August 13 2018
This article links the rising calls to #AbolishICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) to the longstanding, broader movements to abolish police and prisons. It highlights the work of grassroots organizers, like those working with Mijente and Organized Communities Against Deportation, who connect the criminalization of noncitizens to the criminalization of working class people and communities of color. It argues that #AbolishICE is no mere campaign slogan, but one part of a vision to build a new social order committed to the liberation of all.
"Los activistas que luchan por abolir el ICE plantean una visión más amplia"
June 28, 2018
This short article responds to the 45th U.S. president's executive order authorizing the indefinite detention of asylum seeker and migrant families who cross the border without inspection(“Affording Congress an Opportunity to Address Family Separation,” June 20, 2018). It recalls the U.S. history of indefinitely detaining Haitian refugees of all ages, including families, at Guantánamo.
"The story of Guantanamo shows that, once the U.S. establishes the infrastructure of prison camps for families, it can persist as prison camps for anyone. People who endured indefinite detention have described it as a form of torture – one that the U.S. now proposes to inflict on thousands of migrant families."
Interview with Latinx Talk on Rightlessness
April 24, 2018
The mass incarceration of Japanese Americans offers a lesson for Muslims and allies
The Chicago Reporter
June 25, 2017
Opinion-Editorial aligned with the panel “Rightlessness: From Japanese Incarceration to the Muslim Ban” at 11:30 a.m. on July 8, 2017, at Alphawood Gallery in Chicago. The panel is part of their new exhibition, Then They Came For Me: Incarceration of Japanese Americans during WWII and the Demise of Civil Liberties, which debuts June 29, 2017.
Interview on Rightlessness
Interview with Seth Farber, an attorney who assists with Guantánamo cases, recorded on
July 15, 2016 by telephone.
A. Naomi Paik is Assistant Professor of Asian American studies at the University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana. Professor Paik holds a B.A. from Columbia, and an M.A., M.Phil. and Ph.D. from Yale University, She is the author of “Rightlessness: Testimony and Redress in US Prison Camps since World War II.” On July 15, 2016, I had the privilege of interviewing Professor Paik by telephone. What follows are my interview notes, as corrected by Naomi Paik.
GUANTÁNAMO BAY: A PALIMPSEST OF CARCERAL VIOLENCE
The Funambulist Magazine, 04 (March-April 2016): 34-40.
Although the U.S. army’s camp of Guantánamo Bay is not the only site of extrajudicial incarceration in the context of the so-called “war on terror,” it certainly materializes the paradigm of such a dubious carceral program. In this text, A. Naomi Paik examines the judicial and spatial characteristics of the camp in relation to its past role in the detention of HIV positive Haitian refugees.
Manufacturing Rightlessness: The Camp as a Legal Fiction
Conversation recorded with Léopold Lambert in Chicago on July 27, 2014
This conversation with Naomi Paik exposes the arguments she develops in her forthcoming book currently entitled Rightlessness (2015). In it, she uses three historical examples of camps administrated by the United States in their efforts of manufacturing rightlessness for bodies it wants to exclude from traditional judicial channels. We begin the conversation by talking of the logic behind the late 1980s discussion about symbolical and financial reparations to Japanese American citizens who had been incarcerated in the infamous camps from 1942 to 1945. Naomi then describes the legal and physical existence of a camp in Guantánamo holding HIV positive refugees having fled the Haiti 1991 coup d’état and being refused asylum in the United States. Finally, the third historical example is the current function of Camp Delta in Guantanamo, where the legal fictitious status of “enemy combatant” — we discuss of the very signification of this label — provided a simulacrum of legitimacy to indefinitely incarcerate dozens of kidnapped people suspected of belonging to terrorist group without due trial.