Sex not the “breast” way to torture prisoners

Aman Ali's view

“Dumps like a truck, truck, truck. Thighs like what, what, what. All night long, let me see that thooong.”

OK, I have your attention for a serious subject. In an Associated Press article released last week, an Arabic translator working in Guantanamo Bay from 2002 to 2003 confirmed that female workers were using sexual interrogation tactics on Guantanamo prisoners.

Erik R. Saar, the translator, said in one case, a female worker interrogating a Saudi detainee removed her uniform top to expose a skin-tight T-shirt and thong. While the Saudi was praying, she began touching her breasts while talking and rubbing them against the prisoner’s back.

If the Saudi tipped her a few bucks, would he have gotten a lap dance next? But the interrogator continued with her antics by rubbing fake menstrual blood across the prisoner’s face and shutting off the water to his cell.

Saar explained the fake blood “was to make the detainee feel that after talking to her, he was unclean and was unable to go before his God in prayer and gain strength.”

Islam is a religion that has a clear set of standards regarding interactions between members of the opposite sex. Muslims of both genders are taught to maintain humbleness and control their sexual desires.

This Guantanamo Bay example is a clear disrespect toward members of the Muslim faith. The use of sex to attack the dignity of a human being is despicable, regardless of religion.

As reports are coming out about U.S. torture, it is more apparent that these cases are not isolated incidents. The press and the government want us to believe so, as is clear in the way they brushed over Abu Ghraib. More U.S. officials need to be held accountable.

Granted, I acknowledge the difficulty in getting vital information out of suspected terrorists during a time of war. But there needs to be a systematic way to do it. The Third Geneva Convention is an international human rights doctrine that outlines the treatment of prisoners during a time of war. It dictates that torture should be done in an orderly fashion.

The pending Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has dodged questions regarding torture and the Geneva Conventions during his confirmation hearing by the Senate Judiciary Committee. A man like this is one example of the Bush administration’s reluctance to comply with the Geneva Conventions.

After 9/11, President Bush made it clear that the war on terror was not a war on religion. I believe that statement with all my heart, but Eric Saar made a good point in the article by saying, “their (detainees’) families and much of the world will think this is a religious war based on some of the techniques used, even though it is not the case.”

We cannot promote freedom and democracy in other countries if we ignore abuse and torture in our own backyard. I call on President Bush to uphold the Geneva Conventions and put a stop to these perversions.

Aman Ali is a junior information design major, president of the Muslim Students Association and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].