last update Dec. 12
Contrasting the widely-aired allegation that Muammar Gaddafi raped, and allowed others to rape, his cadre of female body guards, are much quieter reports the same were brutally raped and/or killed by NTC rebels as they conquered Libya. The report comes almost entirely from a suspiciously detailed article from a Chinese site called ChinaSmack. It does mention as a source, but doesn't name or link to, "a Middle Eastern website."
Three victims were described, with a before and an after photograph of each.
[M]any of them were tracked down. According to information organized by a Middle Eastern website, the first fled with her boyfriend but was caught by the opposition and shot dead, the two of them dying together. The second was identified despite her makeup/disguise and was beaten to death.
The third was kidnapped by the opposition’s soldiers, viciously tortured and gang-raped for days before being strangled to death with the words “the fate for Gaddafi’s whores” beside her, her body rotting when discovered. At this moment Gaddafi was still on the run!The photo of the third victim is horrific - stripped to underwear, slashed across the back, rotting and blistering in the sun. The image China Smack used to show who she had been is the one run by the Daily Mail, showing "confessed" executioner Nisreen (center). That's who they allege was so cruelly killed and dumped near-naked in the desert.
I found nothing to verify this, just re-posts and references. One added:
It appears Libya is entering a medieval age. The USA and the West (NATO) must take the blame for all these atrocities. But who will act?A video from Afri-Synergy just put the text and images together. Then, helpfully, the description there passes on this hoax alert: "The picture of the first body in the video has been confirmed to not be that of a Libyan per the following link: http://noticias11tv2.blogspot.com/2010/06/en-calidad-de-desconocida-mujer.html" It's a graphic image, of course, with two additional views that are worse yet. Mexico, June 2010. She's got a slit throat and a messed up, decaying head... You don't need to see it.
In this light, I must consider the other two photos. The second one with the bloodied victim set me off. The thick red blood all over a pretty face is somewhat Neda-esque. In both cases, I'm having a hard time seeing from whence it came to splash up that way, aside from a squirt bottle. I could be wrong though, on either count.
Only the first image, with her boyfriend there, looks pretty genuine to me. Aside from the odd close angle suggesting she held the camera to catch a candid "well, we're dead now" photo. All you need is each other? Usually, maybe. Sometimes, a third friend to take the picture might help.
If any of these were to fake a death in aid of an attempt to flee, I hope it worked well enough long enough. And as for the crimes the article brought to mind, it's worth setting aside instead of tossing aside. Just because a hoax is attached to this story doesn't mean that the bodyguards, or other female prisoners of Libya's "revolutionary fighters," aren't suffering these abuses, or aren't in danger of it.
Dec. 11: I just noticed the China Smack article itself has a final comment exposing the one hoax and, apparently, both of the others, although I can't tell just what the provided screen captures show.
Dec. 12: Petri Krohn alerts me (see comments, below) that:
The female bodyguard captured on August 22 seen on this video is Brigadier Aisha Abdel Salam.The capture video is from no later than August 23, and another video no newer than Sept. 1 shows Ms. Salam - a strong, poised, beautiful black woman - being interviewed in uniform. This is from Al Aan, a women's network from the UAE. I'm not sure the context it's shown in -is it old footage, post-capture, or what?
Libya S.O.S. makes this claim today:
National Green Resistance movement recieved information about Brigadier Aisha Abdel Salam is is being tortured and suffering from her injuries. Report was brought in by revolutionary guards in charge of information and intelligence gathering.
For reference, the two videos compared:
An article of September 6 that Petri linked me to draws on an interview with Ms. Salam with an Indian paper. She's described there as "Aisha Abdel-Salam Ali, one of the highest officers of women in the Libyan army." (for those puzzled on hercapture location given there, "the corner" translates to Az Zawiyah, a city just southwest of Tripoli.) She spoke about her recruitment and Gaddafi's philosophy on women in the military and/or his personal guard. It's not entirely clear that she is one of the"nuns" either, being an Army person mostly. But her name is Aisha, and I hear Gaddafi had all his bodyguards re-named Aisha, after his daughter...
After being allowed to speak pretty freely, it seems, to the world media following her capture, I hope the reports of Ms. Salam Ali's torture are untrue. She seems to be quite a strong person, but ... The people who do these things should check in on her in captivity, and do whatever they can to secure her safety to speak freely about her condition. The rebels also need to specify what possible business beyond retribution or entertainment that they have for continuing to hold her. Even "trying to extract col. Gaddafi's whereabouts" no longer holds much water.