Thursday, February 09, 2006

Really sickening

Latest reports out of Guantanamo Bay from the BBC. They are using what they euphamistically refer to as "a restraint system to aid detainee feeding", i.e. strapped to a chair with a tube down their throat. They're also restrained after feeding to stop them vomitting and held in solitary confinement for extended periods.

Now you've got to ask really if conditions are as humane as the US insists they are, why up to 100 guantanamo inmates at a time have been on hunger strike for the last 9 months. You've also got to ask when they're going to start trials. We were originally told that they were just being held there while they got the evidence together to try them. And since that hasn't happened it begs the question: what about the innocent ones? Interestingly the report estimates that 55% of inmates are basically innocent. If they had the data available to figure that out, then surely they can use the same info to try the other 45% and then sentence them. Not that that would necessarily help much, since the military trials they are supposedly being prepared for fall way short of international standards.

Add to that the fact that these guys have been in there for four years. They can't let them out in case one of them writes an autobiography... The interviews which Moazzam Begg gave after he came out were damning enough. Amnesty has suggested they should close the whole thing down, but they do appear to be cornered in terms of public opinion. As soon as they do anything it attracts attention so it's easier to just do nothing. Of course what's needed is public outcry against the status quo.

It's a real shame we've seen all this fuss about a couple of irrelevant cartoons published by non-Muslims for the benefit of non-Muslims. There are much more important things to be angry about.

No comments: