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Misadventures in the Middle East

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The WH is trying to move the USDA to Kansas City this year saying it is a better location for the agency. I guess they should be grateful it wasn't to the Mohave. Trump should be tried for a crime against humanity along with Erdogan.

 

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Saudis bribed twitter workers in order to obtain dirt on critics of the Saudi regime:

 

Quote

The Saudi government, frustrated by growing criticism of its leaders and policies on social media, recruited two Twitter employees to gather confidential personal information on thousands of accounts that included prominent opponents, prosecutors alleged Wednesday.



https://www.statesman.com/zz/news/20191107/us-saudis-recruited-twitter-workers-to-spy-on-critics/1

Edited by Horn Under a Bad Sign

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1 hour ago, Horn Under a Bad Sign said:

Saudis bribed twitter workers in order to obtain dirt on critics of the Saudi regime:

 



https://www.statesman.com/zz/news/20191107/us-saudis-recruited-twitter-workers-to-spy-on-critics/1

So, you gave information to a group so they could use it to identify, target, and maybe even kill people you outed?

Welcome to your "accessory to murder" charge, and for sure your wrongful death suit by the family of any victims killed by the regime.

Any question as to whether Twitter, Facebook, etc. are pure fucking evil?

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3 minutes ago, Brisketexan said:

So, you gave information to a group so they could use it to identify, target, and maybe even kill people you outed?

Welcome to your "accessory to murder" charge, and for sure your wrongful death suit by the family of any victims killed by the regime.

Any question as to whether Twitter, Facebook, etc. are pure fucking evil?

 

Facebook is not evil. It can be used for evil. It can be used for good. It's a medium, not the message.

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4 minutes ago, Horn Under a Bad Sign said:

 

Facebook is not evil. It can be used for evil. It can be used for good. It's a medium, not the message.

It is operated under an amoral code which is glad to use it for evil.

Building a detention facility is not inherently evil.  Building Dachau knowing what it would be used for, and not giving a shit, is amoral, which in that case is also evil.

Facebook and Twitter are plenty happy to be used for evil.  They'll sell Zyklon-B (a pesticide) to the Nazi regime (knowing that it will be used to exterminate jews instead of bugs), and then will dare claim innocence because hey, all we did is sell it.  The Nazis are the ones who actually used it.  Fuck you.  You knew, and you happily profited from it.  That's goddamned evil.

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On 11/18/2019 at 3:59 PM, American Swindle said:

Hmm.....? Could that whole "Assad Gassed his own people" narrative been a false flag to rally support for our interventions in Syria?  

 

 

Tucker was right, we were lied to.  

 

Maybe that's why the establishment is hell bent on smearing Tulsi, because she actually got the information directly from Assad that the Chlorine Gas attack was a false flag operation to rally support for more intervention in Syria.  

 

But Russia!!!! lulz.

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I never heard of the Columbia Bugle before so I googled. Wow.
 
https://mobile.twitter.com/ColumbiaBugle/status/1199194425647218688?ref_src=twsrc^google|twcamp^serp|twgr^tweet
 
(don't know how to embed tweets)

The Columbia Bugle sounds like some sort of scat trick you have to pay a hooker extra for. So, the newsfeed actually makes perfect sense when you look at it that way.

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The fact remains that it looks like Tucker was correct on Syria. I’d like to see links to any other news hosts that showed the ability to question something that made so little sense. The whole story immediately smelled like bullshit, but so many people lapped it up. Pathetic. 

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13 minutes ago, GRHorn said:

The fact remains that it looks like Tucker was correct on Syria. I’d like to see links to any other news hosts that showed the ability to question something that made so little sense. The whole story immediately smelled like bullshit, but so many people lapped it up. Pathetic. 

I know it's fashionable for the left to bash Tucker, but when it comes to the realities surrounding our Empire's tendencies for meddling in other country's affairs, I could care not where the information comes from as long as it's the truth.  

The mere fact that this doesn't outrage most of the population to the degree that say Trump's tweets do is a sign that the info war is being won by the establishment.  The "Assad Gassed his own People" narrative was a farce and one that lead to us dropping bombs (which everyone so passionately a patriotically oogled over when it was done.) on a sovereign nation.  No big deal. Oops sorry Syria, you were just another sovereign country that got caught up in our Empire's blood lust for control of the ME.  

When is enough enough?

 

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On 11/7/2019 at 12:27 PM, Brisketexan said:

It is operated under an amoral code which is glad to use it for evil.

Building a detention facility is not inherently evil.  Building Dachau knowing what it would be used for, and not giving a shit, is amoral, which in that case is also evil.

Facebook and Twitter are plenty happy to be used for evil.  They'll sell Zyklon-B (a pesticide) to the Nazi regime (knowing that it will be used to exterminate jews instead of bugs), and then will dare claim innocence because hey, all we did is sell it.  The Nazis are the ones who actually used it.  Fuck you.  You knew, and you happily profited from it.  That's goddamned evil.

Jack shit happened to the manufacturer of Zyklon-B and same will happen here.

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On 11/26/2019 at 11:36 AM, GRHorn said:

The fact remains that it looks like Tucker was correct on Syria. I’d like to see links to any other news hosts that showed the ability to question something that made so little sense. The whole story immediately smelled like bullshit, but so many people lapped it up. Pathetic. 

Why is it a "fact" that it looks like Tucker was right? Because Caitlin Johnstone says so?

Do you also believe that Wikipedia is an "establishment psyop"?

It's 2019 and people are still buying this shit.  If someone wants to post some original source material that isn't from complete fucking whackjobs, I'll read it. But please, until then, stop being willfully stupid. 

 

 

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Apparently we not only succeed at creating awesome ways to kill people, but also new and interesting ways to implement torture.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/04/us/politics/cia-torture-drawings.html?

 

 

What the C.I.A.’s Torture Program Looked Like to the Tortured

Drawings done in captivity by the first prisoner known to undergo “enhanced interrogation” portray his account of what happened to him in vivid and disturbing ways.

 
 
 


 

An image drawn by Abu Zubaydah, a prisoner at Guantánamo Bay, shows how the C.I.A. applied an approved torture technique called “cramped confinement.”An image drawn by Abu Zubaydah, a prisoner at Guantánamo Bay, shows how the C.I.A. applied an approved torture technique called “cramped confinement.”Credit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

  • Dec. 4, 2019Updated 4:55 p.m. ET
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This article was produced in partnership with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.

GUANTÁNAMO BAY, Cuba — One shows the prisoner nude and strapped to a crude gurney, his entire body clenched as he is waterboarded by an unseen interrogator. Another shows him with his wrists cuffed to bars so high above his head he is forced on to his tiptoes, with a long wound stitched on his left leg and a howl emerging from his open mouth. Yet another depicts a captor smacking his head against a wall.

They are sketches drawn in captivity by the Guantánamo Bay prisoner known as Abu Zubaydah, self-portraits of the torture he was subjected to during the four years he was held in secret prisons by the C.I.A.

Published here for the first time, they are gritty and highly personal depictions that put flesh, bones and emotion on what until now had sometimes been portrayed in popular culture in sanitized or inaccurate ways: the so-called enhanced interrogations techniques used by the United States in secret overseas prisons during a feverish pursuit of Al Qaeda after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

In each illustration, Mr. Zubaydah — the first person to be subject to the interrogation program approved by President George W. Bush’s administration — portrays the particular techniques as he says they were used on him at a C.I.A. black site in Thailand in August 2002.

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They demonstrate how, more than a decade after the Obama administration outlawed the program — and then went on to partly declassify a Senate study that found the C.I.A. lied about both its effectiveness and its brutality — the final chapter of the black sites has yet to be written.

Mr. Zubaydah, 48, drew them this year at Guantánamo for inclusion in a 61-page report, “How America Tortures,” by his lawyer, Mark P. Denbeaux, a professor at the Seton Hall University School of Law in Newark, and some of Mr. Denbeaux’s students.

 
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The report uses firsthand accounts, internal Bush administration memos, prisoners’ memories and the 2014 Senate Intelligence Committee report to analyze the interrogation program. The program was initially set up for Mr. Zubaydah, who was mistakenly believed to be a top Qaeda lieutenant.

He was captured in a gun battle in Faisalabad, Pakistan, in March 2002, gravely injured, including a bad wound to his left thigh, and was sent to the C.I.A.’s overseas prison network.

After an internal debate over whether Mr. Zubaydah was forthcoming to F.BI. interrogators, the agency hired two C.I.A. contract psychologists to create the now-outlawed program that would use violence, isolation and sleep deprivation on more than 100 men in secret sites, some described as dungeons, staffed by secret guards and medical officers.

 

Descriptions of the methods began leaking out more than a decade ago, occasionally in wrenching detail but sometimes with little more than stick-figure depictions of what prisoners went through.

But these newly released drawings depict specific C.I.A. techniques that were approved, described and categorized in memos prepared in 2002 by the Bush administration, and capture the perspective of the person being tortured, Mr. Zubaydah, a Palestinian whose real name is Zayn al-Abidin Muhammad Husayn.

He was the first person known to be waterboarded by the C.I.A. — he endured it 83 times — and was the first person known to be crammed into a small confinement box as part of what the Seton Hall study called “a constantly rotating barrage” of methods meant to break what interrogators believed was his resistance.

Subsequent intelligence analysis showed that while Mr. Zubaydah was a jihadist, he had no advance knowledge about the 9/11 attacks, nor was he a member of Al Qaeda.

He has never been charged with a crime, and documents released through the courts show that military prosecutors have no plans to do so.

He is held at the base’s most secretive prison, Camp 7, where he drew these sketches not as artwork, whose release from Guantánamo is now forbidden, but as legal material that was reviewed and cleared — with one redaction — for inclusion in the study. Other drawings he has done of himself during his imprisonment were published last year by ProPublica.

 
 

Waterboarding

 
 
 
 


Image

00dc-torturetechniques-07-articleLarge.jpg?quality=75&auto=webp&disable=upscaleCredit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

In this drawing, the prisoner portrays himself as nude on the waterboard, immobilized as water pours down on his hooded head, his right foot contorted in pain. The image contrasts with some others seen in popular culture; an exhibit at the Spy Museum in Washington, for example, shows a guard pouring water onto the face of a prisoner who is neatly clad in what looks like a prison jumpsuit.

Mr. Zubaydah’s self-portrait also shows a design detail not present in most depictions — a drop-down hinge to tilt the prisoner’s head. Restraints hold down his wounded thigh.

The Senate Intelligence Committee study of the C.I.A. program concluded that waterboarding and other techniques were “brutal and far worse than the C.I.A. represented.” Its use induced convulsions, vomiting and left Mr. Zubaydah “completely unresponsive, with bubbles rising through his open, full mouth.”

In a now declassified account he provided his lawyer in 2008, Mr. Zubaydah described the first of what would be 83 waterboarding sessions this way: “They kept pouring water and concentrating on my nose and my mouth until I really felt I was drowning and my chest was just about to explode from the lack of oxygen.”

Stress Positions

 
 
 
 


Image
 

00dc-torturetechniques-05-articleLarge.jpg?quality=75&auto=webp&disable=upscaleCredit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

Accounts by detainees in different black sites have differed on how this method was used. In his illustration, Mr. Zubaydah shows himself nude and shackled at the wrists to a bar above his head, forced to stand on tiptoe.

In his account, as reported by his lawyers, he was still recovering from what the C.I.A. had described as a large wound in his thigh, and he tried to balance his weight on the other leg.

 
 

“Long hours went by while I was standing in that position,” he told his lawyers. “My hands were tight to the upper bars.”

Some guards, he said, “noticed the color of my hands,” moved him to a chair “and the interrogation vertigo resumed — the cold, the hunger, the little sleep and the intense vomiting, which I didn’t know whether it was caused by the cold, the ‘Ensure’ or the noise.” (The C.I.A. put its prisoners on liquid diets in its program of so-called learned helplessness.)

Short Shackling

 
 
 
 


Image
 

00dc-torturetechniques-02-articleLarge.jpg?quality=75&auto=webp&disable=upscaleCredit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

Mr. Zubaydah, who is not known to have formal art training, drew himself in a hood, shackled in the fetal position and tethered by a chain to a cell bar to constrict his movement. In granting the C.I.A. approval to use a technique similar to this, Jay S. Bybee, a former assistant attorney general, noted in an 18-page memo dated Aug. 1, 2002, that “through observing Zubaydah in captivity, you have noted that he appears to be quite flexible despite his wound.”

He also noted in the authorization, addressed to the C.I.A.’s acting general counsel at the time, John A. Rizzo, that the agency asserted that “these positions are not designed to produce the pain associated with contortions or twisting of the body.”

Walling

 
 
 
 

00dc-torturetechniques-06-articleLarge.j

Image
 

 Credit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

This image emerged from Guantánamo with a black redaction box over Mr. Zubaydah’s depiction of the face of his interrogator.

 
 

It shows the prisoner’s captor tightly winding a towel around his neck as he smashes the back of his head against what Mr. Zubaydah recalled was a wooden wall covering a cement wall.

“He kept banging me against the wall,” he said of the experience, which he described as leaving him blind “for a few instants.” With each bang, he said, he would fall to the floor, be dragged by the plastic-tape-wrapped towel “which caused bleeding in my neck,” and then receive a slap on his face.

In a 2017 deposition as part of a lawsuit that was eventually settled, James E. Mitchell, a former C.I.A. contract psychologist who devised the techniques with a colleague, John Bruce Jessen, said walling was “discombobulating” and meant to stir up a prisoner’s inner ears. “If it’s painful, you’re doing it wrong,” he said.

Large Confinement Box

 
 
 
 

00dc-torturetechniques-articleLarge.jpg?

Image
 

 Credit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

In this drawing, Mr. Zubaydah is shaved, nude, shackled in such a way he cannot stand up and, by his account, is sitting on a bucket meant to serve as a toilet.

“I found myself in total darkness,” he said. “The only spot I could sit in was on top of the bucket, for the place was very tight.”

In his account, Mr. Zubaydah describes being confined in “a large wooden box that looked like a wooden casket.” The first time he saw it, guards were turning it vertical and a man in black clothes and a military jacket announced, “From now on, this is going to be your home.”

 
 

Mr. Zubaydah portrays himself in the drawings with both eyes. A photograph of him early during his time at Guantánamo shows him wearing an eye patch after the removal of an injured eye.

Small Confinement Box

 
 
 
 


Image
 

 Credit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

The small box is similar to the one on display at the Spy Museum where, during a visit, children could be seen crawling inside.

In his account, included in the Seton Hall report, Mr. Zubaydah describes his time in what he called “the dog box” as “so painful.” He adds: “As soon as they locked me up inside the box, I tried my best to sit up, but in vain, for the box was too short. I tried to take a curled position but to no vain, for it was too tight.” He was immobilized and shackled in the fetal position, as he described it, for “countless hours,” experiencing muscle contractions.

“The very strong pain,” he said, “made me scream unconsciously.”

Sleep Deprivation

 
 
 
 


Image
 

00dc-torturetechniques-03-articleLarge.jpg?quality=75&auto=webp&disable=upscaleCredit...Abu Zubaydah, Courtesy Mark P. Denbeaux

Mr. Zubaydah recalled that agents used a method of “horizontal sleep deprivation” that involved shackling him flat on the ground in such a painful position that it made it impossible to sleep.

The C.I.A. justified sleep deprivation by saying it “focuses the detainee’s attention on his current situation rather than ideological goals.” In approving this and other techniques in August 2002, Mr. Bybee said the C.I.A. had said it would not deprive Mr. Zubaydah of sleep for “more than 11 days at a time.”

 
 

In the Seton Hall study, Mr. Zubaydah recounted being deprived of sleep for “maybe two or three weeks or even more.”

“It felt like an eternity,” he added, “to the point that I found myself falling asleep despite the water being thrown at me by the guard.”

In this drawing, the prisoner portrays himself as lightly clothed.

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Critical detail in the story...

Quote

Mr. Zubaydah, who is not known to have formal art training

 

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40 minutes ago, LABEVO said:

Critical detail in the story...

Quote

Mr. Zubaydah, who is not known to have formal art training

 

To be fair, neither have the Peppa the Pig creators.

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Several years ago, sat down in a small group for a presentation and conversation with a member of the Guantanamo Bar Association (the informal name that the group of attorneys who volunteered to represent Gitmo detainees gave themselves).

He told us the entire story of his representation. And a lot about his client. And his family. At the end of the night, I left the room quaking with rage. After I had spent some of that time in tears and shame. And I was at least a little bit proud of my profession, which had folks standing in the breach. And then depressed, knowing that there’s no way I’d ever do anything that meaningful.

We’re the bad guys. And we’re excited about it and cheer it.

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On 11/26/2019 at 12:00 PM, American Swindle said:

I know it's fashionable for the left to bash Tucker, but when it comes to the realities surrounding our Empire's tendencies for meddling in other country's affairs, I could care not where the information comes from as long as it's the truth.  

The mere fact that this doesn't outrage most of the population to the degree that say Trump's tweets do is a sign that the info war is being won by the establishment.  The "Assad Gassed his own People" narrative was a farce and one that lead to us dropping bombs (which everyone so passionately a patriotically oogled over when it was done.) on a sovereign nation.  No big deal. Oops sorry Syria, you were just another sovereign country that got caught up in our Empire's blood lust for control of the ME.  

When is enough enough?

 

What am I missing here? The outrage by Tucker and the Bugle chick seems to be that the military operations conducted in 2017 and 2018 against Syria were orchestrated by the US Government and our allies on false pretenses? The US government led by, let me check my notes. . . .  The Trump administration and his merry bunch of fucktards?  

 

 

 

 

 

 Confusing time we live in. So confusing Tucker momentarily forgot whose dicks he gets paid to suck. 

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2 hours ago, Brisketexan said:

Several years ago, sat down in a small group for a presentation and conversation with a member of the Guantanamo Bar Association (the informal name that the group of attorneys who volunteered to represent Gitmo detainees gave themselves).

He told us the entire story of his representation. And a lot about his client. And his family. At the end of the night, I left the room quaking with rage. After I had spent some of that time in tears and shame. And I was at least a little bit proud of my profession, which had folks standing in the breach. And then depressed, knowing that there’s no way I’d ever do anything that meaningful.

We’re the bad guys. And we’re excited about it and cheer it.

I assume that you have visited Tower of London before. We are not exactly treading new ground. 

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10 hours ago, Blotto said:

What am I missing here? The outrage by Tucker and the Bugle chick seems to be that the military operations conducted in 2017 and 2018 against Syria were orchestrated by the US Government and our allies on false pretenses? The US government led by, let me check my notes. . . .  The Trump administration and his merry bunch of fucktards?  

 

 

 

 

 

 Confusing time we live in. So confusing Tucker momentarily forgot whose dicks he gets paid to suck. 

Trump was conned into following through with the bombing campaign.  It was an atrocious act and Trump deserves criticism for it.  

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9 hours ago, Anastasis said:

I assume that you have visited Tower of London before. We are not exactly treading new ground. 

Yes (man, I've got that whole story I shared about our visit, and the gal having a seizure and falling down the stairs).  And no question.

But it's why we get more outraged at parents who abuse their children than just a stranger who hits a kid -- the perpetrators are supposed to be the protectors.

We are SUPPOSED to be something better than that.  A beacon of liberty, due process, all of that.

Which is why I get and remain ripshit pissed about how easily Americans discard the rule of law for their favored political position and party.  I was pissed off at Clinton for lying under oath, because valid and truthful evidence is a bedrock of the process.  It's why I'm pissed at the GOP for completely disregarding any notion of the rule of law or procedural norms.  The rule of law exists precisely as long as those in power want it to -- no more, no less.  And when those in power decide to shit on it, we the people need to throw that shit right back in their faces.  That is, if we want to maintain (the illusion that we are) a republic governed by the people.

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