"My Name Used to Be
By David Phinney
Inter Press Service
Saturday 07 April 2007
An American former Navy soldier and private contractor imprisoned and tortured in Iraq by the US military and falsely accused of "aiding terrorists" warns that our worst fears about Iraq have come true.
A year ago, Donald Vance learned what its like to be falsely accused by the U.S. military of aiding terrorists. He was held without charge for more than three months in a high-security prison in Iraq, and interrogated daily after sleepless nights without legal counsel or even a phone call to his family.
On Wednesday, the former private security contractor was honored for his ordeal in Washington and for speaking out against the incident. At a luncheon at the National Press Club, Vance received the Ridenhour Prize for Truth-Telling, an award named in memory of Army helicopter gunner Ron Ridenhour who struggled to bring the horrific mass murders at My Lai to the attention of Congress and the Pentagon during the Vietnam War.
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