Monday, December 17, 2012

British doctor to find out penalty today

Baha Mousa was an Iraqi whose 'crime' was working at a hotel -- possibly seeing British soldiers steal money as well.  Baha was guilty of nothing but was terrorized and then rounded up and taken into British custody where he was beaten until he died.  From the July 13, 2009 snapshot:

Moving over to England, Matthew Weaver (Guardian) notes that Iraqi Baha Mousa's death at the age of 26 while in British custody in September 2003 is the subject of a public inquiry in England which began today and that, "A central issue of the inquiry is why five 'conditioning techniques' -- hooding prisoners, putting them in stress positions, depriving them of sleep, depriving them of food and water, and playing white noise -- were used on Iraq detainees.  The techniques, inflicted on IRA suspects, were banned in 1972 by then prime minister, Edward Heath."  The Telegraph of London offers that Baha "was beaten to death" while in British custody, "sustaining 93 separate injuires, including fractured ribs and a broken nose."  The Telegraph also notes that the inquiry was shown video of Corporal Donald Payne yelling and screaming, "shouting and swearing at the Iraqis as they are force to main painful 'stress position'." Julian Rush (Channel 4) offers a video report of the hearing thus far and what the inquiry is supposed to explore over the next year. BBC explains the Sir William Gage led inquiry will explore four segments:

• The history of "conditioning" techniques, like hooding, used by UK troops while questioning prisoners from Northern Ireland in the early 1970s to the invasion of Iraq in March 2003                             

• What happened to Mr Mousa and other Iraqi detainees          

• Training and the chain of command                           

• Events since 2003 and any recommendations for the future   

Back in June,  ITV reported of Dr. Derek Keilloh:

He is then said to have failed to conduct an adequate examination of Mr Mousa's body after death and failed to notify a superior officer of the circumstances of his death. He faces similar claims relating to two other detainees he examined after Mr Mousa's death.
His account of those three examinations through witness statements given at the time, and maintained in interview under caution, at a court martial and at the public inquiry, are said to be "untrue".

Today, Andrew Johnson (Belfast Telegraph) reports the latest, "A former British Army doctor has been found guilty of attempting to cover up the death of an Iraqi civilian who was fatally beaten by British troops in 2003, and of failing to protect other detainees."  Peter Magill (Lancashire Telegraph) notes of the Baha Mousa inquiry,  "Another detainee, Ahmed Al Matari, who had also been seen by Dr Keilloh at the detention centre after being kicked in the kidneys and legs, accused him of behaving like a 'criminal' during."  Press TV adds, "Britain's Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service will now decide what penalty the British doctor will face.The editorial board of Scotland's Herald weighs in, "Army medics cannot afford to be squeamish but ignoring such brutality amounts to a betrayal of all the servicemen and women who behave decently and within the rules. It also acts as a recruiting sergeant for extremism and destroys at a stroke any goodwill built up with the local population. It is shameful that it has taken so long to uncover the truth. Though maltreatment of detainees may not have been routine, the fact that a number of other such inquiries are still crawling through the system suggests this was more than the work of a 'few bad apples'."

Bonnie reminds that Kat's "Kat's Korner: Stones release a tooth grinder" and Isaiah's  The World Today Just Nuts "The Deaths of Children" both went up last night.  On this week's Law and Disorder Radio,  an hour long program that airs Monday mornings at 9:00 a.m. EST on WBAI and around the country throughout the week, hosted by attorneys Heidi Boghosian, Michael S. Smith and Michael Ratner (Center for Constitutional Rights) topics addressed include the surveillance state, Bradley Manning,  a discussion on marijuana laws with the Drug Policy Alliance's Ethan Nadelmann and Black Agenda Report's Glen Ford joins them for a discussion on Egypt and Syria.

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 matthew weaver
the guardian
the telegraph of london


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