When the votes were tallied on the night of November 2, 2008, I was at a bar in Moab, Utah – the one rabid Democratic stronghold in a rabidly Republican state – to enjoy the hysteria as Barack Obama was summoned to lead the country out of the disaster of eight years of George W. Bush. People shook hands, hooted, clinked glasses, got drunk, raised fists, wept. The good liberals had elected a visionary Democrat to the presidency, who, blessed with a Democratic majority in Congress, would fashion “hope” and “change” into a palpable policy. I was told that in parts of Brooklyn, my hometown, voters ran through the streets banging pots and pans. The feeling was of religious jubilee – the new dispensation was upon us, and 2009 would mark the emancipation from the old rottenness. Corruption and fraud and deceit and war and oligarchy would be washed from the body politic. It was the beginning of the restoration of the republic.
|By: Christopher Ketcham Saturday November 13, 2010 1:59 pm|
|By: emptywheel Monday November 8, 2010 6:52 am|
On Friday, Russia joined the growing list of country telling us to investigate our torture chambers. And on the subject of investigating torture, as we’ve been noting, the statute of limitations on the torture tape destruction expires today. Have we indicted anyone yet?
|By: Jeff Kaye Tuesday October 19, 2010 6:07 am|
A new report by George Soros’s Open Society Foundations corroborates earlier news stories on torture and cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment of prisoners by the U.S. forces at a secret prison within the Bagram complex near Kabul, Afghanistan. While the vast majority of the press have ignored it, one of the report’s “main findings” was that the abuse of prisoners is linked to use of the Army Field Manual’s Appendix M.
|By: Josh Mull Friday August 27, 2010 4:25 pm|
War is not politics, it is violence – murder – on an enormous scale. It does not lead to democracy, security, or good governance, it leads to anger, humiliation, and above all else, more violence.
|By: Jeff Kaye Thursday June 17, 2010 7:15 pm|
Andy Worthington is posting portions of the United Nations’ “Joint Study on Global Practices in Relation to Secret Detention in the Context of Counter-Terrorism,” a detailed, 186-page report issued last February. The UN report was hardly reported by either the U.S. press or the blogosphere, and deserves wide dissemination.
|By: Jeff Kaye Tuesday May 11, 2010 4:29 pm|
BBC reports that the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has confirmed the existence of a second prison site at Bagram. The presence of a second site has long been suspected, a prison the Afghans call Tor Prison, or the “Black” Prison.
|By: Jeff Kaye Monday May 3, 2010 6:07 am|
Almost every day, a new revelation surfaces regarding the United States’ role in spreading and perpetuating the crime of torture. This article looks at several such news stories from just the past few weeks.
|By: emptywheel Monday March 22, 2010 7:05 pm|
A troubling aspect of the shell game being played with the U.S. Army Field Manual’s Appendix M is that it appears to be applicable to those who we can label an illegal enemy combatants even though they have not engaged in any act of war against us. Which sounds like the kind of people we might want to throw into Gitmo. This apparent ongoing shell game with detainees also makes clear that we really need someone (like SCOTUS) to insist that the same access to some review process now available to Gitmo detainees be available to Bagram detainees. Until that happens, our government seems intent on holding people in arbitrary detention.
|By: Spencer Ackerman Friday January 15, 2010 7:30 pm|
Just out from the ACLU: a redacted list naming 645 detainees held by the U.S. at Bagram Air Field in Afghanistan.
|By: Jeff Kaye Wednesday December 2, 2009 5:06 pm|
The set-up of Abu Zubaydah as an Al Qaeda bigwig may have been meant, among other things, for use in intimidation and torture of other prisoners. Andy Worthington recounts how a prisoner captured with Zubaydah, Omar Gharmesh, reported to another prisoner in Syria’s infamous Palestine Branch prison, where they were sent via “extraordinary rendition,” that [...]