It has been nearly 14 years since the 9/11 attacks, but a lawsuit on behalf of Muslims rounded up in the aftermath has barely moved forward as lawyers try to show how frightening it was for hundreds of men with no ties to terrorism to be treated like terrorists, locked up and abused for months at a time.
The lawsuit finally got the go-ahead from a federal appeals court last week, with two judges willing to let the courts grapple with what happened when the largest criminal probe in US history tested the boundaries of civil liberties.
Holding the defendants “in solitary confinement 23 hours a day with regular strip searches because their perceived faith or race placed them in the group targeted for recruitment by al-Qaida violated the detainees’ constitutional rights”, the majority wrote.
“The suffering endured by those who were imprisoned merely because they were caught up in the hysteria of the days immediately following 9/11 is not without a remedy.”
Source: the Guardian