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The Valentine-Torture Connection 2/7. Join us in sending postcard to investigate torture

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annm4peace Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-06-11 09:19 PM
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The Valentine-Torture Connection 2/7. Join us in sending postcard to investigate torture
February 7 also marks the day that the previous Administration erroneously declared that its detainees were not covered by the Geneva Conventions. Our committee and others will be distributing Valentine cards that day, in and around our county and federal buildings in downtown Minneapolis, to remind ourselves of these wrongs, ask our public officials for investigations, and encourage all of us to make things right. (Join us, if you'd like, from 11 am to 1 pm at the northern entrance of the Hennepin Government Center, 300 So 6th St., Minneapolis.)

front of postcard

back of post card

By Diane Steen-Hinderlie, anti-torture committee of WAMM (Women Against Military Madness)
A positive byproduct of the WikiLeaks disclosures is that we've learned why other countries have been reluctant to absorb the duly-releasable prisoners of Guantanamo. Apparently we ourselves haven't modeled such humane behavior ("U.S. refusal of detainees helped keep Gitmo open" Jan. 23, 2011.)

It's important for us to resolve this sorry chapter in our national history. Witness how the newly-named Vice President of Egypt, Mr. Suleiman, is not being accepted by the people there, in large part because of his connection with the US "rendition-torture" program.

It's long been recognized that many of the men held for years at Guantanamo were swept up in the "bounty-hunter" mentality that held sway in the early phases of the war in Afghanistan. Many Gitmo detainees are now believed to have been totally innocent while little evidence exists as to others. One Kuwaiti citizen, for example, was captured by Pakistani forces and sold into US custody in 2002. Despite over 400 interrogations, suffering through many hours of torture, including but not limited to beatings, sleep deprivation, threats and forced stress positions, the US government has failed to gather any evidence against Mr. al-Kandari aside from hearsay accusations of other Guantanamo prisoners and unidentified Afghanis, evidence which, under any other circumstances, would not be allowed in US courts. Kuwait has made various requests for his repatriation, which the US has thus far refused, questioning Kuwait's ability to monitor and rehabilitate previously returned citizens.

Even if some detainees are found guilty of low-level offenses, they've already endured a decade of detention and abuse and therefore "served their time" so could/should be released and rehabilitated. As a charter member of the Center for Victims of Torture (CVT), I felt it incumbent upon myself to inquire about the possibility of arranging such rehabilitative treatment for this segment of releasable Gitmo detainees. In conversation with Center Director Douglas Johnson, he said that's exactly what the Center's treatment facility is designed to do, but that a sponsor would need to be found.
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annm4peace Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-06-11 10:32 PM
Response to Original message
1. If you are in or near Minneapolis, come join us
Monday, February 7 11:00am - 1:00pm
Hennepin County Government Center (atrium)
300 North Sixth St
Minneapolis, MN

Come to a vigil and postcard signing and mailing event protesting nine years of Presidential authorization of torture in America on Monday, February 7th, 111-1 in the atrium of the Hennepin County Government Center. Meet at the north entrance. Cards and a limited number of stamps will be provided.

On February 9, 2002 George W. Bush declared that the Geneva Conventions did not apply to the prisoners at Guantanamo Prison. This unprecedented directive opened the floodgates to prisoner abuse, cruel and unusual punishment, and torture by American citizens, both authorized and unauthorized. America began to torture as a matter of policy for the first time.

And it has not stopped. There are still 173 political prisoners at Guantanamo, nearly half of which the the US Government has said have committed no crime and they do not intend to indict, yet they also do not intend to let free. The infection has spread from Guantanamo to secret prisons around the world, and homeward to holding of over 50,000 inmates in US prisons now held in 23 hour a day solitary confinement, and a daily stream of vitriolic speech on the nations main media. Children under the age of 11 only know an America that condones and commits torture.

At the event we will be asking people to sign and send postcards decrying this sad history to elected officials, judges, attorneys-general and anyone who should know and/or act on these facts. All judicial systems in the United States are authorized to indict anyone on a Federal crime and authorization of torture is a Federal crime, so any law enforcer from a local police officer to the US Attorney General is authorized and, in fact, compelled to act on evidence of a crime. We will be encouraging them to do so with our cards and vigil.

Join us!

Facebook event:!/event.php?eid=121350774604996
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