Shaun Mullen is disappointed at President Obama’s failure to grapple with President George the Worst’s legacy of torture. A nugget:

Seven and a half years after Obama promised a new beginning, including banning torture in one of his first acts, any expectation . . . that he would at least advocate a thorough examination of the torture regime’s worst excesses has been dashed. Obama’s endorsement, by his silence, of the CIA’s continued obstruction of the Democrat-dominated Senate Intelligence Committee’s release of its damning report on torture without redactions that would render it meaningless, is nothing less that a legitimization of that agency’s vile practices. His defense of CIA Director John Brennan, who has led the campaign to stymie release of the report while at least tacitly approving the rogue agency’s own spying on the Senate committee, makes farcical the president’s statements that he believes in the U.S. hewing to international law, including the Geneva Conventions.

I tend to agree with Shaun on this. I do not agree when persons complain that President Obama failed to close Guantanamo; Congress prevented that. In this case, though, he had freedom to choose, and he chose wrong.

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Via Raw Story.

Watch it. If you don’t have time to watch it now, bookmark and watch it later, but watch it.

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12 June 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

Congressman arguing that prisoners should be kept in Gitmo


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12 April 2014 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

What the Booman said.

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Shaun Mullen laments American cowardice in the face of the Bush torture regime. A nugget:

If nothing else, I have learned two things in the years since my first post: The yawning gulf between people who condone torture and those who are repelled by it has not changed, and that accountability not only remains elusive but will remain so.

And so we arrive at another defining moment in the long road since an incurious news media finally began acknowledging something that a number of bloggers, myself included, and civil libertarians had known for years: Despite repeated denials by George W. Bush and his coterie of henchmen, notably Vice President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, they approved of Nazi-like torture techniques under the cover of grotesque legal opinions that violate the Constitution and Geneva Conventions.

One question that nags me, one that I suspect cannot be answered, is this: To what extent was the policy of torturing captives–and it was policy, not the deeds of the infamous “few bad apples”–motivated by simple sexual sadism, both immediate on the part of the torturers and vicarious on the part of those who authorized the policy?

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05 July 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

Statistics on aging prisoners in jail.  More information here:  http://www.criminaljusticedegreehub.com/geriatric-prisoners/


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08 May 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

Bill Press believes that America has abdicated its right to fulminate about “human rights.”

For decades, American politicians have denounced human rights violations in Cuba. With good cause, they’ve accused the Castro brothers of rounding up political prisoners, torturing them, and detaining them for years with no charges filed and no access to a criminal trial.

But, as true as they may be, American politicians can no longer make those charges. Because the worst human rights violator in Cuba today is not the Castro regime, it’s us. It’s the U.S. government at our prison at the United States Naval Station Guantanamo Bay; first, under George W. Bush, and now, under Barack Obama.

Read the rest.

Remember that, when President Obama tried to close Gitmo, that old white men in Congress kept him from doing so.

As an old white man. I’m quite fed up with old white men.

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17 April 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

Book entitled

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31 March 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

Conservative chicken littles conspire for continuing concentration camp cruelty.

Robyn Blumner looks back:

What to do about the detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is a tragic puzzle with no clear solution. Like the war of adventurism in Iraq and a domestic economy in free fall, President George W. Bush left behind this towering mess for Obama to clean up.

Raw politics have stymied Obama’s efforts to close Bush’s Bastille. Congress has imposed completely unjustified restrictions on the movement of Guantanamo detainees to the United States for trial or even for repatriation or settlement in other nations. A Fox News echo chamber equates Guantanamo’s closure and detainee prosecutions in U.S. civil courts with being soft on terrorists, an absurd but effective allegation.

(snip)

Why would a nation whose moral authority as a world leader derives from its commitment to the rule of law and due process establish a parallel legal system for foreigners only, designed to bend whatever rules are necessary to obtain a conviction? Here’s why: Vice President Dick Cheney, his legal attack dog David Addington and apparatchik John Yoo saw military commissions as the culmination of the president’s king-like authority. The Bush administration wanted “a permanent legal structure under the president’s sole command,” Bravin writes, with the power of life and death.

What folks are loathe to mention–especially members of the professional punditocracy–is that the Bush Administration was not only corrupt and incompetent, it was also cruel and sadistic, filled with not nice people.

Read the rest.

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16 March 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

The swamp gas continues to stink.

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15 September 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

It is distasteful that America’s Torquemadas have not been called to account–distasteful, but understandable, for, were they to be called to account, the persons who set them their tasks, the Pope and Vatican Council to their Torquemada–George Bush, Dick Cheney, John Yoo, Paul Wolfewitz, and their dupes, symps, and fellow travelers–would also have to be called to account.

Frankly, not a chance.

But this–well, words fail me.

Peter Van Buren reports at Asia Times:

The one man in the whole archipelago of America’s secret horrors facing prosecution is former CIA agent John Kiriakou. Of the untold numbers of men and women involved in the whole nightmare show of those years, only one may go to jail.

And of course, he didn’t torture anyone.

(snip)

Many observers believe however that the real “offense” in the eyes of the Obama administration was quite different. In 2007, Kiriakou became a whistleblower. He went on record as the first (albeit by then, former) CIA official to confirm the use of waterboarding of al-Qaeda prisoners as an interrogation technique, and then to condemn it as torture.

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15 June 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

From Thoreau: it’s too short to quote, too true to miss.

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This is outrageous.

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25 April 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

One convict to another:  I've learned that when governments do it it's called a "doctrine."

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12 January 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

In the Guardian, Michael Ratner reviews the genesis of the shame of Guantanamo.

Together, these acts (the Authorisation (sic) for Use of Military Force and Military Order #1, both enacted in the post-9/11 frenzy–ed.), plus the Bush administration’s declaration of a so-called “war on terror”, doubled as publicity stunt and power grab. By treating the assaults of 9/11 as acts of war rather than crimes, despite the fact that laws of war apply to battles between countries, the White House could “go cowboy”. And so it did, eschewing the Constitution, kicking down doors, taking prisoners at will, and doing whatever it liked with them – without any heed for international law and without caring whether those prisoners were the right ones or not.

Remember, President Obama has tried since taking office to close the concentration camp. It’s that lily-livered sidewinder Congress that walks in fear.

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26 December 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

One of the perpetual intellectual and moral failures of the “Progressives” who continually rail against the President, doing stupid stuff like calling on persons “to primary Obama,” is their inability to tell who did what to whom. They seem to expect that, since President George the Worst acted like a dictator, President Obama should do the same.

At Bob Cesca’s Awesome Blog, JM Ashby reminds us why the concentration camp at Guantanamo is still open.

Hint: It ain’t the President’s doing.

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12 December 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

TPM:

The company formerly known as Blackwater is now the company formerly known as Xe.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the security contractor is announcing it’s switched its name to Academi, all part of an effort to be more “boring.”

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03 December 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

From the blurb on YouTube:

Thom Hartmann talks with Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, U.S. Congresswoman (D-IL, 9th District) about intimidation tacticts being used against her by Blackwater CEO Erik Prince.

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03 October 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

In a display of meaningless machismo theatre, some members of Congress want to turn more terrorism suspects over the military tribunals.

In the Detroit Free-Press, Col. Lawrence Wilkerson (U.S. Army Ret.) argues against this. He cites not only the obvious Constitutional grounds,* but also practical ones. A nugget (emphasis added):

Congress’ purported reason for funneling more suspects into the military system is, of course, to be tougher on terrorism. Terrorist attacks are acts of war, the thinking goes, and therefore should be handled solely by the U.S. military. But the respective records of federal courts and military tribunals undermine this rationale. Through domestic law enforcement, most notably the FBI and Department of Justice, the U.S. has successfully prosecuted more than 400 terrorism cases. Military tribunals have convicted only six people in 10 years.

________________________

*The rights in the Bill of Rights are accorded to “persons,” not to “persons we like this week”

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21 September 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: America's Concentration Camps

It’s long past time that this sadistic and shameful stain on the moral standing of the United States was expunged:

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said Tuesday that the Obama administration will do its utmost to close the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay before next year’s presidential elections despite political opposition.

Holder said at the European Parliament that even if the current administration fails to close it ahead of elections, it will continue to press ahead if it wins the November 2012 presidential vote.

No doubt the Republicans will proceed to wet the nation’s pants in fear.

They are happiest when they can convince the populace to cower and shiver behind locked doors.

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