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torture

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Honored for torture exposé, Tapley points out more work to be done

Laurels
At an October 26 event attended by five previous awardees and nearly 30 others, the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine presented Portland Phoenix writer Lance Tapley with its 2012 Roger Baldwin Award, recognizing his nearly 100 stories over seven years exposing solitary confinement and other torture of inmates in Maine's prison system.
By JEFF INGLIS  |  November 08, 2012
The Man Nobody Knew: Short Take

Review: The Man Nobody Knew: In Search of My Father, CIA Spymaster William Colby

Carl Colby documents his father's life
"My father lived in shadows," says filmmaker Carl Colby in voiceover. "He liked being invisible." His documentary is a valiant but ultimately futile attempt to understand William Colby, the ex-CIA head who died in 1996.
By GERALD PEARY  |  November 15, 2011
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Review: The Mill and the Cross

Conceptually confusing
Clever CGI allows the effective recreation of a 16th century Flanders.
By GERALD PEARY  |  October 18, 2011
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Review: The Gamm's Torture is front-loaded

Rights and wrongs
Black humor sure is better than no humor at all. What do you do with the disproved defenses of torture besides get angry?
By BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 12, 2011
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Review: Gorey at the Athenæum, animation at MassArt

Cartoon network
In Edward Gorey's old-timey illustrated books, parents leave on an excursion and never return, friends enter a tunnel and never come out, a mother falls ill and dies, a man driving around searching for his lost daughter runs over her with his car, a peculiar bird appears at a house and stays for 17 years.
By GREG COOK  |  February 18, 2011

'No-touch torture' in New Jersey

Maine Whistleblower Watch
Deane Brown, a Maine inmate shipped out of state because of his criticism of the Maine State Prison, is now being held in New Jersey in "one of the most repressive" prison units in the country, often reserved for "political" or activist prisoners like black radicals, says Bonnie Kerness of the American Friends Service Committee's national Prison Watch.
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  May 26, 2011
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5 years against torture

Penal past
The Portland Phoenix ’s prison investigation, focusing on the Maine supermax, has published 75 stories over the past five years. Here are some of the key pieces, with brief updates on what, if anything, has happened since.
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  November 13, 2010
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Review: Saw VII 3D

Going out with a whimper
All the freshness of a hacked-off body part from Saw I.
By TOM MEEK  |  November 02, 2010
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Former inmate, activist now free to speak out

New releases
Last year, when Ray Luc Levasseur was invited to speak on the University of Massachusetts — Amherst campus to commemorate the anniversary of a federal sedition trial held in Springfield, the speech prompted vehement protests from police groups and state officials.
By RICK WORMWOOD  |  October 12, 2010
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Mickey Mouse Multiculturalism

Governor Patrick's problematic Mosque visit. Plus, Bush — and the GOP — vote yes for torture
Massachusetts treasurer and independent candidate for governor Tim Cahill was off base when he accused incumbent governor Deval Patrick of "playing politics with terrorism" in the wake of Patrick's visit to the controversial Roxbury mosque maintained by the Islamic Society of Boston.
By EDITORIAL  |  June 14, 2010



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Radical night out in Portland

 Activism Optimism
“People are upset about Guantánamo and Abu Ghraib,” Noam Chomsky told 750 people packed into the Woodfords Congregational Church last Saturday night, “but if you’re concerned about human rights, take a walk into a maximum-security prison.”
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  April 28, 2010
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Are doctors complicit in prison torture?

The Maine medical community looks at solitary confinement
In the past few years an outcry has arisen over the involvement of military and CIA medical professionals and psychologists in torture. Some critics have even suggested criminal prosecution of the medical staff involved or, at least, revocation of their professional licenses.
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  April 21, 2010
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Screams from solitary

‘By dehumanizing prisoners, we dehumanize ourselves.’
The 132-man supermax unit within the 925-man Maine State Prison is an expensive, taxpayer-funded torture chamber that for 18 years has sucked in mostly nonviolent, mostly mentally ill prisoners and ground them up by means of mind-destroying solitary confinement, officially sanctioned beatings, “restraint” devices resembling those in medieval dungeons, sexual humiliation, and psychiatric, medical, and legal neglect.
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  February 17, 2010

Anti-solitary campaign expands

Stopping Supermax Torture
As the February 17 State House public hearing approaches on the bill to restrict solitary confinement at the Maine State Prison, the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT), which sparked national debate about Abu Ghraib and Guantánamo, has announced its support.
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  February 03, 2010
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Flynn-terrogation

Obsessed with the wrongs of Abu Ghraib, local author Nick Flynn traveled across the globe to meet its victims
In his powerful new memoir, The Ticking Is the Bomb (W.W. Norton), Scituate native Nick Flynn recounts a conversation he had with a man in Turkey.
By MIKE MILIARD  |  January 13, 2010



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Time for law to end torture

Letters to the Portland Editor, September 18, 2009
In a collaborative effort between human-rights activists and incarcerated Mainers, a bill to end the use and abuse of solitary confinement has been drafted and will be submitted to legislators soon.
By PORTLAND PHOENIX LETTERS  |  September 16, 2009

Human rights watch

Acknowledging, and punishing, torture
Last week, on the heels of anti-torture panels and protests in Portland, Washington DC, and elsewhere, the Justice Department told the nation that it would have to wait a few more days before information about American torture policies and practices is made public.
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  June 24, 2009



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Despot for attention

Plus, vote for Passoni
Former vice-president Dick Cheney has taken his torture tour all over the place in the past few weeks, waging an ongoing campaign to defend what the Bush administration called "enhanced interrogation."
By EDITORIAL  |  May 13, 2009
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Whitehouse: Pushing to pull the truth about Bush's war skullduggery from under bus

Digging deep
Rhode Island's Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse had a Joseph Welch moment during last week's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
By PETER VOSKAMP  |  March 11, 2009
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Proud to jump the shark

Macho, loopy, and entertaining as hell, The Unit is prime Mamet
Who but David Mamet would have the macho audacity to name his TV show after the male genitalia?
By JON GARELICK  |  February 25, 2009



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Three years and counting

The Portland Phoenix' s prison scoops keep piling up
For the past three years, Portland Phoenix contributing writer Lance Tapley has been the only reporter in Maine to pay attention to the appalling conditions suffered by inmates in the Maine State Prison
By PORTLAND PHOENIX STAFF  |  November 05, 2008
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McCain’s crooked talk on torture

Critics, including a local former army interrogator, say he’s trying to play both sides of the issue
It might surprise some that McCain’s record in opposing torture and the Bush administration’s terror-war approach is more complicated than his comments suggest.
By IAN DONNIS  |  September 18, 2008

Letters to the Portland Editor, August 29, 2008

Collins backs torture
I am writing about torture around the world that I think is related to possible torture in Maine prisons.
By LETTERS TO THE PORTLAND EDITOR  |  August 27, 2008
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Torture for the hostage-taker?

Prison watch
Will Michael Chasse, the inmate who allegedly held two people hostage on June 30 at the Maine State Prison, now be tortured by Governor John Baldacci’s administration?
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  July 09, 2008

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