In an unprecedented ruling, non-government officials have been given the go-ahead to view secret recordings that depict force-feedings at Guantanamo Bay—a ruling that by its nature establishes the fact that these tapes actually do exist, reports the Guardian. A federal judge yesterday ruled that lawyers for Abu Wa’el Dhiab can view part of the US' video library on the Syrian detainee and hunger striker: some 34 videos of Dhiab being force-fed via a tube inserted through the nose. A larger set of 136 videos exists, but as MSNBC reports, District Court Judge Gladys Kessler ruled that only ones that captured the entire process—from the detainee being removed from his cell to the feeding—be released, along with his medical records.
That full process is what's at play in Dhiab’s lawsuit, which accuses the feds of using the forced-feedings as a way to break the prisoners. He contends that non-resistant hunger strikers are violently wrenched from their cells, subjected to oversized tubes, and fed large volumes of food too quickly. Last year, up to 46 of 166 Guantanamo inmates were force-fed during a hunger strike; a handful of lawsuits resulted, Reuters reported. "There are hundreds of force feedings on tape, maybe even thousands,” claims Dhiab’s attorney. Kessler on Friday ordered a temporary restraining order preventing Dhiab from being force-fed.