(PARRIS ISLAND, S.C.) — A Muslim Marine says he was ordered to step inside a clothes dryer at the Marine boot camp at Parris Island, South Carolina by an inebriated drill instructor who wanted to know if he was a “terrorist” and “part of 9/11,” according to an investigation.
The Marine, who believes he was singled out for harassment by drill instructors because of his Muslim faith, suffered burns to his neck and shoulders after the drill instructor turned the dryer on multiple times.
According to a Marine official, one of the two drill instructors involved in the 2015 dryer incident was the drill instructor who on March 18 “forcefully slapped” Marine recruit Raheel Siddiqui moments before Siddiqui ran away and jumped to his death from a third story stairwell in his barracks.
Siddiqui’s death — ruled a suicide — triggered a broad Marine investigation into hazing and abuse of Marine recruits. Last week it was disclosed that the investigation found that Siddiqui’s drill instructor should not have been allowed to oversee Marine recruits while he was still being investigated for his role in the earlier 2015 hazing incident.
ABC News has reviewed some of the redacted investigation documents that detail the alleged abuse targeting the Muslim Marine in 2015. The documents will soon be posted on the Marine Corps Freedom Of Information Act website.
According to the report, the Muslim Marine told investigators he believed “that during Marine Week he was singled out by drill instructors due to his religion.”
“Marine Week” is when Marine recruits have finished an intense nine weeks of basic training and are just days away from their graduation ceremony.
According to the Marine, he was ordered out of bed in his barracks by two drill instructors who told him to march into a shower area. The recruit alleged that he could smell alcohol on their breath and that other Marine recruits had seen one of the instructors carrying a bottle of “Fireball” whiskey.
Once in the shower area the Marine alleged he was ordered to march in place, to do push-ups and to do crunches with the water running.
“After he was soaked” the Marine alleged that the two instructors told him he needed to be dried off before heading back to his bed.
He complied with an order to step into a large clothes dryer and he was told by one of the drill instructors that the Marine Corps “pays him to weed out spies and he was going to discover (redacted)’s real identity.”
At that point the Marine was asked “if he was part of 9/11”.
The door to the clothes dryer was closed and after running for 30 seconds the drill instructor opened it and “asked who he was working for?” After the Marine replied “nobody” the door was shut again and the dryer was turned on for another 30 seconds. He was asked about his religion and the Marine replied “Islam”.
Once again the dryer door was shut and the dryer was turned on for what the report described as “the longest duration.”
The Marine alleged that at that point “his neck and shoulders burned and he began to cry.”
After he responded “yes” when asked if he was a Muslim the dryer was put on again for another 15 seconds.
A fellow Marine told investigators that he heard one of the drill instructors ask: “Why are you even here? You’re going to kill us the first chance you get aren’t you? What are your plans? Are you a terrorist?”
The Muslim Marine cited several other instances where the drill instructor allegedly hazed him because of his religion and ethnicity.
“(Redacted) alleges that (redacted) had told him that over the past 14 years since 9/11 he has been fighting people exactly like him, Muslims” the report says.
In another instance, the Marine said he complied with the drill instructor’s order to yell “Allah Akbar, so loud that the squad bay wakes up.”
The allegations against the drill instructors were made by three Marines, including the Muslim Marine, more than three months after they had graduated from Parris Island. The months-long investigation included interviews with all 45 Marines in the platoon.
Last week the Marine Corps said that 20 Marines at Parris Island could face criminal and administrative action for their treatment of Marine recruits.
The Marine Corps has already instituted changes intended to prevent future abuse of Marine recruits at Parris Island and the west coast Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego.
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