Website Shows Captive's Beheading
May 2004, 22:11 UTC
Islamic militants say they have executed an American in Iraq in retaliation
for the abuse of Iraqi prisoners by American soldiers. A website that in the
past has carried statements and tapes from al-Qaida posted video of a man being
beheaded, just hours after the U.S. military said an American civilian had been
found dead in Baghdad. In Washington, Correspondent Nick Simeone has the latest.
Five men wearing black clothing, their faces covered with ski masks, read
a statement in Arabic before a man identifying himself as Nick Berg is beheaded.
U.S. officials say the body of a private American civilian with the same name
was found in Baghdad, with a White House spokesman saying those responsible
will be brought to justice.
The unidentified men in the video called the on-camera execution retaliation
for the abuse of Iraqis by the U.S. military at Abu Ghraib prison, which has
provoked anger throughout the Arab world and was the focus of another Congressional
hearing Tuesday. Antonio Taguba, the Army general who wrote a report looking
into the abuses, told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee what happened
was the result of a rampant failure of leadership "from the brigade commander
on down, lack of discipline, no training whatsoever and no supervision."
|Video of beheading
was posted on an Islamist website
The hearing was held a day after President Bush strongly defended Defense
Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who some key Democrats say should resign over the
prison abuse scandal.