Tuesday, May 22, 2007

The Other Guantanamo?

Here's a link to an excellent and troubling piece by one Eliza Griswold in the New Republic, about the Bagram Theater Internment Facility, or BTIF, at the Bagram airbase about 40 miles north of Kabul in Afghanistan. It includes some of the first photos of that facility to be published. According to the story, as of 2002, "interrogation tactics came to include beatings, anal violation with sharp objects, blows to the genitals, and 'peroneal' strikes (an incapacitating blow to the leg with a baton, a knee, or a shin). We know about these tactics because an internal Army investigation into two prisoner deaths was obtained by the New York Times."

Some of these practices have been reportedly curtailed, but as the facility has morphed from a temporary detention facility into something more permanent, troubling practices remain. Detainees have no access to lawyers (which Guantanamo prisoners now do to some extent) or the right to a review of their status.

Last month lawyers "pleaded two separate cases before the D.C. District Court, demanding that the justices review petititons of habeas corpus for Bagram detainees." If the court grants habeas, much more about Bagram may finally begin to see the light of day.

No comments: