Abu Zubaydah is the “poster child for the torture program, and that’s why they never want him to be heard from again,” said Joseph Margulies, his attorney.
Andy Worthington, who has written many articles on Zubaydah over 10 years, summarizes:
Seized in a house raid in Faisalabad in Pakistan on March 28, 2002, when he was severely wounded, he then became the first victim of the CIA’s post-9/11 torture program, flown to Thailand and subjected to horrendous torture, including being waterboarded 83 times. Four and a half years later, after being shunted around various other “black sites,” including Poland (for which the European Court of Human Rights awarded him $148,000 damages in February 2015) he ended up at Guantánamo, where, over time, the government has walked back from all its original outrageous claims about him being a senior member of Al-Qaeda and even having knowledge of the 9/11 attacks, let alone being involved in them.
Zubaydah just appeared before a “Periodic Review Board” at Guantanamo – his first public connection with the world in more than 14 years. He is one of the so-called “high value” detainees who we expect will never be charged, tried, or released. Why? Torture. He was tortured under the rubric designed by the “architects” of the torture program, Bruce Jessen and Jim MItchel, the psychologists who were contracted by the CIA.
More from Andy:
In a desperate effort to shield themselves from accountability for the torture program, officials have ruthlessly silenced its victims, even as the truth has leaked out via other sources, or been made publicly available — in the case of the US Senate Intelligence Committee’s report into the CIA torture program, whose executive summary was released in December 2014.
Margulies told the New York Times that his client “was never a member of Al Qaeda and has never been charged with a crime by American authorities.” He was associated with Mujahedeen fighters in the 90’s, when they were looked upon favorably by the US and its CIA, for havign fought the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.
But once the US decided, without apparent evidence, that he was part of Al Qaeda; once they tortured him so that he lost an eye, and according to their claims, his mind, they can’t back off and admit it… because above all, he can never be allowed to tell what they did to him.