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Col. Tom Cantwell: US government must live up to promise to Liberty residents


Col. Thomas Cantwell,  former US Military Commander, Camp Ashraf
Col. Thomas Cantwell, former US Military Commander, Camp Ashraf

Its bitter sweet because we have some very good memories of our time [in Ashraf] and the people with whom we interacted. Let me tell you a little about Diyala Province. It’s to the east of the Tigris River which was almost to the north out of Baghdad. It’s largely an agricultural province, famous for its oranges, gets to be 120 degrees F in the summer there.
When you get more than 5 kilometers away from the Tigris River, its dirt. Well the PMOI have been given this piece of barren desert to shelter and they have built this elaborate series of camps in Ashraf. It also, as General Phillips said, was also the safest place in Iraq in 2003.
Today, the Ashrafis are at Camp Liberty. Where is Camp Liberty? It’s in between Baghdad International Airport and the city of Baghdad in the suburbs as you were. But it’s also on the frontline. They are now defenseless. I assert a promise on behalf of the American people and the US government to live up to our promise to protect them. To all of those at Camp Liberty when you hear this may God bless you and keep you safe. We have not forgotten you.