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Thursday, December 04, 2003

Letter from Noor

Some time this month a letter from a woman identified only as Noor will be smuggled out of Abu Ghraib prison and will circulate widely in Iraq and amongst anti-Coalition forces. I include here excerpt from the letter (translation from the previous link)
This is a message from your sister Noor, in the American-Zionist prison of Abu Ghraib. Where should I start? The pen is unable to describe to you the misery and the indignation in the prison. Shall I describe for you the hunger while you eat, or shall I describe the thirst while you drink, or the nudity while you dress, or the sleep deprivation while you rest?

... But when I reflect upon our desecrated honour and my situation, I burst into tears.

... Dear brothers and sisters, how can I, in Allah's Name, describe or put into words, the mental and physical suffering we undergo at the hands of the Americans, let alone the severe beatings and daily torture which we try to endure to keep our honour and save your trust.

... You are responsible before Allah for our destiny. The Americans in Abu Ghraib have already desecrated both the honour of you and us.

In whosoever's hand this message finds itself, I request and urge you in the Name of Allah, to raise your voices against this brutal treatment, especially the noble scholars of Islam who fear Allah, who have a pulpit and a platform, this message is a trust which you have to broadcast from your platform, you noble ones.

Remember that once you looked to your sisters in Palestine? Now we are suffering, especially when we see the Zionists drinking alcohol and then violating our honour and chastity like wild beasts. We scream for help to save us from these beasts but no one seems to hear our desperate cry.

You noble one. How many times have you died! Our honour and chastity has been violated, our clothes have been torn, our stomachs have been starved, and our tears are running but there is no supporter or helper.

I do not want to say farewell before saying Fear Allah in your next of kin. The wombs are full from illegitimate bastards from rape. We urge you again: Fear Allah and remember your next of kin!

Also before the farewell: I call upon the nobles ones, if you have weapons attack the prison and kill us with them (Americans) inside the prison. I urge you by Allah, I urge you by Allah, I urge you by Allah!

Your sister in Allah,
Noor

The letter will be treated with scepticism until the Taguba Report lists "[a] male MP guard having sex with a female detainee" as one of its findings from the photographic evidence (which was withheld from the public).

Professor of Political Science at Baghdad University, Prof Huda Shaker al-Nuaimi, was assigned by Amnesty International to track-down Noor. In an article in the Guardian called The Other Prisoners, Shaker states

We believe she was raped and that she was pregnant by a US guard. After her release from Abu Ghraib, I went to her house. The neighbours said her family had moved away. I believe she has been killed.
Newsweek will also note that a female detainee named Noor (last name withheld) was photographed being sexually humiliated. I do not know whether or not this is the same "Noor".
Noor, a detainee whose full name is being withheld by NEWSWEEK, was forced to expose her breasts and genitalia and is shown in the MPs' pictures giving a forced smile for Graner, who sources believe was the photographer.

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