Inquiry Finds Five Cases of Koran 'Mishandling' at Gitmo


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Vernal45
May 26, 2005, 08:19 PM
This is why we will not WIN the war on Terror. We are worried over a Book. How to treat a Book. Yet the enemy has no problem burning a Bible.


Inquiry Finds Five Cases of Koran 'Mishandling' at Gitmo

Thursday, May 26, 2005

WASHINGTON U.S. officials have substantiated five cases in which military guards or interrogators mishandled the Koran of Muslim prisoners at Guantanamo Bay (search) but found "no credible evidence" to confirm a prisoner's report that a holy book was flushed in a toilet, the prison's commander said Thursday.

Brig. Gen. Jay W. Hood (search), who commands the detention center in Cuba, told a Pentagon news conference that a prisoner who was reported to have complained to an FBI agent in 2002 that a military guard threw a Koran in the toilet has told Hood's investigators that he never witnessed any form of Koran desecration.

The unidentified prisoner, questioned at Guantanamo on May 14, said he had heard talk of guards mishandling religious articles but did not witness any such acts, Hood said.

The general said he could not speculate on why the prisoner had recanted his earlier statement, which was contained in an Aug. 1, 2002, summary of an FBI (search) agent's July 22, 2002, interrogation of the prisoner. The summary was made public this week.

"I'd like you to know that we have found no credible evidence that a member of the Joint Task Force at Guantanamo Bay ever flushed a Koran down a toilet," Hood said. "We did identify 13 incidents of alleged mishandling of the Koran by Joint Task Force personnel. Ten of those were by a guard and three by interrogators."

Of the 13 alleged incidents, five were substantiated, he said. Four were by guards and one was by an interrogator. Hood said the five cases "could be broadly defined as mishandling" of the holy book, but he refused to discuss details.

In three of the five cases, the mishandling appears to have been deliberate. In the other two, it apparently was accidental.

"None of these five incidents was a result of a failure to follow standard operating procedures in place at the time the incident occurred," Hood said.

Allegations of Koran abuse have stirred worldwide controversy. After Newsweek magazine reported earlier this month that U.S. officials had confirmed a Koran was flushed in a toilet, deadly demonstrations were held in Afghanistan, although it is not clear what role that story played in sparking the violence. Newsweek later retracted its report.

In an indication of the Pentagon's eagerness to discredit the allegation, Hood briefed reporters on the interim findings of his investigation even though the Pentagon's standard practice is to withhold comment on the progress of any official investigation until it has been completed. Hood did not say how much longer his inquiry would last. He said he was still screening newspaper stories and legal documents from court cases involving detainees in which allegations of Koran mishandling were made.

Eight of the 13 alleged incidents of Koran mishandling that Hood has looked into were not substantiated. Six involved guards who either accidentally touched a Koran or "touched it within the scope of his duties" or did not touch it at all. "We consider each of these incidents resolved," Hood said.

The other two cases in which the allegation was not substantiated involved interrogators who either touched or "stood over" a Koran during an interrogation, Hood said. In one case not deemed to be mishandling, an interrogator placed two Korans on a television. In the other case, which Hood did not describe fully, a Koran was not touched and Hood said the interrogator's unspecified "action" was accidental.

"We've also identified 15 incidents where detainees mishandled or inappropriately treated the Koran, one of which was, of course, the specific example of a detainee who ripped pages out of their own Koran," he said.

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Rebar
May 26, 2005, 08:27 PM
This whole koran thing is rediculous.

I went to the library, and read it. Technically, since I'm an "impure infidel", I'm under a death sentence in some islamic countries just for touching it! Touching it!

Meanwhile, they're burning our flag, looting churches, blowing up buddist treasures, and pretty much disrespecting anything to do with any other religion.

They need to get out of the 14th century as regards to the koran, because I predict it will become a national sport to "desecrate" it.

boofus
May 26, 2005, 08:38 PM
The koran in the toilet isn't abuse! It's art!! They should claim protection under the 1st Amendment. Just like when the leftists burn American flags or urinate on Bibles. It's karma.

Arc-Lite
May 26, 2005, 08:43 PM
..the war is already on... talking of why, or adding fuel to the fire...is a moot point.

2nd Amendment
May 26, 2005, 08:45 PM
Baffling. Amazing. Incredible. Depressing. Why in the world is this even an issue?

Alex45ACP
May 26, 2005, 08:50 PM
The War on Terror can't be won.

Standing Wolf
May 26, 2005, 08:55 PM
Why in the world is this even an issue?

It's how we can tell we've let the enemy define the war.

The War on Terror can't be won.

Well, not if we don't a.) fight it, and b.) fight it to win. When we let the enemy define the war in terms of the treatment of inanimate books, we've obviously forsaken all thought of winning a real world war.

Joejojoba111
May 26, 2005, 09:00 PM
Just a small point, but when debating invisible super heros that livein outer space people get upset, so I guess it's all relative.

ASUI in Islam they don't have a 'God' to directly worship, they worship the texts written by Mohammed (or maybe his son, I think, depending on which type of Islam). Judaism is like this too, they have clothign and a necklace for the Torah and the torah is very respected, but Islam takes it even further.

So to compare, I guess you would have to give the Pope a swirly and see how catholics like it, or something like that, because the closest thing to compare their Koran to IS Jesus, not the bible.

GoRon
May 26, 2005, 11:09 PM
The Pope is a human being. The Koran is a book.

Assaulting a human bieng is not the same as showing disrespect to a book.

That this even has to be pointed out is ridiculous.

I think it is safe to say that the Muslims that are committing idolatry of a book are of the rather more extreme wahabi types.

JohnKSa
May 26, 2005, 11:23 PM
Anybody know what the penalty for owning a bible in Saudi Arabia is?

Ironworker
May 27, 2005, 12:08 AM
Holy texts not of acceptable Islamic orgin can lead to beatings, fines, expulsion, and possibly a beheading, JohnKSa. The Saudis are extraordinarily concerned with the preservation of the exclusivity of their religion, and moreso their particular version of it.

Given that the koran is allegedly the word of god, as dictated to Mohammed by an angel (Michael?), one would be inclined to think it would possess a more robust nature and not need to be treated as though it were spun glass as most of the Islamic world does. Sheesh, most Americans are Christian of one flavor or other, and they tend to get more upset at someone buning the flag than reading the bible whilst on the john...

P95Carry
May 27, 2005, 12:13 AM
Minor observation folks - keep religion per se, low key or zero - it ain't up for discussion. Just so as thread can stay open ya know! :)

SIGarmed
May 27, 2005, 12:20 AM
No we are not worried about a book. In fact I'd say by the looks of it we're winning.

The only ones who care about some alleged "abuse" are the liberal whiners who won't let it die.

These stories have been going on for a couple of years. In the dramatic fashion of the left they won't let it go.

Having our countrymen get their heads cut off or the story of Beslan has already been forgetten by the same whiners.

jefnvk
May 27, 2005, 01:42 AM
I agree this whole thing is blown out of proportion. The enemy knows the way to win the war is through discontent in America.

When it comes down to standing over aQua'rn or touching it if you are not a believer, as examples of mistreatment, we really have gotten into a pissing match. If ripping pages out of a book is what we need to do to get people to talk, then people should really realize IT IS A FREAKING BOOK. You know what I'd do if someone destroyed a Bible in front of me? Look at them like they were stupid. I'm not exactly non-religious, either. I'd probably be a little mad, but not to the point of killing anyone over it, or even hurting someone over it. Definitely not be crying ABUSE over it.

By claiming these cases are abuse and torture (even, to some degree, calling the Abu Ghraib things torture), it really takes away from cases where people are actually tortured (losing limbs, body parts, lives, etc.)

Actually, I wonder. If we started Nuking any city that desecrated a Bible...

longeyes
May 27, 2005, 02:50 AM
The Brits want to ban steakknives.

We are apologizing for even the intimation of Koranic sacrilege.

The Lunacy is spreading.

But it's not universal.

The irony will be the savagery that all this moral self-mutilation will ultimately release. A lot of us, remembering headless bodies and gutted skyscrapers, are on the sidelines watching this absurdity unfold and getting very, very mad.

SteveS
May 27, 2005, 12:38 PM
So to compare, I guess you would have to give the Pope a swirly and see how catholics like it,

The previous Pope was shot and while there was outrage, I don't recall any rioting. Nor was there any rioting in response to Sinead O'Connor ripping up a picture of the Pope on SNL, though Frank Sinatra said he would kick her a$$.

armedcitizen
May 27, 2005, 01:47 PM
though Frank Sinatra said he would kick her a$$.

and Old Blue Eyes could've done it too!

Iain
May 27, 2005, 01:50 PM
You won't win the WoT if you turn it into a war of religion.

CAS700850
May 27, 2005, 02:00 PM
Iain makes a good point. If the war becomes anti-Islam instead of Anti-terrorist, we're in for a worse problem than we have. That is my concern with the alleged mistreatment of the Koran. It gives Al Quada and the like more recruiting ammuntion. "See, America wan'ts to destroy Islam, not terrorists. Terrorism is their excuse to come after us."

By the way, has anyone seen what the actual "mishandling" was? Are we talking about not properly storing it, or trashing a copy as an interrogation technique?

Rebar
May 27, 2005, 02:03 PM
That is my concern with the alleged mistreatment of the Koran.
The problem is, that it seems impossible to not "mistreat" it in some way. Just touching one when you're "impure" is considered abuse requiring a death sentence.

CAS700850
May 27, 2005, 02:07 PM
I guess that's my concern. The press (great tellers of truth that they are) makes it sound like intentional mistreatment, either out of disrespect, malice, or method of interrogation. THat would be one thing. Touching it when your a Baptist guard in a prison, well that would be something else.

bakert
May 27, 2005, 02:09 PM
My understanding is that even owning a Bible in Saudi Arabia is cause for beheading. This whole thing is another example of the 'truthfullness and support" not only for our people in uniform but the whole USA by the media. This whole thing is based on some reporter's interview with an "innocent" detainee caught by our forces in some act. Contrary to what some say, these people were not picked up randomly. How many prisoners have any of you ever heard of say they were guilty or lying to you.The first amendment is one thing but the whole world of journalism seems to crow over every death or setback the USA suffers in the Mideast and seems to thrive on reporting unproven and outlandish accusations. How any thinking person can believe anything reported in the papers or on TV is beyond me. :banghead:
Baker

Rebar
May 27, 2005, 02:13 PM
Touching it when your a Baptist guard in a prison, well that would be something else.
Not to the islamofacists. Intent has nothing to do with it, accidental or not, touching it is defilement, and you're head should be cut off.

Iain
May 27, 2005, 02:16 PM
Not to the islamofacists. Intent has nothing to do with it, accidental or not, touching it is defilement, and you're head should be cut off.

But that isn't the case with every single muslim who might well be offended by deliberate mistreatment of the Koran.

TallPine
May 27, 2005, 02:43 PM
I'd sure like to have one of those "super toliets" that is capable of flushing a Koran.

:D

Vodka7
May 27, 2005, 02:50 PM
I went to the library, and read it. Technically, since I'm an "impure infidel", I'm under a death sentence in some islamic countries just for touching it! Touching it!

Not unless you read Arabic--translations of the Koran are not considered the Koran. The translation process changes it from God's words to the translator's words, which are worthless.

Just to clear up one other misconception--Muslims don't worship the Koran. They worship God the way he taught them to in the Koran. When a situation arises that the Koran is not explicit enough about, they go to the actions of Mohammad as recorded by his contemporaries or those that followed them. After that, they go to clerics who reach a consensus based on what their school of religious thought believes is most inline with Islam.

The main split in Islam, Shiite/Suni, is more complex than I could understand. Basically, which side you're on depends on who you believe succeeded Mohammad.

The real problem is that Americans don't hold anything sacred anymore. We're too all inclusive, too politically correct, to the point where the Supreme Court has said that flag burning is perfectly legal anywhere you could burn, say, a Hooters t-shirt. That's not the case in Muslim countries--they have the guts to say "no, this is sacred. You will NOT mess with it."

I can't remember the last time I heard church bells that denoted anything but the hour... In Egypt, I heard them five times a day, starting at 5:15am--the city (Cairo, in my case) quite literally rings out with them. You hear, in harmony, loudspeakers blaring from every direction.

Religion is a part of the daily life of every Muslim--in these countries, the first thing children learn to read is the Koran. Even a bad muslim child, raised in the United States, will still have more of the Koran memorized than I will ever know of the bible. In these countries, religion is something that happens every day--unlike here, where it's once a week, maybe just the big holidays, or when someone dies. So, where I and several other posters on this board have admitted that someone disgracing a bible right in front of me would not be a big deal, someone defacing a Koran is a big deal--people actually care, and would be offended.

jefnvk
May 27, 2005, 03:37 PM
That's not the case in Muslim countries--they have the guts to say "no, this is sacred. You will NOT mess with it."

But if someone had gone on a massive Bible burning say, after WWII, would we have gone to war with them? Methinks not.

Boats
May 27, 2005, 05:41 PM
I am all for the desecration whenever it can be done. I do not understand shying away from this fight. We are either going to drag them into the modern age, or we are going to be shooting them as long as Lake City keeps pumping out the ammo.

Why should we not go out of our way to inflame their passions? It not only radicalizes those we'd most like to kill, it also apparently gets them to kill one another too.

"But we need allies," comes the whiny refrain. We really need more will to fight.

Arc-Lite
May 27, 2005, 06:15 PM
Vodka...there was some sense in your many general statements... the sense was good, the general statements were far to black and white. This whole question, has one remaining point, we are at war, the reasons or "whys"..really has nothng to do with the outcome. Everything they do, is in the name, of their religion, this being the case, it will always be an issue. Looking back, when Iraq and Iran were at war and locked in a death struggle.... the west was much less their target....something to consider, and maybe the light at the end, of this tunnel.

Joejojoba111
May 27, 2005, 08:43 PM
"Looking back, when Iraq and Iran were at war and locked in a death struggle.... the west was much less their target....something to consider, and maybe the light at the end, of this tunnel."

Well, the west was rather involved in the war, because I don't think a lot of equipment or training to use it was a local commodity. T72s Mirages Centurions Chemical weapons with a US flag on them...

...Maybe the current anger is partly BECAUSE we sat back and were happier when they were kicking each other around... If you know this, maybe they know this, and maybe this isn't something they want to repeat...

Arc-Lite
May 27, 2005, 09:04 PM
call me a realists... giving support to both Iran and Iraq while they were at war....sound pretty much like a good idea....then or now!!! Joe..you think they need a reason why, for this chosen war with us....???? or ANOTHER reason why ???? if your enemy is fighting each other, you give them both rocks. theory...is great for talk, but we seam to be a war. they kill each other, with the same ease they kill us....and that is the way of things.

bjbarron
May 27, 2005, 11:06 PM
It happened again....

Muslims in Pakistan and Afghanistan rioted today in response to new reports that copies of the Koran were desecrated when two American buildings collapsed after being struck by American airplanes in September of 2001.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) revealed that fragments of the burned and soiled Korans were discovered in the ruins of the World Trade Center towers in New York City.

A spokesman for the ACLU said the Bush administration did little to prevent the damage to the Islamic holy books, that apparently belonged to Muslims who worked in the office towers until their "unjustified termination" during the morning of September 11, 2001.

"This is just another example of U.S. insensitivity to cultural diversity," said the unnamed ACLU spokesman. "To add insult to injury, anonymous sources say that some of the Koran fragments may have been unceremoniously dumped in a landfill."

Read more on Scrappleface (http://www.scrappleface.com/)

White Horseradish
May 28, 2005, 12:54 AM
The real problem is that Americans don't hold anything sacred anymore. We're too all inclusive, too politically correct, to the point where the Supreme Court has said that flag burning is perfectly legal anywhere you could burn, say, a Hooters t-shirt. That's not the case in Muslim countries--they have the guts to say "no, this is sacred. You will NOT mess with it."Considering that the American society is less homogenous than that of any Islamic country by an order of magnitude, this is quite proper. Otherwise, this wouldn't be America.

I can't remember the last time I heard church bells that denoted anything but the hour... In Egypt, I heard them five times a day, starting at 5:15am--the city (Cairo, in my case) quite literally rings out with them. You hear, in harmony, loudspeakers blaring from every direction.Don't know where you live, but in St. Paul the bells of St. Panteleimon's ring every holiday. Christianity doesn't prescribe calls to prayer like Islam, so it would be impossible for you to hear them five times a day.

Iain
May 28, 2005, 07:53 AM
I am all for the desecration whenever it can be done.

Well, I guess we should be grateful that wiser heads prevail.

JOE MACK
May 28, 2005, 09:20 PM
The previous Pope was shot and while there was outrage, I don't recall any rioting. Nor was there any rioting in response to Sinead O'Connor ripping up a picture of the Pope on SNL, though Frank Sinatra said he would kick her a$$.

Then some time after being shot, the Pope forgave his assailant and even visited him to pray with him. Think any of the mullahs would do that? :scrutiny:

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