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US tortures Afghan, presumed innocent, to death

 
 
Ticomaya
 
  1  
Reply Wed 31 Jan, 2007 12:46 pm
FreeDuck wrote:
I'm magic.


In that case, could you make all this snow disappear for about a week?
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Wed 31 Jan, 2007 12:57 pm
Sure, that's easy. (Transports Ticomaya to Atlanta)

Voila!
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Ticomaya
 
  1  
Reply Wed 31 Jan, 2007 01:07 pm
FreeDuck wrote:
Sure, that's easy. (Transports Ticomaya to Atlanta)

Voila!


That sounds like an entry in the "Evil Genie game" thread:

"Your wish to have the snow disappear has been granted .... unfortunately, you are now in Atlanta."

Laughing
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Wed 31 Jan, 2007 02:31 pm
Laughing
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revel
 
  1  
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 08:04 am
What happened to the Padilla interrogation videos?

Quote:
This is an infinitely bigger story than the media, thus far, seems to realize. In the Jose Padilla criminal trial, the judge -- Bush-appointee and former federal prosecutor Marcia Cooke, who has a reputation for extreme objectivity -- has ordered the Bush administration to turn over all tapes made of its interrogations of Padilla, as part of Padilla's motion to dismiss the indictment on the ground that he was, in essence, tortured while being held incommunicado for 3 1/2 years. In particular, Padilla's lawyers are most interested in the last interrogation session to which he was subjected -- in March, 2004 -- while still held as an "enemy combatant."

Ten days ago, Newsweek's Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball reported that the administration had produced all of the DVDs it claimed it possessed, but the March, 2004 interrogation video was not among them. The government began claiming that the video "mysteriously disappeared." Bush administration lawyers simply insist that they are "no longer able to locate the DVD."

Associated Press now furthers the story by reporting that Bush lawyers seem to have committed themselves to the position that the video will not be found: "'I don't know what happened to it,' Pentagon attorney James Schmidli said during a recent court hearing." Judge Cooke is reacting exactly how she should -- with utter disbelief in the veracity of this claim:

U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke was incredulous that anything connected to such a high-profile defendant could be lost.


"Do you understand how it might be difficult for me to understand that a tape related to this particular individual just got mislaid?" Cooke told prosecutors at a hearing last month.

It is difficult to put into words how extraordinary this is. As the Newsweek article reported:
The disclosure that the Pentagon had lost a potentially important piece of evidence in one of the U.S. government's highest-profile terrorism cases was met with claims of incredulity by some defense lawyers and human-rights groups monitoring the case.

"This is the kind of thing you hear when you're litigating cases in Egypt or Morocco or Karachi," said John Sifton, a lawyer with Human Rights Watch, one of a number of groups that has criticized the U.S. government's treatment of Padilla. "It is simply not credible that they would have lost this tape. The administration has shown repeatedly they are more interested in covering up abuses than getting to the bottom of whether people were abused."

Then again, credible claims by a citizen that he was tortured while held for years without charges by his own government also used to be the kind of thing "you hear when you're litigating cases in Egypt or Morocco or Karachi," but is now what characterizes the United States.

The March, 2004 video is unlikely the only evidence which the Bush administration is concealing despite being ordered to produce. As the Associated Press reported:

But [Padilla lawyer Anthony] Natale said there may be more tapes missing and other interrogations that were not recorded.

Defense lawyers say brig logs indicate that there were 72 hours of Padilla interviews that either were not taped or for which tapes may be missing. Natale said it seems unlikely that any interrogation session with Padilla was not videotaped "when he was videoed taking showers."

Of course, even if administration's patently unbelievable claim were true -- namely, that it did "lose" the video of its interrogation of this Extremely Dangerous International Terrorist -- that would, by itself, evidence a reckless ineptitude with American national security so grave that it ought to be a scandal by itself. But the likelihood that the key interrogation video with regard to Padilla's torture claims was simply "lost" is virtually non-existent. Destruction of relevant evidence in any litigation is grounds for dismissal of the case (or defense) of the party engaged in that behavior.

But where, as here, the issues extend far beyond the singular proceeding itself -- we are talking about claims by a U.S. citizen that he was tortured by his own government -- destruction of evidence of this sort would be obstruction of justice of the most serious magnitude. This merits much, much more attention.

-- Glenn Greenwald
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nimh
 
  1  
Reply Wed 16 May, 2007 03:20 pm
In the debate of the Republican presidential contenders last night,

Quote:

John McCain, who thanks to the Vietcong knows from personal experience about torture, took a principled stand; and added the inconvenient truth that, well, torture doesnt even actually work:

Quote:

None of the other Republicans had anything like that decency. Mitt Romney played the blowhard: "I want them in Guantanamo where they don't get the access to lawyers they get when they're on our soil. .. Some people have said we ought to close Guantanamo. My view is, we ought to double Guantanamo." And Rudy Giuliani chose to play semantic games:

Quote:
"I would tell the people who had to do the interrogation to use every method they could think of. Shouldn't be torture, but every method they can think of," [he] said, adding that that could include waterboarding."


So lets get this clear: Rudy Giuliani, would-be President of the US of A, believes pushing someone's head under water until he almost suffocates, over and again, is not torture.

Andrew Sullivan has this to say on Giuliani's take on waterboarding.

Quote:
Rudy's For Waterboarding

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/images/2007/05/16/waterboard3small.jpg

He was explicit in a blogger call. He says the Khmer Rouge technique depicted above in a Cambodian museum on torture techniques is not torture. Under domestic and international law, it absolutely is. The Khmer Rouge believed it was. You can see the campaign slogan now: Rudy - Tougher than Pol Pot. Look at the image above. This was Cambodia a few years ago. It is America today.

Shame, shame on Rudy.
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nimh
 
  1  
Reply Wed 16 May, 2007 03:31 pm
Regarding Romney, Andrew Sullivan also analyses an interview he did with Hannity, and concludes:

Quote:
Here's a fascinating interview with Sean Hannity, a man who would love the Republican candidate to campaign on torturing detainees. Of course, Fox News skews the debate by focusing entirely on the one in a million "ticking time-bomb" scenario. What else would you expect from Brit Hume? But Romney reveals in this clip that he does not believe the president is bound by the law in this question. He says that he will not provide a definition of "what is torture and what is not torture," because a president should be able to keep terror supects guessing. So he supports "enhanced interrogation techniques" and not torture, but refuses to say what the difference is. And he says the president gets to pick. And U.S. citizens are subject to this regime. The logic of Romney's position, then, is that the president can designate any human being or citizen an "enemy combatant," detain them indefinitely without charges or recourse to the courts, and torture them using any method he wishes as long as he says it's not torture and he is under no obligation to explain what torture is.

<shakes head in disbelief>
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Wed 16 May, 2007 03:44 pm
Romney just lost my vote.
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reverend hellh0und
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 May, 2007 08:34 am
Re: US tortures Afghan, presumed innocent, to death
nimh wrote:
This made me as furious as I haven't been at the American government since ... sometime in the 80s. I'm close to declaring the US the enemy now.

Mind you, these are not some Afghan interrogaters hired by the Americans to torture by proxy; these were Americans who did this, thinking they were following instructions.




"The story of Dilawar's death - and that of another detainee, Habibullah, who died there six days earlier in December 2002 - emerge from a 2,000-page confidential file of the army's criminal investigation into the case, a copy of which has been obtained by the New York Times. "




The Army is investigating. Tell me if a european kills an african does that make all people from the netherlands "the enemy"? Laughing



And someone from Holland wants to be our "enemy".... The Good Reverend Laughs heartily.....
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 May, 2007 10:24 am
nimh, Please rethink your position on hating Americans.
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FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 May, 2007 11:13 am
nimh doesn't hate Americans. He's objecting to our policies which make things like Dilawar's death not only possible but likely.
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Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 May, 2007 11:15 am
CI forgot the /sarcasm tag

But I got it, lol

Cycloptichorn
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 May, 2007 11:18 am
General Petraeus has an ethical side that I admire - even when they conflict with his boss.

Gen. Petraeus Warns Against Using Torture

By Thomas E. Ricks
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, May 11, 2007; Page A03

The top U.S. commander in Iraq admonished his troops regarding the results of an Army survey that found that many U.S military personnel there are willing to tolerate some torture of suspects and unwilling to report abuse by comrades.

"This fight depends on securing the population, which must understand that we -- not our enemies -- occupy the moral high ground," Army Gen. David H. Petraeus wrote in an open letter dated May 10 and posted on a military Web site.

He rejected the argument that torture is sometimes needed to quickly obtain crucial information. "Beyond the basic fact that such actions are illegal, history shows that they also are frequently neither useful nor necessary," he stated.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 May, 2007 02:41 pm
cicerone imposter wrote:
nimh, Please rethink your position on hating Americans.

Question Question
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nimh
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 May, 2007 02:42 pm
Re: US tortures Afghan, presumed innocent, to death
reverend hellh0und wrote:
Tell me if a european kills an african does that make all people from the netherlands "the enemy"? Laughing

There's quite a bit more going on than just the one incidental case, and this thread has supplied a good few examples.
0 Replies
 
reverend hellh0und
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 May, 2007 07:46 am
Re: US tortures Afghan, presumed innocent, to death
nimh wrote:
reverend hellh0und wrote:
Tell me if a european kills an african does that make all people from the netherlands "the enemy"? Laughing

There's quite a bit more going on than just the one incidental case, and this thread has supplied a good few examples.




Really? Please do tell what percentage and who ordered them? It's funny how some like to bring these things up but ALWAYS gloss over the facts that often it is the Army who finds out about these things and prosecutes the accused (Abu Gahrib was initially an Army investigation.)
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 May, 2007 03:15 pm
Re: US tortures Afghan, presumed innocent, to death
reverend hellh0und wrote:
It's funny how some like to bring these things up but ALWAYS gloss over the facts that often it is the Army who finds out about these things and prosecutes the accused (Abu Gahrib was initially an Army investigation.)

Yeah and we only found out about it when journalists outed the case.

Not to mention that those Army investigations, as often as not, end up in ridiculously little consequences. (Do click that link - should lead you to the news article ebrown posted, "Soldier Gets 75 Days in Afghan Abuse Case").
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 May, 2007 03:20 pm
reverend hellh0und wrote:
It's funny how some like to bring these things up but ALWAYS gloss over the facts that often it is the Army who finds out about these things and prosecutes the accused


I mean, fer chrissakes. If you have followed the link you'll have seen that this soldier smashed away at an innocent prisoner's legs up to the point that they would have to be amputated - if the prisoner had lived. But instead he died from his injuries. And what did this soldier get? 75 days in prison, a reduction in rank and a bad conduct discharge.

75 days. For torturing an innocent man until his legs were reduced to pulp.

And you're telling us that, no problem, we should just trust and rely on the Army's own investigations?
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 May, 2007 03:49 pm
Quote:
Al-Qaeda suspect 'tortured until he bit artery in arm'

The Scotsman
16 May 2007

A PAKISTANI terrorism suspect claimed he was tortured by the US to the point where he tried to kill himself by biting an artery in his arm, according to a transcript released yesterday by the Pentagon.

Majid Khan, in a written statement, said he had no connection to al-Qaeda and that the CIA and US defence department tortured him after his capture in Pakistan and again when he was transferred to the US detention facility at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.

"I swear to God this place is in some sense worse than CIA jails. I am being mentally tortured here," said Khan in a statement read out about his time in Guantanamo. "There is extensive torture for the smallest infractions."

Khan, who is the only US resident among 15 detainees the government considers most dangerous, also described suicide attempts where he "chewed my artery which goes through my elbow", during a hearing.

The CIA and Pentagon have said their interrogations are legal and they use no torture.

Khan's father, however, provided the most graphic descriptions of his son's treatment at the hands of US authorities. In a written statement Ali Shoukat Khan said his son was kidnapped in Pakistan and that there Americans tortured him "for eight hours at a time, tying him tightly in stressful positions in a small chair until his hands, feet and mind went numb".

"He was often hooded and had difficulty breathing. They also beat him repeatedly, slapping him in the face, and deprived him of sleep," he said.

The elder Mr Khan, a retired petrol station owner, said his son was not a terrorist and demanded the government "give him a fair trial in a real court".

The government said Majid Khan told others that he wanted to "martyr himself" in a plot to assassinate Pakistan's president, Pervez Musharraf.

They quoted his father and brother saying Khan was involved with "a group he believed to be al-Qaeda" and was involved in moving people across the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The US government says Kahn and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, suspected mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, plotted to blow up petrol stations and poison reservoirs.

Note:

a) The US government makes a number of charges against him; but there is much reason to be sceptical about its assertions. Remember what happened with all those charges made against Jose Padilla? About him planning to create a "dirty bomb"?

b) As long as he is not given a fair court case we'll never know for sure.

c) Torturing the suspect just made any potential confession he could have made dubious of value, and reduces the chance that the actual truth comes out. As John McCain, who knows about what torture does from personal experience, said in the last Republican presidential primary debate: "The more physical pain you inflict on someone, the more they're going to tell you what they think you want to know."

d) If you are doubtful about whether hooding and beating a suspect, depriving him of sleep and "tying him tightly in stressful positions in a small chair for eight hours at a time, until his hands, feet and mind went numb", amounts to torture, please read the following:

Quote:
In the cellar it was cold. I stretched out on the hard planks. I closed my eyes but the lamp glared down on my face. With closed eyes one looked through blood-red light. I turned towards the wall, away from the light. Bang! A face in the spy-hole, a harsh voice: "Lie on your back. We must see your face."

I turned into the required position, putting my heads under my head. Bang! A face in the spy-hole and the same harsh voice: "Put your hands palm upwards on the plank. We must see your wrists."

<snip>

It was just midnight. He rang the bell on his desk. A guard appeared. "[T]ake him to the cellar, but he is not to sleep." [..]

Bang. Five steps to the wall, five steps to the door, glaring light, bang [..]. I staggered up and down and looked longingly at the wooden plank. [..] Only to stretch out, only to get a second of oblivion. [..]

During those first sleepless weeks everything was vague and blurred. Even suffering. [..] Everywhere in the building one could hear screams, groaning, whimpering, sudden shrill shouts. [..]

I was taken to a whitewashed room. I was ordered to turn to the wall.

"Stand closer. Still closer... All right now, stand at attention. Don't move, if you don't want to get kicked."

There I stood, my nose an inch from the whitewashed wall. They changed the guards every four hours. The guards had only one duty, to kick me or hit my back with their rifle-butt in case I moved. I stood in that position till the evening. [..]

After the first twenty-four hours I had to take off my shoes because my feet were enormously swollen. Standing there I learned about the famous "cinema" of prisoners. By the first evening the unevenly white-washed wall had started to vibrate. The little particles, the slight cracks, the dust on the wall took on various shapes. There were mirages on the wall. My dazzled eyes played tricks on me. Soon I saw snarling, squinting and grinning faces, eyes burning with hatred and loathing. There were hallucinations too. [..] The wall became full of spy-holes and through each a miniature SP thug glared at me.

Next dawn I became quite faint. I hoped I should pass out soon. [..] On the third day I fainted twice in the morning. [..]

It was again nine P.M. [..] As I staggered in he turned the reflector into my face but did not tell me to sit down. I stood there. Every inch of my body was hurting me, my skin, my bones, my insides. Everything in my body seemed to be terribly heavy. I stood there reeling. [..]

This was the beginning. [..] There is no point in describing pain. [..] All of us prison graduates had days when we were tossed about on a stormy ocean of pain. We were alone with our agony, alone like a small abandoned star in the vortex of a hostile universe.

Torture alone did not make us "confess." Sleeplessness, hunger, utter degradation, filthy insults to human dignity, the knowledge that we were utterly at the mercy of the SP - all this was not enough.

[..] we were sent back to our solitary cublicles to "rot away for a while." Now we were tormented by the intense cold, by the glaring bulb and the four walls which threatened to collapse on us.

[..] Now our fear was insanity. Our heads were whirling, we imagined sounds and colours. Some of us had a nightmarish feeling of being drowned. Our [..] feverish brains produced eerie visions and hallucinations. Is it any wonder that many of us had no sound judgment, no will power to resist our tormenters?


Who is this, talking? George Paloczi-Horvath. In 1949, he was arrested by the Stalinist regime of Hungary. In his memoirs, he reports his travails in vivid detail. The above is from pp. 141-150 of The Undefeated.

I quoted this before, in another thread, in more detail. I'll repeat what I concluded. It is maddening to think that there are prisoners now, held in US captivity, transported across Europe as well, who are going through these exact things. At our hands - those of the free West. Enough to make you sink through the ground in shame.

Expect these words above to be repeated, in different memoirs, in ten or fifteen years from now. In Arabic.
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 May, 2007 04:04 pm
I admire your patience and stamina, nimh. Hats off!
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