Two U.S. citizens were arrested, detained, held in captivity for months and tortured by the military after blowing the whistle on the now defunct private contractor they worked for. An Illinois court has upheld a motion to allow the pair to sue Donald Rumsfeld and other unnamed officials, but expect fierce resistance from the Obama administration. Aaron Cynic writes at Chicagoist:
The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago ruled Monday two men can move forward with a civil lawsuit against former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. The Tribune reports the Court upheld a decision from a federal judge allowing a lawsuit which holds Rumsfeld personally responsible for the torture of Donald Vance and Nathan Ertel, two former defense contractors in Iraq.
In 2006, while Vance and Ertel were working in Iraq for Shield Group Security, a private contractor, they began to suspect their employer of involvement in illegal arms trading, bribery, and other activities. The two reported their concerns to the U.S. Government and soon became FBI informants. According to Courthouse News Service, Shield soon confiscated Vance and Ertel’s credentials, which effectively trapped them in the Red Zone. According to court documents, the two men called their government contacts, who told them “they should interpret Shield Group Security’s actions as taking them hostage, and should barricade themselves with weapons in a room of the compound. They were assured that U.S. Forces would come to rescue them.”
After U.S. Forces picked up the two and they shared their information with military, Vance and Ertel were arrested, handcuffed, blindfolded and taken to Camp Prosperity near Baghdad. After two days at Camp Prosperity, they were shipped to Camp Cropper where they were “detained incommunicado,” kept in solitary confinement and tortured. According to the court report, the men were kept in cold cells covered in feces, often deprived of food and water, walled, denied medical care and subject to various forms of psychological torture.