Death by Detention

By Ateqah Khaki at 1:16pm
Last week, our friend – journalist Andy Worthington – reminded readers of a forgotten anniversary: the second anniversary of a death at Guantánamo – apparently by suicide.

Ethics Report is No Substitution for Criminal Investigation

By Suzanne Ito, ACLU at 1:42pm

Last night, The Washington Post reported that former Bush administration officials launched a behind-the-scenes campaign to get the Justice Department to soften the ethics report authored by its Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR). The…

Guantánamo Bay, U.S.A.?

By Ateqah Khaki at 12:10pm

(Originally posted on Daily Kos.)

Last week, Defense Secretary Robert Gates suggested that as many as 100 individuals currently detained at Guantánamo could be transferred to U.S. soil and held without trial. Secretary Gates stated, "The…

Growing Up at Gitmo

By Ateqah Khaki at 3:34pm

Remember Mohammed Jawad? Captured when he was possibly as young as 14 years old, Jawad is one of two Guantánamo prisoners the U.S. is prosecuting for war crimes allegedly committed as a child, under the Bush administration’s failed…

Mr. Panetta: Call Off the Wrecking Ball

By Suzanne Ito, ACLU at 12:43pm

Last week, the CIA announced it would shutter its overseas black sites, where many current Guantánamo detainees, including the former CIA detainees profiled in the Red Cross report declassified last week, were held — and tortured —…

Red Cross Report on Treatment of CIA Detainees Published

By Suzanne Ito, ACLU at 2:26pm

Last night, the New York Review of Books website published the International Committee of the Red Cross's (ICRC) 40-page report on the treatment of the 14 so-called "high-value detainees" (PDF) held at Guantánamo. This is especially…

Strange Bedfellows at Guantánamo

By Jamil Dakwar, Director, ACLU Human Rights Program at 5:23pm
Photo: AP

(Originally posted on Huffington Post.)

I've been observing the military commissions since 2004, and Guantánamo never felt more surreal or otherworldly than it did in what we hope were its final days of operation. On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, while then President-elect Obama prepared for his inauguration the next day, the Guantánamo military commissions charged forward with the pretrial hearing of Omar Khadr, the mental competency hearing of Ramzi Bin l-Shibh, and other proceedings in the case of the "9/11 defendants," the men charged with co-conspiring in the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Prior to the hearings on that Monday, the prosecution and defense teams in two cases filed a joint request to postpone the proceedings in anticipation of the changing of the guard in Washington. The military judges denied this request. Instead, "the show must go on" was the message in the days and hours before President Obama took the oath of office and had an opportunity to issue his executive orders. Neither prosecutors, defense lawyers, nor judges acknowledged during the Monday proceedings that there was an imminent change in the way the incoming administration would deal with the military commissions. Federal courts were closed on Monday in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, but it was business as usual at Guantánamo. Ironically, even the Gitmo Gym was closed on Monday, but not the departing Bush administration's kangaroo courts! Three days later, President Obama issued executive orders to close Guantánamo within one year, suspend the military commissions, prohibit CIA prisons, and enforce the ban on torture.

Closing Gitmo and Ending Torture the Right Way

By Suzanne Ito, ACLU at 7:35pm

Last night, Jameel Jaffer, Director of the ACLU's National Security Project, was on The Rachel Maddow Show talking about President Obama's three executive orders and torture policy going forward.

Andy Worthington, who just guest-posted…

International Intervention Needed on Behalf of Obama's Child Soldiers

By Jennifer Turner, Human Rights Researcher, Human Rights Program, ACLU at 3:37pm

President-elect Barack Obama will make history on his inauguration day. And if a scheduled Guantánamo military commission trial goes forward on January 26, President-elect Obama will make a wholly different kind of history, by presiding over…

Obama's Child Soldiers

By Joel Engardio, ACLU at 5:42pm

Six days after the inauguration of President Obama, the U.S. is scheduled to begin the first trial of a child soldier accused of war crimes since World War II. This video shows why President Obama must take swift action to end the unconstitutional…

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