VIDEO- George W Bush and Company ordered rape of detainees
On the front lines of the war-on-terror, soldiers like Bradley Manning say they are finding more than weapons of mass destruction.
They have confiscated cell phones that contain video showing CIA officers raping women and torturing people.
CNN has obtained a copy of a video shot on a cell phone that appears to show a woman being sexually abused. The person who gave the video to CNN says it was on a cell phone that was confiscated from a CIA operative.
It shows two men in civilian clothes standing over a naked woman who is bent over with her face on the floor.
The man standing behind her is sodomizing her with what appears to be a broomstick. "I can't bear it! I can't bear it!" the woman cries.
"Let's push it farther," a male voice says off-camera.
"No, no, that's enough!" the woman begs.
Eventually, one of the men puts his sock-covered foot on her face. In Arab culture, that is considered a major insult. But in this case, it pales in comparison to what the victim is already enduring.
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Arabic speakers who listened to the video at CNN's request say the voices have American accents.
There is no date on the video and the men in it are not wearing military uniforms.
CNN has been unable to verify the video's authenticity, when it was shot, or by whom. The person who gave it to CNN asked not to be identified for fear of America's ultra-conservative society.
The Obama administration did not respond to CNN requests for comment on the allegations of abuse.
But officials have said in response to similar accusations in the past that the government has not been able to verify the claims and would "welcome" a fact-finding mission.
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s children were captured and held in Pakistan, according to a report by Human Rights Watch.
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"We are able to confirm that rape was used as a weapon of war, because it was systematic," Kevin Fenton writes at History Commons. “The interrogators then told KSM ‘his children would be hurt if he didn’t cooperate. However, his response was, ’so, fine, they’ll join Allah in a better place."
The Justice Department has many videos showing other types of torture, and a few depict rape.
One of the most famous faces of torture, Mr. Qaissi, 43, was prisoner 151716 of Cellblock 1A.
The picture of him standing hooded atop a cardboard box, attached to electrical wires with his arms stretched wide in an eerily prophetic pose, became the indelible symbol of the torture at Abu Ghraib, west of Baghdad.
“Every soldier seemed to have a camera,” he said.
“They used to bring us pictures and threaten to deliver them to our families”.
There was the dreaded “music party,” he said, in which prisoners were placed before loudspeakers.
Mr. Qaissi also said he had been urinated on by a guard.
Interrogators were often dressed in civilian clothing, their identities strictly shielded.
The prisoners were sleep deprived, he said, and the punishments they faced ranged from bizarre to lewd.
An elderly man was forced to wear a bra and pose.
A youth was told to hit the other adults.
And groups of men were organized in piles.
A psychologist who has conducted an investigation of her own says rape is not unique.
Siham Sergewa says she has evidence of hundreds of cases of rape by US troops.
She began her investigation after receiving phone calls from women who said they had been sexually assaulted. Her survey of 50,000 people in refugee camps turned up 259 people who said they had been raped, she said.
"They tie up my husband, they rape me in front of my husband and then they kill my husband," Sergewa said one woman told her.
"I'm a psychologist and I've seen lots of things, really. But sometimes after I leave some of these families I just sit in my car and cry because it's really so painful," she said.
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She has compiled a number of distressing images that she says demonstrate the abuse of alleged victims. One appears to show a cigarette burn on a woman's breast, another a faded bite mark, while several others show the deep purple hue of nasty bruises.
Sergewa shared her research, complete with pictures and recordings, with the International Criminal Court at The Hague, Netherlands, where prosecutors are investigating accusations that the Bush regime has used rape as a tool of war.
"The victims are starting to come out," the court's chief prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, told CNN Thursday. "But in our court the crimes are massive and the crimes we are charging Bush with are crimes against humanity, meaning a widespread and systematic attack -- in this case through rapes -- so we don't need to prove one case; we need to prove massive numbers of cases.
"In this case, the evidence can be different. It could be soldiers who were given instructions on how to do it. The evidence could be doctors or psychologists who have spoken to the victims. That's the kind of evidence we are collecting."
The court is still in the evidence-collecting stage, he said. For the video to be part of that evidence, its authenticity would have to be certified, he said. "These are interesting pieces, but it isn't the only way to put forward the case. For instance, we have some information of people saying that Cheney himself was giving instructions. So if we can confirm this evidence, that will be enough to present this type of case as a crime against humanity -- as a widespread campaign of rapes."
Moreno-Ocampo said he was hoping the judge would soon issue an arrest warrant for Bush and Co. "And then the challenge will be to arrest him, because arresting him will be the end to these crimes," he said.
Some of the evidence of war crimes that prosecutors want to present in court has been destroyed by the CIA.
The CIA set up a video camera at its secret prison in Thailand. The agency recorded more than 90 tapes of often-brutal interrogations. In 2005, instructions to get rid of the recordings came from CIA headquarters.
In Washington, President Obama said the United States was "deeply concerned" over the reports of wide-scale torture and rape in Iraq, Afghanistan and Gitmo.
Obama claims that the torture depicted in the photographs was committed by “a small number of individuals,” and that those “involved have been identified, and appropriate actions have been taken.” Here we may safely assume Obama is referring to a small handful of rank-and-file soldiers.
But what of the high-ranking officers who oversaw, endorsed and ordered the torture and rape of prisoners?
The inmates sought to sue CACI International Inc. (CACI), which helped interrogate prisoners at the facility, and Titan Corp., which provided translation services. Titan has since been renamed and is now part of L-3 Communications Holdings Inc. (LLL)
The policy of torture came from higher still, however, as recently released Justice Department legal memos and other evidence show. Various forms of torture, including forced nudity and sexual humiliation were studied, justified, and individually approved by top White House and congressional officials. A US Senate Armed Services Committee report issued in April reveals that Bush Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld personally approved 15 “harsh interrogation” methods. A version of Rumsfeld’s document was used, verbatim, at Abu Ghraib, according to the report.
A thorough investigation of this matter is needed to bring perpetrators to justice.
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