A grim picture of the US and Britain’s legacy in Iraq has been revealed in a massive leak of American military documents that detail torture, summary executions and war crimes. The newly released Wikileaks documents show the level of brutality unleashed upon the people of Iraq, and the extent to which the Americans & British went to cover them up.
The problem I have with the release of this data is the sheer volume of it all – it all becomes statistics, straight, cold, hard statistics that numb the reader by taking away the humanity or the lack of it shown by the invading forces.
This is typical of the information released, military jargon.
These people have names.
Nahiba Jassim – a pregnant woman – was murdered in a US army checkpoint shooting.
She was being rushed to the maternity hospital in Samarra when the car was fired upon at a US army checkpoint. Saliha Hassan, her cousin who was in the car was also murdered.
They were just two from almost several hundred civilians who were murdered in cold blood, it didn’t matter if you were a pregnant women or even mentally ill.
This bit of military jargon refers to the torture and execution of Adnan Awad Al Jumaili. He was left to die in jail, with the Pentagon issuing secret orders to it’s troops to look the other way while people were being tortured to death.
The UN Convention on Torture blocks states from handing individuals to the authorities of another state where this would place them at serious risk of torture.
The British army are no better.
A soldier shot dead an eight-year-old Iraqi girl as she played in the street.
She remains nameless.
Support our troops?
When will people get it into their thick heads that the military are a bunch of thugs in uniform who are paid to go to other countries and kill other defenceless people.
I can’t support that, oh and by the way the second world war ended more than sixty years ago, so the battling nazi’s line doesn’t carry weight with me.
Dispatches carried out a summation of the wikileak findings last night, the programme Iraq’s Secret War Files is available to watch for the next seven days on the Channel 4 website.
The fact that the supposedly damaging leaks are in fact bolstering American accusations against Iran while minimizing American complicity in Iraqi deaths leads some to believe that the leaks are in fact engineered by the Pentagon to either discredit Wikileaks, or are in conjunction with Wikileaks which is a U.S. government outfit.
While all of the press seems to be reporting the story, few media outlets are going back to their own coverage and acknowledging how they had failed at the time, to report many of the atrocities we now know the US military knew about, and covered up. One glaring example: the killings that took place in Fallujah, where Al Jazeera correspondents were banned.
There is an oft repeated phrase that “the truth is the first casualty of war”.
What we are seeing now is the sordid truth being revealed, the truth of murder, rape and torture of innocent men women and children, by the very people who still view themselves as liberators, bringing freedom and democracy to the birthplace of civilisation.