Thursday, February 14, 2013

From Roger Fitch and our Friends down under at Justinian

Perfidy in peacetime

The United States doesn't require a war for there to be "war crimes ... Stopping the "water cure" from flowing into the trial process ... European Court of Human Rights upsets the CIA's apple cart ... Roger Fitch files from Washington 
Judge Pohl: obligingly kept torture evidence secretTHE news media have concentrated this month on the Guantánamo 9/11 trial, where, in a moment of high farce, the sound and pictures under the delayed-response security systemabruptly vanished despite no one claiming responsibility. 
As soon as a defence lawyer mentioned his motion to preserve CIA "black sites" (they are crime scenes, after all), someone pulled the plug, and it wasn't the judge or official court censor. 
Whodunnit? The judge didn't know, but the prosecution did.
Could it be their mates at the CIA?


And if you believe this one I have a bridge for sale......

Yes, the military at Guantanamo admits it has microphones in the meeting rooms where attorneys meet with their clients- but they claim they don't listen. Really??
Oh yeah, and they realized that the microphones were not working so they fixed them....but they still were not listening....
That sure is showing a lot of self control isn't it? And of course we know our military and its friends in the CIA exercise a lot of self control.
Many of us have long suspected that our meetings were being listened to by the military despite the fact that there was a court order demanding that they not listen- especially when our clients were questioned about things that came up in our meetings after we left- but the military always denied they were listening and of course the judges did not believe that the military would lie to them.....sigh.
Carol Rosenberg has more here.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Bybee- Bush's torture drafter- rules on torture in his position of appellate judge

Well I am sure this will not surprise anyone who has a clue who Bybee is- one of the drafters of the Bush torture papers who was then promoted to be a judge on the 9th circuit court of appeals. Well anyway Judge Bybee finally got a chance to rule on torture in a case in front of him- and guess what- Bybee did not think that being "chained at the ankles and the waist, shackled to a metal bed without a mattress, and forced to lie down and lap his meals from a bowl without using his hands. He said the cell was kept hot, poorly ventilated and in constant bright light. He tried to sleep when he could but felt his mind “deteriorating,” and the conditions “did in fact torture (him) mentally.”   amounted to torture...
But just in case someone else might think it did amount to torture Bybee also held (coincidentally) that since this conduct happened back in 2002 (right around when he was writing the torture memos) no one could have known that conduct like this would be considered  unconstitutional because the law had not been clearly established way back then-that torture was unconstitutional.

I would also suggest that Bybee had a conflict of interest in even ruling on this case as his decision could be seen as an attempt to buttress his own defense in the ongoing attempts to have him removed from the bench-his defense has been "I didn't know this kind of conduct was unconstitutional."

read the decision here

Saturday, February 2, 2013


In other news- Obama finally closed something having to do with Guantanamo- the office in charge of resettling the men...sigh.
you can skip the ad by clicking up on the right hand side- this video from Colbert hits the nail on the head-


This week we all were able to see first hand who controls things at the Guantanamo "commission trials." Ok, we couldn't actually see who it was but we know it is not the judge right? In case you managed to miss this story a secret hand pushed a button censoring the hearing-and the censor was not someone in the courtroom- the judge was a bit pissed off that someone was controlling things from the outside and he claims to have eliminated  the secret censor but it seems to me that if he doesn't know who the censor is it is pretty hard to eliminate it....anyway the judge should know he is not in charge -I mean where does he think he is anyway- the US?