WCW Home News Recent News 11/1/21 What Really Happened in CIA Sites, Finally
11/1/21 What Really Happened in CIA Sites, Finally PDF Print E-mail

By Debra Sweet

From Guantanamo:

Two extraordinary developments happened days ago inside the US torture camp at Guantanamo.

One: For the first time ever, a prisoner testified in military court, with reporters present, on his torture at the hands of the C.I.A. in "black sites." Carol Rosenberg of The New York Times reported that, at his sentencing hearing October 28, Majid Khan spoke of the violence that C.I.A. agents and operatives inflicted on him in dungeonlike conditions in prisons in Pakistan, Afghanistan and a third country, including sexual abuse and mind-numbing isolation, often in the dark while he was nude and shackled. He read his statement aloud for two hours.

The U.S. has never acknowledged its cooperation with third countries in "black sites," and for two decades has refused prisoners to be tried, or even charged, lest they reveal details of torture by the U.S. or military. No prisoners have been allowed to get their stories heard from inside the prison. The military prosecutors declined to comment specifically other than conceding that Khan suffered "extremely rough treatment."

Two: After hearing Khan's testimony, including his admission of joining AlQaeda as a teenager, the military jury sentenced him to 26 years, the least he could have received. Then "In a stark rebuke of the torture carried out by the C.I.A. after the Sept. 11 attacks, seven senior military officers who heard graphic descriptions last week of the brutal treatment of a terrorist while in the agency’s custody wrote a letter calling it 'a stain on the moral fiber of America.'”The military jurors' public opposition to actions by the C.I.A. and military is notable because it stands out from the actions of millions -- yes millions -- of those activated during the so-called "war on terror." It's good they wrote their letter; and more should follow their example. But this stain on the "moral fiber" of the empire is never going to be washed out.

Khan is represented by the Center for Constitutional Rights; under a previously secret agreement, he could be released in 2025.  More on his case.

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