Amnesty International report on global torture exposes inhumane acts perpetrated by United States
Thirty years after ratifying the UN Convention Against Torture, the U.S. government has dodged accountability for perpetrating torture in domestic prisons and CIA black sites and embroiling foreign states in inhumane acts.
So finds a report on global torture released Tuesday by human rights organization Amnesty International. According to the study, torture and abuse have been reported in at least 141 countries around the world in the past five years.
A survey conducted by Amnesty found that 44 percent of people across the world are afraid they would be in danger of torture if taken into state custody in their country.
In the United States, 32 percent of respondents expressed such a fear—which, according to the report, has merit.
“In some maximum security isolation or segregation facilities across the USA, many thousands of inmates are held in solitary confinement in small cells for 22 to 24 hours a day. Many have little access to natural light or out-of-cell recreation time which amounts to cruel inhuman or degrading treatment,” reads the study.
U.S. torture is not confined within its borders. “The U.S. government is also failing to ensure accountability for torture and enforced disappearances committed in the context of counter-terrorism operations. No one responsible for the use of interrogation techniques such as ‘water-boarding,’ prolonged sleep deprivation, and stress positions in Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)-run secret detention centres around the world has been brought to justice. The U.S. Select Committee on Intelligence has conducted a review of the now-terminated CIA programme, but its 6,000-plus page report remains classified.”
Rebecca Gordon, author of Mainstreaming Torture and lecturer at University of San Francisco, told Common Dreams that the U.S. climate for torture has only grown more permissive since the beginning of the War on Terror. “One of the things we’ve seen polls show that almost 13 years out from September 11th, 2001, people are more willing to approve of torture as a tool of ‘security’ than a decade ago,” she said.
The report states that the U.S. has involved other countries in its acts of torture: “Torture and ill-treatment has also been documented in parts of the European Union (EU), with some countries also failing to effectively investigate allegations of complicity in torture carried out in the context of U.S.-led counter-terrorism operations,” states the report.
According to Gordon, “U.S. pressure on European countries to participate in housing CIA black sites and allow their airports to be used for renditions has corrupted a number of European governments in their stance on torture. One of the effects of torture by the United States—a country universally (if not accurately) recognized as a democracy—is when that country participates in torture in a quasi public way, it creates a legitimation of torture as a practice.”
Here are some more links from the reference section, dating back to the 90’s. The pattern is clear and enduring and no one is ever brought to justice. The conclusion is inescapable: the permanent invisible government is unimaginably evil, the media is complicit, and our “democracy” is just a PR facade, a velvet glove over the mailed fist.
- Behind the Death Squads in El Salvador
- Salvadoran Says US Advisors Watched Torture Class
- El Salvador: Assassin says US Financed Death Squad
- Salvadoran Death Squads: A Pattern of US Complicity
- THE CIA & GUATEMALA’S DEATH SQUADS
- Guatemala: Puppets Get Strings Crossed, Abduct U.S. Nun
- Sister Dianna Ortiz on Guatemala Torture
- The United States and Torture
- Behind Haiti’s Paramilitaries
- Honduras: Torture cells, graves at US-Contra base
- CIA Analyst Says US Taught Nazi Torture to Iran’s Secret Police
The spectacle of brain damaged, emotionally castrated, mind controlled debt slaves dancing to the dictates of the monsters that own them in the name of fighting the terrorists that they also own is definitely one for the history books. Medieval social control has certainly come a long way. What’s next, impaling?
Former Assistant Secretary of Housing under George H.W. Bush Catherine Austin Fitts blows the whistle on how the financial terrorists have deliberately imploded the US economy and transferred gargantuan amounts of wealth offshore as a means of sacrificing the American middle class.
Fitts documents how trillions of dollars went missing from government coffers in the 90′s and how she was personally targeted for exposing the fraud.
Fitts explains how every dollar of debt issued to service every war, building project, and government program since the American Revolution up to around 2 years ago — around $12 trillion — has been doubled again in just the last 18 months alone with the bank bailouts. “We’re literally witnessing the leveraged buyout of a country and that’s why I call it a financial coup d’état, and that’s what the bailout is for,” states Fitts. …
The document, entitled “Military Operations on Urban Terrain Collective Training Facility,” reveals the specifics of a mock 30-acre town located on Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.
Originally built in 1990, new additions to the facility, including a Baptist church, a police station and several farmhouses, have transformed the layout of the once “international” town.
According to the military whistleblower who provided the documents to Infowars, U.S. Marines at the facility have been tasked with training soldiers, law enforcement agencies and Homeland Security in skills such as fighting in wooded areas, urban patrolling, forcible entry and night fighting techniques. The facility is also being used to cross train foreign troops from the United Nations and NATO. The whistleblower noted that the vast majority of Marines were opposed to the shift in training and specifically had issues with DHS agents.
In a sharply divided opinion, the supreme court ruled, 5-4, that the case should be dismissed because the plaintiffs didn’t have “standing” – in other words, that the ACLU couldn’t prove with near-certainty that their clients, which included journalists and human rights advocates, were targets of surveillance, so they couldn’t challenge the law. As the New York Times noted this week, the court relied on two claims by the Justice Department to support their ruling: 1) that the NSA would only get the content of Americans’ communications without a warrant when they are targeting a foreigner abroad for surveillance, and 2) that the Justice Department would notify criminal defendants who have been spied on under the Fisa Amendments Act, so there exists some way to challenge the law in court.
It turns out that neither of those statements were true – but it took Snowden’s historic whistleblowing to prove it….
From an article posted to m.a.p in 2000 which you can find in the reference section among all the other conspiracy “theories”:
Under the heading of “civil disturbance planning”, the U.S. military is training troops and police to suppress democratic opposition in America. The master plan, Department of Defense Civil Disturbance Plan 55-2, is code-named, “Operation Garden Plot”. Originated in 1968, the “operational plan” has been updated over the last three decades, most recently in 1991, and was activated during the Los Angeles “riots” of 1992, and more than likely during the recent anti-WTO “Battle in Seattle.” Current U.S. military preparations for suppressing domestic civil disturbance, including the training of National Guard troops and police, are actually part of a long history of American “internal security” measures dating back to the first American Revolution. Generally, these measures have sought to thwart the aims of social justice movements, embodying the concept that within the civilian body politic lurks an enemy that one day the military might have to fight, or at least be ordered to fight. Equipped with flexible “military operations in urban terrain” and “operations other than war” doctrine, lethal and “less-than-lethal” high-tech weaponry, US “armed forces” and “elite” militarized police units are being trained to eradicate “disorder”, “disturbance” and “civil disobedience” in America. Further, it may very well be that police/military “civil disturbance” planning is the animating force and the overarching logic behind the incredible nationwide growth of police paramilitary units, a growth which coincidentally mirrors rising levels of police violence directed at the American people, particularly “non-white” poor and working people.
Military spokespeople, “judge advocates” (lawyers) and their congressional supporters aggressively take the position that legal obstacles to military involvement in domestic law enforcement civil disturbance operations, such as the 1878 Posse Comitatus Act, have been nullified. Legislated “exceptions” and private commercialization of various aspects of U.S. military-law enforcement efforts have supposedly removed their activities from the legal reach of the “public domain”. Possibly illegal, ostensible “training” scenarios like the recent “Operation Urban Warrior” no-notice “urban terrain” war games, which took place in dozens of American cities, are thinly disguised “civil disturbance suppression” exercises. In addition, President Clinton recently appointed a “domestic military czar”, a sort of national chief of police. You can bet that he is well versed in Garden Plot requirements involved in “homeland defense”. Ominously, many assume that the training of military and police forces to suppress “outlawed” behavior of citizens, along with the creation of extensive and sophisticated “emergency” social response networks set to spring into action in the event of “civil unrest”, is prudent and acceptable in a democracy. And yet, does not this assumption beg the question as to what civil unrest is? One could argue for example, that civil disturbance is nothing less than democracy in action, a message to the powers-that-be that the people want change. In this instance “disturbing behavior” may actually be the exercising of ones’ right to resist oppression. Unfortunately, the American corporate/military directorship, which has the power to enforce its’ definition of “disorder”, sees democracy as a threat and permanent counter-revolution as a “national security” requirement. The elite military/corporate sponsors of Garden Plot have their reasons
for civil disturbance contingency planning. Lets’ call it the paranoia of the thief. Their rationale is simple: self-preservation. Fostering severe and targeted “austerity”, massive inequality and unbridled greed, while shifting more and more billions to the generals and the rich, the de-regulated “entities of force” and their interlocking corporate directors know quite well what their policies are engendering, namely, a growing resistance. Consequently, they are systematically organizing to protect their interests, their profits, and their criminal conspiracies. To this end, they are rapidly consolidating an infrastructure of repression designed to “suppress rebellion” against their “authority”. Or more conveniently put, to suppress “rebellion against the authority of the United States.” And so, as the Pentagon Incorporated increases its’ imperialist violence around the world, the chickens have indeed come home to roost here in America in the form of a national security doctrine obsessed with domestic “insurgency” and the need to pre-emptively neutralize it. Its’ code-name: “Garden Plot”.
Recently, Pentagon spokesman Kenneth H. Bacon “acknowledged that the Air Force wrongfully started and financed a highly classified, still-secret project, known as a black program without informing Congress last year.” The costs and nature of these projects “are the most classified secrets in the Pentagon.”(1) Could it be that the current United States Air Force Civil Disturbance Plan 55-2 Garden Plot is one such program financed from this secret budget? We have a right to know. And following Seattle, we have the need to know.
As this and numerous other documents reveal, U.S. military training in civil disturbance “suppression”, which targets the American public, is in full operation today. The formulation of legitimizing doctrine, the training in the “tactics and techniques” of “civil disturbance suppression”, and the use of “abusable”, “non-lethal” weaponry, are ongoing, financed by tax dollars. According to the Pentagon, “US forces deployed to assist federal and local authorities during times if civil disturbance…will follow use-of-force policy found in Department of Defense Civil Disturbance Plan-Garden Plot.” (Joint Chiefs of Staff, Standing Rules of Engagement, Appendix A, 1 October 1994.)
ORIGINS OF OPERATION GARDEN PLOT: THE KERNER COMMISSION
“Knowledge makes a man unfit to be a slave.” — Frederick Douglass,
Rochester, New York is the former home of Frederick Douglass’s, North Star newspaper. In 1964, it erupted in one of the first large-scale urban outbursts of the decade. Precipitated by white police violence against the black community, the July uprising lasted several days, subsiding only after the arrival of 1500 National Guardsmen. In “the fall of 1964, the FBI, at the direction of President Johnson, began to make riot control training available to local police departments, and by mid-1967 such training assistance had been extended to more than 70,000 officials and civilians.” (2)
On July 29, 1967, President Johnson issued Executive Order 11365, establishing the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders. It is more commonly known as the Kerner Commission, named for it’s chair, former Major General, and then Governor of Illinois, Otto Kerner. The creation of the commission came hot on the heels of the violence in Detroit, a conflict which left 43 dead, several hundred wounded and over 5,000 people homeless. Johnson sent troubleshooter Cyrus Vance, later Secretary of Defense, as his personal observer to Detroit. The commission issued its’ final report, completed in less than a year, on March 1, 1968….