December 11, 2005

ON TORTURE, ADDENDUM: More from the Annals of Horror

From the UK Independent:
Benyam Mohammed al-Habashi is accused by the US government of planning a dirty bomb attack in America. He says he was tortured until he admitted the crime.

He was arrested at Karachi airport in April 2002, with a passport under the name of Fouad Zouawi, a friend, and with a ticket to Zurich and then on to London.

In documents compiled by the human rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith, he describes an encounter with someone he believes to be an MI6 officer and details the horror of his torture. Mr Habashi says the officer told him 'I'll see what we can do with the Americans'. "They gave me a cup of tea with a lot of sugar in it. He said 'Where you're going you need a lot of sugar'."

He was taken to Morocco and questioned, then tortured after refusing to admit [...] al-Qa'ida links.

"They took the scalpel to my right chest. One of them took my penis in his hand and began to make cuts. I was in agony. They must have done this 20 to 30 times in maybe two hours. They would do it to me about once a month."

The treatment continued in the so-called "Prison of Darkness" in Kabul, where he was kept from January to May in 2004.

"The US military told us 'Bin Laden had his laugh on 9/11 so it is now our time to have our laugh'," he said. "They would hang me up. I was allowed a few hours' sleep on the second day, then I was hung up, this time for two days. My legs had swollen. My wrists and hands had gone numb."
And so, after this repeated torture, he finally confessed. Wouldn't you? Wouldn't anyone -- simply to make it stop? Wouldn't you "confess" to any crime at all, just to make the agony end?

Of course you would. So would anyone in the world, guilty or innocent. At this point, and given the overwhelming number of such accounts that continue to surface, no one has the slightest reason to wonder why more and more people hate us with every day that passes, or why more and more people wish to do us grievous harm.