Dog Torture Squads Used
In US County Jails
Abu Ghraid Methods Of Psychologica Torture
Using Dogs As First Practices In US County Jails
By Christopher Bollyn
American Free Press
Before it was applied to Iraqi prisoners in the notorious torture chambers of Abu Ghraib prison, the "nightmarish form of psychological torture" using vicious dogs to terrorize prisoners was practiced in U.S. county jails. But, who are the black-clad men and women who tortured American detainees in U.S. county jails?
Fifty men lie face down on the cold prison floor with their manacled hands tightly bound and twisted behind their backs while fierce attack dogs, Dobermans and German Shepherds, terrorize the prisoners, lunging and snarling inches from their faces.
Is this a description of another torture scene from the notorious Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq? No. This is a scene from a county jail in Tennessee in early 2003.
While this outrageous scene sounds identical to the now infamous U.S. military torture sessions at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, this incident, described in detail by a German eyewitness who survived it, occurred in February 2003 in the Blount County Jail in Maryville, Tennessee.
A bizarre videotaped torture session using attack dogs to terrorize prisoners at the Blount County Jail was witnessed by Ernst Zundel, a German citizen and historical revisionist who was held in the jail at the time.
Zundel had been taken from his home and American wife in Tennessee on February 5, 2003, in what appears to have been an extra-judicial rendition conducted by agents of the erstwhile Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), then part of the Dept. of Justice headed by the former Attorney General John Ashcroft and his Israeli-American assistant, Michael Chertoff.
At the time of his arrest, Zundel's immigration status was completely legal and he was in the process of obtaining his permanent residency permit on the basis of his marriage to an U.S. citizen. INS claims, incorrectly, that he had missed an interview, which his lawyer had asked to be rescheduled in writing. Zundel has never been convicted of any crime, in Canada, where he lived for 40 years, or the United States.
Zundel's report about the use of vicious attack dogs to terrorize American prisoners at the Blount County Jail, and similar reports from county jails around the country, occurred prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Because the reports of the psychological torture using dogs in the jails is identical to what was later seen in Iraq, it appears that the company or agency who used the dogs in the county jails was practicing these methods first on American prisoners. It is thought that these earlier sessions were videotaped for training purposes.
Zundel's written testimony, which appears in his 2004 book, Setting the Record Straight: Letters from Cell No. 7, describes a group torture session that he witnessed in the Blount County Jail on February 8, 2003. Another session occurred on February 15, 2003, according to inmate reports, although Zundel, who was meeting with his attorney at the time, was spared.
Zundel's detailed description of the use of dogs to terrorize the inmates at the county jail in Tennessee first appeared in a full-page "Open Letter to the Members of the Senate and Congress of the United States of America," which was published in the Washington Times on September 7, 2003.
Ingrid Rimland, Zundel's American wife, placed three full-page informative ads about the extra-judicial arrest and deportation of her husband in the Washington Times during the summer of 2003, at a cost of some $20,000.
Despite the explosive content of these ads and Zundel's eyewitness description of torture using dogs on American prisoners in a U.S. county jail, Ingrid said she did not get a single phone call from anybody in response.
"Come Sunday, I heard dogs barking," Zundel wrote about the weekend torture session he witnessed in the Blount County Jail. "We were all ordered into our cells while black-uniformed SWAT teams with dogs went systematically from cell to cell, threw us on the floor facedown, handcuffed, arms twisted behind our backs. They dragged us outside the cells like sacks of potatoes while helmeted, visored, New World Order-type cops hollered commands at us. They searched our pockets, beds, and plastic bins.
"The dogs, dripping saliva from their snapping jaws, mainly Dobermans and German Shepherds, were kept on chain leashes two feet from our bodies and faces. Young, pretty women in skin-tight uniforms and tightly fitting flak jackets, all black in color, kept climbing over the men who were curled up, face down, shaking, frightened out of their wits. Some had tears streaming down their faces. The women filmed these hapless prisoners with mini-camcorders close up, laughing and joking, having themselves a ball. Why were those videos taken?" Zundel asked in 2003.
"They and their dogs were hysterical," Zundel wrote recently. "They were constantly shouting at us prisoners, [who were] lying face down, hands cuffed with Israeli-type plastic handcuffs behind our backs. A dog, about two feet away from me, was so vicious and angry that it kept rearing upon its hind legs, his paws in the front stabbing in the air, jerking wildly on the leash. It had no muzzle. It was so close I could see and hear the dog's teeth excitedly crash together in an awful sound. I saw his wild eyes and his frothing, drooling mouth. His spittle dripped on the floor next to me; some hit my arm, my prison uniform, and collected on the floor.
"There were dog handlers at each end of the 'range' where about 50 prisoners - all civilians, all Americans - were lying on the floor, trussed like turkeys, [who] were being terrorized by these dog handlers, much to the amusement of black-uniformed women filming us with their handy cam video cameras â·" laughing!" Zundel wrote.
Vicky Flynn, the Maryville-based spokesperson for Rep. John J. Duncan (R-2nd), who represents the Knoxville area where the Blount County Jail is located, said she had never heard of such reports.
Asked about the reports of the use of dogs at the jail, Marian O'Briant, spokesperson for the Blount County facility, would only say, "No comment." The Blount County Jail is managed by Sheriff James L. Berrong and Chief Ron Dunn, who held these positions at the time of the reported torture sessions.
Berrong refused to answer the phone and, like O'Briant, Dunn would only say, "No comment."
"To hear about the use of dogs in this way within the United States is truly shocking," Jonathan Turley, a professor of national security and constitutional law at George Washington University, told The New York Times. "But Abu Ghraib didn't spring from the head of Zeus."
The same form of psychological torture using dogs occurred at the Passaic County Jail in New Jersey in the fall and winter of 2001, The New York Times reported on April 3, 2006.
The dogs at the Passaic jail were used in a "nightmarish form of psychological torture," according to two detainees who experienced the torture: Ibrahim Turkmen from Konya, Turkey, and Akhil Sachdeva from Toronto. Like Zundel, Turkmen and Sachdeva were detained due to visa issues and had not committed any crime.
Two years after returning to Turkey, Turkmen said he saw a news report about the use of dogs at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. "I told my children that this exact form of torture is what I experienced," he said.
Two or three times a week, the men said, around 3 a.m. when the detainees were fast asleep in dormitory cells housing about 50 men, the electronic doors would open and 10 to 20 officers would rush in with four to six unmuzzled, barking dogs on leashes. The dogs, mostly German shepherds, would strain to within inches of the detainees' faces, they said.
"The guards would barely be able to hold the dogs back," Turkmen said. Sachdeva said that he found himself trembling uncontrollably, and that some detainees started to cry.
"The guards who were holding the dogs used to always laugh," he said. "There were like four or five dogs, barking, terrorizing, and the officers shouting: 'Get up! Raise your hands! Against the wall!' One time the dog was so close his tongue touched me."
It was worst, they said, for detainees who, like Turkmen, lacked English to understand the officers. Sachdeva said a Pakistani man of 51 who did not speak a word of English was beaten bloody by guards because he had stayed on his bed after twice being ordered off.
Photo: The use of attack dogs to threaten and psychologically torture prisoners was first practiced on American inmates in several U.S. county jails, notably Blount County Jail in Maryville, Tennessee, and the Passaic County Jail in New Jersey.
The big question is WHO are these black-clad men and women who ran these torture sessions and whose idea was it to let them practice in U.S. county jails?



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