ACLU Wins Again: Defense Department Will Release New Torture Photos

April 24, 2009

(ChattahBox)—The American Civil Liberties Union is at it again, acting as the front line in pushing back against government secrecy and forcing accountability by actively filing and winning open-records lawsuits. The latest win will force the Department of Defense to release at least 21 photographs by May 28, showing detainee abuse in prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan, other than Abu Ghraib prison. ACLU attorney Amrit Singh, says the photographs will show the country “proof that prisoner abuse by U.S. personnel was not aberrational but widespread…”

The second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the ACLU last year, ordering the requested photos to be released. The Defense Department is not appealing. The ACLU filed the original lawsuit in 2004 after the Bush administration refused to comply with an open records request.

The ACLU says the Department of Defense is processing a large number of photographs in addition to the first set of 21, which it will release soon. These photos are sure to cause further controversy and disgust with the Bush administration’s program of brutal interrogation techniques, used to abuse and torture detainees in its war against terror after the attacks of 9/11.

Just last week, the ACLU was instrumental in the release of additional “torture memos”, authored by Bush administration White House attorneys with the Office of Legal Counsel, twisting the rule of law to sanction torture. The “torture memos” open records lawsuit was also filed against the Bush administration, resulting in the Obama administration not appealing and releasing the documents to the ACLU.

All of the released “torture memos” can be found on the ACLU website, including the DOD detainee abuse photos when they are released.



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