In No Fly List Case, Judge Questions Government’s ‘State Secrets’ Claims & Orders Documents Be Produced

By: Thursday September 18, 2014 1:45 pm

ACLU, Due Process, Eric Holder, Gulet Mohamed, No Fly List, Rahinah Ibrahim, State Secrets Privilege, Torture

 

New DoD Directive on Detainees Allows Sleep and Sensory Deprivation, Biometric IDs

By: Wednesday September 17, 2014 6:00 pm

On August 19, 2014, the Department of Defense released an updated version of its Directive 2310.01E on the “DoD Detainee Program.” It supercedes the previous version, dated September 5, 2006.

Earlier this month, Steve Vladek at the Just Security blog, pondered why the government chose this particular time to release the new, updated directive. While his observations are important and worth considering, much of importance is omitted from his brief analysis.

In my analysis — besides the potential legalities explored by Vladek, which impact the definition of what the government considers the definition of an “unprivileged belligerent” (like the detainees at Guantanamo), and access of legal counsel to these prisoners — the new directive propounds a number of new rules that summarize the Obama administration’s detainee regime, particularly as it relates to Guantanamo.

Navy Continues to Persecute Nurse Who Refused to Force-feed Guantanamo Hunger Strikers

By: Tuesday September 16, 2014 11:12 am

The Board of Inquiry will no doubt cause the Navy Lieutenant a great deal of stress and money, with no certain outcome. Anyone who has been under administrative investigation and “review” for many months knows how difficult such a procedure really is. Whatever the outcome, the continued legal wrangling by the Navy amounts to persecution of a medical officer who had decided not to obey an unlawful order.

John Brennan, Dianne Feinstein, and the Soon-to-be-Released (?) Torture Report

By: Saturday September 13, 2014 9:20 am

CIA Director John “We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Overseers” Brennan and Dianne Feinstein’s Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (i.e., the aforementioned “Stinkin’ Overseers”) have been having a nasty little spat, revolving around both the CIA’s use of torture as an interrogation technique, and also the CIA’s spying on SSCI staffers who are trying to investigate and report on the CIA’s use of torture as an interrogation technique. This past week has given us a few new developments, with Feinstein saying that the report will be out by the end of the month.

Lucy’s holding the football again, but will Charlie Brown finally get to kick it? There’s reason to hope that he just might . . .

American Held in Incommunicado Detention in Yemen Calls Family, Says He’s Being Beaten & Gassed

By: Friday September 12, 2014 4:35 pm

An American citizen in Yemeni custody who his lawyers say has been disappeared for over 180 days has surfaced. One of his lawyers reports he was apparently allowed to make two calls to his wife and mother last night and a guard said he is being held in the Central Security Forces base in central Sanaa.

Sharif Mobley, a 30-year-old man from New Jersey who was living with his family in Yemen, was essentially kidnapped by Yemeni officials and shot in January 2010. He was taken to a police hospital then a general hospital. FBI agents interrogated him numerous times between January and April. Allegedly, he tried to escape from the general hospital and shot a guard, who later died. He was charged with murder and has been in custody of Yemen authorities awaiting trial.

Terrorism, COINTELPRO, and the Black Panther Party

By: Saturday September 6, 2014 5:40 pm

This past July, students from Northwestern University’s Medill Justice Project visited the infamous Louisiana State Prison known as Angola. While there, students landed an impromptu interview with Warden Burl Cain, where they asked him about an inmate at Angola named Kenny ‘Zulu’ Whitmore, who has now been in solitary confinement for 28 consecutive years. This important interview was cited afterwards by Time Magazine in an article examining the impact of solitary confinement on prisoners’ health.

Zulu Whitmore is a member of the Angola Prison chapter of the Black Panther Party (BPP) that was first started in the early 1970s by Herman Wallace and Albert Woodfox of the Angola 3.

Court: Releasing Images of Guantanamo Prisoner Would Incite Violence, Especially Since He Was Tortured

By: Wednesday September 3, 2014 4:15 pm

A federal appeals court has ruled that the United States government can keep video and photos of high-profile Guantanamo Bay prisoner Mohammed al-Qahtani secret because it is well-known that he was tortured and abused and any future release of information depicting him could be used by terrorist groups to incite anti-American violence.

The Center for Constitutional Rights filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit. At issue are at least 58 FBI videos “depicting Qahtani’s activities in his cell and his interactions” with Defense Department personnel. There are also two videos showing “forced cell extractions,” where Qahtani was likely removed from his cell in an abusive or aggressive manner, two videos showing “document intelligence debriefings” and “six mugshots” of Qahtani.

Nixon Would Not Have Authorized Torture, Suggests John Dean

By: Tuesday September 2, 2014 4:18 pm

I asked John Dean a few questions about his new book, The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It, during the FDL Book Salon.

Judge: Government’s Justification for Keeping Detainee Abuse Photos Secret Is ‘Not Sufficient’

By: Thursday August 28, 2014 7:35 am

A federal district court judge has ruled that the government’s certification to prevent the disclosure of thousands of photos of detainee abuse and torture in Afghanistan and Iraq—including inhumane treatment at Abu Ghraib prison—is “not sufficient to prevent publication.”

The federal judge ordered the government to appear in court on September 8 and produce the photographs or submit additional evidence to support keeping the photos secret.

The Torture Report

By: Sunday August 24, 2014 8:45 am

The recent revelations came as no surprise. However, now there can be no doubt that the United States tortured people. What are the repercussions? The Senate Team spent five years researching and putting the CIA torture report together. Apparently, it is quite thorough. What now?

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