20 Years Later, a Jury Weighs Claims of Abuse at Abu Ghraib

April 25, 2024
New York Times

...The plaintiffs suing CACI are represented by the Center for Constitutional Rights, a human rights organization. The group won a $5 million settlement in 2013 in a similar case against the Titan Corporation, another military contractor that had employees at Abu Ghraib. The plaintiffs could not sue the U.S. government, which is (with a few exceptions) immune to tort lawsuits.

Mr. Al-Ejaili, the journalist, has three children and lives with his wife in Sweden. He was working as a cameraman for Al Jazeera in the fall of 2003 when he was arrested by U.S. troops. At Abu Ghraib, he was moved from a tent through a screening center to his first interrogation, with an interpreter and an interrogator, who was a tall man wearing civilian clothes. He said he was then shackled. Soldiers pulled a bag over his head. He heard the word “confess” screamed in both of his ears.

He was commanded to undress, according to his testimony. “At the beginning, I tried to object,” he said. “after that, my soul was shocked.” He spent the night naked and shackled to a pipe. He vomited on the floor.

“I had no control over what was happening to me, or what would happen to me,” he told the jury. “I wished to die.”

Mr. Al-Ejaili was naked for roughly 80 percent of the time he was at Abu Ghraib, he said. He and the other detainees would avoid looking directly at one another, he said, to try to alleviate the humiliation...

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Last modified 

April 25, 2024