Justice Department Gives Torturers a Pass

The Romans had an expression for it: Nulla poena sine lege, no punishment without a law. But people sometimes forget that the opposite is also true: Without punishment for offenders, a law itself can die. The Justice Department recently announced that, of the 101 cases involving alleged illegal treatment of post-9/11 detainees by the CIA … Continue reading “Justice Department Gives Torturers a Pass”

Calls Mount to Investigate Bush Officials for Torture

Senior officials under the former George W. Bush administration knowingly authorized the torture of terrorism suspects held under United States custody, a Human Right Watch (HRW) report released Tuesday revealed. Titled “Getting Away With Torture,” the 107-page report presents a plethora of evidence that HRW says warrants criminal investigations against former Vice President Dick Cheney, … Continue reading “Calls Mount to Investigate Bush Officials for Torture”

Yellow Journalism at Its Nastiest

Can anyone doubt that The Wall Street Journal’s opinion pages show rabid anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bias? Consider early June: Fouad Ajami kicked off the month with a piece critical of Palestinian plans to obtain UN recognition for their state. Ajami asserts that when the Israelis took this route in 1948, “Labor Zionism” had already done … Continue reading “Yellow Journalism at Its Nastiest”

Why US and NATO Fed Detainees to Afghan Torture System

Starting in late 2005, U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan began turning detainees over to the Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS), despite its well-known reputation for torture. Interviews with former U.S. and NATO diplomats and other evidence now available show that United States and other NATO governments become complicit in NDS torture of detainees … Continue reading “Why US and NATO Fed Detainees to Afghan Torture System”

Prisoner Isolation, From Jefferson Davis to Bradley Manning

One hundred and forty-five years later, the room was almost pleasant. There was an embrasure with an open window at the extreme end of the casemate, looking out over the moat and the pretty buildings of Fort Monroe beyond. The sun played over the water and sent dazzling reflections back into the room, which boasted … Continue reading “Prisoner Isolation, From Jefferson Davis to Bradley Manning”

Thursday: 8 Iraqis Killed, 19 Wounded

Updated at 5:08 p.m. EST, Mar. 10, 2011 At least eight Iraqis were killed and 19 more were wounded in the latest round of violence. Again, almost all reported attacks were in the capital. Protests also continue, much to the chagrin of the prime minister who went on the defensive today.

Punished for Seeking a More Perfect Union

Reports that Bradley Manning is being held nude every night at the Quantico brig and is forced to stand naked in the hallway while he waits for his clothes shows the inconsistency of Manning’s treatment with basic American values of due process, fair trial, and human dignity. Here is how his lawyer, David Coombs, describes … Continue reading “Punished for Seeking a More Perfect Union”

Eight Years of Abuses and Impunity in Iraq

A leading human rights group released a report Monday documenting the proliferation of human rights abuses in Iraq since the United States invasion in 2003. Among the most egregious cases, the 102-page report by Human Rights Watch identifies women, journalists, detainees, and marginalized groups, including internally displaced persons and religious minorities, as the most vulnerable … Continue reading “Eight Years of Abuses and Impunity in Iraq”

The Five Eyes’ Daisy Chain

So the Five Eyes‘ daisy chain is alive and well. I encountered this at first hand with my own application under Canada’s Access to Information Act (ATIA), submitted in December 2006 and documented elsewhere. In summary, after a hideous delay not countenanced by the framers of the Act, I got 73 pages of redacted rubbish. … Continue reading “The Five Eyes’ Daisy Chain”