Jailhouse ‘Raq

The front page of today’s New York Times featured an account of heinous abuse of prisoners at a jailhouse in Basra, Iraq. The suffering captives were delivered from their tormentors by a British-led military operation that culminated, after the building’s evacuation, in its destruction. The suffering inflicted was truly awful, according to the report:

More than 100 men were crowded into a single cell, 30 feet by 40 feet, he said, with two open toilets, two sinks and just a few blankets spread over the concrete floor.

A significant number showed signs of torture. Some had crushed hands and feet, [a British military spokesman] said, while others had cigarette and electrical burns and a significant number had gunshot wounds to their legs and knees.

The responsible parties were not U.S. soldiers or other infidels, but Iraqi police.

I await, with hand cupped to ear, the incendiary storm of outrage from the Islamic world that Muslim prisoners might be abused in this way.

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