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Wednesday, June 28, 2006 07:11 pm

The Indelible Stain of Gitmo

Bush’s torture camp in Cuba must be shut down

George W. Bush’s prison camp at Guantánamo Bay is not only a hellhole for the roughly 460 men who’ve been locked down there for four years — it has now also become an indelible, shameful, and spreading stain on our country’s fundamental morality.

You and I must no longer avert our eyes from what the Bushites are doing there. Gitmo — as this off-the-books dungeon is called — holds detainees from Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere who’ve been branded terrorists by Bush & Gang, even though many of them are not. Only 10 have even been charged with any crime, and all are deprived of any right to challenge their imprisonment. They are not allowed to see any evidence against them and are essentially denied access to lawyers. They also have been humiliated, abused, tormented, and tortured.

Indeed, just being trapped in this netherworld of despair is torture — and when dozens have resorted to hunger strikes, our government has strapped them to metal “restraint chairs,” run tubes through their noses and down to their stomachs, and force-fed them.

Dozens more have attempted to end their despair with suicide, and now three have succeeded. In a shocking disassociation from humanity, one of our government’s top officials called these three deaths a “PR move” by the prisoners. More perversely, the commander of Gitmo called the suicides “an act of asymmetrical warfare against us.” Even colder was the response of George W., the guy who created this dungeon of despair. He said he had “concerns” about the deaths. He was not appalled, outraged, or sorry — only concerned.

To the world, Gitmo is no longer Bush’s prison — it’s yours and mine. To reassert our society’s humanity, let’s shut down Gitmo and reinstate the rule of law.

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