Archive | C.I.A

Assange’s Extradition Case: Critical Moment for the Anti-war Movement

by NOZOMI HAYASE

Drawing by Nathaniel St. Clair

Earlier this week, Leader of the UK opposition Jeremy Corbyn challenged Prime Minister Boris Johnson in the House of Commons on the US extradition request for WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange.

Corbyn stated that Assange had been charged by the US “for exposing war crimes, the murder of civilians and large-scale corruption”. Backing the Council of Europe, who warned that the prosecution of Assange sets a dangerous precedent for journalists and called for his immediate release, he asked:

“Will the Prime Minister agree with the Parliamentary report that’s going to the Council of Europe that this extradition should be opposed and the rights of journalists and whistleblowers upheld for the good of all of us?”

Corbyn has risen to political prominence for his lifelong activism against military action. He opposed the 2003 Iraq War and also voted against British military involvement in Afghanistan and Libya. The Labour leader, who is known for his staunch commitment to democratic rights and peace, understood very well the value of WikiLeaks’ disclosure of government secrets.

WikiLeaks’ publication of documents concerning US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan was a major contribution to the anti-war movement. The release of the Collateral Murder video provided a rare window into modern asymmetric warfare, revealing the war crime of a US military airstrike killing innocent civilians in a suburb of Iraq.

Corbyn, who has not mentioned Assange’s plight over the last 10 months, and with now less than two weeks before his extradition hearing, finally broke his silence. In his question to the Prime Minister, he fiercely asserted the voice of the anti-war movement at the Parliamentary session.

The Fourth Estate as a vehicle for peace

This decisive action by Corbyn came shortly after Julian Assange was nominated for the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize, along with whistleblowers Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden. The nomination letter stated that these three need to be recognized for their “unprecedented contributions to the pursuit of peace and their immense personal sacrifices to promote peace for all”. It acknowledged how they have “exposed the architecture of war and strengthened the architecture of peace”. In the following week, Assange also won the 2020 Gary Webb Freedom of the Press Award, adding another prize to his list of journalism awards.

Assange understood the critical role of media in keeping peace. He once noted: “Populations don’t like wars. They have to be lied into it. That means we can be ‘truthed’ into peace.” Speaking in defense of the disclosure of classified US military documents on the Iraq War, Assange pointed out how “most wars that are started by democracies involve lying” and described, “the start of the Iraq War involved very serious lies that were repeated and amplified by some parts of the press”.

The Iraq War is a good example of the massive failure of established media in the West. Colin Powell’s fabrication at the UN Security Council about Iraq’s supposed weapons of mass destruction was a particular low point for the US in its base war propaganda.

While media have become stenographers to power and have long betrayed ordinary people, WikiLeaks has defended the public’s right to know by publishing more than 10 million documents, with a pristine record of accuracy exposing human rights abuses, government spying and war crimes on an unprecedented scale. By bringing truth to the public, the whistleblowing site transformed the Fourth Estate into becoming a powerful vehicle for peace-making.

Australian MPs’ initiative

In the EU, the number of Parliament members, lawmakers and ministers in support of Assange is growing. In Assange’s home country, Australia, concern for one of the nation’s legendary journalists is becoming stronger. As more and more people voiced disappointment with the inaction of the Australian government, individuals inside the institution began to take action.

On February 10, Australian MP Andrew Wilkie tabled a historic petition in Australia’s Parliament calling for an end to the US extradition. As he urged the government to bring Assange back home, he added:

“That the perpetrator of those war crimes, America, is now seeking to extradite Mr Assange to face 17 counts of espionage and one of hacking is unjust in the extreme and arguably illegal under British law.”

Then, a day later, he announced that he would travel to London to visit Assange in Belmarsh prison, where he has been kept in complete isolation until recently. Another Australian MP George Christensen will also visit Assange in London and together they plan to lobby Britain for his freedom.

Momentum is now building up, with political figures demonstrating great leadership in urging their governments to do the right thing. In the US, during the lead-up to Mr Assange’s UK hearing, the Democratic Party’s primary nomination contest is intensifying. Candidates race to win the right to challenge Trump for the 2020 presidential election.

Presidential race to rescue the free press?

Who among the US presidential candidates would be the next to follow Corbyn’s great lead to defend Assange, in order to rescue the free press that is now under attack by the Trump administration?

So far, strong support is shown by Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, Hawaii’s congresswoman and the first female combat veteran to ever run for president. She indicated that, if elected President in 2020, she would drop all US charges against Julian Assange and pardon Edward Snowden.

What about the positions of other major candidates? Both the Vermont senator Bernie Sanders and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren recognized the dangerous precedent that the Trump administration’s indictment against Assange poses for press freedom, yet they fall short in coming forward to strongly defend a journalist imprisoned in London’s HMP Belmarsh, who is now facing 175 years in a US prison for his publishing activities exposing US war crimes.

Will Sanders, who is viewed by many as America’s counterpart to UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, stand up for what has become the most essential media freedom issue of our time? Would Warren, who promises to take on Wall Street to protect economic opportunities for working families, show the same enthusiasm to protect media freedom? Will any of them challenge Joe Biden for the remarks he made while he was Vice-President to Barack Obama comparing Assange to a “high-tech terrorist”?

Bill Weld, a former Massachusetts governor, who now has become the only opponent to challenge Trump for the Republican ticket, indicated that his administration would not press Espionage Act charges against Julian Assange.

Grassroots action

While presidential candidates are lacking in their courage to defend Assange, support toward the WikiLeaks founder is growing at the grassroots level among the American people. Rick Sterling, the Bay Area-based investigative journalist, recently launched a new petition to intervene on behalf of Assange’s freedom. The petition, endorsed by the National Lawyers Guild and Veterans for Peace, is addressed to Vanessa Baraitser, who will be the presiding judge at Assange’s formal extradition hearing starting February 24, urging her to exercise judicial independence and reject the US extradition request.

Sterling, who is a member of Syria Solidarity Movement, has been critical of the US military invasion of the Middle East, and has traveled to London with other concerned friends to investigate Assange’s current situation. He said, “Once there, we were inspired by the dedication of activists who protest outside Belmarsh Prison every Saturday and in Trafalgar Square every Saturday night. People from around the world are coming to express their solidarity.”

He said that he initiated this petition because he wanted to make it known that  “there are informed American citizens who adamantly OPPOSE what our government is doing”. He added: “We want the judge to consider all the facts and not be pressured or bullied into extraditing Assange.”

In defense of peace

Assange’s US extradition hearing is set to start for five days on February 24, and will then resume on May 18 for three more weeks. His first day in the court is marked as a Global Day of Protests, where supporters around the world are organizing rallies and demonstrations. In the US, supporters across the country are planning to gather for solidarity actions planned in Washington DC throughout the first week of his hearing.

Nils Melzer, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture who investigated Mr Assange’s situation, spoke at a recent public rally in London about how Julian Assange reported on torture conducted by the US government, but which has never been prosecuted. He reminded the audience that Assange has been and continues to be psychologically tortured, and that if he were to be extradited to the US he would be tortured until the day he dies.

The US government’s extradition and prosecution of Julian Assange is a critical moment for press freedom, but also for the anti-war movement. This aggressive government’s assault on journalists poses grave danger to peace, for without a press that is free and independent, truth that has the power to stop wars is defenseless.

If the Trump administration were to succeed in extraditing Assange to the US, where he will not receive a fair trial, it will be the death of investigative journalism and the victory of senseless wars. If this is ever allowed to happen, the murder of an innocent journalist will not be the end, but only the beginning: the unchecked power of the US Empire will bring misery and death to countless innocents around the world, and tyranny inevitably follow with wars without end. We need to solidify our opposition to the US extradition of Julian Assange, because peace needs a great public defense.

Posted in USA, C.I.A, UK0 Comments

Bolivian Elections Will be an Opportunity to Legalize the Coup

By Lucas Leiroz de Almeida

Global Research,

The next Bolivian presidential elections were scheduled for May 3. The scenario in the country remains troubled, marked by the unrest and tensions created by the coup that led to the overthrow of Evo Morales. On the one hand, candidates from the right stand up enthusiastically with the intention of neutralizing any possible resurrection of the left. On the other hand, Morales, although with undeniable popular support, currently does not seem to have enough strength to face the right forces.

Bolivia is currently going through one of the worst phases in its history. A real drop, if we take into account the situation of economic stability that the country lived recently, with the policies of an indigenous and socialist nature of Evo Morales. The coup d’état carried out by pro-Washington groups last year is one of the most advanced activities on the United States’ agenda in Latin America. The failure of the planned coup d’état in Venezuela was not repeated in Bolivia, which fell into the hands of external enemies.

The illegality of the political maneuver that brought down Morales is undeniable. The aggressiveness with which the Bolivian opposition acted makes clear the intentions and modus operandi of groups interested in putting an end to the socialist government. Now, however, with the new elections, the right has its chance to mask the coup with the varnish of legality, thus perpetuating a Bolivian zombie state, totally hostage to the actions of groups outside the national interests.

The popular preference for Morales is undeniable and absolutely noticeable. The 60% majority that declared a preference for the former president makes clear the real popular interest. Never before has Bolivia, the poorest country in South America, experienced such economic growth and such autonomy and freedom for the traditional communities of indigenous peoples. Now, however, the coup perpetrators intend to go back on all the points on which Morales has made progress, subordinating the national economy to the international market and intensifying the policies of repression against native peoples.Bolivia’s Self-Declared/Unelected Coup d’Etat President

MAS – Movimiento Al Socialismo, party of Evo Morales – will have as candidate the former minister of the economy, Luiz Arce. In contrast, reactionary options abound, including, notably, Jeanina Añez, the “self-proclaimed” president of the country, and Luis Fernando Camacho, the businessman who led the protests against Morales at the head of the powerful Santa Cruz Civic Committee, in addition to Carlos Mesa, former president with a more moderate behavior.

It is speculated that Añez and Camacho will unite on a single front in a possible second round in the elections, harming both the MAS popular left and Mesa’s moderate reactionarism. However, it is not just the popular will and full confidence in the legality of the conduct of the elections that should be used to analyze this case.

In fact, South America is going through a terrible time in political, economic and geopolitical terms. With the exception of Venezuela, which survives under a serious economic crisis, all other countries are taken over by governments strongly committed to Washington’s agenda. This means that their direct support for the election of a socialist candidate will be minimal and, in return, the pressure for a coup victory will be exaggerated and cruel, with emphasis on the role played by Brazil, currently governed by Jair Bolsonaro, a neoliberal who has already made clear several times his intentions to use all of Brazil’s regional power to guarantee the full functioning of the interests of the USA – having even, on several occasions, threatened to intervene militarily in neighboring countries, such as Venezuela.

Furthermore, Bolivia’s legal situation is catastrophic. The country has recently undergone a coup d’état and finds itself hostage to the articulations and clashes of different groups. This means that it is possible and likely that there will be fraud and sabotage in the elections if the expectations of the coup perpetrators are not met at the polls. In any case, the coup makers will do their best to win, because they know that the victory would guarantee them a mask of legality, guarantee their international recognition, since for the West the only thing that matters is the democratic appearance.

Posted in USA, ZIO-NAZI, Bolivia, C.I.A0 Comments

19 YEARS OF WAR AND NO END IN SIGHT ‘ Video’

ENDLESS WAR & AMERICAN EMPIRE

RETIRED U.S. ARMY COLONEL LAWRENCE WILKERSON

“America exists today to make war.

How else do we interpret 19 straight years of war and no end in sight? It’s part of who we are.

It’s part of what the American Empire is.”

Posted in USA, C.I.A0 Comments

The U.S. Attempted 2018 Coup against Nicaragua ‘Video’

Nicaragua: The April 2018 Crisis and Beyond. Full length Documentary by Dan Kovalik

By Daniel Kovalik

Global Research,

Watch this full length documentary by Dan Kovalik

Daniel Kovalik is an American lawyer and Human Rights advocate who’s followed Nicaragua’s politics for the last four decades.

20 months after what was called the “April Crisis” he goes to Nicaragua to understand what really happened.

“Kovalik helps cut through the Orwellian lies and dissembling which make so-called ‘humanitarian intervention possible.”  Oliver Stone

Australia’s Naval Base in Papua New Guinea: Power Play in the South Pacific against China

Posted in USA, C.I.A, Nicaragua0 Comments

Media Blacks Out Pentagon Report Exposing U.S. Role In ISIS Creation

The report proved that the growth and expansion of ISIS was a direct result of arms being sent by the U.S. to anti-Assad Islamists, with the strategic U.S. intention of toppling the Assad regime in Syria.

By Jay Syrmopoulos 

msm-blacks-out-pentagon-report-linking-isis-origins-to-US

In a story reverberating across the world, last week award winning journalist and scholar Dr. Nafeez Ahmed exposed startling information about U.S. complicity in the creation and rise of ISIS, as contained in a recently declassified Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) report.

Dr Nafeez Ahmed@NafeezAhmed

Read the story blacked out by corporate media on the secret US intel report revealing who really created ISIS http://www.middleeasteye.net/columns/pentagon-confirms-west-gulf-states-and-turkey-created-islamic-state-608321312 …Pentagon report says West, Gulf states and Turkey foresaw emergence of ‘IS’A US intelligence report reveals that Western support for Syria’s rebels aided and abetted the rise of the ‘Islamic State’ – and the Pentagon won’t deny itmiddleeasteye.net658:40 AM – May 30, 2015Twitter Ads info and privacy137 people are talking about this

Possibly more terrifying than the report itself may be the fact that this information has been virtually blacked out across global mainstream media.

This silence speaks volumes as to the weight of this information. It illustrates the complicity of the English-speaking media, in collusion with government, to keep people ignorant of the harsh realities of U.S. style realpolitik.

Dr Nafeez Ahmed@NafeezAhmed

Spoke to national newspaper interested in story-they concluded it was too ‘difficult’ to run ‘at this late stage’ https://twitter.com/insurgeintel/status/602084351703154688 …INSURGE intelligence@insurgeintelEXCLUSIVE: Secret #Pentagon report reveals West saw #ISIS as strategic asset to destabilise #Syria https://medium.com/insurge-intelligence/secret-pentagon-report-reveals-west-saw-isis-as-strategic-asset-b99ad7a29092 …2012:15 PM – May 23, 2015Twitter Ads info and privacy58 people are talking about this

The stunning report, dated August 2012, proved that the growth and expansion of ISIS was a direct result of arms being sent by the U.S. to anti-Assad Islamists, with the strategic U.S. intention of toppling the Assad regime in Syria.

The report stated, “major forces driving the insurgency in Syria” comprise “the Salafist, the Muslim Brotherhood, and AQI [al-Qaeda in Iraq], showing explicitly what elements were providing the true velocity of the insurgency.

Although the U.S. has held to the official line that only moderate rebels are being armed in Syria, figures such as Presidential candidate Rand Paul stating that “war hawks” in congress were responsible for the rise of ISIS, to Vice President Joe Biden stating (start at 1:30:00), that there were no “moderate rebels,” say otherwise.

“The secret Pentagon document provides extraordinary confirmation that the US-led coalition currently fighting ISIS, had three years ago welcomed the emergence of an extremist ‘Salafist Principality’ in the region as a way to undermine Assad,” Ahmed said.

In an interview with Josh Cook of Truth In Media, Ahmed stated:

“I spoke to a major national newspaper here in the U.K. and what was interesting was they were quite sympathetic to the line of inquiry, but just felt like they couldn’t cover it. And it wasn’t that they were told they couldn’t cover it. The journalist that I spoke to who is a senior journalist that I have a lot of respect for was very sympathetic to what I was saying. He literally said to me look – I actually could sense that there was this fear that I shouldn’t be talking about this, this is going to far – is the document really strong enough? He didn’t feel confident.

“There is almost like an unspoken recognition I think in the mainstream media that there are certain things we are not allowed to say. The idea that something as despicable as ISIS could actually been foreseen or facilitated deliberately, which is really what is implied by this report quite clearly.

“It’s almost too much,” he said. “It goes against the grain of so much we take for granted. So many assumptions about not just American, but Western kind of supremacy and the benevolence of our government that we would never do anything like this … it’s a big kind of leap.

“On the one hand I think that journalists are scared and worried about pushing boundaries to that extent. It does raise a concern that there is an absolute silence on this issue, especially in the English speaking media. It raises real questions about what is behind that silence?”

People have a right to be informed about the undertakings of a government operating in their name and the press has a duty to expose that which is intentionally obscured from the view of the public by those in power.

When the press is afraid or complicit in hiding these facts from the American public, then we, as a nation, are in a much greater danger than anything ISIS presents.

Please share this story to help get this vital information out to as many people as possible, as people deserve to know what actions their governments undertake in their name!

Posted in Middle East, USA, C.I.A, Iraq, Syria0 Comments

CIA Official ‘Behind Soleimani’s Assassination’ Killed in Downed Plane in Afghanistan?

By Middle East Monitor

Global Research,

The following report by Middle East Monitor remains to be fully corroborated.

***

Russian intelligence sources have claimed that Michael D’Andrea, head of CIA operations in Iran and who orchestrated the assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, was killed in a US spy plane downed yesterday in Ghazni, Afghanistan.

The plane with US Air Force markings reportedly served as the CIA’s mobile command for D’Andrea, who earnt several nicknames including: Ayatollah Mike, the Dark Prince, and the Undertaker. He is one of the most prominent CIA figures in the region, appointed head of the agency’s Iran Mission Centre in 2017. Under his leadership, the agency was perceived to take a more “aggressive stance toward Iran”.

The Taliban claimed to have shot down the plane but have yet to provide evidence, whilst the US has denied the claim but has acknowledged the loss of a Bombardier E-11A plane in central Afghanistan. Graphic images online have already circulated purportedly showing some of the charred remains of those on board.

#AlFath
Enemy intelligence aircraft crashed in Sado Khelo area of Deh Yak district #Ghazni noon hours today resulting in all crew & high-ranking CIA members killed.
Wreckage & dead bodies laying at crash site. https://t.co/DL7qwHpcRe

— Zabihullah (..ذبـــــیح الله م ) (@Zabehulah_M33) January 27, 2020

Unconfirmed reports that the CIA head of anti-Iran operations, Michael D’Andrea aka Ayatollah Mike, was on board the plane that crashed near Ghazni, Afghanistan this morning.

D’Andrea also masterminded the murder of Imad Mughniyeh, former Hezbollah Chief of Staff, back in 2008.

— Brasco_Aad (@Brasco_Aad) January 27, 2020Soleimani’s Assassination: An Act of Psychological Warfare

Afghan authorities initially claimed the plane was a state-owned airline, but this was denied by the company, Ariana. Helicopters have been brought down before by the Taliban, but they are not believed to have the capabilities required to bring down a high-flying aircraft.

It has been speculated that Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corp (IRGC) may also have a hand in the incident, especially as anti-aircraft support has previously been given to the Taliban. Additionally, the Afghan Shia Fatimyoun Brigades, who are trained by the IRGC, also have a presence in the country.

CIA Middle East chief, Soleimani Killer and Bin Laden Hunter, dead on Jet in Afghanistan. Tasnim and Mirror told after VT
by Fabio Giuseppe Carlo Carisio for VT iTaly

VERSIONE ORIGINALE IN ITALIANO
The news is so big that we have to write it running the risk of a denial, … pic.twitter.com/7Da2jmkHug

— VeteransToday (@veteranstoday) January 28, 2020

An exiled Iranian journalist who has written previously for the hard-line Javan daily newspaper suggested the IRGC was involved, tweeting: “The American Gulfstream plane was downed in Afghanistan by the Taliban. They say that intelligence officers were on board. This report has not yet been confirmed, but if it is, it is possible that the issue of Iran will also emerge in this case.”

Another Iranian journalist who writes for Mashregh newspaper, described as having close links to IRGC, tweeted not long after the news broke out: “We will attack them on the same level as they are attacking us.”

Soleimani’s successor as head of the IRGC’s Quds Force, Esmail Qaani, has established ties in Afghanistan going back to the 1980s. Additionally, the chief commander of the IRGC, General Hossein Salamiwarned that no American military commanders will be safe if the US administration continues to threaten Iranian commanders.

D’Andrea, who is reportedly a convert to Islam, doing so in order to marry his Muslim wife, who is from a wealthy family from the Mauritius of Gujarati origins, having met on his first overseas assignment in East Africa, one of the senior directors of her family’s company Curumjee Group, has been speculated to provide cover for CIA operations.

He also oversaw hundreds of drone strikes, which according to The New York Times “killed thousands of Islamist militants and hundreds of civilians”. D’andrea is credited with being the mastermind behind the CIA’s notorious “signature strike” used to kill people based on their behaviour, not identity, subsequently used to determine someone’s guilt or likelihood of being a terrorist.

He was central to the post-9/11 interrogation programme and ran the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center. Assassinations and torture were central to his approach. He also oversaw the hunt for Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and was involved in the assassination of Hezbollah member Imad Mughniyah in Damascus, Syria.

Posted in USA, ZIO-NAZI, C.I.A, Iran, Iraq, Middle East0 Comments

Guns, Drugs and the CIA ‘Video’

By Frontline

Two of the most persistent offensives of the Reagan presidency have been the war against communism in Central America and the war on drugs here at home.

But investigations of America’s secret war in Nicaragua have revealed mounting evidence that the Central Intelligence Agency has been fighting the Contra war with the help of international drug traffickers. It is not a new story.

From the 1980s Archive, we bring the attention of our reader the FRONTLINE investigation traces the CIA’s involvement with drug lords back to the agency’s birth following World War II.

It is a long history that asks this question: “In the war on drugs, which side is the CIA on?”

Our program was produced by Leslie and Andrew Cockburn.

It is called Guns, Drugs, and the CIA and is reported by Leslie Cockburn.

Watch the video below.

Posted in C.I.A0 Comments

France Apology after History Textbook Links CIA to 9/11

By BBC

9/11

A French publisher has apologised after a history textbook that appeared in bookshops in recent weeks suggested the 11 September 2001 attacks were probably “orchestrated by the CIA”.

The debunked conspiracy theory was apparently highlighted on social media initially by a group of schoolteachers.

The book History of the 20th Century in Flash Cards is aimed at undergraduate students.

On its website, the publisher said the phrase should never have appeared.

“This phrase which echoes conspiracy theories devoid of any factual basis should never have been used in this work. It doesn’t reflect the editorial position either of Ellipses publications or the author,” it said (in French).

The textbook is described as a complete course on the last century in French, European and world history. It was written by Jean-Pierre Rocher, a teacher of history and geography and a graduate of the Sciences Po university in Paris, and aimed at Sciences Po undergraduates as well as students preparing for France’s elite “grandes écoles”.

Although the book came out in November, it was not until the daughter of one of the secondary school teachers bought a copy that one of them spotted the reference to the CIA.

Click here to read full article.

Posted in USA, C.I.A, France0 Comments

Guantánamo: psychologists who designed CIA torture program to testify

  • Techniques included waterboarding and other forms of torture
  • Hopes that trial will cast more light on scale of program

Julian Borger

Protestors mark 18th anniversary of Guantánamo Bay detention camp and call for its closure and ‘accountability for torture’ near the White House, on 11 January.
 Protesters mark 18th anniversary of Guantánamo Bay detention camp and call for its closure and ‘accountability for torture’ near the White House, on 11 January. Photograph: Mike Theiler/Reuters

The two psychologists who designed the US “enhanced interrogation” programme that included waterboarding and other forms of torture are due to give evidence in open court for the first time this week.

James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen will answer questions at a pre-trial hearing on the 9/11 attacks before a military tribunal in Guantánamo Bay.

Lawyers for the defendants, who are among 40 detainees being held at prison camp on the island of Cuba, say it will be a unique opportunity to hold to account those responsible for approving and carrying out the use of torture, and to demonstrate that both the CIA and FBI were complicit in torture, with significant implications for any future trial of suspected 9/11 plotters.Advertisement

Mitchell and Jessen were former air force psychologists who were tasked by the CIA in 2002 to establish a programme of severe interrogation techniques. They were paid $1,800 a day and in 2005 they set up a private company, which provided most of the interrogators and most of the security staff at the “black sites”, secret detention facilities. The company was paid $81m for its services before its contract was terminated in 2009.

“The perverse ‘work’ of these psychologists has dramatically set back the global fight against torture. The interrogation methods they championed have had a rippling effect around the world,” said Julia Hall, a human rights lawyer with Amnesty International who is attending the hearings.

The American Psychological Association has disowned Mitchell and Jessen for “violating the ethics of their profession and leaving a stain on the discipline of psychology”.

But both men have insisted they did nothing wrong, arguing they were asked to do things that were declared legal by the George W Bush administration, and that they had to prevent the worst excesses of other interrogators.

Defence lawyers and human rights advocates hope Mitchell and Jessen will cast more light on the scale of the torture programme, the culpability of senior officials and the role of the FBI, which has hitherto presented itself as uninvolved.

“The main points that I will be asking the witnesses about are the deep involvement of the FBI in the rendition detention and interrogation program, the huge bureaucracy that was necessary to support the use of coercive pressure as an interrogation tactic, and the elements of the CIA’s programme that didn’t involve Dr Mitchell and Dr Jessen at all,” said James Connell, lawyer for one of the defendants, Ammar al-Baluchi, who will lead the questioning of Mitchell this week. “There are many other people who are involved.”

Alka Pradhan, another Baluchi lawyer who will take the lead in questioning Jessen said the coming session was “probably one of the most consequential hearings we have had yet” in eight years of pre-trial hearings.

At the core of the prosecution case are a set of statements made by the defendants in 2007 to FBI investigators. The government contends that this was a “clean team” of investigators who had nothing to do with torture. The statements were therefore untainted and admissible in court.

Pradhan said the Mitchell and Jessen testimony would add to already considerable evidence that the FBI also had dirty hands.

“They knew that they needed ‘clean interrogations’ in order to be able to prosecute and eventually execute,” she said. The defence lawyers say there were FBI agents at the black sites during enhanced interrogations and that the FBI submitted questions for the interrogators to use, knowing torture was being used.

This week’s hearing has been complicated by a new set of secrecy rules introduced by the prosecution on Thursday, that prevents defence lawyers from citing references to the interrogation programme in published books, even though they had been cleared for publication by the CIA.

On the other hand, defence teams will be allowed to cite more details of dates, places and techniques used on detainees. The CIA has acknowledged that at least 39 prisoners were subjected to the enhanced interrogation techniques that included slamming detainees into a wall, confining them in a 21x30in (53x76cm) box, and waterboarding, the simulation of drowning by covering a prisoner’s face with cloth and pouring water on it. The UN and human rights groups have declared waterboarding and some of the other techniques to be torture.

Defence and prosecution lawyers are due to argue over classification and other procedural issues in closed session at the military commission built on the Guantánamo naval base near the detention camp.

Then the presiding judge, Col Shane Cohen, is expected to hold open sessions for at least some of the next two weeks.

Mitchell and Jessen agreed an out of court settlement in a civil suit brought by the American Council on Civil Liberties on behalf of Suleiman Abdullah Salim and Mohamed Ben Soud, who were released without charges after being tortured, and the family of Gul Rahman, who died under interrogation in 2002 in one of the CIA’s secret detention facilities around the world, known as “black sites”.

Rahman died after being left shackled overnight naked from the waist down in a freezing concrete cell. Mitchell and Jessen said they had complained about Rahman’s treatment but their warnings were ignored by senior CIA officials.

The psychologists said their interrogation programme had been designed to induce a “learned helplessness” in detainees that would make them more compliant. Mitchell wrote a memoir, Enhanced Interrogation, in which he claimed that the enhanced interrogation techniques helped foil al-Qaida attacks on the US.

“I concluded that it would be immoral and unethical to ignore my obligation to use what I knew to defend our citizens and our way of life against enemies who themselves had initiated the conflict and whose stated goal was to destroy us,” Mitchell wrote.

His claims over the programme’s success is disputed by a report by the Senate intelligence committee, which found that the enhanced interrogations produced no actionable intelligence.

Posted in USA, C.I.AComments Off on Guantánamo: psychologists who designed CIA torture program to testify

A LEADER MURDERED BY THE CIA: PATRICE LUMUMBA ‘Video’

ASSASSINATED JANUARY 17, 1961

It could be because so many of them have been assassinated.

The story of Patrice Lumumba, murdered by the connivance of US and Belgian intelligence agencies which then turned the Congo over to a savage dictator…to make it easier to loot the country.

Patrice Émery Lumumba was a Congolese politician and independence leader who served as the first Prime Minister of the independent Democratic Republic of the Congo (then Republic of the Congo) from June until September 1960. He played a significant role in the transformation of the Congo from a colony of Belgium into an independent republic. Ideologically an African nationalist and Pan-Africanist, he led the Mouvement National Congolais (MNC) party from 1958 until his assassination.

Shortly after Congolese independence in 1960, a mutiny broke out in the army, marking the beginning of the Congo Crisis. Lumumba appealed to the United States and the United Nations for help to suppress the Belgian-supported Katangan secessionists. Both refused, so Lumumba turned to the Soviet Union for support. This led to growing differences with President Joseph Kasa-Vubu and chief-of-staff Joseph-Désiré Mobutu, as well as with the United States and Belgium, who opposed the Soviet Union in the Cold War.

Lumumba was subsequently imprisoned by state authorities under Mobutu and executed by a firing squad under the command of Katangan authorities. Following his assassination, he was widely seen as a martyr for the wider Pan-African movement.

CIA director Allen Dulles called the military coup against Lumumba “an urgent and prime objective,” handing over the Congo to U.S.-backed dictator Mobutu Sese Seko.

“They buried Lumumba 
In an unmarked grave.
But he needs no marker––
For air is his grave.
Sun is his grave,
Moon is, stars are,
Space is his grave.
My heart’s his grave,
And it’s marked there.
Tomorrow will mark it everywhere.”

Langston Hughes, 1961

The murder of Patrice Lumumba – A CIA production

Posted in USA, Africa, C.I.A, DR CongoComments Off on A LEADER MURDERED BY THE CIA: PATRICE LUMUMBA ‘Video’

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