Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Pulverizing a dead horse using the fake but accurate method
Symbol of Abu Ghraib Seeks to Spare Others His Nightmare

By Hassan M. Fattah

AMMAN, Jordan, March 8 — Almost two years later, Ali Shalal Qaissi's wounds are still raw.

There is the mangled hand, an old injury that became infected by the shackles chafing his skin. There is the slight limp, made worse by days tied in uncomfortable positions. And most of all, there are the nightmares of his nearly six-month ordeal at Abu Ghraib prison in 2003 and 2004…

A disfigured hand also seems visible in the infamous picture, and features prominently in Mr. Qaissi's outlook on life. In Abu Ghraib, the hand, with two swollen fingers, one of them partly blown off, and a deep gash in the palm, earned him the nickname Clawman, he said…
But wait...

N.Y. Times' Iraq Detainee Story Challenged

NEW YORK (AP) -- The New York Times is investigating questions raised about the identity of a man who said in a Page 1 profile that he is the Abu Ghraib prisoner whose hooded image became an icon of abuse by American captors.

The online magazine Salon.com challenged the man's identity, based on an examination of 280 Abu Ghraib pictures it has been studying for weeks and on an interview with an official of the Army's Criminal Investigation Command. The official says the man the Times profiled Saturday, Ali Shalal Qaissi, is not the detainee in the photograph.

In an e-mail to the Times, Chris Grey, chief spokesman for the Army investigations unit, wrote: "We have had several detainees claim they were the person depicted in the photograph in question. Our investigation indicates that the person you have is not the detainee who was depicted in the photograph released in connection with the Abu Ghraib investigation."....

If one examines the photo of the alleged victim that accompanies the NY Times article, he is holding the iconic abuse picture but only his right hand is visible, his disfigured left hand is not. If you examine the larger version of the same abuse photo accompanying the Washington Times (WT) article, the prisoner’s left hand does not seem disfigured. Clearly, the angle and the resolution of the WT photo (and its sister in the NYT picture) do not lend themselves to a definitive analysis. Which, of course, is not a bad thing given what the NY Times is selling.

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