“Eternal Prisoner” in the black Prison

  ”The way we interrogate a prisoner may result in the death of a prisoner. If he dies, his body will be cremated without leaving a trace. But if he survives, can the CIA guarantee that he will never have contact with the outside world in the future? ?” Twenty years ago, the CIA headquarters received such a telegram from a forward agent.
  ”Yes.” The CIA quickly gave a clear answer, and said, “He will never have too much communication and contact with other people, and we will never let him say anything important. At the end of his life He will remain in solitary confinement until now.”
  The prisoner who was given this “evaporation order” by the CIA was named Abu Zubaida. Since 2002, he has been detained by the United States without trial or sentence. Recently, he received a compensation of 100,000 euros (about 723,000 yuan) to compensate for the damage that the CIA held him in a black prison in Europe and subjected him to various tortures a few years ago. But the 50-year-old “permanent prisoner” is still being held in Guantanamo, with an unknown sentence and an unknown future.
  Zubaydah, whose real name was Zayn Abidine Mohammed al-Hussein, was born into a family of Palestinian immigrants in Saudi Arabia with 10 siblings. For the first 20 years of his life, Palestinian identity made him struggle. As a child, he traveled to the West Bank with friends to protest the U.S. connivance of Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territories. Growing up, he was sent by his parents to study computer science at a university in India. His parents hoped that he could, like his Indian classmates around him, find a well-paying job in a tech company in the United States after graduation.
  In Zubaida’s memory, his parents’ marriage was not a happy one. He spent almost his childhood “shouting, squealing and crying” from his parents. Faced with all kinds of mental trauma, Zubaida was deeply immersed in a certain sense of disillusionment, eager to find spiritual sustenance. At that time, many Arab youths went to Afghanistan to join armed groups to resist the Soviet invasion. But when Zubaida, a 20-year-old college student, went to Afghanistan in 1991 without telling his parents, Soviet troops had withdrawn two years earlier, and the country was in the throes of a civil war.
  When he first arrived in Afghanistan, Zubaida wrote in his diary: “To be honest, I was terrified. Not of bullets, but of the future itself. From that moment on, I will have no way out.” But he also felt excited. He quit smoking and sat beside the veterans all night listening to their war stories. However, he gradually realized the cruelty of war. “I saw seven tanks lined up with their gun barrels pointed at the top of the mountain where I was, and I was so close to death.”
  In 1992, Zubaida was hit by shrapnel and lay several times in the hospital. moon. Under enormous pressure, his “fighting enthusiasm” was gradually worn away and replaced by anxiety and depression. At that time, his father sent a letter announcing that he had severed the relationship with him: “I don’t want to send you to prison, I will treat you as dead or missing.” This letter interrupted Zubaida’s way home.
  There are various theories about Zubaida’s relationship with al Qaeda. One theory is that he wanted to join al Qaeda, but was turned down. Later, he acted alone and became a “lone wolf” type of armed man. There is also a saying that he is an ordinary member of the “al Qaeda” organization. Zubaida’s lawyer said he was an outsider of al-Qaeda and played a role like an “overseas travel broker.”
  After the 9/11 incident in 2001, the CIA placed Zubaida at the forefront of the “blacklist” to be arrested based on its own intelligence. Zubaida was identified as “one of the most important cronies” of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, and was even regarded as the second or third figure of the “al Qaeda” organization and one of the main planners of the 9/11 attack. His name appeared in a CIA briefing to then-President George W. Bush.
  In the spring of 2002, Zubaida was arrested by the US military and intelligence officers in Pakistan and was handed over for interrogation. This is the beginning of his 20 years of hardship.
  Eager to take credit, the CIA will seize Zubaida touted as “a major blow to bin Laden” and hope to pry him open as soon as possible.
  A few months after the 9/11 terrorist attack, the United States launched the “Secret Interrogation Project”, using “enhanced interrogation methods” for captured terrorists – hiring psychologists to design a complete torture plan for prisoners and implement them. Zubaida was the first al Qaeda criminal caught by the CIA, and the first person to taste the “enhanced interrogation methods”.
  For the first few weeks after his arrest, Zubaida was kept in a cold, air-conditioned room with no clothes allowed and only one bowl of rice a day. The interrogators threatened him many times, saying that they would “slit your mother’s throat”, and he made no secret of his hostility: “The various injustices you (the United States) have done to the Palestinians have made me you (the United States) since I was a child. ) enemies.” Four years before his arrest, Zubaida was detained in the CIA’s “black prisons” in Thailand, Poland, Morocco and Lithuania, and in 2006, he was sent to the U.S. Guantanamo prison in Cuba , has been detained to this day.
  During the period, he lost his left eye and was subjected to torture such as forced water injection in the past. The most brutal punishment came in 2002, when he was held in a CIA “black prison” in Thailand and subjected to at least 83 waterboarding – a torture that caused inmates to fear death by drowning. Zubaida recalled: “They kept pouring water, and I felt like I was about to drown, and my chest almost exploded.” Someone kept dumping cockroaches and caterpillars in it. Under the long-term torture, Zubaida suffered from schizophrenia. In his diary, he wrote: “If I could forget all that happened, God, I would not hesitate for a moment.”
  From February 2005 to March 2006, Zubaida was detained in the outskirts of Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania. The CIA “Black Prison”, code-named “Violet Base”, suffered from sleep deprivation and the use of bright eyes. After Lithuania joined NATO in 2004, it converted a riding school into a “Violet Base” “at the request of its allies”. The CIA provided more than $1 million (about 6.3 million yuan) to the Lithuanian local government for this purpose as a “thank you”.
  ”Violet” is only a part of the “black prison network” overseas. After 9/11, the CIA secretly set up “black prisons” overseas to evade U.S. laws against the use of torture. The Guantanamo Prison where Zubaida was later detained was originally a temporary detention facility established at the U.S. military’s Guantanamo base in 2002, but it has been in existence for 20 years and has detained hundreds of people. According to a survey by Seton Hall University Law School, at least 55% of detainees have never participated in any hostilities against the United States. Of the 39 still in prison, only a handful have been charged or convicted.
  The U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee has investigated the files of dozens of terrorist suspects detained by the CIA, and concluded that the CIA concealed the cruelty of torture methods on the one hand, and exaggerated the effect of torture to extract confessions, and even put the suspects in prison. The key confessions before being tortured are packaged as “significant gains” after torture. In other cases, CIA officials ordered continued torture even when analysts determined the suspect had no intelligence value.
  Such was the case with Zubaydah’s interrogation. An FBI report said nearly all of Zubaidah’s revelations were obtained by FBI agent Sofan at a hospital in Pakistan. After being handed over to the CIA, Zubaida was tortured but failed to provide “important information related to terrorist threats.” The clues obtained by Sofan were packaged as the result of the CIA’s “enhanced interrogation methods” in the process of reporting to the top management. Although the report is based on the background of the “competition” between US intelligence and law enforcement agencies, it also shows that the torture of Zubaida by the CIA did “appear to be only for the satisfaction of sadism”.

  For 20 years, Zubaida has become the poster child for the victims of the CIA’s “black jail”. On the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 incident, the American HBO TV channel also broadcast the documentary “Prisoner Forever” to tell his story.
  Zubaida has never been charged since being transferred to Guantanamo as an “irregular fighter”. This practice of long-term imprisonment without trial is a violation of U.S. law. In 2008, his lawyers sued over the legality of Zubaydah’s detention under new U.S. Supreme Court precedent that ruled that “irregular fighters” had the right to sue. In 2010, the Guantanamo Review Task Force recommended that Zubaida be prosecuted, but nothing follows. In 2020, the Guantanamo Periodic Review Commission ruled that Zubaida’s continued detention was a “national security necessity” for the United States, given that he “still sees certain countries and individuals as enemies.”
  Zubaida also entrusted a lawyer to sue the relevant countries about his being detained in the CIA’s overseas “black prison”. In May 2018, the European Court of Human Rights ruled on Zubaida v. Lithuania for assisting the CIA in setting up a “black jail” and abusing torture in its territory. The court held that, from February 2005 to March 2006, Lithuania allowed the CIA to set up a “black prison” on Lithuanian territory, knowing that the CIA would torture Zubaida, but allowed him to be imprisoned in the prison, and later passed Secret channels transferred him to CIA “black jails” in other countries, putting him at greater risk of abuse, violating several provisions of the European Convention on Human Rights and having to pay compensation. After more than 3 years of delay, Lithuania paid 100,000 euros. “It is very unlikely that Lithuania will do this without the approval of the United States. This is also in line with the idea of ​​the United States softening its stance on the issue of ‘permanent prisoners’,” said Zubaida’s lawyer Dembeau. However, Zubaida himself simply cannot After receiving the money, his assets have been frozen by the United States. The 100,000 euros are said to be currently in his brother’s bank account.
  In October 2021, the U.S. Supreme Court also reviewed Zubaida’s case, focusing on whether his detention in the CIA’s “black prison” in Poland was a state secret. Previously, the CIA destroyed a batch of “enhanced interrogation methods” materials, including Zubaida’s, on the grounds of confidentiality. During oral arguments, a number of judges questioned the indefinite detention of Zubaida, including conservative Judge Kavanaugh whether there was any reason for the U.S. government to continue holding him for a month, given that the U.S. has officially withdrawn troops from Afghanistan. Zubaida’s lawyers have filed a new lawsuit demanding that Zubaida be released immediately. He quoted U.S. Supreme Court Justice Breyer as saying: “In Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, we said, you can put people in Guantanamo while (the U.S. military) is still fighting in Afghanistan. We’re not there anymore ( Afghanistan), so why is Zubaida still there (Guantanamo)?”
  In December 2021, the Lithuanian Ministry of State Security handed over a building near Vilnius to an asset management agency, which was then sold. According to local media reports, there used to be a training center for the Lithuanian Ministry of State Security, and it is likely that the “Violet Base” was located there. The “rule of law and justice” seems to be coming, but can Zubaida get the justice that belongs to him, even if it is a fair trial? There is still no definite answer to this question.

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