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The Year in Torture

by YORAM GAT

The following are forms of maltreatment visited upon prisoners by U.S. personnel during 2004. The list was compiled from articles detailing information in official U.S. documents. Allegations by prisoners that were not supported by official documents were not included.

Involuntary injection of tranquilizer (1)

Prisoner put in sensory deprivation garb and blackened goggles (1)
Placement in isolation cell (1)

Shackling in uncomfortable positions for many hours (1)

Prisoners left to soil themselves (1)

Prisoners exposed to blaring music or insistent meowing (1)

Forcible enemas (1)

Sleep deprivation (1)

Flashing lights in prisoners’ eyes (1)

Preventing visits by the Red Cross (1)

Sexual taunts by female interrogators (1)

Shackling in fetal positions for 24 hours or more (2)

Deprivation of food and water (2)

Prisoner placed in a sleeping bag and tied with an electrical cord (3)

Strangulation (4)

Beatings (4)

Placing lit cigarettes into prisoners’ ears (4)

Use of military dogs (4)

Rape of a juvenile male prisoner (4)

Chaining in a cold room (5)

Holding in a hot room (5)

Burning (6)

Administering electric shocks (6)

Killing (6)

Sexual humiliation (6)

Mock executions (6)

Pouring a glass of water on prisoner’s head (6)

Prisoner photographed with a pistol being held to head (6)

Dousing a prisoner with alcoholic liquid and setting on fire (6)

Squeezing of testicles (6)

Sodomizing with a rifle muzzle (6)

Forcing prisoner’s heads into the dirt (6)

Striking a prisoner with an empty 5 gallon plastic water jug (6)

Using Taser guns (7)

Prisoner punched in the face (7)

Soldiers sitting on hooded and handcuffed prisoners (8)

Prisoner dragged by the neck and dies (9)

Forcing prisoners to masturbate publicly (10)

Piling prisoners into a naked human pyramid (10)

Hooking wires on the hands and feet of a hooded prisoner who was told to stand on a box or else be electrocuted (10)

Sources:

(1) The New York Times
Fresh Details Emerge on Harsh Methods at Guantánamo
By NEIL A. LEWIS
Published: January 1, 2005

(2) The Washington Post
Further Detainee Abuse Alleged Guantanamo Prison Cited in FBI Memos
By Carol D. Leonnig
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, December 26, 2004; Page A01

(3) The Denver Post
Article Published: Tuesday, December 21, 2004
Army court documents detail fatal interrogation technique
By Arthur Kane
Denver Post Staff Writer

(4) BBC
Tuesday, 21 December, 2004, 21:54 GMT
US pledges new jail abuse inquiry

(5) The Ledger
Published Tuesday, December 21, 2004
New F.B.I. Files Describe Abuse of Iraq Inmates
By NEIL A. LEWIS and DAVID JOHNSTON
New York Times

(6) The Los Angeles Times
December 15, 2004
THE CONFLICT IN IRAQ
Details of Marines Mistreating Prisoners in Iraq Are Revealed
By Richard A. Serrano, Times Staff Writer

(7) BBC
8 December, 2004, 23:41 GMT
US punishes troops over stun guns

(8) ABC News
AP: Navy Probes New Iraq Prisoner Photos
Dec 3, 2004

(9) MSNBC
Court-martial begins in Iraq prison death
Prosecution: Marine major was cruel and inhumane,

The Associated Press
Updated: 10:20 p.m. ET Nov. 2, 2004

(10) ABC News
Frederick Gets 8 Years in Iraq Abuse Case
AP
Oct 21, 2004

 

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