Obama’s Whitewash of Bush’s Guantanamo Sins

The Israelis have exacted justice not only aganist the Nazis, but also even from those who are unwilling and unwitting participants of the Holocaust. The Palestinians paid for the sins of Europe with their land despite a lack of international consensus and watch gleefully now as the oppressed of WWII become the opressor. Now the Palestinians are landless and homeless. As if to add salt to wound now we have Iraq and the Gitmo bay. The white man can shove his fucking version of justice, freedom and democracy up his arse because they do not respect people who are different.

Bush needs to be in the dock as a war criminal

Where is the justice for people like Saad.

Taken Whloesale from http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2009/01/25/64947.html

Monday, January 26, 2009

Obama closing Gitmo means nothing: ex-inmate

Source: alarabiya

Tortured man says decision is mere ‘whitewash’

Former Guantanamo Bay prisoner Mohammad Saad breaks into sobs and gut-wrenching moans when he details six years’ humiliation, interrogation and torture under U.S. orders in Egypt, Afghanistan and Cuba.

At 31 he walks with a limp and needs a stick to cross the drawing room of his brother’s palatial villa in Pakistan‘s historical center Lahore.

It’s too painful, it’s too deep, it’s too dark and fills me with sadness… They did everything they could to destroy me when I was completely innocent,” the man recounts.

Since returning home in 2008 — six years after he was arrested and years after U.S. investigators said they had no case against him — Saad has undergone one operation to stem infection in his left ear and is waiting another.

Unmarried and an orphan, with little hope of a normal life, he is unmoved by U.S. President Barack Obama’s widely feted decision to close Guantanamo Bay, ‘secret’ CIA detention facilities and outlaw torture.

Obama’s “whitewash”

“Obama’s decision to close Guantanamo Bay is a mere whitewash. Obama has to apologize to the prisoners, to their families and their societies, Saad said.

“They have to apologize to the Muslim world and a whole generation. That’s the least he could do… He should pledge these atrocities will never be repeated and compensate those who suffered any kind of torture.”

Some outgoing U.S. administration officials rejected accusations that tactics amounted to torture and argued that U.S. interrogation techniques such as “waterboarding” or simulated drowning yielded useful intelligence.

Saad says he was 24 years old, a lecturer in Islamic studies and a sought-after reciter of the Quran visiting family in Jakarta when Indonesian agents acting on U.S. orders arrested him before dawn on January 9, 2002.

He was kept without food and water and then handed over to an Egyptian at the airport on Jan. 10 to board a special plane.

“They stripped me and started beating me, kicking me in the face but asking no questions. It was utter humiliation. They shackled me from my neck to my knees and took me to the plane. An American official was also there,” he said.

“During the flight they slapped me, kicked me and wouldn’t let me use the loo. After a while they gave me a bottle and said I can urinate in that. I arrived in Cairo on Jan. 11,” he continued.

“Call your God”

In Egypt, he says he was incarcerated in an underground cell for 92 days, his knees and back given electric shocks, and interrogated by Egyptians about Washington’s most wanted man, Osama bin Laden.

Well educated, the son of an Islamic scholar and a master of nine languages, including English, Saad has to strain to hear during an interview with AFP.

In April 2002, he says he was flown to Bagram, the U.S. military-run prison in Afghanistan where he was stripped, shackled and handcuffed.

“After a few rounds of interrogation I was put in solitary confinement for seven months and on March 23, 2003 they transferred me to Guantanamo Bay.”

He says his interrogators threw the Quran on the floor during his questioning. “They laughed and said ‘Call your God to come and punish us. Call your God’.”

“I went on hunger strike three times. They said they would give me treatment if I cooperated. I was suffering. I was in terrible pain. There was an abject sense of humiliation. I wanted to end my life but I could not,” he described.

He says he passed a polygraph (lie detector) test. “They didn’t let me sleep, moving me from one cell to another with hoods and (my) legs tightly shackled. My legs started bleeding.”

Saad denies ever being affiliated to al-Qaeda or extremists, or of visiting Afghanistan.

“They wanted me to confess that I met Osama bin Laden and I went to Afghanistan. I never met him, I never went to Afghanistan,” he says breaking into loud moans and sobs.

In 2004, he says he was told the U.S. government had no case against him and that he would be freed. He was released three years later.

“Can they (the Americans) return those seven years? Never. They have destroyed so many lives. They have turned intelligent, healthy human beings into vegetables,” says Saad.

Closing Guantanamo

About 245 prisoners are still held at the jail housed at a U.S. naval base in southern Cuba, which has been a rallying point for anti-American sentiment around the world for the last eight years.

Obama on Thursday signed an executive order to close the prison within a year, and pledged to sift through the evidence and determine why the detainees are still being held in the next six months.

The inmates are likely to fall into three categories. First those for whom the U.S. has said it has no evidence of wrong-doing, will be transferred and subsequently released.

The second group of detainees will be prosecuted according to the evidence held by the government.

The third and most troubling group for the Obama administration are those deemed too dangerous for release, but against whom the government has either not enough credible evidence or only unusable confessions obtained through “enhanced” interrogation — or torture, as some charge.

For this group the review board may seek legal means to keep them in detention, perhaps indefinitely.

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