by Kiera Feldman
Campus bulletin boards provide the most local and timely news around: soccer games, guest speakers, fraternity parties, charity fundraisers, and more. Yet, where is one of the biggest news items of our time?
Puzzling over a government that substituted torture for due process, future generations will ask, "How was it possible to go about your daily lives?" The answer is, sadly, "Quite easily." This poster was conceived as both an intervention into daily life and an awareness campaign.
These are the three pages that lay the groundwork for detainee abuse at Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, and countless "black sites" worldwide." They come from a recently declassified government document titled ["Review of Department of Defense-Directed Investigations of Detainee Abuse."] As more documents such as this are declassified, it becomes clear how little we actually know---how much remains to be uncovered.
By juxtaposing "interrogation techniques" with an Abu Ghraib photo, this poster calls attention to the discrepancy between sterile official discourse and the brutality it enables. The overlaid transparency parallels the false transparency of declassified documents. It is tacked in the middle of the photo, inviting the viewer to lift the page to understand the scenario. Yet, once the top page is lifted, the photo remains illegible. All that is clear is that it is a latrine, and something terrible has happened there. But, despite declassified documents, the mess remains uncleaned.
Combating torture: a manual for action
International Detention Coalition
Immigration Law Practitioners' Association
Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture
Association for the Prevention of Torture
Physicians for Human Rights Campaign Against Torture
UN Committee Against Torture