Witness Against Torture Protests In DC
Above: Witness Against Torture – Hate Doesn’t Make Great – inside Hart Senate Office Building, January 2017
WAT Protests Trump Cabinet Nominees; Hundreds Demand Guantanamo Prison Be Shut Down
Clad in orange jumpsuits and Shut Down Guantanamo t-shirts, activists with Witness Against Torture took over the Hart Senate Building with a message for Senators, staffers, and the general public. They marked the 15th anniversary of the opening of the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The message was “Shut Down Guantanamo,” “No Torture Cabinet” and “Hate Doesn’t Make U.S. Great.” These statements were painted a banner that activists dropped from a balcony as 9 members of the group dressed in orange jumpsuits and black hoods held a die-in, mourning those Muslim men who died at Guantanamo without ever being charged with a crime. The nine, and another two singers, were arrested by Capitol Police, as supporters sang “O America, don’t believe their lies. Their politics of hate will destroy our children’s lives.” The balconies were crowded with onlookers as the action unfolded. One of the two who unfurled the “No Torture Cabinet” banner was also taken into custody.
These actions took place as Senators were hearing testimony from President elect Trump’s picks for Attorney General and Secretary of State, which were interrupted repeatedly by WAT activists. They are now in custody.
WAT released a statement reading: “President-Elect Donald J. Trump has nominated militarists for top cabinet positions. He has promised to ‘load up Guantanamo with really bad dudes.’ On the critical human rights and rule of law issues, Trump’s posturing represents backsliding to the worst of the Bush administration’s misdeeds and abrogation of the law.
Remembering those who have been imprisoned, tortured and, in some cases, lost their lives, at Guantanamo, Witness Against Torture calls on President Obama to use his last days in office to expedite releases from Guantanamo, and make public the full U.S. Senate Torture Report. We demand that President-elect Trump reject the use of torture, continue transferring men from Guantanamo, end indefinite detention and reject national security or other measures that discriminate against Muslims.
WAT urges members of the Senate, in whom the public has placed its trust, to use all their power to uphold the Constitution and the rule of law. You can choose to reject the Trump administration’s nominees and insist that people at the highest levels of government would never advocate for torture. You have the opportunity to repudiate torture, release the Torture Report and acknowledge responsibility for the ghastly abuses that occurred during both the Bush and Obama administrations.
Click here to see more images of Witness Against Torture’s Action.
The names of those arrested at both locations are: Chantal de Alcuaz, Jerica Arents, Beth Brockman, Don Cunning, Erica Ewing, Ellen Graves, Martha Hennessey, Sherrill Hogan, Kathy Kelly, Joanne Lingle, Joan Pleune, Manijeh Saba, Helen Schietinger, Eve Tetaz, Carmen Trotta, Silke Tudor
Witness Against Torture on Social Media.
We will be using #CloseGitmo and #guantanamo
Check out our latest news and updates on Tumblr.
Post any pictures of your local activities to our flickr account and we will help spread the word.
Donate to support our work and Fast for Justice.
We are asking our supporters to donate $55 to Witness Against Torture to symbolize the 55 men remaining in Guantanamo.
Witness Against Torture is completely volunteer driven and run. We have no paid staff, but do have expenses associated with our organizing work. We need your financial support. We are fiscally sponsored by the Washington Peace Center. The Washington Peace Center is a verified US-registered non profit.If you are able, click here to donate: