Lakhdar Boumediene, the named plaintiff in a seminal Supreme Court case preserving Guantanamo Bay detainees’ right to challenge the legality of their detention, recounts his experience as a man falsely accused of terrorism and imprisoned at Gitmo for seven years in an op-ed in the New York Times. The whole thing is worth reading, but one sentence in particular stands out:
I left Algeria in 1990 to work abroad. In 1997 my family and I moved to Bosnia and Herzegovina at the request of my employer, the Red Crescent Society of the United Arab Emirates. I served in the Sarajevo office as director of humanitarian aid for children who had lost relatives to violence during the Balkan conflicts. In 1998, I became a Bosnian citizen. We had a good life, but all of that changed after 9/11.
When I arrived at work on the morning of Oct. 19, 2001, an intelligence officer was waiting for me. He asked me to accompany him to answer questions. I did so, voluntarily — but afterward I was told that I could not go home. The United States had demanded that local authorities arrest me and five other men. News reports at the time said the United States believed that I was plotting to blow up its embassy in Sarajevo. I had never — for a second — considered this.
Boumediene was not simply arrested and imprisoned for years despite no evidence that he was a terrorist, he was arrested while he was working as a humanitarian aide worker. For children. The man devoted his life to helping the youngest and most vulnerable victims of a terrible conflict, and we locked him up and tortured him.
The Occupiers are still protesting, despite the media pretty much totally ignoring them. Though the tenor and theme has changed--at least in Oakland--from "economic justice" to cries against police brutality.
Police brutality has been a hot topic here for *generations*. There is a long and brutal history of white cops beating the hell out of black people, poor people, latino people, and activists of all stripes.
And the protests just seem to enrage the cops. Watch them knock a woman off her bicycle and beat her on the ground with clubs. How long can this go on before protesters begin responding with equal force? They have shown amazing restraint so far in not getting violent (a few thrown rocks aside, and really a few rocks is nothing compared to the sanctioned police violence).
#OO #OPD slams woman and her bike to the ground, beat her and chase her down the street! - YouTube
Despite being declared America’s Most Dangerous City by Forbes magazine for having the highest violent-crime rate in the country, Detroit will no longer make its police department precincts and districts available to the public after 4 PM due to budget cuts.
The Detroit Police Department announced yesterday that all eight precinct and district stations will shut down for the day at 4 PM, reopening at 8 AM the following morning.
In addition, many positions, including vehicle and building maintenance, law enforcement information network operation, and other “desk jobs” will be cut in order to move officers from the precincts to the streets.
“I think it’s going to work,” said Detroit police Cmdr. Steve Dolunt. “I think it’ll get the officers more involved [with citizens].”
Some 100 officers will be laid off in order to allow the department to receive federal grant money. There are 3,000 officers currently on the payroll.