Bad News, If True

In the Washington Times, a former Iraqi general now living in Jordan claims that Iranians and Iranian-trained Shia militia are behind the secret detention centers where Sunni prisoners suspected of terrorist activities have apparently been abused. Gen. Muntazar Jasim al-Samarrai claims that there are ten such secret centers in Iraq, only two of which have yet been identified:

Gen. al-Samarrai said the Iranian intelligence officer, Tahseer Nasr Lawandi, works directly under the Kurdish deputy minister, Gen. Hussein Kamel, and is known throughout the ministry as “The Engineer.”

“The Engineer was behind the torturing and killing in the ministry and was also in charge of Jadriya prison,” said Gen. al-Samarrai, who left the ministry after a dispute with superiors and is now living in Jordan.

U.S. troops raided the secret Jadriya facility in mid-November and found 166 prisoners, many emaciated and bearing obvious signs of torture.

Iraq’s Interior Ministry denied yesterday that any of the 625 prisoners discovered last week in a secret detentiion facility had been tortured.

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