Freedom 6 November 2011Posted by marisacat in 2012 Re Election, California / Pacific Coast, Greece, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iran, Occupy Wall Street, UK, Viva La Revolucion!.
A placard between tents at the encampment [Dan Kitwood/Getty Images]
I hardly ever drop in on the NYT anymore… but I did follow a link in the previous thread and so saw a guest op/ed from Sarah Shourd, one of the three hikers held in Iran… When she, Bauer and Fattal came to Occupy Oakland about two weeks ago, they mentioned they support also the hunger strike that had spread thru Cali prisons over solitary confinement… and I DO see signs at OOcc about prisons, prisoners and incarceration….
[A]fter two months with next to no human contact, my mind began to slip. Some days, I heard phantom footsteps coming down the hall. I spent large portions of my days crouched down on all fours by a small slit in the door, listening. In the periphery of my vision, I began to see flashing lights, only to jerk my head around to find that nothing was there. More than once, I beat at the walls until my knuckles bled and cried myself into a state of exhaustion. At one point, I heard someone screaming, and it wasn’t until I felt the hands of one of the friendlier guards on my face, trying to revive me, that I realized the screams were my own.
Of the 14 and a half months, or 9,840 hours, I was held as a political hostage at Evin prison in Tehran, I spent 9,495 of them in solitary confinement. When I was released just over a year ago, I was shocked to find out that the United Nations Convention Against Torture, one of the few conventions the United States has ratified, does not mention solitary confinement. I learned that there are untold numbers of prisoners around the world in solitary, including an estimated 20,000 to 25,000 in the United States. According to the United Nations’ special rapporteur on torture, Juan Méndez, the practice appears to be “growing and diversifying in its use and severity.”
Amy Fettig at the American Civil Liberties Union told me: “In the U.S. we use solitary as a routine prison administrative practice. It’s not something that’s used as a last recourse, as it should be.” Last summer, prisoners at Pelican Bay prison in California went on a hunger strike to end the practice of isolating some prisoners for more than 22 hours a day. The strike spread until thousands of prisoners were participating. Only when officials agreed to review the use of solitary confinement did the prisoners accept food. . . . . .
No shock really… even a nominally Leftischer party must fall.
Agreement reached on Greek unity government
Greece’s two main political parties reached an agreement Sunday evening to form a unity government, giving Europe a steadier partner as it works to avert a larger financial crisis on the continent.
Prime Minister George Papandreou will resign after the new government is formed, officials said, although the timing, and his successor, remained unclear.
Read more at:
WashPo, Washing the Nooz Daily What else is new.
I’ll say it again, shut down the Port of Piraeus.