July 27, 2011
An innocent European, who was sold to U.S. military by a citizen spy, spent nearly five years in Guantanamo Bay prison without charges exposes the brutality of torture. With the DHS anti-terror apparatus now turned inward, do American citizens face the same treatment?
Martin Luther King Jr. wisely proclaimed “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Murat Kurnaz, a German-born Turkish citizen, describes in the video below his chilling story of torture under United States custody. Kurnaz was rounded up in Pakistan at the height of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 when locals sold him to the U.S. military for $3000, the bounty paid to citizen spies for “terror suspects.” With the Department of Homeland Security ramping up its own citizen spy program, can we expect the same treatment in America?
Working for a peaceful NGO, Kurnaz was detained on his way to return home to Germany. Over the next five years he was repeatedly tortured by the United States with no charges ever filed. According to Amnesty USA, “his 2006 release was prompted by a personal plea by German Chancellor Angela Merkel to President George W. Bush even though official documents show that U.S. and German authorities had determined in 2002 that he was innocent.”
Murat’s story echoes that of other released Guantanamo detainees, and verifies that events that took place in Abu Ghraib were definitely not an isolated case. How many more cases of criminal torture must Americans hear before they demand an end to these actions done in their name? If this was done to even one innocent person, like Murat, it is a catastrophe to justice, freedom, and basic moral conscience. These are war crimes by every definition.
When American officials excoriate other nations for being brutal regimes, it rings more hollow than ever after listening to Murat’s testimony. America is becoming history’s most evil empire by engaging in such wicked brutality. This is the shameful reputation that Americans must now wear when they travel abroad. No longer is America a shining example of liberty and morality. The U.S. government is increasingly a criminal organization, and its citizens in their apathy seem like willing accomplices.
Americans and Brits, with their endless distractions, may not realize it, but this stunningly evil injustice machine is coming home to roost. You see, Murat was turned in by a citizen spy for financial compensation. America is now acting on similar anonymous tips to corral potential dissidents; and the U.K already pays its citizens to monitor CCTV for crimes.
The Department of Homeland Security has proudly unveiled its very own citizen spy program. Although they are not yet paying for tips, the citizen snitch can remain anonymous while having immunity in case of wrongful accusations. The DHS promotional video below, with its hypnotic background music and monotone narrator, comically shows ridiculous scenarios that citizen spies should report on:
The injustices of detainment without charges and vicious torture has been allowed to happen because abductees were suspected of being “enemy combatants” somewhere over there. But now, the DHS has openly announced that the primary target for their anti-terror apparatus is focused inward on American soil. With its citizen spy program in full swing, we can expect many innocent people to be wrongfully snitched on. And if history is any indicator, victims will face Jack Bauer justice with little recourse. Beware: an injustice there is quickly becoming an injustice here.
Eric Blair’s article first appeared at Activist Post.