Since I began researching Guantánamo and the “war on terror” on a full-time basis over six years ago, my motive has been to pierce the lies told about the prisoners, falsely tarred as “the worst of the worst,” even though most of them were rounded up for money, or through poor intelligence, and to expose the horrors that ensue when a rogue government — saturated in vengeance and with a long-standing disdain for restraints on executive power — disregards domestic and international law, deliberately confusing a terrorist attack with a war, depriving prisoners seized in wartime of the rights of the Geneva Conventions, and introducing arbitrary detention and torture.
Torture has permeated every aspect of America’s “war on terror,” and I have researched and written about what is known of its use at Guantánamo, and in prisons in Afghanistan, through the stories of the men held there and the documents about them that have been publicly released. I have also undertaken research into prisoners held in other locations — in the proxy prisons in countries including Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Syria, where the torturers of those regimes extracted information on behalf of the CIA, and in the “black sites” run by the CIA, in a disturbingly novel departure from its traditional modus operandi, in Thailand, Poland, Romania, Lithuania and Morocco.
My main contribution to the documentation of these prisoners is a section of a UN report published in 2010, the “Joint Study on Global Practices in Relation to Secret Detention in the Context of Countering Terrorism,” dealing with US secret detention policies after 9/11, on which I was the lead author. That report is available here as a PDF, and in June 2010 I cross-posted the chapter dealing with US secret detention in three parts on my website — see UN Secret Detention Report (Part One): The CIA’s “High-Value Detainee” Program and Secret Prisons, UN Secret Detention Report (Part Two): CIA Prisons in Afghanistan and Iraq and UN Secret Detention Report (Part Three): Proxy Detention, Other Countries’ Complicity, and Obama’s Record. Read the rest of this entry »
Investigative journalist, author, filmmaker, photographer and Guantanamo expert
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