Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey

State terrorism and double standards

The hunger strike was held in the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, according to lawyers, involving over a hundred inmates. Prison officials argue that fasting prisoners are about 40 -, two months have already passed amid signs of deteriorating health and increased desperation of the prisoners.

Last Sunday, the U.S. newspaper The New York Times published a letter signed by the Yemeni prisoner Samir Naji al Hasan Moqbel, who claims to have dropped 15 kilos since the beginning of the fast, on February 10.  He denounces inhumane practices of prison staff against participants in the protest, which are force-fed by tubes.

Significantly, one day before the publication there was a clash between guards and prisoners at Guantanamo in which the first non-lethal bullets were used against the latter under the pretext of safeguarding the health and safety of detainees.

The degrading and inhuman treatment they are subjected to remind inmates that Guantanamo is a space for outright denial of the law, and a disgraceful example of the criminal network set up by the White House at the time of George W. Bush to kidnap, imprison and torture suspected terrorists or citizens of the Arab and Muslim world that could be considered as such by Washington.

It must be remembered that most of the prisoners at that site not only have for more than a decade faced extremely harsh treatment, but also have suffered from the denial of virtually all human rights.  They are placed in a legal limbo: no right to be judged in a court of law, not receiving any judicial authority ruling, and without being recognized as members of an opposing military force, which at least would have guaranteed the status and rights afforded to prisoners of war.

To date, and despite the Obama administration itself saying that 87 of the 166 Guantanamo detainees pose no threat to the security of the United States and have the approval for release, Washington has decided not to act in accordance with that assessment, still keeping them in captivity.

The same happens with the promise of closing Guantanamo, made by Barack Obama during his first presidential campaign. He has apparently succumbed to the pressures and the real power of the military-industrial complex and ultraconservative groups of the neighboring nation.

Such facts are  indicative of political , legal and moral degradation of a superpower that has not been recovered, undermining Washington's moral authority to condemn acts of terrorism such as occurred last Monday during the Boston Marathon.

After all, the U.S. government itself supposedly fights to combat terrorism, but to the contrary, has been a promoter that fits into the category of state terrorism.  Its military devastation of Iraq and Afghanistan, the bombing of innocent civilians with drones, which have claimed the lives of 175 children in Afghanistan, Yemen and Pakistan since 2004 - and, of course, the persistent kidnapping of the innocent, 166 of whom languish, against all ethics and any legal framework in the concentration camp at Guantanamo.

Translated from the Spanish version by:

Lisa Karpova