In addition... those who refuse to leave their cells to be force-fed voluntarily are “beaten and forcibly extracted from their cells,” another hideous procedure that is part of the very fabric of Guantánamo, carried out by teams of five heavily armored guards, responsible for quelling even the most minor infringements of the rules, who, over the years, have been responsible for attacks so severe that prisoners have ended up with broken limbs.Worthington analyzes the situation in Guantanamo, post Obama's order to shut down the facility within a year. Inside Gitmo, little has changed. Despite Obama's order to suspend the military commissions trials, Military Judge Col. James Pohl ruled the arraignment of "high-value" detainee, Abdul Rahim al-Nashiri, accused of involvement in bombing of the USS Cole, will take place as scheduled. Worthington's conclusion, "the bitter truth as I write these words is that Guantánamo is still being run as if the Bush administration remains in control."
This is, I’m sure you’ll agree, a far cry from the “humane treatment of prisoners” required by the Geneva Conventions, and it is crucial, therefore, that those concerned with the treatment of the prisoners at Guantánamo maintain the pressure on the new President to demonstrate that he is keeping to his word.
Another example of this disturbing fact is the inclusion of abusive techniques in the Army Field Manual, the document which covers interrogation policy at Guantanamo (and by executive order, now all military and CIA personnel), which also allows for up to 30 days of isolation, sleep deprivation, and forms of sensory deprivation. Although it prohibits certain torture techniques like waterboarding, sexual humiliation and forced nudity, it fails to prohibit other, such as stress positions.
How much the inclusion of these loopholes in the Presidential orders was influenced by the Pentagon or by the CIA is as yet unknown, but their existence indicates that the struggle to ensure that America is, genuinely, a country that does not torture, is not yet over.