09 February 2007

American Pow's torments in Iraq

Lieutenant Colonel (Ret.) Jeffrey Tice, USAF

On January 19, 1991, Lt. Col. (then-Major) Jeffrey Tice’s F-16 aircraft was struck by a surface-to-air missile over Baghdad . He flew for nearly 100 miles toward safety in Saudi Arabia before he was forced to eject over Iraqi territory. Within thirty seconds of landing, he was surrounded by Bedouin tribesmen, kneed in the groin, and struck with a rifle butt in the back of his neck. That night he was taken to their camp where they took turns punching, kicking, or threatening him with knives. In addition, he was forced to hold a gun to his head and play Russian roulette. The next day, he was bound and taken to a nearby town to await interrogators.
Three men interrogated him, and he responded to their questions with name, rank, and serial number only. They handcuffed him behind his back, picked him up by his elbows, and dragged him to an unmarked car for the drive to Baghdad . Each time he moved, the handcuffs tightened and dug deeper into his skin.
In Baghdad , he was taken to a room inside a building on an Iraqi military compound and thrown to the floor. After a few minutes, he was shoved, still blindfolded, down several flights of stairs into an underground bunker. Initially, he was placed in a hallway in the bunker where passing Iraqis kicked him, slapped him, and spit on him. He was then transferred to an interrogation room and chained to a chair. Over the next two or three days, he was interrogated around the clock in sessions lasting approximately thirty minutes, interspersed with thirty-minute breaks. Because of his rank, his interrogators pressed him for significant strategic information.
His interrogators beat him, generally in the lower extremities, focusing on his left leg and knee, and struck him all over his body with whatever objects they had at hand. At one point, he was struck with a wooden plank that shattered and almost broke his lower left leg. In addition to the pain from the beatings, he had completely lost circulation in his hands after approximately twelve to fourteen hours of being tightly handcuffed. Lt. Col. Tice was beaten almost to the point of unconsciousness several times during these interrogation sessions. After the first day of torture, he was already badly bruised.
Voicing suspicions that he might be Israeli, his captors stripped him naked below the waist to check for circumcision. His penis was fondled and he was verbally abused during this inspection. His interrogators then accused him of being an Israeli spy.

No comments: