Ingrid Loyau-Kennett spoke to the two men who have since been arrested over the attack. She told Conal Urqhart her story.
Facts about Guantanamo
United States Naval Station Guantanamo Bay (also called Gitmo or GTMO by the Sailors and Marines that have been stationed there) is located on 45 square miles (120 km2) of land and water at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba which the United States leased for use as a coaling and naval station in the Cuban-American Treaty of 1903. The base is located on the shore of Guantánamo Bay at the southeastern end of Cuba. It is the oldest overseas U.S. Naval Base, and the only military installation located in a country with which the United States does not share diplomatic relations.
Since 2002, the Naval base has contained a military prison, the Guantanamo Bay detention camp, for persons alleged to be unlawful combatants captured in Afghanistan, Iraq, and other places. The torture of prisoners, and their denial of protection under the Geneva Conventions, has been a source of international controversy.
On 22 January 2009, President Obama signed executive orders directing the CIA to shut what remains of its network of “secret” prisons and ordering the closing of the Guantanamo detention camp within a year. However, he postponed difficult decisions on the details for at least six months. As of January 2013, The US Government has yet to close the detention camp. On 7 March 2011, President Obama issued an executive order that permits ongoing indefinite detention of Guantánamo detainees. The National Defense Authorization Act for 2012 would have authorized indefinite detention of suspected terrorists, but enforcement of the relevant section was blocked by a federal court on 16 May 2012, ruling on a suit brought by a number of private citizens, including Chris Hedges, Daniel Ellsberg, Noam Chomsky, and Birgitta Jonsdottir. The government sidestepped the ruling, however, saying “The government construes this Court’s Order as applying only as to the named plaintiffs in this suit.”
- Detainees in Guantanamo now: 166
- Detainees facing active charges: 6
- Detainees cleared for immediate release, but stuck in the camp: 86
- Guantanamo inmates on hunger strike: 103
- Hunger strikers strapped down and force fed: 30
- Prisoners who have died in custody: 9
- Children the US has held at Guantanamo: 21
- Detainees tried in civilian court: 1
- “Unreleasable” detainees who can’t be tried for lack of evidence or torture: 50
- Prisoners released by the Bush administration: 500+
- Prisoners released by the Obama administration: 72
- Current annual cost to US taxpayers: $150 million
- Days since Obama first pledged to close Gitmo: 1579
- Days since first prisoners arrived at Guantanamo: 11 years, 4 months, 11 days
Not surprised. The UK have long been the enabler of US foreign policy and a whole range of illegal and inhumane acts.
Guatemala’s top court has overturned the genocide conviction of former dictator Efrain Rios Montt, ordering that the trial be taken back to the middle of proceedings.
The ruling late on Monday threw into disarray a process that had been hailed as historic for delivering the first guilty verdict for genocide against a former Latin American leader.
The constitutional court secretary, Martin Guzman, said the trial needed to go back to where it stood on 19 April to resolve several appeal issues.
The ruling came 10 days after a three-judge panel convicted the 86-year-old former general of genocide and crimes against humanity for his role in massacres of Mayans during Guatemala’s bloody 36-year civil war.
The panel found after two months of testimony that Rios Montt knew about the slaughter of at least 1,771 Ixil Mayans in the western highlands and did not stop it.
The tribunal sentenced Rios Montt to 80 years in prison, drawing cheers from many Guatemalans. It was the first time a former Latin American leader was convicted of such crimes in his home country and the first official acknowledgment that genocide occurred during the war – something the current president, retired general Otto Perez Molina, has denied.
Rios Montt’s lawyers immediately filed an appeal, and he spent three days in prison before he was moved to a military hospital, where he remains.
The court said on Monday it threw out his conviction because the trial should have been stopped while appeals filed by the defence were resolved.
Courts solved more than 100 complaints and injunctions filed by the defence before the trial even started.
Rios Montt’s defensce team walked out on 18 April, arguing that they couldn’t continue to be part of such bad proceedings. When the three-judge tribunal resumed the trial, it ordered two public defenders to represent Rios Montt and his co-defendant, Jose Rodriguez Sanchez.
Rios Montt rejected his public defender and instead brought in Garcia, who was expelled earlier by the tribunal but reinstated by an appeals court.
Garcia had earlier been ordered off the case after he called for the three judges on the tribunal to be removed from the proceedings. He kept trying to have the judges dismissed. And the constitutional court ruled on Monday that the trial should have been suspended while his appeal was heard.
Prison Labor Exposed: From Starbucks to Microsoft - A sampling of what US prisoners make & for whom
May 21, 2013
Tens of thousands of US inmates are paid from pennies to minimum wage—minus fines and victim compensation—for everything from grunt work to firefighting to specialized labor.
The breaded chicken patty your child bites into at school may have been made by a worker earning twenty cents an hour, not in a faraway country, but by a member of an invisible American workforce: prisoners. At the UnionCorrectional Facility, a maximum security prison in Florida, inmates from a nearby lower-security prison manufacture tons of processed beef, chicken and pork for Prison Rehabilitative Industries and Diversified Enterprises (PRIDE), a privately held non-profit corporation that operates the state’s forty-one work programs. In addition to processed food, PRIDE’s website reveals an array of products for sale through contracts with private companies, from eyeglasses to office furniture, to be shipped from a distribution center in Florida to businesses across the US. PRIDE boasts that its work programs are “designed to provide vocational training, to improve prison security, to reduce the cost of state government, and to promote the rehabilitation of the state inmates.”
And Each month, California inmates process more than 680,000 pounds of beef, 400,000 pounds of chicken products, 450,000 gallons of milk, 280,000 loaves of bread, and 2.9 million eggs (from 160,000 inmate-raised hens).Starbucks subcontractor Signature Packaging Solutions has hired Washington prisoners to package holiday coffees (as well as Nintendo Game Boys). Confronted by a reporter in 2001, a Starbucks rep called the setup “entirely consistent with our mission statement.”
Texas inmates produce brooms and brushes, bedding and mattresses, toilets, sinks, showers, and bullwhips.
In Texas, prisoners make officers’ duty belts, handcuff cases, and prison-cell accessories. California convicts make gun containers, creepers (to peek under vehicles), and human-silhouette targets.
A stitch in time: California inmates sew their own garb. In the 1990s, subcontractor Third Generation hired 35 female South Carolina inmates to sew lingerie and leisure wear for Victoria’s Secret and JCPenney. In 1997, a California prison put two men in solitary for telling journalists they were ordered to replace “Made in Honduras” labels on garments with “Made in the usa.”
Open wide: At California’s prison dental laboratory, inmates produce a complete prosthesis selection, including custom trays, try-ins, bite blocks, and dentures.
Constructive criticism: Prisoners in for burglary, battery, drug and gun charges, and escape helped build a Wal-Mart distribution center in Wisconsin in 2005, until community uproar halted the program. (Company policy says, “Forced or prison labor will not be tolerated by Wal-Mart.”)
On call: Its inmate call centers are the “best kept secret in outsourcing,” Unicor boasts. In 1994, a contractor for gop congressional hopeful Jack Metcalf hired Washington state prisoners to call and remind voters he was pro-death penalty. Metcalf, who prevailed, said he never knew.
Federal Prison Industries, a.k.a. Unicor, says that in addition to soldiers’ uniforms, bedding, shoes, helmets, and flak vests, inmates have “produced missile cables (including those used on the Patriot missiles during the Gulf War)” and “wiring harnesses for jets and tanks.” In 1997, according to Prison Legal News, Boeing subcontractor MicroJet had prisoners cutting airplane components, paying $7 an hour for work that paid union wages of $30 on the outside.
M.I.S.P Economy Police and Penal Complex
… and the bloody madness slowly escalates wider and wider.
Two South Africans set out to discover what happened to their unlikely musical hero, the mysterious 1970s rock ‘n’ roller, Rodriguez.
A March against Monsanto is a March for Life and Freedom
Marissa Mayer, the former Google executive who is now in charge of Yahoo, is poised to create yet another nothing-to-riches tale in the web industry with the $1.1bn (£720m) acquisition of the blogging site Tumblr.
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA
Perhaps for the first time in his political career, Nigel Farage, the scourge of British politics, found himself in retreat on Thursday evening as dozens of protesters hounded him out of central Edinburgh.
The Ukip leader was finally whisked away in a police riot van under a tirade of abuse from a crowd of about 50 young demonstrators – students, anti-racist campaigners and activists in the radical left pro-Scottish independence movement – after being forced to retreat not once, twice or three times, but four times.
Farage was first forced out of the Canon’s Gait pub on the Royal Mile after the landlord took fright as the demonstrators disrupted his casual press conference with shouts of “racist”, “scum” and “homophobe”. Out on the street, as the fingers pointed and taunts escalated, he was rejected by one taxi and turfed out of a second.
Then, finally, the harassed and ill-prepared handful of officers were forced to push him back into the Canon’s Gait, slamming its front doors shut, as the demonstrators chanted: “Nigel, you’re a bawbag, Nigel you’re a bawbag, na, na, na, hey!” with gusto.
The etched sign above the Canon Gait’s door read: “Enjoy your visit.”
With further verses of “Ukip scum, off our streets” echoing in his ears, Farage was bustled into a police van under the glare of television camera lights.
Legalisation, which comes amid rise in attacks on Palestinians and their property,
couldis designed to frustrate US peace efforts.