US Secret Prisons and Human Rights
Washington, taking measures to clarify all the circumstances of the 9 / 11 terrorist attack, by the hands of its special services, kidnapped people suspected of the crime. Since torture was prohibited in the United States, secret CIA prisons were located outside the country. This was facilitated by the fact that the laws of many countries, such as, for example, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Jordan, Egypt and Poland, allow torture to be applied to prisoners. The human rights organization Open Society Justive Initiative attempted to calculate how many states help the Americans in this. It turned out that such countries are no less than 54, and this constitutes 21% of the total number of all existing states, of which 28% of the UN member countries. It is known that Spain, Denmark, the United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Syria and Iran provided active assistance in apprehending those suspected of terrorism. Canada, Ireland and Cyprus have provided their air and ground space for American operations. But Israel, Holland, Hungary and Russia did not succumb to the pressure of the United States and did not participate in the crimes of the American special services.
The world became aware of the details of torture in Europe in the American secret prisons. These facts shocked the Europeans so much that the court for human rights decided to declassify information about the presence of secret prison houses of the CIA in Poland. So far, such a decision has not been made in respect of Lithuania and Romania, which also had secret CIA prisons on their territory.
The European Union considered that the cooperation of European countries with the Americans in shameful, morally, projects, compromises its reputation and compels the Europeans to hide their awareness on this issue.
For example, the Polish leadership did not confirm its participation in the CIA’s program to create secret prisons. But this information was voiced by a Saudi Abd al-Raheem an-Nasiri, who claimed that he was held for about six months in a secret prison located on Polish territory.
In the Polish secret prison "Stare Keshkuta", the CIA stationed leaders of terrorists and anti-American movements. The Romanian prison "Mikhail Kogelnichanu" was intended for the criminals of the lower category. Both prisons were under the leadership of the CIA. The President of Romania, of course, was aware of the existence of such a prison in the country. The price paid to Bucharest for supporting the CIA’s special operations was a promise to support Romania’s entry into NATO.
Details about the secret prison of the CIA, located in the territory of Lithuania, the public learned in 2009 year. It was located near the cottages of Lithuanian officials - in the village of Antavilay. Earlier, a riding school was working on its premises. This building was purchased and refurbished by the American company Elite LLC. The indoor arena was dismantled and in its place were built cameras and torture rooms, a garage was also equipped and an autonomous power supply system was installed. The journalists suggested that the construction of a secret prison was a pass for Latvia to the North Atlantic Alliance. The leak of information about this object forced the Lithuanian parliament to make a decision to conduct an investigation. But by this time the secret CIA jail had not been in place for four years. It is still unknown how many prisoners passed through the antivilia prison.
The world community has long been familiar with the principles of the work of Americans on foreign territory: even if it is illegal, but necessary for them, it means - it is possible. Therefore, the leaked information about finding US secret prisons in many European countries did not come as a surprise to people. On its territory, US intelligence agencies never violate the laws. But the territory of countries where the government will not notice the use of torture to prisoners, will not demand respect for human rights, close all eyes to the actions of the US special services, is very suitable for cooperation with the Americans in the fight against terrorism. It is difficult to give a moral and ethical assessment of such actions by the leadership of the US partner countries, but humility in this matter is not very clean in all respects to the American intelligence service talking about their ingratiating, flirting and, possibly, dependence on the United States.
And although information about the American program of secret prisons was leaked to the media under Bush Jr., the situation has not changed much. The US intelligence agencies continue to disregard international requirements and the laws of the countries where their secret corners are located. In these torture sites they use sophisticated torture on prisoners, forcing them to surrender their accomplices (even if in reality they do not exist).
The fact that the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) was forced to decide on the issue of secret American dungeons in Europe shows that community control over the actions of American special services by the “old Europe” has been lost for a long time. And the status of the "cradle of Western civilization" suffered enormous damage. But the EU “honestly earned” this blow to its reputation. The Europeans, knowing about the illegal actions of the CIA on their territory, did not want to bear responsibility for them. No one doubts that it is necessary to combat international terrorism, but it is impossible (not even ethically) to violate the laws of the countries where anti-terrorism activities are being carried out. The world community has the right to assess the actions of those leaders of countries where secret prisons were established. Officials should be fully responsible for the activities of foreign intelligence services on their territory. The further political career of these heads of state must depend on whether the people who gave them power support their decisions.
The Polish Ministry of Interior has responded to the decision of the ECtHR with a threat to limit cooperation with an international court. It is unlikely that the actions of the Poles can be considered balanced. Going to deception, they had to understand that the Europeans would not forgive them for such a vulgar treachery. Warsaw, this lie can bring problems with many world powers (not only European). It is time for the Poles to think: is it not too high a price that they pay for their cooperation with Washington? It must be admitted that the Polish side did not receive any benefit from cooperation with the US special services. But Warsaw should be responsible for the results of this cooperation independently. And this lesson will be a warning to those countries that unconditionally fulfill the requirements of the United States.
In order to preserve their own face in this unpleasant situation for them, the Polish government announced the launch of investigations by the prosecutor’s office about the possibility of the existence of CIA secret prisons in the country. Pavel Gras, on behalf of the country's government, made the report that the investigation is classified and there will be no interaction with the ECHR on this issue until its completion. The head of the Polish National Security Bureau added that declassifying documents is detrimental to the country's national security. Poland has repeatedly expressed such disregard for its European partners. Warsaw always uses the terms “cooperation” and “partnership” when it comes to financial or humanitarian aid from Brussels, but almost always ignores the obligation to fulfill its obligations to the Western European community.
It is also necessary to note the negative role of the USA, which provoked Poland to violate international agreements and manifested its usual cynicism towards its partner. But Poland is not a “little child” and should be responsible for its actions.
It is no secret to anyone that, in its policy of the United States, it applies a policy of double standards: within the country, human rights are strictly observed, but outside of it, without any formal accusations (enough and indirect suspicions), people can be kept in secret prisons. They deny prisoners the right to be protected, to try their cases in court and to challenge the results of investigations. And the American accomplices, who help them with the placement and concealment of the CIA secret jails, should be on a par with the American special services responsible for their crimes.
According to human rights activist Julia Hall, the leaders of the countries that are members of NATO were aware of the program for creating secret prisons being implemented by the Americans as part of the fight against terrorism. The first international investigation into this issue took place back in 2006, and NATO members had the time and authority to end torture in secret prisons. And although the governments of some countries indemnified the losses to the victims of torture prisons, there has not yet been a single trial against those who committed these crimes. D. Hall believes that even if the victims of torture openly tell about the secret prisons of the CIA, the investigation may be delayed for many years.
Americans themselves are not very concerned that information about their prisons abroad was declassified. They do not care about the public opinion; they respond to any criticism on this issue with contemptuous silence. If, however, they are forced to give explanations, then, most likely, they will refer to a small percentage of mistakes on their part in conducting the fight against international terrorism. The Pentagon will take all possible measures to extinguish the desire of human rights defenders to interfere in the work of their secret units.
It is striking that the number of victims of the American fight against terrorism has significantly exceeded the number of people killed in the 9 / 11 terrorist attack. It is possible that it is the actions of the US special services that provoke terrorist organizations to intensify criminal operations.
So far, Washington and their accomplices managed to conceal their crimes: documentation is being destroyed, deliberately false information is being disseminated through information agencies, pressure is being put on the ECHR and human rights defenders.
Despite the fact that information about secret prisons is quite well hidden, the ECtHR has decided to condemn Macedonia in the use of cruel treatment of suspected terrorists. An Italian court convicted in absentia several CIA officers for the abduction and torture of an Egyptian, who later managed to return to their homeland. Convicted special agents were not prosecuted in the United States and did not suffer any punishment. The CIA, as always, ignored the court decision outside its own country.
Secret prisons are only a small part of the ever-growing problem of the Euro-Atlantic partnership.
Such circumstances once again confirm the truth that the United States does not have the right to declare itself to the world community as a model for the observance of human rights. History put everything in its place - these actions will be given an objective assessment. Already, many countries are protesting the use of unmanned aerial vehicles and missiles to track down and destroy suspected terrorists, including US citizens. The killings occur without trial and investigation. In Yemen, three US citizens were killed in a similar way. Thousands of people, including 170 children, have become victims of unmanned aerial vehicles in Pakistan.
- Valery Boval