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One of the CIA's jet planes used to render purported terrorists to other countries--where information is extracted by any means necessary--made 10 trips to Uzbekistan. In a segment of CBS's 60 Minutes on these CIA torture missions (March 5), former British ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murray told of the range of advanced techniques used by Uzbek interrogators:

"drowning and suffocation, rape was used . . . and also immersion of limbs in boiling liquid."

But it was much more than mere limb immersion.

The Village Voice

Two nights later on ABC's World News Tonight, Craig Murray told of photos he received of an Uzbek interrogation that ended with the prisoner actually being boiled to death!

Murray, appalled, had protested to the British Foreign Office in a confidential memorandum leaked to and printed in the Financial Times on October 11 of last year:

"Uzbek officials are torturing prisoners to extract information [about reported terrorist operations], which is supplied to the U.S. and passed through its Central Intelligence Agency to the U.K., says Mr. Murray." (Emphasis added.)

Prime Minister Tony Blair quickly reacted to this undiplomatic whistle-blowing.

Craig Murray was removed as ambassador to Uzbekistan.

Uzbekistan is the sprawling badlands of a former soviet buffer state run by the merciless dictator Islam Karimov. Although Mr. Karimov has a name that makes him sound like a MacGuyver villian, he makes people who oppose him... die. Not a big purple finger waver that the Bush or Blair administration advertises widely to the American or British people during this time of 'made for TV' color-coded democratic 'revolutions'. He is just a ruthless thug willing to rent the backalleys and darkened rooms of his prisons out to the United States and her allies (at your expense) to rip people's fingernails out with pliars. When you sit down in a panic on April 15th trying to get your tax forms in the mail with the 15th postmark displayed over your crooked stamp, you might be upset that Lockheed is building a warplane you think is wasteful with your taxes. It would flay the mind and stagger the soul to imagine just how low your tax dollars can go in this world if you dig deep enough. Because, somewhere in the world, the Boston Red Sox former team plane, paid for by you and moving under vague new call signs without the owner's knowlege, may be taking a man from Lebanon (who may not be guilty of anything but being on a suspect list) to an ugly place. A spot where there is a tall metal lobster pot set beneath a halogen lamp and over a propane burner waiting for nothing more than water, its newest victim, and a struck match. Worse, it is a tub with a media section. A corner gallery for a grimy camera and a jaded photographer to keep a visual running score of the events. A photographer who has more than likely flooded a big file cabinet or two with the other 'interviews' his bosses have conducted on an 'off-the-books but substantial' U.S. dole.

There are no frills to the british embassy station there, just the basics; electricity, running water, and military security to protect you on the compound. You don't wander around outside of the compound embracing the Uzbek natives and drinking in the local culture with a Manchester United jersey on or a New England Patriots hat. Leaving the compound without an escort is a violation of security protocol. You don't want to get into a misunderstanding with the local security forces. Mr. Karimov has a secret police force that can make people evaporate like ashes in the air above a fire if it suits his whim. Its not an easy place to accept as a diplomatic assignment, but its a great place to lose somebody you want to 'cease to exist'. Most Prison facilities in Uzbekistan are Soviet era cement monoliths that were last maintained with hard Russian cash sent from Moscow prior to 1991. You don't get sent to the Uzbek capitol as a reward for a big donation to the re-election campaign of a President or a Prime Minister.

And the CIA doesn't put somebody on a plane to Uzbekistan or Syria or Libya... unless they want to spend your U.S. tax dollars to make somebody scream before they die. The absolute ruler makes a killing in the killing business. They get lots of practice on political prisoners and the head thug's potential rivals for power.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

"Uzbekistan provides a vital base for U.S. operations in neighbouring Afghanistan. U.S. financial aid [to Uzbekistan] provides a bulwark against Russian influence." And--dig this--an October 16 Financial Times editorial points out that because the Bush administration supports the barbaric government of President Karimov, the U.S. "has given [Karimov] the confidence to sell a long-running campaign against internal dissidents as part of the campaign against Al Qaeda." (Emphasis added.) -Philip Stephens, the Financial Times

In 2003, Fatima Mukhadirova sent photographs of her son--who was tortured to death in an Uzbek prison--to the British embassy. As reported in Muslim Uzbekistan (February 12, 2004): "His teeth were smashed, his fingers were stripped of nails, and his body had been cut, bruised and scalded." His mother was put on trial "for attempted encroachment on the constitutional order" to convince her to shut up about what was done to her son. (She was subsequently convicted and sentenced to six years in prison.) -Nat Hentoff, The Village Voice

-There were no reports of politically motivated disappearances. US State Department -Uzbekistan Review Released March 31, 2003

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Craig Murray isn't exactly living like a hero these days either. If you do a little research on him you find that his appearance on ABC News is dismissed as 'payback' by Bush administration supporters and Blair apologists in the UK because he was fired from his job in a way that clouds his diplomatic resume. Since the events contained in this story he hasn't exactly brought great rewards on himself for telling his story. But who knows? Maybe he's not a good guy at all. Maybe he's just a guy they say he is who has been working in diplomatic circles trying to cover his ass so that when another PM comes to power... he can try to get another diplomatic job. Like an assistant coach in the NFL fired by a powerful coach or owner trying to both lay low and network so that the next coach might consider giving him a job. What I do know is this... somebody handed a manila evelope to him once at the embassy. But no matter if he is a hero or goat in his heart... he came forward and told a painful truth because of the horrors that he witnessed in the palm of his hand. He revealed a story about an envelop filled with the images of a writhing man slowly being boiled alive in a large metal container. Photographed by people who do this sort of thing for a living, because you don't take a series of candid photographs of somebody boiling alive and thrashing around begging for mercy if you've never done it before. You don't keep detailed records of horrors that chill the soul, you keep detailed records of mundane things for the files.  

In the name of saving freedom, and preserving our democratic way of life, with our money.  

-Just think about this:

You are from Egypt. Or Lebanon. A reckless cousin of yours begins to attend a radical cleric's mosque and begins to practice an extreme brand of radical Islamic fundamentalism. It is a tragedy for your family, but worse, for your father. You see, your father is the man that your now-radical cousin is named after. This man who has chosen to walk an ugly, evil path in this life is his brother's eldest son and you were all once so very close that your uncle honored your father this way. Now, your cousin is a controversial figure in your house. His spiritual leader is dismissed by your family as a thug who exploits people to do things he wouldn't do himself. He is a parasite of people of passionate faith. Your mother and father will be damned before they let you hang around with a nutcase you share a blood bond with who might get you killed for some coward who wouldn't blow himself up (for all of his raging nonsense to the contrary) in a crowded market of innocent jewish (and palestinian) strangers in a million years. You know that one day soon it is likely that your cousin will be dead, by his own hand, in a manner that you yourself find to be a complete blashphemy to your faith.

Then your father vanishes.

Now, after he has been missing for a year, you discover half, or three quarters, of the details about what happened to your father. He's dead. Worse, there is no body to mourn over, because it was desecrated and destroyed by the people who killed him. He died in a dark cell somewhere (in Uzbekistan) because an American (an anonymous CIA case officer) saw your radical cousin's name flash on an alert and had him snatched up by the authorities while he was on a business trip to Jordan. While beating him senseless, he proved to be a hard case. He kept saying that it was not him but some obviously non-existent 'nephew' that was really the wanted party. It was just a mistake, but that couldn't be, because the CIA doesn't make mistakes. The name on the list matches. The photo is an arab man with a beard. Same Height. Build. Hometown. Its a done deal. Frustrated by the denials and his holding out, the CIA made sure he was packed off for a harder interrogation at the hands of a less restrained ally. There, he was boiled alive until the flesh peeled off his legs and he begged for the man with the digital camera taking photos of his thrashing around to shoot him and stop the pain. Some animal took photos. You know this because you follow the western media when you can through your parents satilite dish getting European news channels. People were fired for exposing this horror, and the people who promoted the program that caused it to happen were promoted to more powerful positions in the British and American governments.

Now... your crazy hateful cousin comes around again. He spouts his violent, ugly, and evil views in a rant. Your grandfather (taking over now as the head of the household) lets him come and go with a blessing. Your mother lets him come and go in a dazed state of mourning. They give him money. And every word of hate rings in your ears as gospel now. Somewhere... an American (whose innocent children will die needlessly for nothing more than doing humanitarian aid work in the wrong place at the wrong time during a time of madness and illogic) sits in front of his TV unaware of all of this. He just sits. Breathlessly awaiting the latest Nancy Grace screed on the all-important Michael Jackson case. Like a giant clueless pickle in a sweater resting on an old family lazyboy... pickling in his ignorant bliss.

How many 'mistakes' are terrorists now? Its a fundamental question that needs to be rationally pursued to fully wage a pre-emptive war on terrorism. You don't short circuit hate by mindlessly creating more of it. That is the very definition of why the Bush Administration, and its lackey bulldog Tony Blair, have completely fucked up the War on Terrorism with their institutionalized stupidity. Somewhere, hidden in an office, or a vault, or a microfilm case, or on a compact disc... there are photos, records, videos, logs, detailed case works of things that Joseph Megele would be proud of. We know it, they won't show it. Its been completely white washed and covered up. During the immediate post Abu Graib scandal period US congresspeople said that there were more photos and videos of 'interviews' that would cause strong men to damned near vomit on the floor next to them should they be released.

I know. I know. I know.
This diary could have been written a year ago.
This diary could have been written two years ago.
Three.

It is still happening, still being covered up, and still coming out in odd little volcanic leaks that slip through the fingers of powerful men and women doing evil things in the name of freedom. Mr. John Bolton, bullyboy bastard and bain of powerless secretaries, file clerks, and first year analysts... is still lying through his teeth to Congress, while on the docket and bucking for a promotion. Covering up and excusing away this sort of hellish garbage was his bread and butter with the administration. Theoretically, John Bolton, if confirmed, may find himself having to have to stand in the gallery of the United Nations and lecture the representatives from Uzbekistan on their attrocious human rights records. In our name. As they sit and nod in 'shame', knowing that any real condemnation with teeth will be vetoed by the US because the Uzbek representative has a LOT of photos and files that could be trouble if things get too serious. The question is... how many countries now have in their posession a big 'uh uh uh... not so fast' file to wave at the United States when we are in a position of trying to lead the world based on our 'moral superiority'? "Oh... I wouldn't do that Mr. Bolton. Remember these... these photos? The color photos? Remember that giant fry-O-lator we built? You had us french fry those three fellows from the United Arab Emeriates? Well, we actually used that wonderful device 123 times and your prisoners and our prisoners are all easily lumped together... and, how shall we say it.... ah... just like in the American movies? We go down... you go down."

Question: "As commander in chief, what is it that Uzbekistan can do in interrogating an individual that the United States can't?"

George W. Bush repeated his talking point: "We seek assurances that nobody will be tortured."

-There were no reports of politically motivated disappearances. US State Department -Uzbekistan Review Released March 31, 2003

The 2003 analysis was held to the available 2002 data. Read it over, its a horrorshow without the new data added in.

There were no confirmed reports of political killings.
Followed by details of... political killings.
There were no reports of politically motivated disappearances.
Followed by... reports of obvious politically motivated disappearances.
The Constitution provides for freedom of thought, speech, and convictions; however, in practice, the Government continued to restrict these rights severely.
No wonder Bush loves these guys.

If you try to access 2004 or 2005:

Page Not Available

Sorry, you have tried to access a page that is not available. (Like reason, sanity, longterm thinking, and restraint in the Bush White House.)

Originally posted to LeftHandedMan on Wed Apr 20, 2005 at 01:41 AM PDT.

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