Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Innocent Guantánamo Torture Victim Fouad al-Rabiah Is Released in Kuwait"

By Andy Worthington, truthout.org, December 10, 2009: "The long ordeal of Fouad al-Rabiah, an innocent man and a 50-year-old father of four, who had been in US custody for almost exactly eight years, finally came to an end today, when he was flown back to his homeland of Kuwait from Guantánamo, where he had spent the majority of those lost years, after several brutal months in US custody in Afghanistan. . . ."

Monday, February 15, 2010

New York Times editorial: "Seven Paragraphs"

February 14, 2010:
There are times when governments fight to keep documents secret to protect sensitive intelligence or other vital national security interests. And there are times when they are just trying to cover up incompetence, misbehavior or lawbreaking.

Last week, when a British court released secret intelligence material relating to the torture allegations of a former Guantánamo prisoner, Binyam Mohamed, it was clear that the second motive had been in play when both the Bush and the Obama administrations and some high-ranking British officials tried to prevent the disclosure. . . . (continued)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

"The former vice-president has just confessed to a war crime."

"Cheney: 'I Was A Big Supporter Of Waterboarding,'" by Andrew Sullivan, "The Daily Dish," February 14, 2010.
. . . The question is therefore not if, but when, he is convicted as a war criminal - in his lifetime or posthumously.

In fact, the attorney general of the United States is legally obliged to prosecute someone who has openly admitted such a war crime or be in violation of the Geneva Conventions and the UN Convention on Torture. For Eric Holder to ignore this duty subjects him too to prosecution. If the US government fails to enforce the provision against torture, the UN or a foreign court can initiate an investigation and prosecution.

These are not my opinions and they are not hyperbole. They are legal facts. Either this country is governed by the rule of law or it isn't. Cheney's clear admission of his central role in authorizing waterboarding and the clear evidence that such waterboarding did indeed take place means that prosecution must proceed.

Cheney himself just set in motion a chain of events that the civilized world must see to its conclusion or cease to be the civilized world. For such a high official to escape the clear letter of these treaties and conventions, and to openly brag of it, renders such treaties and conventions meaningless.

"Cheney Exposes Torture Conspiracy"

By Robert Parry, Consortium News, February 14, 2010: "If the United States had a functioning criminal justice system for the powerful – not just for run-of-the-mill offenders – former Vice President Dick Cheney would have convicted himself and some of his Bush administration colleagues with his comments on ABC’s This Week."

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Just found: Andrew Sullivan re torture in 2005

"The abolition of torture: Saving the United States from a totalitarian future," by Andrew Sullivan, The New Republic, December 19, 2005. See also 2007.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Amnesty International and Cageprisoners

Sunday Times, February 7, 2010: "Amnesty International is ‘damaged’ by Taliban link: An official at the human rights charity deplores its work with a ‘jihadist.’"

Amnesty's first response; later response.

Cageprisoners' response.

BBC World Service Newshour discussion, February 9, 2010.

Friday, February 5, 2010

"USA: Still failing human rights in the name of global 'war'"

"Pyrrhic court victories for administration as Guantánamo detentions enter ninth year and deadline for closure missed," Amnesty International, January 20, 2010.