At least 76 people who were captured while fleeing the war in Somalia in January are still being held in Ethiopia under a program of secret prisoner renditions backed by the United States, Kenya and Somalia, human rights activists said Friday.
The Muslim Human Rights Forum, a Kenyan advocacy group, said that the prisoners — including 17 Kenyan citizens and 20 Ethiopians — were being held incommunicado and in violation of international prisoner conventions, and may be at risk of torture.
Most of the Ethiopians in custody are members of the minority Ogadeni and Oromo ethnic groups, which are waging separatist campaigns against Ethiopia. International human-rights monitors have warned that Ethiopian security forces routinely abuse members of those groups, and the U.S. State Department has accused Ethiopia of torturing prisoners.
The Muslim group's report, titled "Horn of Terror," provides the fullest accounting so far of the fates of 152 people from 21 countries who were arrested in a shadowy anti-terrorism operation run by U.S. allies in the Horn of Africa that activists think had the backing of American officials
Saturday, July 07, 2007
Friday, July 06, 2007
Thursday, July 05, 2007
President Bush lives in a world where in effect it is always the summer of 1945, the Allies have just defeated the Axis, and a world filled with darkness for some six years has been rescued by a new and optimistic democracy, on its way to becoming a superpower. His is a world where other nations admire America or damned well ought to, and America is always right, always on the side of good, in a world of evil, and it's just a matter of getting the rest of the world to understand this. One of Bush's favorite conceits, used repeatedly in his speeches, is that democracies are peaceful and don't go to war against one another. Most citizens of the West tend to accept this view without question, but that is not how most of Africa, Asia, South America, and the Middle East, having felt the burden of the white man's colonial rule for much of the past two centuries, see it. The non-Western world does not think of the West as a citadel of pacifism and generosity, and many people in the U.S. State Department and the different intelligence agencies (and even the military) understand the resentments and suspicions of our intentions that exist in those regions. We are, you might say, fighting the forces of history in Iraq—religious, cultural, social, and inevitably political—created over centuries of conflict and oppressive rule.
Posted by cuddlefish at 11:54 AM
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
Crooks and Liars has the video and transcript of Kieth Olbermann's Special Comment
And George W. Bush took our assent, and re-configured it, and honed it, and sharpened it to a razor-sharp point, and stabbed this nation in the back with it.
Were there any remaining lingering doubt otherwise, or any remaining lingering hope, it ended yesterday when Mr. Bush commuted the prison sentence of one of his own staffers.
Did so even before the appeals process was complete…
Did so without as much as a courtesy consultation with the Department of Justice…
Did so despite what James Madison –at the Constitutional Convention — said about impeaching any president who pardoned or sheltered those who had committed crimes “advised by” that president…
Did so without the slightest concern that even the most detached of citizens must look at the chain of events and wonder:
To what degree was Mr. Libby told: break the law however you wish — the President will keep you out of prison?
In that moment, Mr. Bush, you broke that fundamental compact between yourself and the majority of this nation’s citizens — the ones who did not cast votes for you.
In that moment, Mr. Bush, you ceased to be the President of the United States.
In that moment, Mr. Bush, you became merely the President… of a rabid and irresponsible corner of the Republican Party.
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
"From my viewpoint, the president has stepped in to short circuit the rule of law and the system of justice in our country. In so doing, he has acknowledged Mr. Libby's guilt for, among other things, obstruction of justice, which by definition is covering up for somebody in a crime. By commuting his sentence, he has brought himself and his office into reasonable suspicion of participation in an obstruction of justice. The commutation of (Libby's) sentence in and of itself is participation in obstruction of justice."
Posted by cuddlefish at 11:11 AM