“People are doing the same as (in) Saddam Hussein’s time and worse. It is an appropriate comparison,” Allawi told British newspaper The Observer.
“People are remembering the days of Saddam,” said Allawi, a secular Shi’ite and former Baathist who is standing in elections scheduled for Dec. 15. “These are the precise reasons why we fought Saddam Hussein and now we are seeing the same things.
“We are hearing about secret police, secret bunkers where people are being interrogated,” said Allawi in an apparent reference to the discovery of a bunker at the Shi’ite-run Interior Ministry where 170 men were held prisoner, beaten, half-starved and in some cases tortured.
“A lot of Iraqis are being tortured or killed in the course of interrogations.”
…”The Ministry of the Interior is at the heart of the matter,” Allawi said. “I am not blaming the minister himself, but the rank and file are behind the secret dungeons and some of the executions that are taking place.”
It should go without saying, but I’ll say it anyway, that Allawi is not pointing the finger at the Americans themselves. He’s saying that the Iraqis who run Iraq today, or at least the mid-level employees, have decided to take up Saddam’s lead in dealing with opposition. Maybe the Interior Ministry would have started this shit without any input from us, can’t say. Allawi himself hardly has a clear record when it comes to treating prisoners humanely. I can say that when it comes to detainee treatment we could have set a much better example than we did.