8 Year Anniversary: Call to Action

(9 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

Docudharma! This 8 year anniversary snuck up on me.  Shall we, DD, join and endorse this effort?

Witness Against Torture

CALL TO ACTION:

Join Witness Against Torture January 11-22, 2010 in a Fast and Vigil to Shut Down Guantanamo, End Torture and Build Justice

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January 11, 2010 will mark eight years since the Bush administration turned the US Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba into a “enemy combatant” detention facility, re-commissioning it as a torture chamber and legal black hole they hoped no one would notice and from which they hoped none would emerge.

Witness Against Torture did notice, and along with many other groups, we have been working to challenge this detention and torture apparatus, to ensure legal representation for the men there, and justice and release for the vast majority-most of whom were swept up in raids in the early days of the U.S. occupation in Afghanistan or are the victims of false condemnation by people eager to collect hefty bounties for “terrorists.”

When President Obama signed the Executive Order calling for Guantanamo’s closure, we felt as though we had won – that the long years of arguing against torture (of all things), of demonstrating, of railing, were over. We dared to believe that a new day had dawned. Soon, however, our optimism faded to feelings of frustration and betrayal. The administration has dragged its feet and continued to trample on the lives of the men – real people, not merely abstract “others” – at Guantanamo.

In all, the Obama administration’s handling of detainee issues– from the reluctance to investigate and prosecute systematic torture, to its defense of indefinite detention-has fallen far short of the soaring rhetoric of his campaign. And now, and as the administration expands the war in Afghanistan and expands operations at the U.S. prison in Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan– we see more clearly than ever the need for consistent, principled, nonviolent action and witness.

So, it is with resolute– but heavy– hearts that we in Witness Against Torture once again turn our attention to the sad business of marking January 11, 2010 and the eighth year of torture, abuse and detention at Guantanamo.

But, more than mark this miserable anniversary, we intend to call attention to President Obama’s political bankruptcy. As such we have committed to a fast and daily vigil from January 11 through January 22– the day by which the president said Guantanamo would be closed.

Dharmanauts? Admins?? What do you say?

Endorse the Fast to Close Guantanamo

Please fill out the form below. (Organizations only, please.)

We encourage endorsers to done one or more of the following:

   * send an email announcement to your members / contacts in Dec and Jan

   * put a button on your website that will link to www.witnesstorture.org. Click here for options.

   * for those on Facebook & Twitter: please follow us and send announcements to your friends, fans, supporters and members.

   * put a notice in printed newsletters and/or put the Jan 11th flier in an upcoming mailing

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In case you missed it, Andy Worthington has his Guantánamo: The Definitive Prisoner List (Updated for 2010)”

Overall, as it stood at December 31, 2009, 574 prisoners had been released from Guantánamo (42 under Obama), one – Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani – had been transferred to the US mainland to face a federal court trial, six had died, and 198 remained, including one man, Ali Hamza al-Bahlul, who is serving a life sentence after a one-sided trial by Military Commission in 2008. {of original count 779}

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9 comments

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  1. damn

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    • Heather on January 5, 2010 at 11:57 pm
  2. so… anyone else have an opinion?

    Some of the endorsers on board include:

       * After Downing Street

       * Center for Constitutional Rights

       * World Cant Wait

    You dont really have to literally fast, ya know. 😉

    (thanks for the FP, ek)

  3. and if so, will an Admin do it? or shall I? We You have to complete their online form to officially endorse and get our button.

  4. Torture obliterates any claim of being anything other than the practice of evil.

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