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Archive for the category “Torture”

Japan! The Evil Lives On

What do you think of about Japan? Amazing electronic gadgets, Toyota cars, Geisha girls, the Bullet Train, incredible gardens? Perhaps if you read history or are old enough to recall WW2 you will shudder at the thought of the immense cruelty of the Imperial Japanese army to those that it captured or conquered.

This cruel mindset, it seems, lives on in it’s criminal justice system. Executions by hanging still take place and it is literally minutes or at best only hours before it is carried out, are the condemned informed. Before this they are kept in a cell little bigger than a toilet for many years where they are forced to sit and not allowed to even exercise in this cell. Two times a week, three in summer, they are taken outside to exercise. Prevented from communicating with other prisoners it is little wonder that many of them become insane before execution. Even those who were insane at the time of the crime are executed.

Japan’s conviction rate exceeds 99% so it is obvious that many innocent people are found guilty and killed by the State. Confessions are known to be extracted from suspects by the police using what could be classed as torture.

Japan may have been defeated in the war but it was rebuilt by the United States, another nation that still in many States kills people to show that killing people is wrong.

Ref:   Amnesty International BBC

Lockerbie Bomber

As could easily be expected there is an outcry over the release of the convicted Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi. The media naturally trying to make conspiracy connections between his release and lucrative oil contracts in Libya and seemingly unable to accept that the Scottish Justice Minister was simply following the legal process in Scotland which includes mercy in exceptional circumstances.

The cry, largely from the USA, that he should have been kept in prison to die is a cry for vengance and not for justice. He is going to die in the next few weeks or months and whether he was guilty or not and there does at least seem to be grounds for doubt, is not the point. In releasing him Scotland has shown that it’s values are greater than those of terrorists and of those who advocate revenge.

It is of no surprise that the strongest condemnations have arisen in the US and in particular from the US administration. This after all is a nation that still executes people, many of whom are mentally ill or who were under age at the time of their offence. A nation who kidnaps people and secretly transports them to imprisonment, without trial, in foreign lands and which authorises torture.

We have nothing to learn from the US, the so called ‘Christian’ country but they have much to learn from this courageous, difficult and merciful decision by Scottish Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill.

Water-boarding & More-

Former US Vice-President Dick Cheney has urged the CIA to release memos which, he says, show harsh interrogation techniques such as water-boarding work.

If these memos do indeed show that ‘harsh techniques’ which anyone else would call torture, work then it must surely follow in Dick Cheney’s mind that the US should go further. How about pulling out finger nails with pliers or maybe the rack would be a good idea?

It just goes to show how low the Bush administration had sunk, an administration that the UK government supported through thick and thin. President Obama is like a breath of fresh air so let’s hope that he has the strength never to be sucked in by those in America who still believe that ‘might is right’ and that human rights and decency are only for them.

Time to Come Home

At least five more deaths of our troops in Afghanistan since I last wrote on this matter. Five more wasted young lives along with even more injured, some of whom will require care for the rest of their lives.

The financial cost of this hopeless invasion is crippling and the human cost is incalculable. The government says that we are fighting terrorists who would otherwise be in the UK causing havoc. Even if this were completely true and nothing to do with pipelines across Afghanistan, already it is said that trainee terrorists are moving into Pakistan and Somalia where it is easier for them to set up camp. What is the West going to do now then? Invade Pakistan, invade Somalia? Then where? Atrocities have so far been committed here by largely ‘home grown’ terrorists so is the government going to create Martial Law here?

Bring our troops home now and save who knows how many young lives. This ‘war’ is actually an invasion of a foreign country and the so called ‘insurgents’ are in reality fighting for their country against the invaders. Surely we would do the same if the situation were reversed. The government in Kabul is nothing¬† but a puppet of the US and is corrupt from top to bottom. No, I wouldn’t like to see the Taliban back in full control but it is their country and we should keep our noses out. It took many hundreds of years to arrive at our democratic and freedom loving society, they too need time to develop. Let’s not forget that our democratic and freedom loving society created Guantanamo Bay, an acceptance of torture and in the UK’s case, allowing US planes to refuel en route with prisoners being taken for torture.

Bring our troops home, cancel the aircraft carrier order, concentrate our resources purely on a defensive force and we will be richer, pose no threat and therefore be safer.

US Vice President admits Torture

The Vice President of the United States, Dick Cheney, admitted that he was consulted on the use of ‘water boarding’ torture in Guantanamo Bay prison and that he approved it.

That the US could sink to such depths is perhaps not that surprising but it is still a shock when the second in command calmly and coolly states that it’s OK to torture people in the name of freedom and democracy. There should be world wide outrage and condemnation and all those involved including the President and Vice President should charged with crimes against humanity and appear before a Tribunal at The Hague.

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