Alcohol May Have Played Role in Iraqi Prison Abuse

Weeks before prison mistreatment was uncovered at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, military officials were working to stem reported alcohol misuse at the facility, the Los Angeles Times reported June 13.

According to senior military officers, commanders implemented a number of measures in December and January to curb alcohol use and prostitution. The prevalence of alcohol misuse led officials to form an Alcoholics Anonymous chapter at the prison.

Some officers said that alcohol abuse could be linked to the behavior of guards who were charged with beating prisoners, stripping them naked, and stacking them on each other on the prison floor.

Under General Order No. 1 issued by U.S. Central Command in the Middle East, bars soldiers from possessing alcohol.