Maher Arar, a Canadian citizen, was a victim of the U.S. policy known as “extraordinary rendition.” He was detained by U.S. officials in 2002, accused of terrorist links, and handed over to Syrian authorities, who tortured him. Arar is working with the Center for Constitutional Rights to appeal a case against the U.S. government that was dismissed on national security grounds.
His speech to receive the Letelier-Moffitt International Human Rights Award (by video, since he is barred from entry from the US) is truly shocking. This is the America we have become: a torturer of innocents.
For me, this sums it all up: an immigration official saying to him when detained at JFK: “The INS is not the body or the agency that signed the Geneva Convention, convention against torture.” They have no shame.