Bringing the War Back Home, Courtesy of the Chicago Police Department: Black Site Used in Chicago; Local Press 'Uninterested'

An explosive article about CPDs use of a black site to hide, isolate and sometimes torture people in Chicago has just been published by Stuart Ackerman of The Guardian newspaper. (The full article is at .)

The Chicago police department operates an off-the-books interrogation compound, rendering Americans unable to be found by family or attorneys while locked inside what lawyers say is the domestic equivalent of a CIA black site, is how the story begins. The facility, a nondescript warehouse on Chicagos west side known as Homan Square, has long been the scene of secretive work by special police units. Alleged police practices at Homan Square, according to those familiar with the facility who spoke out to the Guardian after its investigation into Chicago police abuse, include keeping arrestees out of official booking databases; beatings by police, resulting in head wounds; shackling for prolonged periods; denying attorneys access to the secure facility; holding people without legal counsel for between 12 and 24 hours, including people as young as 15. The article continues, At least one man was found unresponsive in a Homan Square interview room and later pronounced dead.

In an interview about the Homan Square facility that appeared in The Atlantic, Tracy Siska, executive director of the Chicago Justice Project, stated There was knowledge in the police-accountability community. We knew exactly where it was but we couldnt get the press in Chicago to cover the story. We think it started during [former Chicago Police Department Superintendent] Phil Clines time around 2006 or 2007. [Siskas interview is at .]

The exposure of Homan Square joins other well-noted issues in Chicago. There are noted activities by retired Chicago detective Richard Zuley, working as an interrogator at Guantanamo, where he apparently applied techniques developed under Jon Burge on Chicagos South Side on African American suspects. There is also the vast militarization of Cook County police forces, which have received over 1,700 pieces of military equipment from the Pentagon, according to Ackerman.

It is clear that the elites in Chicagooperating through their Mayors, Richard M. Daley and especially Rahm Emanuelsee the population of Chicago as a major threat. Their war is not against those threatening usas they so regularly claimbut is against us, the people of Chicago. The Chicago Tribune and Sun Times are also collaborators in the war against us: after all, why did it take a British newspaper to reveal with the Chicago Police Department has been doing to Chicagoans?


Kim Scipes is Chair of the Chicago Chapter of the National Writers Union, UAW #1981.


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