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Torture And Secret Prisons, But This Time With A Smiley Face

Posted by The Agonist on April 8th, 2011

From our partners at The Agonist

This is exactly why the creators and enforcers of the Bush torture regime should have been prosecuted:

[S]uspected terrorists are still being held under hazy circumstances with uncertain rights in secret, military-run jails across Afghanistan, where they can be interrogated for weeks without charge, according to U.S. officials who revealed details of the top-secret network to The Associated Press.

The Pentagon also has said that detainees only stay in temporary detention sites for 14 days, unless they are extended under extraordinary circumstances. But U.S. officials told the AP that detainees can be held at the temporary jails for up to nine weeks, depending on the value of information they produce. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the program is classified.

More than a dozen former detainees claimed they were menaced and held for weeks at the Joint Special Operations Command site last year, forced to strip naked, then kept in solitary confinement in windowless, often cold cells with lights on 24 hours a day, according to Daphne Eviatar of the group Human Rights First, which interviewed them in Afghanistan.

Eviatar said her monitoring group does not believe the JSOC facility is using the full range of Bush-era interrogation techniques, but she said there’s a disturbing pattern of using fear and humiliation to soften up the suspects before interrogation.

Many of those interviewed said “they were forced to strip naked in front of other detainees, which is very humiliating for them,” Eviatar said. “The forced nudity seems to be part of a pattern to make detainees feel disempowered.”

Forced nudity is torture. Call this what it is: torture light. And it is still on going.

And happening in American with Bradley Manning.

So, to recap: we still have secret, black-site prisons in Afghanistan and use torture. How is this any better than Bush?

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