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Thursday, Aug 21st

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US govt presses NY appeal on detainee photos

The U.S. government has asked an appellate court to reconsider its decision ordering the release of 21 pictures of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan. In court papers made public Friday, the government says the photos must be withheld to protect American troops.

In September, a three-judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered the U.S. to give the pictures to the American Civil Liberties Union. Now the government is asking the full appeals court to hear the case.

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Judge Is Told 6 Algerians Should Remain Detained

A Justice Department lawyer yesterday urged a federal judge to continue the detention of six Algerians at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, contending they would "take up arms" and attack Americans if released.

The government alleges that the six Algerians were planning to go to Afghanistan to fight U.S. forces. But the detainees' lawyers said the men are innocent, never should have been confined and, after nearly seven years of captivity, should be freed. The lawyers described the detainees as hardworking family men. 

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TVNL Comment: If you were held without charges for seven years by some foreign governtment, would you want to 'take up arms' against those who imprisoned you?  Just asking....

FBI staff silenced over torture

AS EVIDENCE of prisoner mistreatment at Guantanamo Bay began to mount in 2002, FBI agents at the base created a "war crimes file" to document accusations against American military personnel, but were eventually ordered to close the file down, a Justice Department report has disclosed.

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Karzai 'demands' Obama end civilian deaths after latest incident

Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Wednesday demanded that President-elect Barack Obama put an end to civilian casualties as villagers said U.S. warplanes bombed a wedding party, killing 37 people, including 23 children and 10 women.

Karzai said he hopes the election will "bring peace to Afghanistan, life to Afghanistan and prosperity to the Afghan people and the rest of the world." He applauded America for its "courage" in electing Obama.

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Bush Torture Memo Slapped Down by Court

As the curtain falls on the Bush Administration, one set piece of the Administration's policy on torture has finally been ushered offstage. The Bybee Memo, a 2002 opinion authored by the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel, was brushed aside last week by a federal judge overseeing the nation's first-ever criminal trial of an American accused of torture abroad.

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Bush Administration Committed War Crimes Against Prisoners, Reveals Physicians for Human Rights

"After years of disclosures by government investigations, media accounts, and reports from human rights organizations, there is no longer any doubt as to whether the current administration has committed war crimes," wrote retired Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba in the preface to the report. "The only question that remains to be answered is whether those who ordered the use of torture will be held to account.

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Guantanamo jury convicts bin Laden's media man

A U.S. military tribunal found Osama bin Laden's media secretary guilty of conspiring with al Qaeda, soliciting murder and providing material support for terrorism in a verdict announced on Monday at Guantanamo.

Yemeni prisoner Ali Hamza al Bahlul is the second man to be convicted by a jury in the war crimes court at the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He faces life in prison.

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