The NewStandard ceased publishing on April 27, 2007.

Use of dogs in Abu Ghraib authorized at the highest levels

by Jon Elmer

June 11, 2004 – American military intelligence operatives have told investigators under oath that the use of unmuzzled dogs to intimidate and attack detainees in Abu Ghraib was ordered by the highest levels of command within the prison, the Washington Post reported on its front page Friday. Sergeant Michael Smith, a military intelligence interrogator, told investigators that the head of military intelligence at Abu Ghraib, Colonel Thomas M Pappas, authorized the use of dogs in order to frighten detainees into providing information during interrogation: "He said it was good to go," Smith testified. Dogs are considered by many Muslims to be unholy animals. The Post report also includes one soldier’s testimony stating that military dog handlers held "a contest to see how many detainees they could get to urinate on themselves" out of sheer terror. One of the more infamous photographs from Abu Ghraib prison shows a naked Iraqi man cowering in fear with his hands over his head as two leashed dogs perched viciously on their hind legs, barking; the next photograph in the sequence shows the man lying on the ground in a pool of his own blood, a severe bite wound in his leg.

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The NewStandard ceased publishing on April 27, 2007.


Jon Elmer is a contributing journalist.

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