Human Rights books to keep an eye out for in 2010

Posted on January 2, 2010. Filed under: Books, Human Rights | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy New Year to all our readers. May 2010 be a great year for you all.  

Following are some of the books we have recently got wind of, so keep on the look out for their upcoming release. Based on initial reports, they seem like items worth exploring soon.  

1. The Geneva Conventions Under Assault

Sarah Perrigo and Jim Whitman  

Due: late March  

The Geneva Conventions Under Assault by Sarah Perrigo and Jim Whitman

2. Global Governance and Biopolitics: Regulating Human Security

David Roberts  

Due: early March  

Global Governance and Biopolitics - Regulating Human Security by David Roberts

Global Governance and Biopolitics - Regulating Human Security by David Roberts

3. The Devil and Mr. Casement: One Man’s Battle for Human Rights in South America’s Heart of Darkness

Jordan Goodman  

Due: mid Feb  

The Devil and Mr. Casement - One Man's Battle for Human Rights in South America's Heart of Darkness by Jordan Goodman

The Devil and Mr. Casement - One Man's Battle for Human Rights in South America's Heart of Darkness by Jordan Goodman

4. Before Eminent Domain: Toward a History of Expropriation of Land for the Common Good (Studies in Legal History)

Susan Reynolds  

The University of North Carolina Press  

Due: mid January  

Before Eminent Domain: Toward a History of Expropriation of Land for the Common Good

Before Eminent Domain: Toward a History of Expropriation of Land for the Common Good

5. Beyond Punishment in International Criminal Justice

Mark Findlay and Ralph Henham  

Due: early Jan  

Beyond Punishment in International Criminal Justice by Mark Findlay and Ralph Henham

Beyond Punishment in International Criminal Justice by Mark Findlay and Ralph Henham

6. Profiting from Diversity: The Business Advantages and the Obstacles to Achieving Diversity

Gloria Moss  

Due: early January  

Profiting from Diversity: The Business Advantages and the Obstacles to Achieving Diversity by Glora Moss

Profiting from Diversity: The Business Advantages and the Obstacles to Achieving Diversity by Gloria Moss

7. Worked Up Selves: Personal Development Workers, Self Work and Therapeutic Cultures

Elaine Swan  

Due: early January  

Worked Up Selves: Personal Development Workers, Self Work and Therapeutic Cultures by Elaine Swan

Worked Up Selves: Personal Development Workers, Self Work and Therapeutic Cultures by Elaine Swan

(more…)

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Book Review – The Guantánamo Lawyers – Inside a Prison Outside the Law. NYU Press, 2009.

Posted on December 7, 2009. Filed under: Books, Human Rights | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Guantánamo Lawyers – Inside a Prison Outside the Law
ISBN-13: 9780814737361

The Gitmo Lawyers

The Guantánamo Lawyers is a great read.

Everyone of us has been peppered for years now with stories from the media of Guantanamo inmates and their abuse, either at the hands of their guards, or by the legal system (lack of due process). This book, the Guantanamo Lawyers, brings over 100 personal narratives from not only the inmates at “Gitmo” but also from other overseas prisons/detention centres. It brings these narratives to us first hand from their direct representatives, their Lawyers. The inmates, range from teenagers to octogenarians from approximately forty separate countries. For years, so many have been detained without charges, without any form of trial, and/or a fair and proper hearing. Many of these inmates are indeed America’s enemies but what is so scary is that in the book we learn of stories of how many of the inmates weren’t even captured on any form of battlefield. They were just rumored to be enemies, sometimes on little or faulty intelligence and delivered up to US forces for handsome bounty.

What really pulls at ones sensitivities is the utter mental and physical despair that the detainees go through, their feeling of hopelessness and fear as they are terrorized daily.
Its is hard to believe that civilized society can be driven to these depths. Especially the United States, the once shining example of freedom and justice.
Countless studies have been done on inmates and detainees over hundreds of years and this is probably one of the best (and most horrible) studies of how an intense isolation of a torturous military imprisonment devoid of so many human rights and international legal norms, can wreak havoc on an inmates mind and body and in the process, collaterally rip apart the very soul of the people and country that the system is supposed to protect. One can’t help but draw parallels with these stories with those of the harshest of colonial era penal colonies. These inmates have no sense of future. Deprived of their reality they are driven to self harm such as suicide, hunger strikes, self mutilation etc to add to the harm already heaped upon then day after day by their overseers.

Guantanamo detainees like the ones from 'The Guantanamo Lawyers"

We learn of the brave fight by true American patriots – the lawyers who represent them. The lawyers, many of them military lawyers, thankfully, are not beholden to their military masters, but driven by their devotion and oaths to justice, fairness and human rights for all. Their plight is moving. One finds themselves cheering for these advocates like one would cheer on a football team. Their lesson is our lesson and that is, no matter who we are, we must respect the rule of law, human rights and never stoop to the level of our enemies.
Grab a copy – it’s sure worth the read.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………

Contents of The Guantánamo Lawyers: Inside a Prison Outside the Law

Introduction by Mark P. Denbeaux and Jonathan Hafetz
Prelude

Chapter 1 Representing the “Worst of the Worst”
How and Why the Lawyers Started Representing Detainees

Chapter 2 Getting behind the Wire
Rasul/Al Odah: The Right to Representation

Chapter 3 – Uncovering Guantánamo’s Human Face
First Impressions
Rendered: How the Detainees Got to Guantánamo
Female Attorneys
Family Members
Interpreters

Chapter 4 Red Tape and Kangaroo Courts
Barriers to Representation
The No-Hearing Hearings: Combatant Status Review Tribunals
Military Commissions
Political Maneuvering
Boumediene v. Bush: The Death Knell for Prisons beyond the Law

Chapter 5 – Tortured
A Product of Torture Culture
Reactions
Hunger Strikes
Suicides

Chapter 6 – Alternative Forms of Advocacy

Chapter 7 – Leaving Guantánamo
Stuck in Limbo
Out but Not Free
Happy Endings?

Chapter 8 – Guantánamo beyond Cuba: A Global Detention System outside the Law
Guantánamo Comes to America
Black Sites
Coda
Timeline: Guantánamo and the “War on Terror”

Contributors

If one is inclined to go further with the research or understanding of the Lawyers narrative, New York University Library has produced a Guantánamo Lawyers digital archive for this purpose. The site is dedicated to collecting the narratives of the legal representatives who acted on behalf of detainees at the Guantánamo Bay Detention Center. Anyone can download and view the documents as PDFs. Please visit the site here: Guantánamo Lawyers Digital Archive

Michael Simon
The Human Rights Book Review

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