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Sunday, Apr 26th

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Israel violated rules of war in strikes on Gaza homes: group

Israel violated human rightsA majority of Palestinians killed in dozens of Israeli attacks on Gaza homes in the 2014 war with Hamas were women, minors or elderly people, and some of the strikes violated the rules of war, an Israeli rights group said Wednesday.

The B'Tselem group called strikes on homes "one of the appalling hallmarks of the fighting" and said they were part of a policy approved at the top levels of the government and the military.

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Former enemy combatant Ali al-Marri released from prison early, deported from U.S.

Al-AmaraAfter more than 13 years in local, military and federal jails or prisons on terrorism-related charges, a former West Peoria resident is home in his native Qatar, leaving a series of short-term questions and long-term legal ramifications in his wake.

Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri, 49, was spirited out of the United States on Friday, two days before he was scheduled to be released from a maximum security prison in Florence, Colo.

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Australian aims another blow at Gitmo military justice system

Guantanamo nightmare“David Hicks didn’t commit any crime,” according to his lawyer Wells Dixon, and that’s why the Australian former Guantánamo prisoner is seeking to quash his conviction by a U.S. Military Commission. If he succeeds, Hicks will have dealt a serious blow to the already embattled system created by the Bush Administration to circumvent the U.S. legal system in dealing with Guantánamo detainees.

The Australian who spent almost six years at the island prison after he was sold to U.S. forces in Afghanistan in 2001, in 2007 became the first detainee tried by a military commission. He had been one of three detainees to file the first habeas corpus petitions challenging the government’s authority to hold them without due process — a case they won before the U.S. Supreme Court.

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Meet Alfreda Bikowsky, the Senior Officer at the Center of the CIA’s Torture Scandals

Alfreda Bikowski torturerNBC News yesterday called her a “key apologist” for the CIA’s torture program. A follow-up New Yorker article dubbed her “The Unidentified Queen of Torture” and in part “the model for the lead character in ‘Zero Dark Thirty.’” Yet in both articles she was anonymous.

The person described by both NBC and The New Yorker is senior CIA officer Alfreda Frances Bikowsky. Multiple news outlets have reported that as the result of a long string of significant errors and malfeasance, her competence and integrity are doubted — even by some within the agency.

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Pentagon Blocks Graphic Abuse Images

Pentagon blocks graphic photosThe Pentagon is refusing to release a trove of graphic photos showing U.S. troops abusing detainees, arguing that doing so would play into ISIS’s hands.

It’s a bit of a counterintuitive argument, because the photos were all taken from investigations into detainee abuse during the early days of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars—long before ISIS existed.

Nevertheless, Rear Admiral Sinclair Harris told a federal court in a declassified declaration filed late Friday, that all 2,100-plus photos should be kept from public view.

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Yet no apology: CIA’s mistaken detention destroyed German man’s life

CIA destroys man taken by mistakeKhalid al Masri is a broken man today. A decade after the CIA snatched him by mistake, flew him half way around the world in secret, and questioned him as part of its detention and interrogation program, he’s yet to recover.

He’s abandoned his home. He no longer is part of the lives of his wife or children. Friends can’t find him. His attorneys can’t find him. German foreign intelligence will say only that he’s “somewhere in a western-leaning Arab nation.”

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The CIA Didn’t Just Torture, It Experimented on Human Beings

Torture program not just tortureHuman experimentation was a core feature of the CIA’s torture program. The experimental nature of the interrogation and detention techniques is clearly evident in the Senate Intelligence Committee’s executive summary of its investigative report, despite redactions (insisted upon by the CIA) to obfuscate the locations of these laboratories of cruel science and the identities of perpetrators.

At the helm of this human experimentation project were two psychologists hired by the CIA, James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen. They designed interrogation and detention protocols that they and others applied to people imprisoned in the agency’s secret “black sites.”

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