible.
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

The Torture Doctors of Abu Ghraib

 

No need to inquire about co-payments at Abu Ghraib prison facility.

Rummy’s HMO will cover the whole thing.

And, there’s no sense in worrying about those nagging medical malpractice suits either.

American doctors can pursue their own diverse inclinations without inhibition or fear of reprisal.

The Pentagon now provides cover for dilettantes in the ancient art of prisoner abuse; a security umbrella for aspiring “interrogation specialists”.

The British medical journal, The Lancet, confirms that: “Doctors working for the US military in Iraq collaborated with interrogators in the abuse of detainees at Baghdad’s Abu Ghraib prison, profoundly breaching medical ethics and human rights.”

University of Michigan Steven Miles cited evidence “that doctors or medics falsified death certificates to cover up homicides, hid evidence of beatings, and revived a prisoner so he could be further tortured.”

“….and revived a prisoner so he could be further tortured.”

Some things bear repeating.

It looks a though Rumsfeld’s views on modernizing the military now include “transforming” the Hippocratic Oath as well.

Originally, it was believed that medical personnel were merely involved in covering up cases of abuse. These new developments suggest that something much more sinister was going on; something whose roots were deep in the Defense establishment, perhaps, going all the way to the front offices of the DOD. (Dept of Defense)

Professor Miles continues by stating, “The medical system collaborated with designing and implementing psychologically and physically coercive interrogations…”

“A physician and a psychiatrist helped design, approve and monitor interrogations at Abu Ghraib.”

This should adequately prove that the atrocities at Abu Ghraib were both intentional and, more importantly, “systemic”.

Such procedures that are articulated here only reinforce the belief that torture was an integral part of a carefully considered policy that was approved at the highest levels of government.

Miles paints a picture of “physician complicity, and in isolated cases, active participation…in abuse at the Baghdad prison, as well as in Afghanistan and at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.”

(The fact that the abuse was uncovered at ALL of the prisons again suggests that the practice was condoned from above.)

In one case reported by Human Rights Watch “soldiers tied a beaten detainee to the top of his cell door and gagged him. The death certificate indicated he died of natural causes…during his sleep” Afterwards, the Pentagon “changed the cause of death to homicide by blunt force injuries and suffocation.”

How does one find doctors who will abandon their oath and comply with such flagrant criminal activity?

Does the Pentagon have a recruiting program for “aspiring Mengeles”? (note: Josef Mengele; the ruthless, Nazi concentration camp doctor, who carried out murderous experiments on Jewish prisoners)

Certainly this profligate entourage of sadists didn’t just descend on the Pentagon one day with their resume’s in hand?

There must be a screening program…a litmus test…a way of confirming that ones abilities meet the challenges of the job.

All this, should finally put to rest the “few bad apples” theory.

The brutality and torture at Abu Ghraib took place with the full knowledge and approval of the Secretary of Defense. He alone set the standards for prisoner treatment. No underling would dare to put their career at risk by authorizing the type of behavior that transpired at the Baghdad prison facility.

From the earliest days following 9-11 (memos) clearly indicate that the DOD was looking for ways to eviscerate the rules governing the humane treatment of prisoners. Their determination brought about a seismic shift in the prevailing ethic at the War Dept. Torture was not only “on the table” it was the accepted standard of the new regime.

Their search resulted in the farrago of American Gulags that now stretch across the globe; (those 24 jewels in the imperial crown) the myriad of islands that attest to Rumsfeld’s “culture of cruelty.”

MIKE WHITNEY lives in Washington state. He can be reached at: fergiewhitney@msn.com

 

More articles by:

MIKE WHITNEY lives in Washington state. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press). Hopeless is also available in a Kindle edition. He can be reached at fergiewhitney@msn.com.

October 17, 2018
John Steppling
Before the Law
James McEnteer
Larry Summers Trips Out
Frank Stricker
Wages Rising? 
Muhammad Othman
What You Can Do About the Saudi Atrocities in Yemen
Binoy Kampmark
Agents of Chaos: Trump, the Federal Reserve and Andrew Jackson
Karen J. Greenberg
Justice Derailed: From Gitmo to Kavanaugh
John Feffer
Why is the Radical Right Still Winning?
Dan Corjescu
Green Tsunami in Bavaria?
Rohullah Naderi
Why Afghan Girls Are Out of School?
George Ochenski
You Have to Give Respect to Get Any, Mr. Trump
Cesar Chelala
Is China Winning the War for Africa?
Mel Gurtov
Getting Away with Murder
W. T. Whitney
Colombian Lawyer Diego Martinez Needs Solidarity Now
Dean Baker
Nothing to Brag About: Scott Walker’s Economic Record in Wisconsin:
October 16, 2018
Gregory Elich
Diplomatic Deadlock: Can U.S.-North Korea Diplomacy Survive Maximum Pressure?
Rob Seimetz
Talking About Death While In Decadence
Kent Paterson
Fifty Years of Mexican October
Robert Fantina
Trump, Iran and Sanctions
Greg Macdougall
Indigenous Suicide in Canada
Kenneth Surin
On Reading the Diaries of Tony Benn, Britain’s Greatest Labour Politician
Andrew Bacevich
Unsolicited Advice for an Undeclared Presidential Candidate: a Letter to Elizabeth Warren
Thomas Knapp
Facebook Meddles in the 2018 Midterm Elections
Muhammad Othman
Khashoggi and Demetracopoulos
Gerry Brown
Lies, Damn Lies & Statistics: How the US Weaponizes Them to Accuse  China of Debt Trap Diplomacy
Christian Ingo Lenz Dunker – Peter Lehman
The Brazilian Presidential Elections and “The Rules of The Game”
Robert Fisk
What a Forgotten Shipwreck in the Irish Sea Can Tell Us About Brexit
Martin Billheimer
Here Cochise Everywhere
David Swanson
Humanitarian Bombs
Dean Baker
The Federal Reserve is Not a Church
October 15, 2018
Rob Urie
Climate Crisis is Upon Us
Conn Hallinan
Syria’s Chessboard
Patrick Cockburn
The Saudi Atrocities in Yemen are a Worse Story Than the Disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi
Sheldon Richman
Trump’s Middle East Delusions Persist
Justin T. McPhee
Uberrima Fides? Witness K, East Timor and the Economy of Espionage
Tom Gill
Spain’s Left Turn?
Jeff Cohen
Few Democrats Offer Alternatives to War-Weary Voters
Dean Baker
Corporate Debt Scares
Gary Leupp
The Khashoggi Affair and and the Anti-Iran Axis
Russell Mokhiber
Sarah Chayes Calls on West Virginians to Write In No More Manchins
Clark T. Scott
Acclimated Behaviorisms
Kary Love
Evolution of Religion
Colin Todhunter
From GM Potatoes to Glyphosate: Regulatory Delinquency and Toxic Agriculture
Binoy Kampmark
Evacuating Nauru: Médecins Sans Frontières and Australia’s Refugee Dilemma
Marvin Kitman
The Kitman Plan for Peace in the Middle East: Two Proposals
Weekend Edition
October 12, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Becky Grant
My History with Alexander Cockburn and The Financial Future of CounterPunch
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail