By Chris Floyd on 9/12/2006, 5:30am PT  

Guest blogged by Chris Floyd. Originally posted at Empire Burlesque, September 10, 2006.

Let us pause on this day of solemn remembrance and take stock of what our noble Leader has done in the world with the vast storehouse of "political capital" he received from the "new Pearl Harbor" that his noble captains Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Libby (and brother Jeb) once openly called for – in September 2000 – in a document published by their noble organization of selfless zealots for global altruism, The Project for a New American Century. Now, on this solemn occasion, as the noble Leader himself takes to the airwaves to remind us of his nobility in those dark days after the attack that his noble captains had so presciently yearned for, let us assay just one small gleaning of the great and noble crop of freedom the Leader has harvested with the seeds from what he has often called the "opportunity" provided by the murder of almost 3,000 American citizens and nationals from many other countries.

Let us turn our tear-filled eyes away from the noble Leader's sentimental journey through the three sites of mass murder in which his greatness is firmly rooted, and look for a moment to Mesopotamia, to the great and ancient land of Babylon, where the noble Leader has bestowed – entirely unasked, an act of purest noblesse oblige – the benefits of liberation, democracy and the free market. Let us sojourn to a place that was once a zone of darkness under the harsh rule of Saddam Hussein, a symbol of torture, of the bestiality that lurks in the nether chambers of the human heart, a place whose name sent shivers of atavistic fear through the breast of every Iraqi: Abu Ghraib.

Let us recall the overwhelming joy that greeted our noble Leader's declaration that he would tear down this fortress of evil – and recall too his later, more considered wisdom that it would in fact make a handy-dandy place to keep the captives of his own mild and benevolent rule. Now, in accordance with his noble intent to turn over full sovereignty of the Iraqi government to the, uh, Iraqis, he has relinquished control of Abu Ghraib to his protégés, to the security forces that he himself has raised up and trained for service to the Iraqi people. Let us see what has transpired since this auspicious and historic turnover --- but let us not, on this solemn day, resort for this information to any of those media outlets who have made themselves a vessel for traitorous doubts and terroristic manipulation by editorially opposing the noble Leader's humanitarian intervention in Iraq or taking his noble captains to task for supposed incompetence, venality, corruption and deceit.

No, no, on this most solemn of days above all, let us have recourse instead to a fine, reliably conservative journal, which has staunchly supported the Leader's noble mission in Iraq from the very start. Let us see what the Sunday Telegraph, pro-war, pro-Bush, has to say about what has been happening in Abu Ghraib since the Leader's favored Iraqi factions have taken it over. Let us see the kind of liberation that the exploited deaths of almost 3 ,000 people on 9/11, and the deaths of more than 2,600 Americans killed in Iraq since then, and the deaths of more than 100,000 innocent Iraqi civilians has produced. Let us see what Bush has purchased with so much blood.

Tortured screams ring out as Iraqis take over Abu Ghraib (Sunday Telegraph)

The notorious Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad is at the centre of fresh abuse allegations just a week after it was handed over to Iraqi authorities, with claims that inmates are being tortured by their new captors. Staff at the jail say the Iraqi authorities have moved dozens of terrorist suspects into Abu Ghraib from the controversial Interior Ministry detention centre in Jadriyah, where United States troops last year discovered 169 prisoners who had been tortured and starved.

An independent witness who went into Abu Ghraib this week told The Sunday Telegraph that screams were coming from the cell blocks housing the terrorist suspects. Prisoners released from the jail this week spoke of routine torture of terrorism suspects and on Wednesday, 27 prisoners were hanged in the first mass execution since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime.

Conditions in the rest of the jail were grim, with an overwhelming stench of excrement, prisoners crammed into cells for all but 20 minutes a day, food rations cut to just rice and water and no air conditioning.

Abu Ghraib became synonymous with abuse after shocking pictures were published in 2004 showing prisoners being tortured and humiliated, galvanising opposition to the US presence in Iraq.

The witness gained access to the prison just days after the Americans formally handed over control to the Iraqi authorities on Sept 1.Inside the 100-yard long cell block the smell of excrement was overpowering. Four to six prisoners shared each of the 12ft by 15ft cells along either side and the walls were smeared with filth. The cell block was patrolled by guards who carried long batons and shouted angrily at the prisoners to stand up.

Access to the part of the prison containing terrorism suspects was denied, but from that block came the sound of screaming. The screaming continued for a long time. "I am sure someone was being beaten, they were screaming like they were being hit," the witness reported. "I felt scared, I was asking what was happening in the terrorist section. I heard shouting, like someone had a hot iron on their body, screams. The officer said they were just screaming by themselves. I was hearing the screams throughout the visit."

....Capt Ali Abdelzaher...also confirmed that a number of inmates had been transferred from the Jadriyah detention centre, along with their guards and interrogators. Graphic stories of abuse at that previously secret facility emerged after US soldiers found 169 prisoners showing signs of torture last November.

Most of the prisoners held by the Americans at Abu Ghraib were either released in recent months or transferred to a new £32 million detention centre at Camp Cropper near Baghdad International Airport....

Some of the small number of prisoners who remained in the jail after the Americans left said they had pleaded to go with their departing captors, rather than be left in the hands of Iraqi guards. "The Americans were better than the Iraqis. They treated us better," said Khalid Alaani, who was held on suspicion of involvement in Sunni terrorism.

Well, odd's fish, that's something, isn't it? as the Scarlet Pimpernel would say. Obviously, dog collars and "stress positions" beat the hell out having the hell beat out of you and getting seared with hot iron.

So let us, on this solemn day, remember the goodness that the noble Leader has brought to the benighted land of Iraq with the political capital he accrued from his captains' dream of a new Pearl Harbor:

Our torturers are not nearly as bad as the torturers we brought in to replace our torturers.

Surely we can all agree that this is an outcome worth the deaths of thousands upon thousands of innocent people.

May God bless the President of the United States of America, on this most solemn of days.

Share article...