Guantanamo (cont…)

The Guardian: ITV and Mirror to interview Guant·namo detainee [via Damian]

The article mentions previous reports of conditions in Guantanamo:

One man of 90 claims he was used as a hostage and kept alive on a drip so that younger suspects could see him suffering. He was there for eight months and believed he would die.

A fellow inmate told of “crucifixion” punishments, beatings to the soles of the feet and reported that some detainees were forced to stand among practice targets on the shooting range.

It will be interesting to see how the Briton being interviewed was treated…

Pentagon papers

Salon.com: The new Pentagon papers [via Jim Moore]

Before the Iraq invasion, many of these same players labored together for literally decades to push a defense strategy that favored military intervention and confrontation with enemies, secret and unconstitutional if need be. Some former officials, such as Richard Perle (an assistant secretary of defense under Reagan) and James Woolsey (CIA director under Clinton), were granted a new lease on life, a renewed gravitas, with positions on President Bush’s Defense Policy Board. Others, like Elliott Abrams and Paul Wolfowitz, had apparently overcome previous negative associations from an Iran-Contra conviction for lying to the Congress and for utterly miscalculating the strength of the Soviet Union in a politically driven report to the CIA.

The commission, aside from being modeled on failed rubber stamp commissions of the past and consisting entirely of those selected by the executive branch, specifically excludes an examination of the role of the Office of Special Plans and other executive advisory bodies. If the president or vice president were seriously interested in “getting the truth,” they might consider asking for evidence on how intelligence was politicized, misused and manipulated, and whether information from the intelligence community was distorted in order to sway Congress and public opinion in a narrowly conceived neoconservative push for war. Bush says he wants the truth, but it is clear he is no more interested in it today than he was two years ago.

Written by some left-wing journalist? Nup – straight from “A high-ranking military officer reveals how Defense Department extremists suppressed information and twisted the truth to drive the country to war.” Definitely worth the read if you are interested in Dubya’s falsehoods in the march to war…

Lessig book

Lawrence Lessig has a new book coming out. Definitely one to grab…

Thoughts on Spain

I haven’t really had a chance to keep abreast of the Spain terrorist attacks, or the elections for that matter. Scott Rosenberg has two posts, here and here, on the elections. Some informed thoughts…

Huméco updates

I just posted my notes from the last few days in Melbourne over at the huméco weblog – basically all the entries for March 14, 15 and 16. I couldn’t post when I was in Melbourne because I didn’t have net access, so I’ve dated and timestamped them according to when I wrote the entries.

Holidays

Forgot to mention – I’m on hols for a week – I’ve been in Melbourne for 4 days – will be posting more about the trip here and over at huméco over the next day or two. Got lots of reading to catch up on, so probably a few posts will come out of that too.

eBay – good when it works

I’m learning the hard way about what not to do on eBay. I’m sure the guy I’m trying to buy off is doing something dodgy. Yes, I shouldn’t have bid on a first time seller, yes I should have organised an escrow account, yes I should have confirmed every last bloody detail about the item, and yes I should have checked shipping price before bidding… Lessons learnt hey. At least I haven’t paid anything for the item yet. Last email has been sent before I fork out the USD$20 for a mediator. Bugger.