The military agency that provided advice on harsh interrogation techniques for use against terrorism suspects referred to the application of extreme duress as "torture" in a July 2002 document sent to the Pentagon's chief lawyer and warned that it would produce "unreliable information."
A Court of Appeals for the Washington, D.C. Circuit ruled Friday that detainees at the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, are not "persons" according to it's interpretation of a statute involving religious freedom.
The ruling sprang from an appeal of Rasul v. Rumsfeld, which was thrown out in Jan. 2008.
I am reminded of the chilling story of Alyssa Peterson, who I have written about numerous times in the past three years but now with especially sad relevance. Appalled when ordered to take part in interrogations that, no doubt, involved what we would call torture, she refused, then killed herself a few days later, in September 2003.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has been described as one of the enforcers of globalization. Nations who receive IMF assistance are often forced to surrender more sovereignty and further open up their borders to international banks and multinational corporations. Much of their wealth is then sucked dry by foreign predators with its resources and population essentially becoming the collateral for such financial aid. As a result of the global economic crisis, many more nations are having to turn to the IMF for help. At the recent G-20 Summit in London, the IMF’s role was expanded and its powers enhanced. There was little mention of its failed policies and its less then stellar record of effectively promoting development and democracy around the world. While some talk of reform, the IMF continues to rape the world, one poor nation at a time.
The Army has approved new guidance to military commanders in an effort to stem the rising toll of soldier suicides, officials said late Thursday. The plan includes hiring more mental health workers and tightening the way officials handle drug testing, health screening and a host of other long-standing procedures that in some cases became lax, according to officials, as the Army focused on fighting two wars.
Army leadership has become more alarmed as suicides from January through March rose to a reported 56 _ 22 confirmed and 34 still being investigated and pending confirmation. Usually, the vast majority of suspected suicides are eventually confirmed. The 2009 number compares to 140 for all of last year, a record blamed partly on strains caused by repeated deployments for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Milwaukee's police chief said Tuesday he'll go on telling his officers to take down anyone with a firearm despite Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen's finding that people can carry guns openly if they do it peacefully.
Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn said he'll continue to tell officers they can't assume people are carrying guns legally in a city that has seen nearly 200 homicides in the past two years.
A Tunisian man claims he was tortured by the CIA eight months before a Justice Department memo sanctioned the practice.
Rafiq Alhami makes his claims in a lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court in Newark.
The suit claims Alhami was kicked, punched, threatened with dogs and kept shackled in painful positions at three secret CIA sites in Afghanistan in 2001.
"For Alaskans, the time has come to end the siege on our government by political tricksters. Enough is enough. With the help of reform-minded advocates from across our nation, we will stand up for what is right," said a message on the Web site for the Alaska Fund Trust.
The jailers of the 19th century — even in the pre-Civil War South — largely abandoned the practice of imprisoning people for falling into debt as counterproductive and ultimately barbaric. In the 1970s and ’80s, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed that incarcerating people who can’t pay fines because of poverty violates the U.S. Constitution.
Apparently, though, some states and county jails never got the memo. Welcome to the debtors’ prisons of the 21st century.
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