But this year, as in the past few years, the report will be ignored by my activist colleagues in Egypt. Today’s New York Times has a story that explains why.
The story is about ex-Guantanamo detainee Muhammad Saad Iqbal. After more than six years in American custody, Iqbal is now free, never having been charged with any crime, but he suffers from years of abuse. Some of the worse came when the Americans rendered him to Egyptian authorities, whom, Iqbal says, tortured him. You can read his story here.
This year’s State Department report will criticize the Egyptians for torture. It will echo Amnesty’s own language accusing the Egyptians of systemmatic torture and impunity for the torturers. But as the evidence mounts that American officials are complicit in the same abuses that they criticize, this year those words just don’t mean as much.