Scahill Via Greenwald: CIA Uses Secret Prison In Mogadishu For Interrogation

Same shit, different day. Did you think Leon Panetta’s statement that “CIA no longer operates detention facilities or black sites” was, um, intended to be taken as a factual statement? Did you think the Obama administration would abandon the “enhanced” interrogation of the Bush administration? In your dreams, sucker! Glenn Greenwald points to an article by Jeremy Scahill for The Nation (unfortunately behind the subscription wall, or give your email address). Greenwald’s summary:

Earlier this week, the truly intrepid investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill published in The Nation one of the most significant political exposés of the year.  Entitled “the CIA’s Secret Sites in Somalia,” the article documented that the CIA uses and effectively controls a secret prison in Mogadishu, where foreign nationals who are rendered off the streets of their countries (at the direction of the U.S.) are taken (along with Somali nationals) to be imprisoned with no due process and interrogated (by U.S. agents).  Although Somali government agents technically operate the facility, that is an obvious ruse: “US intelligence personnel pay the salaries of intelligence agents and also directly interrogate prisoners” and are “there full-time,” Scahill reported.  On Democracy Now on Wednesday, the International Committee of the Red Cross confirmed it has no knowledge of this secret prison.  

This arrangement, as Scahill told me yesterday, is consistent with standard Obama administration practice: “they continue even the most controversial Bush terrorism policies by having some other government technically operate it so they can keep their fingerprints off it.”  Indeed, the administration has even resorted to this playbook by using “torture by proxy” — as we saw when the Kuwait government, with at least the complicity if not direction of the U.S., detained and beat American teenager Gulet Mohamed during interrogation sessions.  Just yesterday, a federal judge “reacted skeptically” to the Obama DOJ’s demands for dismissal of a lawsuit (on secrecy grounds) brought by an American citizen imprisoned for four months in Africa, where “U.S. officials threatened him with torture, forced disappearance and other serious harm unless he confessed to ties with al-Qaida in Somalia.”

The more things change…

How long will it be… how many presidential administrations will it take… before I can view my nation once again with pride? This kind of bullshit is exactly what prevents me from voting for Obama in 2012: how can I vote for a man who abuses the power of the United States to inflict cruelty in ways never condoned before the administration of G. W. Bush?

UPDATE: Democracy Now has an extended segment on Scahill’s report.

 

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Comments

  • MandT  On Monday July 18, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    That America is forever gone and will not return.

    • Steve  On Monday July 18, 2011 at 8:58 pm

      MandT, you may be right. I hope not. “Forever” is a long time; perhaps long after I have passed from this plane, enough people will wake up to the horror of it all and try to make it right.

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