Torture Confirmed At Guantanamo Under Obama

Via Jay, Jeff Kaye phoned up and asked and they are so confident they have bamboozled a brutalised public into acquiescence they simply admit it-

Recently, it occurred to me that, with all the debate or controversy over the Obama administration’s policies on torture, no one had asked the military, and in particular those running America’s “terror” prisons, if they had been using the Army Field Manual’s Appendix M. So, I called Guantanamo’s Public Affairs Officer, Lt. Commander Brook DeWalt, and asked him if Appendix M interrogations had taken place at Guantanamo.

Lt. Commander DeWalt took a few days to get confirmation, but when he spoke to me on December 11, he confirmed that while “not routine,” Appendix M interrogations are conducted at Guantanamo “as authorized,” “in accordance with DOD directives and U.S. law.” He would not go into operational specifics. Officer-In-Charge of the 4th Public Affairs Detachment (Guantanamo Forward), Lt. Col. James Crabtree, whom was also contacted, declined to be more forthcoming about dates when asked for more specific dates of operational usage.

Appendix M is the portion of the 2006 revised Army Field Manual that covers “unlawful enemy combatants” who don’t meet the U.S. government’s criteria for Geneva treatment as prisoners of war. Obama doesn’t want to call them illegal combatants anymore, so the government doesn’t call them anything, except people with lesser rights.

Appendix M was certainly not the old “enhanced interrogation techniques,” but they weren’t exactly notthem either. The new AFM was supposed to be better than the old one, like any new product, but in fact, old prohibitions against abusive interrogation techniques were removed, and in some cases, the techniques formally reintroduced. An example of the latter is sleep deprivation, which used to be explicitly proscribed, but is now part of Appendix M procedure. “Fear Up” procedures are strengthened. Modes of sensory deprivation are introduced. The ban against drugs that cause serious derangement of the senses or temporary psychosis is replaced by a ban against drugs that cause “permanent damage.” Stress positions are, notably, not explicitly banned.

MORE

Advertisements

Egyptian Forces Readying For Attack On Viva Palestina Convoy In Al Arish

To all friends of Palestine

Our situation is now at a crisis point! Riot has broken out in the port of Al- Arish.

This late afternoon we were negotiating with a senior official from Cairo who left negotiations some two hours ago and did not return. Our negotiations with the official was regarding taking our aid vehicles into Gaza.

He left two hours ago and did not come back. Egyptian authorities called over 2,000 riot police who then moved towards our camp at the port.

We have now blocked the entrance to the port and we are now faced with riot police and water cannons and are determined to defend our vehicles and aid.

The Egyptian authorities have by their stubbornness and hostility towards the convoy, brought us to a crisis point.

We are now calling upon all friends of palestine to mount protests in person where possible, but by any means available to Egyptian representatives, consulates and Embassy’s and demand that the convoy are allowed a safe passage into Gaza tomorrow!

Kevin Ovenden
Viva Palestina Convoy Leader

———————
Alice Howard
Viva Palestina UK – Administration Manager
Tel: 07944 512 469
Email: alice@vivapalestina.org
Website: http://www.vivapalestina.org/

Find your Embassy Consulate here

CALL!
Egyptian Embassy
020 7499 3304 +
UK FCO 020 7008 1500
BBC 03700 100 222

Iceland!

The people of Iceland have not finished with their outrage at what they were suckered into, they are absolutely right to refuse to impoverish themselves in order to honour criminal banks’ debts. Of course the threats are coming thick and fast and expect the media to be full of negative stories of Icleandic evil but what they are doing is actually good for all of us, the free insurance we provide for banks, (keep your profits while we pay your losses) is nothing but theft. The full weight of global capital will be brought to bear on Iceland, if one country gets uppity and gets away with it the whole system might not seem so assured of its hegemony. It will not be easy and great economic violence will be done to Iceland if they hold firm and yes UK creditors will suffer (but all could be saved if instead of bailouts we had investment in the public commons) but if we let them be attacked it simply means our supine, submissive status to our own financial institutions will become even more entrenched, we may as well just open up a vein and offer them their fill. Michael Hudson has covered this over the last year, much better reading than the UK media manage, their unexamined nationalism and deference to orthodox neoliberal religion does not make for good journalism-

The Real Issue is Iceland’s Economic Independence Will Iceland be Handed Over to a New Gang of Kleptocrats?

Make Iceland Pay for Incompetent British Bank Deregulation! Gordon Brown Spills the Beans on the IMF

The Specter of Debt Revolt Is Haunting Europe Why Iceland and Latvia Won’t (and Can’t) Pay for the Kleptocrats’ Ripoffs

Honduras- Cracking The Coup

For more, including unedited interview with Lisa Sullivan, Latin America coordinator at School of the Americas Watch go to www.radioproject.org

This past June, a military coup ousted the democratically-elected president of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya Rosales. On November 29th, Honduras took global center-stage again when conservative businessman, Porfirio Lobo Sosa, was declared the new President Elect. But the election is mired in controversy and world reaction is split. The U.S. is offering cautious support for the win while other nations, like Brazil, Venezuela and Argentina, refuse to recognize the results. They say the election was held under an unlawful government.

On this edition, independent producer Chris Thomas takes us to the streets of Honduras to look at the roots of a long-standing conflict between a powerful oligarchy and the poor and dispossessed majority who fought back for their rights.

Featuring:

Berta Cáceres, Indigenous Peoples Council of Honduras (COPINH) Leader, ex-vice-presidential candidate on independent ticket, National Resistance Front Against the Coup Member; Salvador Zúñiga, COPINH Leader National Resistance Front Against the Coup Member; Adelay Reyes, Center for Women´s Rights (CDM), Feminists in Resistance; Guillermo Amador, National Pedagogical University Student Leader, National Resistance Front Against the Coup Member; Carlos H. Reyes, Ex-presidential candidate on the independent ticket, Union of Beverage and Related Industry Workers President, National Resistance Front Against the Coup Member;Adolfo Facussé, Powerful business leader, National Industrial Association of Honduras President; Roberto Micheletti, Congressman of nearly three decades and de facto president of Honduras; Amilcar Bulnes, Business leader and Honduran National Business Council President; Luis Guillermo, Secretary General of the International Human Rights Federation; Laura Carlson, Americas Policy Program Director.

SOAW– Leaders of the human rights community [in Honduras] have requested a constant presence of international visitors to bring attention to this situation and help protect the lives of Hondurans. We are urging SOA Watch activists to join the Task Force on the Americas delegation to Honduras from March 13-20, 2010 (for more information write Dale Sorensen,geodale1@earthlink.net), a Quixote Center delegation (contact Jenny Atlee, jennya@quixote.org) or the January 24-31, 2010 Rights Action delegation (contact Grahame Russell, info@rightsaction.org)