Last week, a victory for the government in a federal court case sent a signal out to the rest of the world as to how loosely we hold the ideals of "liberty and justice for all" In a decision that is not surprising AT ALL, Federal District Judge Barbara Jones determined that the Pentagon DOES NOT need to make public vital information pertaining to the prisoners held at the Parwan Prison on the Bagram Air Force Base outside of Kabul.
The ACLU filed suit demanding that such pertinent information as circumstances and location of "capture", the national origin and citizenship, and the length of imprisonment of detainees at Bagram be released. They were denied, under the guise of "national security". And, the judge also decided that there is no need to reveal whether or not the CIA is keeping captives there. It seems like after the debacles at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo, the government is reluctant to share any details of the hundreds of people detained at Bagram. The ACLU believes that it is for fear that the public will find out that many people being held are, in fact, innocent of any wrongdoing, simply victims of circumstance. Prisoners at Bragram DO NOT have the right to challenge their captivity in US Courts.
Many prisoners have claimed after their release from the prison at Bagram that they were tortured. The ACLU suspects that the military is attempting to cover up improprieties in the way prisoners are treated. They also believe that some individuals currently detained may be there as a result of simple house sweeps that have occurred throughout Afghanistan. And, there is suspicion that Bagram Air Force based, is, like Guantanamo, is being used as a Black Ops site for vetting prisoners from all over the world.
Although President Obama signed an order banning torture by the military, it ONLY applies to people captured during "armed conflict". Those captured under the umbrella of the "War on Terror" are not considered legitimate combatants, and therefore the ban does not apply. And, there is no need for the government to report captives from counter terrorism activities to the Red Cross. In other words, the government and the military is allowed to simply hide its activities regarding certain prisoners. A lot of loop holes right there!
What is the military hiding? And how does keeping information regarding those held at Bagram help with "national security". If anything, it will only cause those who are fighting our military overseas fight even harder to avoid being captured and sent to Bagram. Truthfully, many would choose death over the possibility of being tortured, held indefinitely AND basically disappearing from the eyes of the world.