Of course they’re all terrorists …

Donald Vance, an American citizen and Navy veteran, got caught up in a raid on a contractor that was brought about by his own actions as a whistleblower. The account of his subsequent maltreatment at Camp Cropper is enough to turn your stomach.

except for the ones that aren’t, such as a whistleblower about contract fraud in Iraq who got picked up in the raid on his company brought about by the information he supplied to the FBI, and held at Camp Cropper:

American guards arrived at the man’s cell periodically over the next several days, shackled his hands and feet, blindfolded him and took him to a padded room for interrogation, the detainee said. After an hour or two, he was returned to his cell, fatigued but unable to sleep.

The fluorescent lights in his cell were never turned off, he said. At most hours, heavy metal or country music blared in the corridor. He said he was rousted at random times without explanation and made to stand in his cell. Even lying down, he said, he was kept from covering his face to block out the light, noise and cold. And when he was released after 97 days he was exhausted, depressed and scared.

Donald Vance continued to be held, maltreated, and denied access to a lawyer for more than two months after the FBI had told the military that he was the whistleblower in the case. Before his release, his captors seemed very interested in whether he intended to complain afterwards. The Pentagon continues to deny that it did anything wrong. No doubt the Justice Department will press for his lawsuit against Donald Rumsfeld to be dismissed, and will probably prevail.

How about some Congressional hearings?

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

2 thoughts on “Of course they’re all terrorists …”

  1. It doesn't sound like he was treated better than if he was in Cook County Jail, with the exception of the lack of communication.

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