Prof. M. Cherif Bassiouni, President Emeritus of the International Human Rights Law Institute, UN human rights expert in Afghanistan, & author of "The Institutionalization of Torture by the Bush Administration" (2010), refute George Bush's claim in his memoir that the torture committed with his approval was legal because his lawyers told him so. H. Candace Gorman, attorney for a Guantanamo prisoner, describe the torture detainees there endure and the ongoing imprisonment of 173 men at Guantanamo, despite President Obama's pledge to close it.
This vigil is hosted and sponsored by its participants.
For the past 14 weeks, a group has gathered weekly in West Des Moines, Ia to vigil against torture. The word vigil implies, a period of staying awake when one would ordinarily sleep. Many of us spend too much of our time sleeping.
Despite the campaign words of an Obama administration, many of the policies of the Bush Administration remain. Just this last week prisoners at Bagram were denied habeas corpus petitions that prisoners at Guantanamo won.
Solitary confinement of prisoners exists under a range of names: isolation, control units, supermax prisons, the hole, SHUs, administrative segregation, maximum security, or permanent lockdown.
Prisoners can be placed in these units for many reasons: as punishment while they are under investigation; as a mechanism for behavior modification, when suspected of gang involvement; as retribution for political activism; or to fill expensive, empty beds, to name but a few.
The STOPMAX Campaign, sponsored by the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), works to eliminate the use of isolation and segregation in U.S. prisons.
Our strategies include research, grassroots organizing, public education and policy advocacy to abolish solitary confinement or reduce its use.
To lay the groundwork for the campaign, we researched the use of isolation in a cross-section of correctional facilities: state Departments of Corrections, Departments of Juvenile Corrections, and immigration detention centers.
Postcard marking 65 years after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki -- 65 years of misspent trillions, contaminated air, land, and water, stockpiled thousands of warheads.
AFSC provides support and leadership to strengthen and broaden a peace movement that bridges many issues and engages many communities. The Bay Area Peace Building Program works with peace organizations and local communities to organize nonviolence programs for youth, interfaith dinners for women and religious leaders, speaking events, public actions, and popular education programs that include music and art to engage youth more effectively.
We are also proud to support the nationwide "afghans for Afghans" knitters' campaign.
AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more
Where we work
AFSC has office around the world. To see a complete list see the Where We Work page.