Even as the young Afghan man was dying before them, his American jailers continued to torment him.
The prisoner, a slight, 22-year-old taxi driver known only as Dilawar, was hauled from his cell at the detention center in Bagram, Afghanistan, at around 2 a.m. to answer questions about a rocket attack on an American base. When he arrived in the interrogation room, an interpreter who was present said, his legs were bouncing uncontrollably in the plastic chair and his hands were numb. He had been chained by the wrists to the top of his cell for much of the previous four days.
Mr. Dilawar asked for a drink of water, and one of the two interrogators, Specialist Joshua R. Claus, 21, picked up a large plastic bottle. But first he punched a hole in the bottom, the interpreter said, so as the prisoner fumbled weakly with the cap, the water poured out over his orange prison scrubs. The soldier then grabbed the bottle back and began squirting the water forcefully into Mr. Dilawar's face.
"Come on, drink!" the interpreter said Specialist Claus had shouted, as the prisoner gagged on the spray. "Drink!"
At the interrogators' behest, a guard tried to force the young man to his knees. But his legs, which had been pummeled by guards for several days, could no longer bend. An interrogator told Mr. Dilawar that he could see a doctor after they finished with him. When he was finally sent back to his cell, though, the guards were instructed only to chain the prisoner back to the ceiling.
The above excerpt is from Tim Golden's "In U.S. Report, Brutal Details of 2 Afghan Inmates' Deaths" in this morning's New York Times.
Francisco e-mails to note Tim Golden's "Cuban Exile Is Charged With Illegal Entry:"
Homeland Security Department officials said Thursday that they had charged Luis Posada Carriles, the violent anti-Castro militant, with illegally entering the United States.
The charge could be the first step in the deportation of Mr. Posada, 77, who resurfaced outside Miami and was arrested on Tuesday after 45 years of shadowy combat against Fidel Castro.
It also represents a legal and political dilemma for the Bush administration.
Taylor draws our attention to David E. Rosenbaum and Edmund L. Andrews' "An Architect of Bush Plan on Retirement Urges Retreat:"
Robert C. Pozen, the business executive who developed the theory behind President Bush's plan to trim Social Security benefits in the future, urged the president on Thursday to drop his insistence on using part of workers' taxes to pay for individual investment accounts.
This was one of two blows during the day to Mr. Bush's policies on Social Security and retirement saving. In the House, Representative Bill Thomas, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, disregarded the methods favored by the president to encourage workers to save for retirement - mostly tax incentives for the affluent - and offered completely different proposals of his own.
The president's Social Security and retirement measures have faced trouble in Congress all year, and the developments on Thursday raised further doubt about their prospects.
Lori notes Katharine Q. Seelye's "Red Cross Reported Koran Abuses:"
The International Committee of the Red Cross said yesterday that it had given the Pentagon "multiple" reports from detainees in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, that American personnel had mishandled the Koran. The committee said the complaints from detainees then ceased.
The Pentagon confirmed that it had received these reports from the committee, but characterized the incidents as minor and rare and said that detainees themselves had also mishandled the Koran.
With regards to the Bully Boy's latest war (the war on the Fourth Amendment), Cedric e-mails
Eric Lichtblau's "Democrats Fault Plan for F.B.I.:"
Several Democrats voiced strong objections on Thursday to a plan by the Bush administration and Republican leaders for expanding the Federal Bureau of Investigation's counterterrorism powers and said they would fight to have the issue fully debated in public rather than behind closed doors in the Senate.
"The F.B.I. already has the power to get what they need in investigations," Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat who sits on the Intelligence Committee, said in an interview. "I'm unwilling to give the F.B.I. unfettered authority to conduct investigations and take away the last vestige of accountability, which is essentially what they are seeking here."
A proposal advocated by the Bush administration and Republican leaders on the Senate Intelligence Committee would allow the F.B.I. to demand records from businesses and other institutions in intelligence investigations without getting an order from a judge.
Bernado e-mails to highlight Clifford Krauss' "A Tie-Breaking Vote Saves Liberal Leader in Canada:"
Prime Minister Paul Martin and his Liberal government survived on Thursday evening by a single vote in the House of Commons after limping for months as a result of a party scandal.
While the victory in the deeply divided legislature will avert an immediate election, it probably will mean only a brief respite for Mr. Martin from the continuous political troubles that have shaken his ability to improve security and trade relations with the United States and infused new oxygen into the separatist movement in Quebec.
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