[via this diary.] Very shortly the German periodical Stern will have more on those European secret prisons which don’t exist. In a nutshell, German security personnel visited the American facilities as early as 2001 and were shocked at the abuses that they witnessed there. Several immediately reported their experiences to superiors and prosecutors in Germany.
Until now the German government has denied any knowledge of secret prisons so this counts as one hell of a gotcha piece in Stern‘s home market, as well as a timely reminder over here of what it means when a country with America’s resources decides to institutionalize abuse.
One German agent was said to have compared the actions of the US interrogators to Serbian war criminals during the break up of Yugoslavia. “The Serbs ended up before the international court in The Hague for this kind of thing,” he was quoted as saying.
During a visit to the US military base in Tuzla, in northeastern Bosnia, two officers from Germany’s federal police (BKA) and a translator for the German foreign intelligence service (BND) discovered that suspects held there were beaten savagely, the magazine said in an early extract from its edition that is set to come out on Thursday….German investigators recorded what they saw in an intelligence document, which the magazine used as the basis for its report.
It said a 70-year-old terror suspect needed 20 stitches to his scalp after he was repeatedly hit over the head with a rifle butt while being held at “Eagle Base,” as the US camp is called.
The soldier who had beaten him was “visibly proud” of his conduct, the magazine quoted the report as saying.
The usual gaggle will insist that because the 70-year-old man was a terror suspect he must have been guilty of something. After all, America never abuses the innocent…and god forbid that we force innocent men to confess to crimes they had nothing to do with…even though that is precisely the purpose of the “techniques” that Bush, Cheney et al. are so adamant about using. Ask a different set of questions and the same 70 year old man would gladly admit to killing JFK and misplacing Stalin’s glasses.
We have a grand, useless infrastructure that produces bad information, strangles good information (who would voluntarily come forward to interrogators who torture?) and gums up the legal system with genuinely bad people who can never be prosecuted due to abuses on our part. And right on schedule, the the worst countries on Earth react – see, America does it! The only positive thing that I can draw from this sad period of American history, now we know who are the closet sadists and the authoritarian followers waiting for the right regime under whose thumb to subsume their will. Smile for the camera, guys.