"Just weeks ago, a federal judge dismissed the former Abu Ghraib prisoners' lawsuit against CACI International on the grounds that because Abu Ghraib is oversees, it is beyond the jurisdiction of U.S. courts."
"Less than 10 years after the world saw the first images of torture and abuse at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, it is the victims who are now being sued by military contractor CACI International, seeking to recover fees from recent trials. Years later, victims are still struggling to cope with the memories from their ordeals.
"'When I remember it now, I just want to set myself on fire,' says Taleb al-Maleji, a former Abu Ghraib prisoner, in an Al-Jazeera interview. 'I was one of those Linda [a U.S. soldier] forced to be naked. There were sniffer dogs and sound bombs. They would take off our clothes and splash cold water in the cells in winter on our blankets and clothes so we couldn't sleep or sit.' Al-Maleji was never charged with a crime and was later released.
The plaintiffs charged that CACI was part of a conspiracy to subject prisoners to "electric shocks; repeated brutal beatings; sleep deprivation; sensory deprivation; forced nudity; stress positions; sexual assault; mock executions; humiliation; hooding; isolated detention; and prolonged hanging from the limbs."
It's just a fraction of the alleged torture and misconduct that has been acknowledged by the Department of Defense dating back to 2004.
By the Department of the Army's own admission in the 2004 Taguba Report, army personnel and contractors were identified in acts that included "punching, slapping, and kicking detainees; jumping on their naked feet; videotaping and photographing naked male and female detainees; and forcibly arranging detainees in various sexually explicit positions for photographing," among other charges.
None of the contractors have been prosecuted and 11 soldiers have been convicted of various minor charges including dereliction of duty. Nobody has been charged in the deaths of several detainees.
So the US military doesn't deny the torture and abuses, which led to death of some innocent detainees, but a US judge throws out the case. There will be no accountability by the torturers.
But those victims, those few survivors who still retain enough mental faculties to file a lawsuit, are now themselves being victimized -- again -- by the entity that subjected them to smears of feces, electrical shocks to the nipples, and sexual torture?
Common Dreams again:
"Defense contractor CACI International has taken the shocking step of suing four former Abu Ghraib detainees who are seeking redress in U.S. courts for the company's role in torturing, humiliating and dehumanizing them, with the U.S. corporation recently requesting that the judge order the plaintiffs -- all of whom are Iraqi -- to pay CACI for legal costs.
"CACI is demanding over $15,000 in compensation, mostly for witness fees, travel allowances and deposition transcripts, according to court documents.
"'Given the wealth disparities between this multi-billion dollar entity and four torture victims, given what they went through, it's surprising and appears to be an attempt to intimidate and punish these individuals for asserting their rights to sue in U.S. courts,' Baher Azny, legal director for the Center for Constitutional Rights, which is working on the case, told Common Dreams."