The Torture Question tonight on PBS by far, television's most in-depth look at how the controversial interrogation policy evolved after a major power struggle within the Bush administration. (via Rocky Mountain News) The problem, of course, is that it's often the things we'd rather not think about that we most need to hear, especially when those things are actions taken in all of our names with an eye toward making us safer. Ellen Gray Watch a preview here.
While the proverbial road to hell is paved with good intentions, the internal government memos collected in this publication demonstrate that the path to the purgatory that is Guantanamo Bay, or Abu Ghraib, has been paved with decidedly bad intentions. The policies that resulted in rampant abuse of detainees first in Afghanistan, then at Guantanamo Bay, and later in Iraq, were product of three pernicious purposes designed to facilitate the unilateral and unfettered detention, interrogation, abuse, judgment, and punishment of prisoners: (1) the desire to place the detainees beyond the reach of any court or law; (2) the desire to abrogate the Geneva Convention with respect to the treatment of persons seized in the context of armed hostilities; and (3) the desire to absolve those implementing the policies of any liability for war crimes under U.S. and international law.Regarding the Torture Papers, which detail Torture's Paper Trail, and, then there's Hungry for Air: Learning The Language Of Torture, and, of course, there's ( more inside)
"The Bush administration intervened to argue that their claims should be dismissed" I seriously can't believe it. This is Brechtian. Something has to be missing. This can't be my government.
LAWs instructions for starting criminal procedures against Bush Today in Vancouver, Lawyers Against the War filed torture charges against George W. Bush under the Canadian Criminal Code. The charges were laid by Gail Davidson, co-chair of Lawyers against the War--LAW, under provisions enacted pursuant to the U.N. Torture Convention, ratified by both Canada and the United States. The charges concern the well known abuses of prisoners held by US Armed Forces in the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq and the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba. The charges were accepted by the Justice of the Peace and referred for a hearing to decide whether Bush should be required to appear for trial. The Attorney General of Canada's consent is required within eight days for proceedings to continue, and the question of Bush's diplomatic immunity will have to be resolved by the court.
The Wrong Morons. (from the Army Times) "Around the halls of the Pentagon, a term of caustic derision has emerged for the enlisted soldiers at the heart of the furor over the Abu Ghraib prison scandal: the six morons who lost the war...But the folks in the Pentagon are talking about the wrong morons."
Does America Torture? "The men's death certificates, made public earlier this week, showed that one captive...died from 'blunt force injuries to lower extremities complicating coronary artery disease' while another ...from [a] blood clot in the lung that was exacerbated by a 'blunt force injury'." What steps are we taking in our "war on terror"? What if other countries decide to treat our civilians as "enemy combatants"? Is the Pax Americana so important that we must resort to torture, or, as is most often the case, giving up prisoners to countries that are known torturers?
They Have Ways of Making Al-Qaida Talk Interrogations must be pretty damn crucial these days. Given advances in science during the past twenty years, how much more sophisticated can CIA methods have become since the 80's?
A first hand account of Taliban torture Published in today's Washington Post. It made me shudder.
Your worst nightmare come true. "Bound hand and foot and gagged, a 27-year-old English woman tourist cowered for seven hours in the vast loneliness of the Northern Territory night, stalked by a gunman who is feared to have killed her companion."
At his gig on Sunday, Mark Thomas did a show about the continuing repression of the Kurds in Turkey, the appalling record of torture and other human rights abuse there and in particular the building of the Ilisu Dam, a social, environmental and archaeological disaster. And we in Britain are paying for it. Hurrah. Contrary to that article, UK Gov support for the the Dam has not been dropped. Previous (vaguely similar)MeFi thread here.
Oh and, apparantly wearing a badge can be illegal now.
Torture Still Widespread In Asia Says Amnesty. On Drudge. Do you think human rights violations of this sort mandate sanctions? I tend to not be a big fan of the U.S.'s ineffective Iraqi or Cuban sanctions but... This is very, very brutal. What do you think the proper U.S./European response should be?