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Iraqi Abuse? By: Don Feder
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, May 04, 2004


The Arab world is shocked and incensed by the alleged abuse of Iraqis in one U.S. military prison. Shame on Uncle Sam, say the sons of the desert.

As Steve Martin would say: Well, excu-u-use me! If Muhammad’s mob ever showed an ounce of compassion toward non-Moslems, their outrage would be more credible.

That’s no excuse for what supposedly happened at the Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad.

Still, some of the allegations seem mild compared to the horrors that routinely go on in the dungeons of Middle Eastern regimes. Initial reports said prisoners were made to wear women’s underpants, or stripped naked and forced to lie on top of each other  – which sounds more like a fraternity initiation than a KGB interrogation.

Other allegations are far more serious. If true, the perpetrators should be severely punished.

On seeing some of the photographs, like the prisoner standing on a block with wires attached to his hands (he was told he’d be electrocuted if he fell off), President Bush expressed disgust. "This treatment does not reflect the nature of the American people," Bush told reporters.

Six Army reservists face courts-martial for mistreating prisoners. They are a tiny fraction of the 3,400 reservists who are guarding terrorist suspects at 16 military prisons in Iraq.

There’s been a shakeup at the Abu Ghraib prison. The General formerly in charge (who says she had no knowledge of the abuse) has been replaced.

In others words, everything that could be done has been done. The soldiers charged with brutality await trial. Their superiors have been reassigned or rotated to the States. There’s an on-going investigation. The situation would not have come to light in the first place had other military personnel stationed at the prison not blown the whistle on their fellow soldiers.

None of this has stopped members of the religion of peace from issuing blanket condemnations. The reaction in the Arab world was reported in a May 2, USA Today story ("Arabs outraged by photos of U.S. forces humiliating Iraqis").

The nation that rid the region of Saddam Hussein -- a megalomaniac who’d invaded two of his neighbors in the course of a decade -- is excoriated both by Arab media and street. (When Saddam was in power, Iraqi dissidents found it next to impossible to interest the Arab press in the rapes and the torture-killings that went on in beautiful, downtown Baghdad on a daily basis.)

But now that it’s infidels who are at fault, you’d think the U.S. had turned Iraq into Auschwitz without the amenities. The New York Times informs us, "such degradations (forcing prisoners to simulate sex acts)…are particularly humiliating to Arabs because Islamic law and culture so strongly condemn nudity and homosexuality."

"The Shame!" screamed the headline in an Egyptian newspaper. "Shame on America," sputtered Cairo resident Mustafa Saad, repeating this theme. "How can they convince us now that it is the bastion of democracy, freedoms and human rights?" the irate Egyptian asked USA Today.

Apparently, Mustafa is unconvinced by the fact that America has taken action. America is investigating. If crimes were committed, America will mete out punishment – to her own.

If America were Egypt, the culprits would get commendations, promotions and a weekend at the beach. Coptic Christians, who constitute 10 percent of Egypt’s population, are routinely persecuted and occasionally murdered by Moslem mobs, to enormous yawns from the Egyptian government.

Remember Jessica Lynch, the American private who was captured by the Iraqi army? Lynch was gang-raped (anally) by her captors. Apparently, the rape of a female POW doesn’t offend the Arabs’ exquisite sensibilities.

Do you recall Americans blaming: a) all Iraqis b) all Arabs c) all Moslems for this bestial behavior? Do you recall protestations of outrage in the Arab world? But then, Lynch was an infidel Crusader and a defiler of the sacred sand of Islam, and – as such – probably had it coming, from the humane perspective of enlightened Arab opinion. (She was also out of burqa.)

While the Arab street seethed over the revelations of what reportedly went on at Abu Ghrabi prison, Palestinians murdered an Israeli woman who was eight months pregnant and her four children – ages two to 11.

Tali Hatuel, 34, who lived in a Jewish community in Gaza, was riding in a convoy when poor, oppressed Palestinians began firing on Israeli cars. After Hatuel’s white Citroen swerved off the road, gunmen approached the vehicle and shot the woman and her four children at killing range.

The Arab Affairs correspondent on Israel’s Channel Two quoted Palestinian sources saying the attack was intended to hasten the departure of Jews from Gaza.

In other words, the Palestinians deliberately shot a pregnant woman and her four children (one of them two years old) at close range because their hatred of Jews is boundless, as well as to achieve their objective of making part of Israel Juderein.

The thugs who call themselves the Palestinian Authority (who receive millions annually from the U.S. and European Union) fully approved of this atrocity. If Arafat saw pictures of the bullet-ridden bodies, instead of expressing disgust, most likely he chortled in glee.

When you come to it, when did the Arab/Moslem public last express the least regret over: machine-gun attacks on churchgoers in Pakistan, the anti-Christian jihad that’s resumed in Indonesia, genocide and slavery practiced by the Islamic regime in Sudan, the 2003 bombings of Istanbul synagogues, the recent spate of church burnings in Nigeria, the ongoing persecution of Iranian Jews by that nation’s mullah-ocracy, the orgy of destruction visited on Serbian churches and monasteries in Kosovo by Albanian Moslems, the deaths of over 100 in a 2002 attack by Chechen terrorists on a Moscow theater, the March 11 Madrid train bombing (death toll: more than 200) or the slaughter of more than 3,000 Americans in a single day by 19 airborne Saudis?

It’s only the civilized who are horrified at brutality – even when the brutes are their own kind, even when the victims are their sworn enemies.

On the other hand, with certain honorable exceptions, the Moslem attitude seems to be: If it was done to an infidel, they possibly/probably/definitely had it coming.

Were they living on land Moslems claim? Were they 110-pound female Crusaders who had sullied Islam’s sacred sand pit? Were they dhimmis (Christians and Jews living under Islam) whose existence is tolerated, at best? Were they pregnant "settlers" and two-year-old Zionist imperialists?

If the six reservist guards are found guilty of offenses against their Iraqi prisoners, maybe they should be treated with the same severity as those who commit crimes against Christians/Jews/Hindus etc. in the wonderful world of Islam.

After the Arab street is through lecturing us on the humane treatment of prisoners, perhaps David Duke could address us on racial tolerance, Al Sharpton could comment on responsible social activism and al-Qaeda could instruct us on ecumenical relations.


Don Feder is a former Boston Herald writer who is now a political/communications consultant. He also maintains his own website, DonFeder.com.


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