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‘You can’t leave bodies in drains’: Something evil has visited Kuwait City

February 1991: ‘They twisted my son on a pole and broke his legs with pieces of wood’ – The Iraqi army leaves wreckage in its wake, writes Robert Fisk

Sunday 13 June 2021 01:22
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<p>A US Humvee and a Saudi tank pass under a sign directing them to Kuwait City in February 1991 during the Desert Storm offensive</p>

A US Humvee and a Saudi tank pass under a sign directing them to Kuwait City in February 1991 during the Desert Storm offensive

What kind of people would do this? That’s what we kept asking ourselves in Kuwait City yesterday. Day had been turned into night, so thick was the canopy of smoke, the nation’s oil wells burning gold and orange along the black-fringed horizon, Hieronymus Bosch courtesy of the Iraqi army.

They had even used the modern equivalent of a torture wheel. All day, Kuwaiti men, young and old, approached our car with their terrible stories. “They twisted my son on a pole and broke his legs with pieces of wood,” a stooped old man said. “They thought he was in the resistance. Now they have taken him away, with all the others, as a human shield.”

Then there was Heather Rennison, an English woman married to a Kuwaiti. “A cousin of my mother-in-law was arrested. She was only 19 and they had found two-way radios in her bedroom. Three days later they came to her home to ask her parents for clothes and blankets. So her parents thought she would be all right. Then the Iraqis hanged her and dumped her body outside her home. There were burns from electricity on her arms and legs. Of course, the Iraqis kept the clothes and blankets.”

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