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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Leilehua grad wrote Iraq prison abuse report

By Peter Boylan
Advertiser Staff Writer

Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba, the author of a scathing report that detailed the sadistic abuse of inmates at the Army's Abu Gharib prison in Iraq, is a graduate of Leilehua High School.

Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba
He is the second Filipino-American general in the history of the Army.

Taguba, a member of Leilehua's class of 1968, wrote a 53-page report that revealed a wide range of blatant, sometimes sexual abuses against prisoners committed by soldiers with the 372nd Military Police Company and also by members of the American intelligence community.

Maria Taguba, Antonio's mother said she is proud of all that her son has accomplished.

"I am proud but I scared, too, you know," said Taguba from her home on Carsen Drive in Wahiawa. "You don't know what will happen, but it is OK, that is his job. Any mother is always scared."

Antonio Taguba was born Oct. 31, 1950, in Sampaloc, Manila. His family moved from the Philippines to Hawai'i when he was 11. After graduating from Leilehua, Taguba enrolled at Idaho State University where he graduated in 1972. He joined the Army soon after graduating.

The report, obtained and written about first by The New Yorker magazine, was the focal point of an international media blitz that included the release of incriminating photos in which U.S. soldiers are seen posing with Iraqi detainees who have been forced into humiliating situations.

Taguba's report includes a list of abuses that include sodomy with a broom stick, premeditated beatings, and the use of military dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees.

It also portrays an institution out of control, run by soldiers who had little to no training in operating a prison.

The U.S. military has reprimanded seven soldiers as a result of the report, two of whom were relieved of their duties.

Reach Peter Boylan at 535-8110 or pboylan@honoluluadvertiser.com.