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Volume 18, Number 19 May 5, 2004

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Abu Ghraib Prison, Iraq 2003-2004

  1. Editorial - A Plan of Remedial Action

  2. Taguba Report (Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba) Investigation of the 800th MP Brigade 

  3. Photographs

Action Needed to Deal with Yankee Torturers

Some recent images from Iraq are gruesome as hell. (see Video: American Hostage Beheaded by Zarkawi?).Others are outrageous.

Last week, the U.S. television giants got their mitts on the pictures and began to make hay.Hooded head view. Sexual domination intended to humiliate and degrade.

Photographs portraying crimes against POWs were taken by U.S. personnel, the Abu Ghraib prison custodians in Iraq. These people have clearly violated the Geneva Convention: Treatment of POWS. (see also Video: American Hostage Beheaded by Zarkawi?) The real crime is the release of the photographs like this. Stupid grunts!

The photographed atrocities, which apparently occurred in late 2003 are said to have involved about 24 prisoners. There are allegations at least two inmates were murdered. Female inmates claim they were raped. If these accusations prove to be true, the jailor is a worse offender than the inmates; these so-called 'Americans' have degraded the honourable work of a couple hundred thousand heroic service personnel; and have disgraced their nation.

Abu-Ghraib prison known as "1A". This is where suspects are subjected to interrogation by members of military intelligence, the CIA and other servicesU.S. reaction is disgusting. 

Some U.S. politicians are clearly as stupid as those grunts at Abu Ghraib who tortured and sexually humiliated prison inmates while photographing their actus rea. U.S. Democratic Party members and a few disgruntled axe-grinding  Republicans  like Senator John McCain (Arizona) have irresponsibly exploited those images as fodder for the current  Presidential electioneering and by demanding their concept of an immediate solution: another public inquiry and a public "Roast" of the Defense Secretary. The world needs to see action, not campaign-snake-oil hustling brain-dead politicians.

The pecking order (The social hierarchy in a flock of domestic fowl in which each bird pecks subordinate birds and submits to being pecked by dominant birds.) of the most righteously indignant is hard to figure but it is no less true that the competition for the top slot of "most outraged" is ferocious.

Lying to the world, U.S. Senator Diane Feinstein (California) said on CNN this morning, "Americans don't do these kinds of things!".

Al-Jazeera has been hungering for such a screw-up so desperately that the Arab TV network has been inventing 'American atrocities' for months. Now it believes it has a real one to make all the fakes seem true. Every indignant, lying U.S. Senator in Washington isn't going to change a thing.

Enough talk, Uncle Sam. The United States must get off its high horse and take remedial action:

  1. The U.S. must appoint a team of prosecutors;
  2. establish an easy access bureau for taking complaints throughout Iraq;
  3. collect witnesses' statements;
  4. dishonourably discharge, arrest and indict the perpetrators and their accomplices;
  5. hand the Iraq prisons over to properly trained Provost Corps (MP) regulars;
  6. confirm all the prisons in Iraq meet Red Cross criteria;
  7. tear down Saddam Hussein's Abu Ghraib hell hole jail;
  8. immediately begin to set dates for the criminals trials; and
  9. pay the air fare and lodgings for all victims' family members to attend relevant trials.

Micheal O'Brien, Editor

Atrocities by all sides is the truth of most wars.

(see also Video: American Hostage Beheaded by Zarkawi?)

What type of human does these things?

Why would anyone do this?A theoretical construct argues that because extremists' Islam has such a loathsome, cruel attitude toward women, life in an observing fundamentalist Muslim family is more about tension and hostility than about caring and sharing. You can substitute "contempt "and "love" respectively.

One only has to look at the mistreatment of women in the Taliban's Afghanistan or to a lesser degree, within many instances of life in Saudi Arabia or 'Palestine'. Then look at the behaviour of the larger community. Few clinicians would disagree that this cruel treatment of half the species in certain communities is a radical dysfunction and a recipe for social disaster.

After many generations of ignominy toward females--Grandmas, Moms and daughters--could this now have an apocalyptic dimension?

Many of the Saudi hijackers who forced Boeing 767s into Washington DC and New York targets came from seemingly average families in a world where women are either badly mistreated or at best, degraded to a lesser social status.

Any genetic predisposition among Muslim offspring toward psychopathy could find a fertile environment in this anti-female family of tension and hostility (lack of love) for producing two-dimensional personalities: the quintessential psychopathic personality disordered male and the borderline or dependent personality female. This male offspring has little or no empathy nor ability to bond with the rest of the human race; no self observation; no care for another's feelings; and it evaluates each person it comes in contact with as either exploitable or expendable. For the defective personality female offspring, life is a long, sad, submissive stretch; a confounding search for better love and a dire need to please. Thus the crisis of character grows in each succeeding generation and the moral fibre of large communities becomes more corrupt.

Other less-impacted offspring might engender core values of self-loathing. Death, as a consequence, is given a higher place among 'life's' priorities. Living with this mantra means being forever in conflict with the natural yearning to survive. What harm, what anger must this deep subconscious conflict generate? Moreover, living in an environment that heaps debasement on the female human to whom we were all once attached by the umbilical chord, is to live in conflict and to breed so much 'Youngian' anger that any abhorrent, raging behaviour is a possible outcome. Well, the aberrations may be as plentiful and multi-directional as the spokes radiating from the hub of a laced wheel, perhaps like a DSM diagnostic pie-chart model for disordered personalities and their traits (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders - American Psychiatric Association). Regardless, the manifestations of the problem lie in tragic stories of terror and mass graves all over the world.

Micheal O'Brien, Editor

The Psychoanalytic Roots of Islamic Terrorism

By Phyllis Chesler

In the ongoing battle for Fallujah, terrorists are using women and children as human shields against American soldiers. 

  • On April 27, 2004, in Jerusalem, Hamas used a Palestinian human bomb to kill two Palestinian alleged "collaborators"; 
  • on April 28, 2004, even as UN envoy, Lakhdar Brahimi, was busy characterizing Israeli policy as the "great poison in the region," Jordanian police arrested al-Qaeda operatives who were quite literally trying to launch a chemical poison attack that might have killed 80,000 Jordanians and Americans; and
  • on May 1, 2004, in Gaza, Palestinian gunmen shot and killed a Jewish woman who was eight-months pregnant together with her four young daughters.

Despite enormous and continuing denial on the part of left and liberal ideologues and the media, we are facing an exceedingly pathological strain of Islamofascist terrorism. So a crucial question must be asked: from a psychological and anthropological point of view, what kind of culture produces human bombs, glorifies mass murderers, and supports humiliation-based revenge? 

According to Minnesota based psychoanalyst and Arabist, Dr. Nancy Kobrin, it is a culture in which shame and honour play decisive roles and in which the debasement of women is paramount. In an utterly fascinating and as-yet unpublished book, which I will be introducing, the Sheik's New Clothes: the Psychoanalytic Roots of Islamic Suicide Terrorism, Kobrin, and her Israeli co-author, counter-terrorism expert Yoram Schweitzer, describe barbarous family and clan dynamics in which children, both boys and girls, are routinely orally and anally raped by male relatives; infant males are sometimes sadistically over-stimulated by being masturbated; boys between the ages of 7-12 are publicly and traumatically circumcised; many girls are clitoridectomized; and women are seen as the source of all shame and dishonour and treated accordingly: very, very badly. 

According to Dr. Kobrin, "The little girl lives her life under a communal death threat--the honour killing." Both male and female infants and children are brought up by mothers (who are debased and traumatized women). As such, all children are forever psychologically "contaminated" by the humiliated yet all-powerful mother. Arab and Muslim boys must disassociate themselves from her in spectacularly savage ways. But, on a deep unconscious level, they may also wish to remain merged with the source of contamination--a conflict that suicide bombers both act out and resolve when they manfully kill but also merge their blood eternally with that of their presumably most hated enemies, the Israeli Jews. In Kobrin's view, the Israeli Jews may actually function as substitutes or scapegoats for an even more primal, hated/loved enemy: Woman. 

Widespread child sexual abuse leads to paranoid, highly traumatized, and revenge-seeking adults. Based on my own experience in Afghanistan (a non-Arab, Muslim culture), a polygamous, patriarchal culture also leads to an infernal, fraternal competition for paternal favor and inheritance. It is brother against brother, full brothers against half-brothers, full and half brothers against first cousins--and thus, can entire families and clans remain locked in revenge-fueled mortal combat for generations. 

Clearly, only evolution of democracy and the elevation of women can begin to change such dynamics. Western feminists, American leaders: Please note. Alas, historically and theologically, Arab and Muslim culture strongly opposes both democracy and equality for women. This is why the battles to liberate Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Middle East are so important and so very difficult. The American and Israeli war against terrorism is like World War Two, not like Vietnam. 

Yesterday, further confirmation of Dr. Kobrin's thesis arrived at my door. The remarkable and charming Walid Shoebat, an ex-PLO terrorist, came to visit. He has been speaking about his renunciation of terrorism and conversion to evangelical Christianity. Shoebat has been touring the country speaking out for Israel and against the "occupation of Palestinian minds with Jew-hatred." Unlike the human bombs, Shoebat "merged" with his American-born mother by finally rescuing her from years of captivity and domestic abuse in Bethlehem/Beit Sahur. He also rescued his father, the man who imprisoned and abused her. 

Shoebat confirmed the widespread sexual abuse of both boys and girls in Palestinian society. "It is a strange society. Homosexuality is forbidden but if you're the penetrator, not the penetrated, it's okay." He is describing prison sexuality. "If you're a teenage boy with no hair on your legs other boys your age will pinch your butt and tease you. Once, I saw a class of clothed teenage boys sexualize their gymnastics exercises. And once, on a hiking trip, I saw a line of shepherd boys waiting for their turn to sodomize a five year old boy. It was unbelievable."

Shoebat's father also told him stories about starving Arab men who would barter sex for meat from Iraqi soldiers. According to Shoebat, teenage boys prey upon younger children; older male relatives prey upon pre-adolescent and adolescent boys and girls. They do not have intercourse with the girls since this would render them un-marriageable and bring shame upon their families. I heard many stories in both Afghanistan and Iran about the male preference for anal sex, even within marriage, either as a form of birth control or as a preferred homosexual practice. 

Most Arabs and Muslims will deny that this is so. They will attack westerners who say so as "orientalists, colonialists, racists." Western intellectuals will agree with them. They have been well indoctrinated by--no, western academics were the ones who first glorified the work of the late Edward W. Said who, in my opinion, published his master work, Orientalism, in 1978 as a way of denying feminist ideas and refocusing academic attention away from women and onto brown, Muslim, Arab men as the truest victims of oppression. Neat trick. 

Shoebat's grandfather was the Muktar of his village. Nevertheless, eleven-fifteen people lived cramped into two rooms with a huge balcony, a courtyard, and an outhouse. Once, when Shoebat's American-born Christian mother, (she was forced to convert to Islam), upended a backgammon board in front of his father Achmed's friends, Achmed took a hammer and cracked her skull. Shoebat, her youngest child, took her hand and walked with her to the nearest church where the nuns sewed up her head. There were no hospitals. Whenever his mother tried to escape, (always together with her three children) the Shoebat men would find her, re-kidnap her, subject her to further punishment. 

The male sexual abuse of female children exists everywhere; it is one of the main means of traumatizing and shaming women into obedience and rendering them incapable of resistance or rebellion. However, the male sexual abuse of male children--denied, never admitted--may work differently and may turn boys into predatory, pedophilic men. Also, among Arabs and Muslims, revenge killings are uniquely prevalent.

Shoebat told me several extraordinary stories which illustrate Palestinian and Arab Middle Eastern mentality. One of his paternal uncles was supposedly having an affair with the mother of Yusuf Al-Atrash who belongs to the family of Sami Al-Altrash, the Montreal-based student who stopped Bibi Netanyahu from speaking at Concordia University. The woman's husband was the chief of police whose revenge consisted of throwing live grenades at Shoebat's family home. The home bore the unrepaired damage for years. The outraged husband wanted to not only kill his wife's lover but his entire family. "My father and his immediate family all had to die because of what his brother did." 

Shoebat asked me how I would resolve this feud-unto-death because of his uncle Najib, who was also the chief of police. I foundered. Bride-exchange sacrifice? Blood money? I could not come up with the ingenious plan that Najib crafted--a plan which may also shed light, in part, upon the nature of the Arab war against the Jews. Najib persuaded the village that they had to attack, pogrom-style, a nearby Jewish community. (Ramat Rachel). Once the Israelis opened fire in self-defense, most of the Arabs fled. However, the Arab attack upon the Jews provided cover for what Achmed had to do: He himself shot Yusuf in the back. When the Israelis, as they always did, allowed the Arabs to safely retrieve their dead, Najib proclaimed Yusuf al-Atrash a "shahid" and buried him in his bloody clothing. This is a mark of honour. A "shahid" enters heaven more quickly, clothed in his own blood.

This characterizes an Arab way of thinking. From here, it is easy to create the kinds of doctored footage and photo-opportunity journalism that has dominated this latest Intifada against the Jews. It is also a way of thinking that the liberal western media does not comprehend. 

Yusuf's martyrdom was not enough, the "honour" of the al-Atrash family had not yet been redeemed. Another man from the al-Atrash family attacked Shoebat's father Achmed, who, in self-defense, stabbed his attacker, "ripped his stomach open like a sheep." The man did not die. Shoebat's father immediately went into hiding. By this time, Shoebat was living in America. His paternal uncles called him and asked that he pay the blood money. Shoebat did so but not until each of his uncles ("nice uncles") publicly "abandoned" Achmed. "He is not my brother, I denounce and abandon him." 

And only in this way was Shoebat finally able to rescue his mother. He paid the blood money and brought both his long-suffering mother and her abuser, his father, to America. Since Shoebat's mother holds an American passport she was able to bring her husband into the country with her.

Recently, Shoebat's brother--a man they had previously socialized with--called Shoebat's wife. "Tell your husband that we know what he is doing against Islam. Tell him we know where he lives. Bye bye."

"I told my wife, 'Welcome to the Middle East where your beloved one day can become your executioner the next day.'"

Shoebat is, miraculously, engaged in redefining loyalty. He has taken his mother's side, and in so doing, has broken with the shame, honour, and secrecy codes of his father's culture. It is important to understand that Shoebat has not broken with his father. On the contrary, he rescued him too. Shoebat's mother and father both live near him in the United States. 

These amazing anecdotes confirm the veracity of Dr. Kobrin's work. In my view, they also suggest that Americans and Europeans begin to think twice about what Arabs tell them about who started a fight, and why the Israelis, the Jews, and the Americans are to blame.

Phyllis Chesler

Phyllis Chesler, PhD, is an Emerita Professor of Psychology and Women's Studies and the author of twelve books including the best-selling WOMEN AND MADNESS and most recently, THE NEW ANTI-SEMITISM. THE CURRENT CRISIS AND WHAT WE MUST DO ABOUT IT (Jossey-Bass/John Wiley). She may be reached at her website www.phyllis-chesler.com.

News

New Plan for FallujahMaj. Gen. Jassim Mohammed Saleh in Fallujah at prayer.

General Jassim Mohammed Saleh (right), will not lead Iraqi forces in Fallujah but once vetted may play a role at the Brigade level.

U.S. Military officials in Iraq appear to have a top-level Iraqi General in mind but haven't officially named him. Meanwhile, U.S. Marines have softened their positions in Fallujah and Iraqi soldiers entered the city last Friday under U.S. command. The move was aimed at restoring stability in the Sunni stronghold city.

The anticipated appointment of General Mohammed Latif to command the Fallujah Brigade was the latest in a series of developments in the town.

General Latif participated in meetings with Marines last week on the creation of the Brigade. A U.S. official said yesterday the decision to put Gen Latif in charge emerged as it became clear he was more influential. "General Saleh as I understand it will be working at the battalion level, not the brigade level," added the spokesperson.

General Jassem Mohammed Saleh is still being "vetted" by the Iraqi defence minister and the Coalition Provisional Authority, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Myers told Fox News television on Sunday.

U.N. Participation in Iraq Taking Form U.N. Secretary General Anan

The U.N. Security Council will likely authorize a multinational force to remain in Iraq to help create a secure environment, Secretary General Kofi Annan said early this week.

"I think it will be part of the new resolution

A U.N.-sanctioned multinational security force will help maintain security in Iraq after the U.S. military hands limited sovereignty back to the country, U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan said Sunday that the Council will be discussing and approving that will cover the period after the 30th of June", Annan said.

"Quite frankly, it's in everybody's interest that we do whatever we can stabilize Iraq," the secretary general added.

U.N. Security Council Resolution 1511 passed last October put the U.N. stamp on a multinational force whose mandate would extend until "completion of the political process" in Iraq -- defined as the drafting of a new constitution and the holding of democratic elections afterwards.

U.K. Also Accused of Abusing Prisoners

Britain launched an investigation into allegations British soldiers had abused Iraqi prisoners and the Daily Mirror newspaper published photographs on Saturday of a captive being urinated on and beaten.

Images having some question about their authenticity were published only days after similar revelations involving U.S. troops provoked international dismay and anger, and Prime Minister Tony Blair said the allegations must be treated seriously and investigated quickly.

Britain's army chief, General Sir Mike Jackson, ordered an immediate inquiry into the allegations on Friday, after the Daily Mirror handed the photographs to army authorities.

"If proven, not only is such appalling conduct clearly unlawful, it clearly contravenes the British army's high standards," Jackson said in a statement. "If proven, the perpetrators are not fit to wear the queen's uniform. They have besmirched the good name of the army and its honour."

The Daily Mirror published five photographs of a hooded prisoner, which it said had come from two unnamed soldiers in the Queen's Lancashire Regiment. The soldiers said the man had been detained on suspicion of stealing.

"Lads were taking turns giving him a right going over, smashing him in the face with weapons and stamping on him," one soldier was quoted as saying.

The newspaper said the prisoner was later driven away from a Basra camp and hurled off the back of a truck.

Several weeks later, men from the same regiment are alleged to have beaten to death another prisoner, The Mirror said.

Canadian Troops to Stay in Haiti

Nearly 500 Canadian troops have been in Haiti since March taking part in a multinational security force dealing with the uprising that led to President Jean-Bertrand Aristide fleeing the country. 

The troops patrol some of the poorest neighbourhoods of Port-au-Prince. 

Canada agreed last week to extend their deployment, after the United Nations Security Council approved a resolution that will eventually send more than 8,000 peacekeepers and police officers to the Caribbean nation.

The U.N. Security Council unanimously passed the resolution, which will see blue-helmeted peacekeepers take over from the U.S.-dominated multinational force that was deployed in February to end a three-week rebellion. The uprising led Haiti's first democratically elected president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, to flee the country.

Foreign Affairs Minister Bill Graham said the roughly 500 Canadian troops who were to end their 90-day deployment later in the month will see their stay extended for as long as several months.

"We've undertaken, for transition purposes, to keep the troops there," Graham said, adding that the extension would allow other countries to fulfill their commitment to provide troops.

Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin called the U.N. resolution "good news" and said Canada's main contribution would eventually be in police training. "The whole issue of setting up the required institutions, that's where we want to work in conjunction with the Haitians," he told a news conference in Washington last Thursday after a meeting with U.S. President George W. Bush.

Boeing Announces Dividend

Boeing [NYSE: BA] company's Board of Directors approved, on Monday, a quarterly dividend increase of more than 17.5 percent and said the company will resume its authorized share repurchase program. Additionally, the company reconfirmed that it is considering a near-term contribution of up to an additional $1 billion to its pension plan.

The dividend increase of 3 cents per share lifts the company’s quarterly dividend to 20 cents per share, from its current level of 17 cents per share. The increased dividend is payable June 11, 2004, to shareholders of record at the close of business on May Boeing 757-300 21, 2004.

The share repurchase program was authorized by the company’s Board of Directors on December 11, 2000. Boeing halted the program after September 11, 2001. Of the 85 million authorized shares, 44 million remain available for repurchase. 

The number of shares to be repurchased and the timing of such purchases will be based on the level of cash balances, general business conditions and other factors, including alternative investment activities

In other news from Boeing, the company delivered its last new 757-300 passenger airplane to Continental Airlines Chairman and CEO Gordon Bethune and about 100 Continental employees and guests. Continental now operates 10 757-300s and more than 40 757-200s. Launched in 1996, the 757-300, at 178 feet 7 inches, is the longest single-aisle twinjet ever produced. Boeing will build the final 757, a 757-200, in October. Boeing has delivered more than 1,038 757 airplanes to 55 customers during the past 22 years.

U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Bremer: Security in Iraq 
Recruitment of Security Forces 

Our training of an Iraqi Army and an Iraqi police service is a key part of our efforts to ensure that Iraqis are eventually able to handle their own security. Our training efforts are continuing at an extraordinary pace. 

On April 18, the Iraqi Minister of Defense announced his appointment of the top Iraqi generals in the new Iraqi Army. Iraqi officers, drawn almost entirely from the many honourable men of the former Iraqi Army, already command these forces. 

Over 70 percent of all the men in the Iraqi army and Iraq Civil Defense Corps served honourably in the former army and wish to serve their country again. All are carefully vetted to ensure that no one is accepted who had a direct hand in the atrocities of the former regime. 

In reconstituting these forces, the Iraqi people also benefit from the skills of the many who served in armed groups that fought against Saddam’s regime. We will continue to welcome these individuals into the army, the Iraqi Civil Defense Corps, the police and border guards. 

More of these officers with honourable records from the former army and elsewhere will serve in the months ahead as the new Iraqi Army grows. In the coming months, the Coalition and the Iraqis forces will steadily strengthen their security partnership, placing increasing responsibility in the hands of Iraqis. By June 30, Iraqi soldiers in the ranks will report up through an Iraqi chain of command to Iraqi generals. 

When sovereignty is transferred to an Iraqi government on June 30, Coalition and Iraqi forces will continue to work as partners to defeat the terrorists and provide security for the Iraqi people. 

This is consistent with our strategy from the moment we disbanded the former Iraqi Army and began planning for building new security forces. We knew all along that there would be substantial recruitment from the old army for the junior ranks of the new force and, in due course, the senior ranks as well. Central to the strategy, however, is ensuring that no senior officers from the old army had blood on their hands from the former regime’s crimes. We have implemented a robust vetting process to this effect. 

Assistance for Iraq Border Crossing Points

Both Iraqis and the Coalition remain concerned about security of Iraq's border. Iraq’s long borders, especially those with Iran and Syria, are difficult to defend and there is evidence that foreign terrorists are coming into Iraq. 

The Coalition is working toward solutions. 

When the interim government takes office on June 30, that government will have the equipment, staff, training and materials necessary to operate each of its 20 major border crossing points. 

We expect to have 16,000 Iraqis devoted to border security by June 30. Until that time we are going to limit and control the number of people crossing into Iraq from other nations. 

Additionally, the Coalition is providing Iraq with sophisticated technical systems to help screen and track foreign visitors. 

Iraqi Detainees 

During the war and since the liberation of Iraq, Coalition forces have detained thousands of Iraqis, and hundreds of foreigners. 

But we have already released over 75 percent of those detained and we have simplified the processing of detainees. 

All cases are reviewed within 72 hours by an attorney and in many cases, the person detained is released immediately. 

Two months ago, we established a special board to expedite the review of all detainees. Since then we have released over 2,500 detainees. 

We give highest priority to reviewing the records of female detainees. Fewer than 10 females are currently detained. 

We will not release any detainee guilty of serious crimes, as Saddam did when he flooded the streets with criminals in 2002. 

We now publish a complete list in Arabic daily on the CPA website at http://iraqcoalition.org/Arabic/prisoners/index.html. This list is also available at Coalition Information centers across the country and will be posted regularly at the country’s police stations and courthouses starting May 10. 

Iraq Reconstruction 

Since the liberation of Iraq, the Coalition has completed over 20,000 individual reconstruction projects worth billions of dollars. 

These projects have employed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis building and renovating schools, orphanages and medical clinics; roads, bridges and dams. Iraqis from Dohuk to Basra have worked on these projects and millions have benefited from them. 

Thousands of additional projects will be financed by over 19 billion dollars from America. Already Coalition officials are meeting with provincial and municipal leaders to hear their priorities. 

The Coalition will be accelerating these projects everywhere in country and we expect that they will create over a million and a half jobs over the next year. 

The Coalition will give priority to Iraqi firms whenever possible in order to create as many opportunities for Iraqis as possible. 

To date, the firms working on these projects have given contracts to several hundred Iraqi firms. 

Coalition military commanders and Coalition offices around the country will have an additional $500 million to spend on reconstruction projects which can be quickly completed, like fixing roads or schools, and which will provide jobs for Iraqis. 

Iraq De-Ba'athification 

The Ba'ath Party poisoned Iraqi political life and was one of the most brutal instruments of Saddam’s tyranny. There is no room in the new Iraq for Ba'athist ideology nor for Ba'athist criminals. 

Banning the party and removing from public life those who used it to commit crimes was necessary and remains necessary if we are to build a democratic Iraq. 

De-Ba'athification was and remains the right policy for Iraq. 

But many Iraqis have complained that de-Ba'athification procedures have been applied unevenly and sometimes unfairly, particularly in the education sector where the requirement for teacher and professors to join the party was strongly enforced. The result was that many teachers who were Ba'ath Party members in name only were dismissed from their jobs. 

Therefore, in coordination with the Minister of Education, the Minister of Higher Education, and the Chairman of the Supreme National De-Ba'athification Commission, we are taking steps to ensure that the policy is implemented fairly and efficiently. 

De-Ba'athification Review Committees were established last year to review the thousands of appeals from former firqah-level Ba'athists who were dismissed from the jobs but, under the de-Ba'athification procedures, have a right to apply for reinstatement. 

The decisions made by local de-Ba'athification appeals committees of the Ministry of Education will be effective immediately. 

This will allow thousands of teachers to return to work. 

Thousands more will begin receiving pensions this week. 

Those primary and secondary school teachers formerly of the rank of firqah members whose appeals have not yet been heard will have their appeal adjudicated within 20 days. 

The National De-Ba'athification Commission will handle the cases of hundreds of university professors with the same urgency. Professors who did not use their posts to intimidate others or commit crimes should be allowed to return to work promptly. 

More information will be available on the websites of the Coalition (iraqcoalition.org) and the National De-Ba'athification (www.debaath.org) websites and through Ministry of Education and Ministry of Higher Education offices throughout Iraq.

Remembrance in Iraq 

To commemorate those who suffered the atrocities of Saddam’s regime, the Coalition has directed the establishment of a National Commission for Remembrance. Remembering is indispensable both as a comfort to the oppressed and tyrannized and as a cautionary tale for the future. 

This Commission will be part of a broader effort to come to terms with Iraq's immediate past, an effort that includes, for example, the Iraqi Special Tribunal. 

The Commission will administer a $10 million fund for remembrance and will consider proposals from across the nation on how best to memorialize the suffering of Iraq’s many communities under Saddam. 

The Commission will also seek to raise private funds to establish a national museum in Baghdad to ensure that the nation forever recalls Saddam’s depredations, such as the Iraqi sufferings during the 1991 Intifada, the 1988 Anfal campaign and Saddam's "Arabization" campaign that savaged Kurds, Arabs and Turcomans alike.

Paul Bremer

Author: Ambassador L. Paul Bremer III was named Presidential Envoy to Iraq on May 6, 2003 and in this capacity is the Administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority.

During his 23-year State Department career, Ambassador Bremer served as Special Assistant or Executive Assistant to six Secretaries of State. His overseas assignments have included service at the Embassies in Afghanistan and Malawi and service as Deputy Chief of Mission at the American Embassy in Norway. President Reagan named him as Ambassador to the Netherlands in 1983 where he served for three years. Ambassador Bremer also served as Executive Secretary of the State Department and was President Reagan’s Ambassador at Large for Counter Terrorism.

Ambassador Bremer is one of the world’s leading experts on crisis management, terrorism and homeland security. In September 1999, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dennis Hastert, appointed him Chairman of the National Commission on Terrorism. In June 2002, President Bush appointed Ambassador Bremer to the President’s Homeland Security Advisory Council. He has also served on the National Academy of Science Commission examining the role of Science and technology in countering terrorism and chaired a Heritage Foundation study, “Defending the Homeland”.

 


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