In the era before the Arab Spring the CIA collaborated with the Qaddafi regime and even rendered suspects they captured to Libya where they were interrogated and tortured.
Human Rights Watch has released a long 156 page report documenting the CIA's program of torture, including waterboarding in close collaboration with the Qaddafi regime. This new information was released just days after the U.S. Attorney General, Eric Holder, had made a formal decision granting immunity to agents involved after investigation of over a hundred cases of CIA agents engaging in acts of torture.
The HRW report interviewed prisoners held by the CIA in black sites in Libya as well as caches of documents that were turned up when rebels seized Qaddafi's state security offices last year. Five Libyans were held first in U.S. prisons in Afghanistan for 8 months to 2 years and were then rendered to Libya. They were chained naked to walls in dark, windowless cells for weeks or even months at a time. They were restrained in painful stress positions, beaten, slammed into walls. They were not allowed to bathe and were denied sleep by loud Western music. The detainees had been tortured in CIA prisons in Afghanistan as well. All 14 prisoners interviewed claimed that they were turned over to the Libyan regime with the fulll expectation that they would be tortured and abused there.
Among those turned over to the Qaddafi regime was Ibn-Shekh-al-Libi. He was one of the key sources of fraudulent claims about Saddam Hussein. These claims were cited by the Bush administration to justify invading Iraq. He died in Libya but photos of him before his death show evidence of torture. Many suspect his claims were obtained through torture. A number of those tortured in Libya are now in important positions in the new government. A well known former military leader Abdelhakim Belhadj was also rendered to Libya with the help of the UK M16: Tracked by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), after a tip-off from MI6 gained from London-based informants ,Belhadj was arrested with his pregnant wife in 2004 at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Malaysia...Transferred on the same plane to Bangkok, he was then placed in the custody of the CIA, where he was retained at a secret prison at the airport.Returned to Libya on the rendition aircraft N313P,[ he was held at the Abu Salim prison for seven years.
The Justice Department even under Obama has tried to convince everyone to forget these crimes and move on. Obama wants to move forward and not dwell on the past. The torturers involved in rendition are the untouchables. While continuing to outlaw torture Obama has not even outlawed rendition. The situation would certainly not improve with Romney at the helm. There is a long article at this site that shows some of the torture boxes used in Libya by the CIA.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com