Facing South

INSTITUTE INDEX: Torture, American-style

Date on which a federal appeals court dismissed a lawsuit brought by five foreign plaintiffs transported by CIA contractors to U.S.-run prisons or foreign intelligence agencies overseas, where they were tortured: 9/8/2010

The vote in that case, in which the Justice Department invoked the "state secrets" privilege: 6 to 5

Year the lawsuit was first filed by the ACLU against Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen DataPlan for its role in the U.S. "extraordinary rendition" program, which can be traced to the Clinton administration: 2007

Estimated number of foreign nationals subjected to extraordinary rendition after 9/11, when the Bush administration intensified the program: 150

Number of victims of the U.S. torture program who've had their day in court thus far: 0

Year in which the U.S. ratified a U.N. convention that says no state shall "extradite a person to another state where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture": 1994

Year in which then-Sen. Barack Obama said in response to news reports about the Bush administration's secret authorization of brutal interrogation techniques that "torture and secrecy betray core American values": 2007

Number of days after his inauguration that President Obama banned torture by U.S. officials: 2

Number of months after taking office that his administration formally continued the Bush administration's legal defense of the torture program: 1

Month when the ACLU and Human Rights First filed a landmark lawsuit charging former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and other senior military leaders with direct responsibility for the torture and abuse of detainees: 3/2005

Date on which a federal judge dismissed that suit while noting that the facts alleged "stand as an indictment of the humanity with which the United States treats its detainees": 3/7/2007

Number of times Binyam Mohamed, a legal resident of the U.K. and one of the plaintiffs on whose behalf the ACLU sued Jeppesen, was transported by pilots and crews based in North Carolina: 2

Number of North Carolina-based pilots for whom a German judge issued arrest warrants in 2007 for their involvement with "torture taxis": 3

Year of the founding of Aero Contractors, a North Carolina-based charter flight company that's a major hub of the CIA's secret air service and that was involved in the post-9/11 torture flights: 1979

Number of months that Khaled el-Masri, a German citizen who was the target of an extraordinary rendition involving a plane operated by Aero Contractors, was detained and tortured before U.S. officials realized they had the wrong man and ordered his release: 5

Year in which a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit el-Masri filed against the CIA and three private companies involved in his transport, citing the state secrets privilege: 2006

Year in which the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear el-Masri's appeal: 2007

Number of years it took for Japanese-Americans imprisoned in internment camps during World War Two to receive reparations, which the federal appeals court majority in this week's ruling suggested as a possible remedy for extraordinary rendition victims: 50

(Click on figure to go to the source.)

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