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THE VETERAN

Page 20
Download PDF of this full issue: v34n1.pdf (11.3 MB)

<< 19. Proof That a Draft is Being Readied for 2005?21. From Frontline to Homefront >>

Action Alert: Zero Tolerance for Torture

By TASSC

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NO, to the torture of Iraqi detainees and U.S. government secrecy.

YES, to the release of government documents and open hearings.

Recent reports in the media have confirmed that "sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses" (Taguba Report) have been committed against Iraqi detainees by U.S. personnel. Although these abuses have been known to various U.S. officials for some time, it was only after the publication of photos on television that the president and others responded with suitable outrage.

Promises are being made, investigations are being announced and congressional closed-door hearings are being held. Yet what we know today is, for the most part, the result of information leaked to the media. We are not being given the right to judge for ourselves what, in fact, has been going on in Iraqi prisons, who has been doing what and who, ultimately, is responsible.

Therefore, TASSC calls on the United States government:
* To ensure the protection of all its detainees from any form of torture or ill-treatment.
* To release all documents in its possession related to the abuse of Iraqi detainees. If the president is serious about presenting the United States to the world as a free, open and just society, his first act will be the release of the report of Major General Antonio Taguba. The president should also agree that all subsequent reports of investigations will be made public upon their completion.
* TASSC calls on Congress to pledge that all hearings on this subject will be open to the public.

These actions would suggest that the U.S. government might indeed be serious about confronting torture committed under its auspices. Hopefully, they would also serve as a precedent for releasing documents dealing with the government's past involvement in human rights abuses.

TAKE ACTION

1. Please contact your representative and your senators and urge them to insist on public disclosure of all documents related to the abuse of Iraqi prisoners. We, the people of the United States, do not need more rhetoric from our leaders; we need the facts so that we may judge for ourselves.

U.S. Capitol Switchboard: (202) 224-3121

2. Call the White House Comment Line: (202) 456-1111. The president's email address is: president@whitehouse.gov.

Note: We would appreciate if you would let us know what you are told. Please contact Harold Nelson with your information: harold@tassc.org

Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International (TASSC)
2141 Harewood Road NE, Suite B, Washington, DC 20017
Tel: (202) 529-2991
Fax: (202) 529-8334
Email: info@tassc.org
http://www.tassc.org


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