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Indybay Feature
Thu Apr 3 2014 (Updated 04/05/14)
Corrected Billboard "Defends" Transparency at Guantanamo Bay
Thu Apr 3 2014 (Updated 04/05/14)
Billboard Modified to Highlight Hassan v. Obama Fight Against Guantanamo Force-Feeding
On March 24, the California Department of Corrections (CDC), which practices culture jamming by "correcting" commercial advertisements, successfully apprehended, rehabilitated and discharged a billboard in San Francisco, located at Oakdale Avenue between Bay Shore Boulevard and U.S. Highway 101. With larger-than-life lettering the billboard reads, PAIN ISN'T ALWAYS OBVIOUS. LEARN THE SIGNS AT GUANTANAMO BAY. Next to its massive headline the ad includes logos for a California mental health agency and the tagline KNOW THE SIGNS.

The ad was released from custody two weeks after a landmark lawsuit, Hassan v. Obama, was brought before U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. to end force-feeding at Guantanamo Bay. Filed on behalf of Emad Abdullah Hassan, the lawsuit is the first case against forced-feeding since the U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that federal courts can hear challenges by detainees to conditions of their confinement. Hassan is a Yemeni national who has been detained at Guantanamo Bay for twelve years despite being cleared for release in 2009. He has been on hunger strike since 2005 and has allegedly experienced over 5,000 forced-feedings, a practice that is violent, abusive and illegal, according to his lawsuit.

Although half of Guantanamo's inmate population has been cleared for release, 154 detainees are trapped in legal limbo at the U.S. naval base. Last year more than 100 Guantanamo detainees were on hunger strike demanding an end to their detention without trial. Currently, fewer than 40 people remain on hunger strike, 16 of whom are being forced-fed.

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Previous Related Indybay Features: "Corrected" Billboard Calls Out Corporate Tax Loopholes | Liberated Ads Confront San Francisco Eviction Crisis | Hollywoood Movie Billboard in SF Spoofed to "Honor" U.S. National Security Agency | SF Vigil in Solidarity with Guantanamo Hunger Strikers Culminates with Civil Disobedience | Orange Jumpsuit Protest in Palo Alto Marks Opening of Guantánamo 11 Years Ago | Bay Area Artists Modify Islam-Bashing Hate Speech Advertisements on SF MUNI Buses | 8th Year of Guantanamo Commemorated With Giant Posters in San Francisco | National Day of Protest: Close Guantanamo and End Torture | Bay Area Billboards "Study In Israel" Modified by Guerrilla Advertisers | Satirical Ads in Berkeley Poke Fun at Pro-Israel PR Efforts
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