ghost plane

stephen grey is the author of 'ghost plane,' which is a revealing account on the secret world of cia prisons. grey claims that all around the world, prisons are being used for the interrogation and torture of terror suspects.

now, we know these prisons exist. george w. bush admitted to their existence last year. what is not being owned up to, are the tactics being used, the direct violation of a person's rights, which in this case, is torture. we are talking about electroshock, sleep deprivation, in some cases razor blades... not to mention the sheer terror of being abducted for seemingly no reason.

bush has defended the use of these prisons, as a necessary means in the war on terror. this is no surprise, considering bush is officially the torture president, having legalized the use of indefinite detainment. however, bush cannot take all the credit: bill clinton has his fair share of it, considering he's the one that brought these renditions about, albeit in smaller, lesser numbers.

what is rendition exactly? it is basically the secret abduction and transfer of suspects, usually without warning, on 'ghost planes' to foreign countries where these prisons exist. once there, the suspects are submitted to some of the most barbaric means of interrogation. methods, by the way, that haven't been proven to be effective. if you take an innocent man, and you beat him long enough, he'll tell you he's the fucking lindbergh baby just to make you stop.

maher arar, a canadian citizen, was a victim of such cases of "rendition," where he was whisked away to syria and tortured, only to be cleared of all charges afterwards. (the united states sill has arar on a no-fly list, claiming he is still a potential threat, even though arar has been proven innocent of all charges. this is no surprise, considering arar has a lawsuit against the united states government. to take him off the no-fly list, is to admit they were wrong).

what is equally disturbing is the fact that in order for the cia to pull this kind of stuff off, they need the co-operation of other sovereign countries. you need permission to have a secret prison on foreign soil, to be able to land the ghost planes, as well as relying on local authorities sometimes to capture the suspects. this includes, of all countries, canada. i suspect this is one of those "don't ask, don't tell" situations for the canadian government.

when facing disturbing issues such as torture, i still try to find a silver lining. in this case, it's the ghost planes themselves. these planes, funny enough, are luxury planes. private jets. i guess if you're going to be abducted against your will and flown to an undisclosed location where you will be submitted to physical and emotional degradation, you might as well fly first class.

here is a clip from the hour with the stephen grey:

and if you want, a previous blog i did about the loss of habeas corpus in the united states can be found here, called last castle.