Shostack + Friends Blog Archive


American Torture Chambers

After the Second World War, Germans claimed they didn’t know what was being done to Jews, Catholics, Gays, Gypsies and others by their government. We, as Americans, have no such excuse. We know what’s being done in our name, and have failed to stop it. The American government is torturing prisoners, and sending prisoners to other countries with the goal of having them tortured. I’ll be blogging about this until it ends. Please read.

  • The BBC reports that ACLU is going to sue the CIA:

    “The lawsuit will charge that CIA officials at the highest level violated US and universal human rights laws when they authorised agents to abduct an innocent man, detain him incommunicado, beat him, drug and transport him to a secret CIA prison in Afghanistan,” the ACLU said in a news release.

    I can’t find the press release yet.

  • Hilzoy at Obsidian Wings excerpts and analyzes the Washington Post story “Wrongful Imprisonment: Anatomy of a CIA Mistake,” in “Oops; Our Bad:”

    [el-]Masri can find few words to explain his ordeal. “I have very bad feelings” about the United States, he said. “I think it’s just like in the Arab countries: arresting people, treating them inhumanly and less than that, and with no rights and no laws.”

    Also there, but by Kathryn, is “Not So Extraordinary After All,” an examination of the after-effects of torturing the wrong guy. Ooops, we destroyed your life and left you a shivering wreck. Not even gonna say we’re sorry, but tell the world that your treatment is a needful part of the current crisis.

  • Our Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice is overseas with a shock and awe campaign, designed to disgust our remaining allies. At least, that’s the only explanation I can figure. Hilzoy at Obsidian Wings has “Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire,” and Soj at Flogging the Simian has analysis of her performance in “CIA Secret Jails: Part 12.”

Please, take the time to read these. Yesterday, in a comment, Gunnar Peterson took me to task for irony with a quote from Rainer Maria Rilke:

Search into the depths of Things: there, irony never descends — and when you arrive at the edge of greatness, find out whether this way of perceiving the world arises from a necessity of your being. For under the influence of serious Things it will either fall away from you (if it is something accidental), or else (if it is really innate and belongs to you) it will grow strong, and become a serious tool and take its place among the instruments which you can form your art with.

I make no claim to be at the edge of greatness here. I have great respect for the ability of Soj, Hilzoy, and Kathryn to write with eloquence and feeling while I act, with all respect, as an echo chamber for their words.

More on security, certificates, passwords, and even philanthropy later.

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