It comprises photographs and documents that confront the nature of contemporary warfare and the invisible mechanisms of state control. From George W. Bush’s 2001 declaration of the ‘war on terror,’ until 2008, an unknown number of people disappeared into a network of secret prisons organised by the US Central Intelligence Agency – transfers without legal process, otherwise known as extraordinary rendition. No public record was kept as these prisoners were shuttled all over the globe. Some were eventually sent to Guantánamo Bay or released, while others remain unaccounted for.
The paper trail assembled in this volume shows these activities via the weak points of business accountability: invoices, documents of incorporation, and billing reconciliations produced by the small-town American businesses enlisted in prisoner transportation. In conjunction with photographs of former detention sites, detainees’ homes, companies and government locations this work recreates the network that links CIA ‘black sites,’ and evokes ideas of opacity, surface, and testimony in relation to this process: a system hidden in plain sight.