U.S. intelligence personnel ordered military dog handlers at the Abu Ghraib
prison in Iraq to use unmuzzled dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees
during interrogations late last year, a plan approved by the
highest-ranking military intelligence officer at the facility, according to
sworn statements the handlers provided to military investigators.
A military intelligence interrogator also told investigators that two dog
handlers at Abu Ghraib were "having a contest" to see how many detainees
they could make involuntarily urinate out of fear of the dogs, according to
the previously undisclosed statements obtained by The Washington Post.
The statements by the dog handlers provide the clearest indication yet that
military intelligence personnel were deeply involved in tactics later
deemed by a U.S. Army general to be "sadistic, blatant and wanton criminal
President Bush and top Pentagon officials have said the criminal abuse at
Abu Ghraib was confined to a small group of rogue military police soldiers
who stripped detainees naked, beat them and photographed them in
humiliating sexual poses. An Army investigation into the abuse condemned
the MPs for those practices, but also included the use of unmuzzled dogs to
frighten detainees among the "intentional abuse."
So far, the only charges to emerge have been against seven MPs and do not
include any dog incidents, even though such use of dogs is an apparent
violation of the Geneva Conventions and the Army's field manual. The
military intelligence officer in charge of Abu Ghraib later told
investigators that the use of unmuzzled dogs in interrogation sessions was
recommended by a two-star general and that it was "okay...