A new poll finds majority of Americans — 59 percent — believe torture was justified after the 9/11 attacks. Look around you at the company you keep. The people who support torture, six out of ten, are your neighbors, your co-workers, the people on the bus with you. If you live in Washington DC, they [...]
|By: Peter Van Buren Tuesday December 9, 2014 8:00 am|
The highly-redacted Senate Intelligence Committee report on post-9/11 torture is being released as you read this. It will likely contain few details on what actually happened by America’s hand. But details or not, at the most fundamental level the report does not matter. America will sidestep the most important lessons that could have emerged: we [...]
|By: Kevin Gosztola Tuesday November 25, 2014 3:50 pm|
Police deployed in riot gear fired tear gas directly at a coffee shop in St. Louis early in the morning on Tuesday. The scene unfolded just hours after an announcement by St. Louis County prosecutor, Robert McCulloch, that a grand jury had found no “probable cause” to indict white Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for killing an unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, on August 9.
Rachel O’Leary, who is the Deputy Executive Director for Field Organizing for Amnesty International USA, was in MoKaBe’s Coffeehouse in the Shaw neighborhood with some members of a delegation of human rights observers. About 1 am—or just after—tear gas was fired.
“We noticed police behaving strangely,” O’Leary recalled. “They were squatting down in a group, and we couldn’t figure out what was happening. We were watching this out the window.”
|By: Ben Norton Sunday November 23, 2014 4:00 pm|
According to a new report by the independent, non-governmental, human rights organization the Palestinian Prisoners Club (PPC), at least 600 Palestinian children have been arrested in Jerusalem alone in the past five months. Of these, roughly 40% were sexually abused.
This horrific, grotesque abuse is not the only crime of which the Israeli military is guilty. Israeli Occupation Forces are not supposed to engage in night and predawn raids, but they regularly conduct them. Israeli law says that minors undergoing investigation are supposed to be accompanied by their guardians, yet Israel virtually never allows this.
|By: Angola 3 News Sunday November 23, 2014 10:22 am|
Responding to the Nov. 20 ruling buy the US Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously affirming Albert Woodfox’s third overturned conviction, the New York Times has written a scathing editorial condemning the treatment of Albert Woodfox by the state of Louisiana.
|By: Ben Norton Friday November 21, 2014 4:25 pm|
Yale University American historian Beverly Gage was sifting through the US National Archives in the summer of 2014, doing research for a book on J. Edgar Hoover, when she came across a letter historians had been searching for for many a decade. Written from the perspective of an imaginary yet disappointed admirer of Martin Luther King, Jr., the missive encouraged the leading civil rights, anti-war, and socialist activist to kill himself.
“There is only one thing left for you to do,” the anonymous author warned, “before your filthy, abnormal fraudulent self is bared to the nation.” “You know what it is.”
|By: Kevin Gosztola Wednesday November 19, 2014 1:27 pm|
A high court judge in the United Kingdom has ruled that a Pakistani detained by British forces in Iraq in February 2004 may proceed with claims against the UK government related to his rendition, torture and detention.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Wednesday November 12, 2014 4:57 pm|
A United States delegation came before the United Nations Committee Against Torture, as part of the committee’s periodic review of compliance with a treaty prohibiting torture. The delegation indicated publicly that, unlike under President George W. Bush, the government had decided the ban applies to the US Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. But the delegation still left unresolved the question of whether the US believes the torture ban absolutely prohibits and applies to US officials anywhere in the world.
Every four years signatories to the Convention Against Torture (CAT) are required to submit reports on how they are complying with the ban. The Committee reviews the country’s report and invites government officials from that country to attend a session to provide additional information. The session allows the Committee to put forward questions, which the government is able to respond to the following day.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Friday October 24, 2014 12:26 pm|
When Ferguson, Missouri, was experiencing a crackdown by militarized police forces in August after a white police officer killed Mike Brown, Amnesty International made the unprecedented decision to deploy human rights observers to a city inside the United States. A 13-person delegation monitored developments and the human rights organization has now released its report on what the delegation witnessed.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Wednesday October 1, 2014 6:40 am|
The United States will face a deadline at the end of the year and will apparently no longer have the right to hold prisoners in Afghanistan. It will have to decide what to do with a group of prisoners at Bagram military base, who President Barack Obama’s administration would like to continue to hold in indefinite detention.
Brigadier General Patrick J. Reinert, the current facility’s commander, said, “We’ve got to resolve their fate by either returning them to their home country or turning them over to the Afghans for prosecution or any other number of ways that the Department of Defense has to resolve.” The administration is considering transferring the prisoners to the US court system or possibly Guantanamo Bay.