NEW YORK – September 3 – Today, in a case filed on behalf of the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), attorneys argued that video recordings of CCR client Mohammed al Qahtani at Guantanamo Bay should be released to the public under the Freedom of Information Act. The government possesses tapes of al Qahtani made when he was in solitary confinement immediately prior to a period, detailed in a log published by Time Magazine in 2006, in which al Qahtani was systematically tortured. He is the only Guantanamo prisoner whom the U.S. government has explicitly acknowledged torturing. Al Qahtani’s attorneys at CCR have viewed the tapes, but are prohibited from discussing their contents, including confirming or denying whether they contain footage of abuse.
“Without access to documentation of abuses such as the torture of Mr. al Qahtani, the public is deprived of its best mechanism for holding officials accountable and its most powerful impetus to change policies. The government has already destroyed hundreds of hours of videotape depicting harsh interrogations of prisoners by the CIA, for the express purpose of avoiding public scrutiny. Release of al Qahtani’s tapes will provide a unique opportunity for accountability—one that was lost when those other tapes were destroyed.” said CCR Senior Staff Attorney Shayana Kadidal, referring to an order by Jose A. Rodriguez Jr., former head of the C.I.A.’s clandestine service, to destroy 92 video tapes of interrogations at CIA black sites.
We need to update you on where Truthout stands.
To be brutally honest, Truthout is behind on our fundraising goals for the year. There are a lot of reasons why. We’re dealing with broad trends in our industry, trends that have led publications like Vice, BuzzFeed, and National Geographic to make painful cuts. Everyone is feeling the squeeze of inflation. And despite its lasting importance, news readership is declining.
To ensure we stay out of the red by the end of the year, we have a long way to go. Our future is threatened.
We’ve stayed online over two decades thanks to the support of our readers. Because you believe in the power of our work, share our transformative stories, and give to keep us going strong, we know we can make it through this tough moment.
If you value what we do and what we stand for, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to support our work.