Red Cross Described ‘Torture’ at CIA Jails

The International Committee of the Red Cross concluded in a secret report that the Bush administration’s treatment of al-Qaeda captives “constituted torture,” a finding that strongly implied that CIA interrogation methods violated international law, according to newly published excerpts from the long-concealed 2007 document.

The report, an account alleging physical and psychological brutality inside CIA “black site” prisons, also states that some U.S. practices amounted to “cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.” Such maltreatment of detainees is expressly prohibited by the Geneva Conventions.

The findings were based on an investigation by ICRC officials, who were granted exclusive access to the CIA’s “high-value” detainees after they were transferred in 2006 to the U.S. detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The 14 detainees, who had been kept in isolation in CIA prisons overseas, gave remarkably uniform accounts of abuse that included beatings, sleep deprivation, extreme temperatures and, in some cases, waterboarding, or simulating drowning.

At least five copies of the report were shared with the CIA and top White House officials in 2007 but barred from public release by ICRC guidelines intended to preserve the humanitarian group’s strict policy of neutrality in conflicts. A copy of the report was obtained by Mark Danner, a journalism professor and author who published extensive excerpts in the April 9 edition of the New York Review of Books, released yesterday. He did not say how he obtained the report.

“The ill-treatment to which they were subjected while held in the CIA program, either singly or in combination, constituted torture,” Danner quoted the report as saying.

Many of the details of alleged mistreatment at CIA prisons had been reported previously, but the ICRC report is the most authoritative account and the first to use the word “torture” in a legal context.   read on


4 responses to “Red Cross Described ‘Torture’ at CIA Jails

  1. The “Geneva Conventions” apply only when both sides use the same play book.War is a brutal business, how quickly you have forgotten Sept. 11.


    • Regarding 9/11 who can forget the USA Pre-planned invasions and Occupations of foreign sovereign countries having plunderable resources -America’s full scale nose-dive into illegal kidnapping, rendition and torture, secret flights to ghost prisions and use of illegal ordinance and purposeful targeting of civilians as happened in Afghanistan, Iraq, the Balkans and even Gaza with carpet bombing runs in densely populated areas with nuclear unspent uranium that targeted civilian infrastructure like water treatment plants and power plants and hospitals and schools and even wedding parties. What of the lies and more lies and of course the phony evidence that was used to fan the flames for war. Also I can not think of a time when the US actually followed the Geneva Conventions as proven with American atrocities in both WW2 and the Korean War.
      Blessings must go to those victims of US greed and moral retardation.

  2. Today 03/21/09 I am responding again to your post with the same information provided the first time. While I understand your position; I kindly disagree I was there the night the war broke out and retired from the U.S.A.F. prior to September 11, 2001. If you choose to dislike the U.S. so much do not dislike the people who love the U.S. and choose to defend it. With respect I resubmit the original comment
    “fma7 you are correct America is a sovereign country and on 9-11-01 we were attacked as was Kuwait another sovereign country and most of the worlds oil reserves. The Taliban and Terrorist have a history of using civilians as human shields this is not an American practice.
    Phony evidence … plans, test facilities, scientist, and all the hardware equal trouble even when not assembled into the final product.
    Try WWII when we all used the same playbook that is except for the Germans who tried diligently to exterminate the Hebrew race. Oh yea, by the way Saddam Hussein tried to exterminate the Kurdish race in much the same way”


    • “If you choose to dislike the U.S. so much do not dislike the people who love the U.S. and choose to defend it.” This self-serving statement completly misses the point. It is much bigger that a petty like or dislike, this is about justice and truth and owning responsibility. The lies leading up to these wars are now proven and documented as is the illegal torture, rendition and crimes against humanitY. You conveniently have chosen to ignore the documentation . Furthermore these wars are not about defending the US, that is horseshit. The Afghanistan Government even told the US that they would will turn over Bin Laden to them directly upon receiving proof that he was responsible. The US refused and started carpet bombing.
      Regarding Iraq-Saddam Hussein was another CIA installed puppet who murdered his way to power with American support. Saddam was executed for crimes he committed in 1982, by his standards not very serious crimes — complicity in killing 150 people. Well, there was something missing in that account — 1982 is a very important year in U.S./Iraqi relations. That is the year in which Ronald Reagan removed Iraq from the list of states supporting terrorism so that the U.S. could start supplying Iraq with weapons for its invasion of Iran, including the means to develop weapons of mass destruction, chemical and nuclear weapons. That is 1982. A year later Donald Rumsfeld was sent to firm up the deal. Well, Iranians may very well remember that this led to a war in which hundreds of thousands of them were slaughtered with U.S. aid going to Iraq. They may well remember that the year after the war was over, in 1989, the U.S. government invited Iraqi nuclear engineers to come to the United States for advanced training in developing nuclear weapons (chomsky)
      Your statement, ‘I was there the night the war broke out” proves only that you are complicit in the carnage that transpired

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