the article.



1. Another cute little trick is the Pentagon's decision not to release more photos of the Abu Ghraib outrages. According to Death Minister Rumsfeld, it's not because doing so would cause even more damage to the war effort and Rumsfeld's prestige. No, it's because it would violate the Geneva Conventions' rules against releasing degrading photos of prisoners of war.

Presto! The captives are now POWs, and all of a sudden the United State cares about the Geneva Conventions, after violating them for 12 years by mounting a blockade that killed hundreds of thousands of civilians in Iraq; by bombing civilian targets there and in Serbia; and by descending into savagery in its treatment of its victims at Guantanamo. The bare-faced hypocrisy is stunning, even for the Bush regime. (See "Rumsfeld visits abuse prison / U.S. defence chief cites legal barriers to releasing any more torture photo" by Robert Burns, Associated Press, posted at Halifax [Nova Scotia] Chronicle Herald, May 14, 2004.)

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2. One example is a Syrian-born Canadian citizen, Maher Arar. By all reports a law-abiding businessman, Arar was kidnapped by U.S. officials while changing planes in the United State. While in U.S. custody, he was interrogated and denied access to a lawyer. With no charges filed against him and without being told why it was all happening, he was deported to Syria, where he was tortured for a year in what was apparently an arrangement to share information extracted from him.

It's interesting, therefore, that on May 12, 2004, the United State announced economic "sanctions" against Syria for supporting "terrorism," by which is meant Syria's support for the Palestinian resistance. ("They Put a Bag over My Head & Flew Me to Syria for Torture and Interrogation," CounterPunch, November 6, 2003) Arar is now pursuing legal action against the Empire (and its hapless taxpayers).

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3. Alleged U.S. atrocities include:

• shooting unarmed and wounded civilians from a helicopter with a 30mm cannon ("'Smoke Him' / Video Shows Wounded Men Being Shot by U.S. Helicopter," Robert Fisk, CounterPunch, May 6, 2004);

• driving prisoners miles away from Baghdad to release them in the middle of nowhere ("Prisoners from Abu Ghraib dropped off north of Baghdad," by Robert Moran, Knight Ridder, posted by the San Luis Obispo (Calif.) Tribune, May 4, 2004);

• murdering prisoners ("U.S. Probe: Two War Prisoners Murdered by Americans," Reuters [brief only], May 4, 2004, posted at MyWay.com);

• shooting community leaders at a public meeting ("U.S. Troops Marching in Saddam's Footsteps" by Aaron Glantz, Antiwar.com, May 5, 2004);

• shooting ambulance drivers ("Report from Fallujah — Destroying a Town in Order to Save it" by Rahul Mahajan, CommonDreams.org, April 12, 2004);

• using snipers to randomly pick off motorists ("'Shells and rockets were falling like rain'" by Jonathan Steele, The Guardian, April 12, 2004);

• using snipers to prevent wounded Iraqis from receiving medical treatment ("'Do we look like fighters?' ask Fallujah families with their disabled, their old, and their children" by Patrick Cockburn, The Independent, April 13, 2004 );

and on and on.

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