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February 10, 2010
5:12 PM


Robyn Shepherd, (212) 519-7829 or 549-2666;

ACLU and PEN American Center Present Reckoning With Torture: Memos and Testimonies From the "War on Terror" March 3 at Georgetown University Law Center Hart Auditorium

Featuring Readings By The Daily Show's Aasif Mandvi, Members Of Congress, Writers And Former Government And Military Officials And An Artistic Presentation By Artist Jenny Holzer

NEW YORK - February 10 - The American Civil Liberties Union, PEN American Center and Georgetown University will present Reckoning with Torture: Memos and Testimonies from the "War on Terror," an evening of readings calling attention to acts of torture and abuse carried out by the United States under the Bush administration. The event, featuring members of Congress, a former CIA officer, a former senior military interrogator, writers and artists will take place on Wednesday, March 3 at 7:00 p.m. EDT at Georgetown University Law Center's Hart Auditorium in Washington, DC.

Among the documents to be read are autopsy reports concluding that numerous prisoners in U.S. custody died as a result of harsh interrogations; memos authorizing waterboarding, sleep deprivation, stress positions and other torture techniques; detainee Abu Zubaydah's first-hand description of these practices; and a minute-by-minute account of the 2002 torture of Mohammed al-Qahtani, which took place over six weeks in 2002. Video excerpts of former Guantánamo detainees talking about their captivity will be screened between readings. Artwork by Jenny Holzer based on declassified government documents will serve as a backdrop to the readings.

Reckoning with Torture: Memos and Testimonies from the "War on Terror," an evening of readings from documents that have brought these abuses to light - memos, declassified communications and testimonies by detainees.


  • Readings by: Aasif Mandvi, contributing correspondent on The Daily Show; Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), Chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary; Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN); Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA); Jack Rice, former CIA officer; Matthew Alexander, former U.S. interrogator and author of How to Break a Terrorist; David Cole, constitutional law professor; authors Alice McDermott, AM Homes, Susan Shreve and others.
  • Visual presentation by artist Jenny Holzer of artwork based on declassified government documents. Images will include redacted hand prints of U.S. soldiers accused of crimes in Iraq and postmortem identifications of prisoners who died while in custody

Wednesday, March 3, 2010
7:00 p.m. EST

Georgetown University Law Center's Hart Auditorium
600 New Jersey Avenue N.W.
Washington, DC 20208

Admission is free. Seating is by general admission, on a first-come, first-served basis. For press inquiries, please contact the ACLU.


The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) conserves America's original civic values working in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in the United States by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

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