If the UN is looking for human rights abuses, don’t go past DC: Devine

Secretary of State Anthony Blinken disrespected his own country on the world stage recently when he invited the United Nations to come here and investigate human-rights abuses such as racism.

Well, if he wants to go down that track, the UN investigators won’t have to go past Washington to find one of the worst human-rights abuses around.

Blinken and Attorney General Merrick Garland have turned a blind eye to the injustice of dozens of Jan. 6 detainees still locked up, without trial, often in solitary confinement. Even people charged with no violent offenses are being treated worse than murderers.

Now a group of valiant lawyers for the “January Sixers” have written a last-ditch letter to Amnesty International and the American Civil Liberties Union asking them to “investigate the mistreatment and torture of pretrial detainees held in the District of Columbia jail over the last six months.”

They have catalogued shocking abuses.

Attorney General Merrick Garland has turned a blind eye to the injustice of dozens of Jan. 6 detainees still locked up.
People storm the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021 in Washington, D.C.
Rioters storm the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C.
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“In addition to prolonged solitary confinement, January Sixers are being beaten, denied medical treatment, denied regular shower access, as well as reasonable access to personal hygiene item . . . It is clear that January Sixers constitutional rights are being violated at DC-GITMO, within five miles of the White House . . .

“This letter is an emergency request to help us put an end to the human-rights violations taking place at . . . ‘DC- GITMO’ — violations which without question meet the definition of torture,” write the lawyers, Joseph McBride Steven Metcalf and Martin Tankleff.

They point out that “none of the detainees or those released pending trial have been charged with insurrection, despite the media, leaders in Congress, and the President of the United States calling it an insurrection. “However . . . our call for help . . . would remain the same. This is because pretrial detainees are being tortured while in federal custody in violation of Supreme Court precedent, as well as the UN Standard Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, otherwise known as the Nelson Mandela Rules . . .

“The Supreme Court . . . has ruled that pretrial detainees, unlike convicted persons, cannot be punished at all, never mind maliciously and sadistically.”

You can condemn what the January Sixers did that day all you want, but turning a blind eye to injustice and sadism committed in our name only hurts us all in the end.

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