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LANALLAH __Islamic BlogZine__
Saturday, January 15, 2005

First Hand Account Of Detention And Torture At Abu Ghraib

Jan 13, 2005
Published by JUS

JUS has received this gut wrenching first hand account that magnifies the torture and abuse that continues to this day in Abu Ghraib and that should surely shock us to our senses to stand up against the despicable American occupation of Muslim land.

This eye witness account is written by the cousin of an Iraqi brother that is known by a brother in the UK. His cousin is based in Mosul, and was a university student at the time he was arrested by the occupation forces. He has given his kunya name Abu Huthdayfah so as to conceal his identity.

Bismillahi Rahmani Raheem

During one of the days which we lived under the shade of the occupation, and we accept this as part of Allah’s decree, but we are not used to living under the shade of an occupation which orders and prohibits and arrests and confiscates and ruins, and you do not know whether at any moment the privacy of your home will be invaded, or if you will be arrested with or without a reason, or if you will be shot or if you will die.

One day my brother came to me at 9.00 in the morning and told me that the Shaheed Bashar Kalandar Mosque was being searched by the Americans. When I heard this I ran to the mosque. I found the Americans surrounding the mosque in their armoured cars and I saw my brother and my friend sitting on the grassy patch between two main roads. I saw on their faces expressions of sadness and concern. I looked at them with great sadness and asked them what happened. My friend said to me, “the Americans have been searching the mosque from 8:30 in the morning.” I said to him “has the Sheikh of the mosque come?” He replied “No, he has not arrived yet.” I said to him “let us wait and see what they are up to!”

We saw an American soldier carrying his gun and people were looking at the mosque to see what was happening and most of them were children. One of the brothers called me and told me to move the kids away as the bullets of the Americans do not respect the old or the young.

We moved the children away and returned to where the inspection was going on and we saw Sheikh Abdul Jawaad speaking to the translator of the Americans. The translator asked the Sheikh, “Do you have any weapons in the mosque?” The Sheikh replied “Yes! We have weapons!” I was shocked by the Sheikh’s reply and his strong Taqwa and Iman and the question in my mind was ‘Why did the Sheikh reply “yes!” when there were no weapons in the mosque?’

The Sheikh entered the mosque and returned after a minute to the translator carrying in his hand the Noble Quran and said “This is our Weapon”. I could see the fear the Americans felt and the strong Iman of the Sheikh.

The translator lit a cigarette despite it being in Ramadhan and the Americans began to search the mosque in all their gear and without respect for the sacredness of the mosque or with any respect for the promises they gave the Iraqis of ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy’.

The Americans then came out of the mosque looking defeated not finding anything, and carrying hatred in their hearts for Muslims. The Americans then left. We presumed they would not return. To our amazement they returned within quarter of an hour and began such an inspection of the mosque that cannot be described in words. They turned everything upside down, even the Noble Quran was not spared this dishonour and again they were in the mosque with their boots on.

The Americans then exited the mosque, looking defeated, still not finding anything. They then turned their sights to the youth, glaring with hatred. They then began to seize all the youth they saw. I was one of those they seized as well as three of my friends from the mosque. They put me on the ground and they held my head to the ground. Then an American put his foot on my head. I felt how much hatred they had towards me. Then they pulled me up and put something over my eyes and I did not see anything until I reached their base.

The weather was very cold when we were taken out of their cars. Me and my friends were put in a room that was cold beyond description. This was after being searched in a way that I cannot describe but can only say that it was criminal and against human rights.

The next day, after spending a freezing night in which none of us could sleep through, an American came to us. We had not eaten anything yet or broken our fasts. The thing we feared most was our interrogation by the American officer because some of our colleagues had been taken to this interrogation and all we could hear was their screams due to the severity of the torture. Then one of my friends came back looking destroyed due to the severity of the torture and he was not able to talk to us because the Americans were watching us. And after that my turn came to be interrogated and the American officer was sitting down.

Standing next to the American officer were two well-built American soldiers. The American officer began to ask me about people who I did not know. And every time he asked me about a person I replied that I don’t know. And he said “Admit you terrorist!” and I replied, through the translator, “I am not a terrorist!” I said that I prayed in the masjid and the American soldiers arrested me with some of the youth and that was my crime ie that I was a muslim. The officer rose from his chair, taking the seat in his hands, and he hit me on the head with his seat. The blood gushed from my head. Then he said “Do you not now admit!” I said to him “By Allah I do not take part in any crimes!” He then began to hit me over and over again with the seat. I fell to the ground and was covered in blood. The officer left the room, annoyed, and said to the two men that were with him, “Make him admit” and they began to hit me on my face and stomach, and my body became exhausted. I lay down on the floor and one of them stood on my weak body and he took a gun out of his pocket and he cocked the gun and put it to my head and said your grave is here. “Admit!” and he began to press the gun against my head and I felt as if my spirit was leaving my body. And all he was saying was, “Admit!” and I was saying to him that I did not know anything. He hit me with the butt of the gun and I fell unconscious.

After that I woke up and he said to me get out and I was taken to a hall. The hall was covered in broken glass. He then told me to me run over the glass and as I was doing this shots were being fired around my feet. This kept going until my strength gave way and I fell.

They then took me to a room were other people who had been tortured were placed. The room was without a door and we felt the draft from the very cold night weather. We had no idea where we were or were we would be taken. Later on black hoods were put on our heads. We then were beaten heavily on our legs. They left us until the morning and then put us in a car and we were taken on a long journey to a destination which turned out to be Abu Ghuraib. We were taken into the prison. They removed our clothes. So we were led through the prison naked. Some of us were returned our clothes. But another group were given red clothes and they were taken away and we have no idea where to and what became of them, or whether they were dead or alive. We were then taken to a section of the prison where other Iraqis were being held.

We met people from places such as Ramadi, Falluja, Baghdad, Takrit and others. One of the prisoners asked me why I was there. I told them the torture I had gone through. He replied “They did not torture you very much!” The other prisoners began to tell me accounts of the torture they had witnessed. For example they used to put them in water and electrocute them and also they would set police dogs who were trained to rape them.

And what about the women at Abu Ghuraib? As soon as they enter the prison they are given sexual discharge to the drink. This greatly affected me and a cried very hard and they began to explain the torture that was inflicted on the Iraqi girls. They would parade the girls naked and the police dogs would rape them as well as the American officers.

When my turn came to be summoned to the prison court, the judge, holding many papers in his hands, asked me “What is your crime?” I replied that I was simply inside the masjid and the American soldiers came. The judge sentenced me to four months in prison.

Inside the prison daily life consisted of hunger, thirst and torture. For example in the morning they would put us in a basin full of ice cold water. And then when we come out of the water we would remember Allah for example reciting “There is no Power or Might save Allah!” and this would help us bear the ordeal. When the four months were over and I left the prison with some of the other people, there was a large crowd greeting us. They were excited to see us and we were embraced to cries of “Allahu Akbar!”

All this time my family had no idea what had been happening to me. When I returned to my house I was feeling mentally and physically damaged. My parents were overjoyed to see me. They told me that when I was taken to the prison the Americans came to my house to look for weapons and they looted money, which we had been saving and gold from our house. This is my story and there are many stories that are much greater than this.

Abu Huthdayfah

Couretesy of : www.jihadunspun.net

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