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)
posted by y2karl
on Mar 14, 2005 -
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?
posted by taumeson
on Mar 7, 2003 -
The eXile's Gary Brecher,
as offensive and amusing as usual, pondering the future of war: "The only enjoyable wars will be the mismatches, when the machine armies are unleashed on the savages. We've seen some of them lately: the NATO air forces working out on Serbia, the US and British planes playing with the Iraqis like a couple of kittens with a half-dead mouse. They're the wars people will enjoy, because the targets are so easy, so undefended, that there are lots of good gun-camera shots. But these wars have a little weakness: they never solve the problem."
posted by GriffX
on Oct 3, 2002 -
Is Preemption a Nuclear Schlieffen Plan?
The greatest and most difficult task facing a statesman in international affairs is reconciling the natural tension between the constructive nature of a nation's grand strategy with the destructive character of its military strategy. The emerging doctrine of preemption should be examined in the context of this challenge.
With this in mind, the author continues with a "Dr. Strangelove" type warning.
Are our leaders "doing themselves in" (and us with them) in the current 'war' on terrorism?
posted by tgrundke
on Aug 21, 2002 -
Cops Abuse New Anti-Terror Law. The raid was perhaps the state's first known instance of law enforcement officers using new anti-terrorism police powers in a case unrelated to terrorism...
Ahh, yes. The War On Drugs meets The War Against Terror.
posted by fnord_prefect
on Aug 5, 2002 -
lead to catastrophic failures. More money for the "war on terror" or more government power from the Patriot Act cannot make up for incompetence, poor policy directives and bungling. How many more of these must we see before everyone agrees that a thorough investigation leading to proper reforms is the only remedy?
posted by nofundy
on Jun 19, 2002 -
What We're Fighting For
: a group of 60 diverse academics lay out the basic principles shared by Americans and the West in the war against terrorism:
We affirm five fundamental truths that pertain to all people without distinction:
1. All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
2. The basic subject of society is the human person, and the legitimate role of government is to protect and help to foster the conditions for human flourishing.
3. Human beings naturally desire to seek the truth about life's purpose and ultimate ends.
4. Freedom of conscience and religious freedom are inviolable rights of the human person.
5. Killing in the name of God is contrary to faith in God and is the greatest betrayal of the universality of religious faith.
We fight to defend ourselves and to defend these universal principles.
posted by dhartung
on Mar 8, 2002 -
They just wont let it lie.
What posses these people to keep fighting against overwhelming odds.I can see what they are against but for the life of me I cannot see what they are for.Couple of points near the bottom of the piece are interesting.IHave I been asleep or has the killing of innocents on 23 January been underreported.Does the fact that small raids have led to arrest interrogation and subsequent release
answer my own question?
I am perplexed,are there any good guys?
posted by Fat Buddha
on Mar 2, 2002 -
All out war! A call to arms for those pixelpushers out there. Sick sense of humor (like the kabul coverage) combined with really great gfx. caution: bandwidth!
posted by heimkonsole
on Oct 30, 2001 -
Will pictures like this
[not graphic, but disturbing] turn popular support against the bombing in Afghanistan? Or will stories like this
bolster support for military action against the Taliban? What story sways you more?
posted by gazingus
on Oct 24, 2001 -
case becomes criminal investigation as Law Enforcement intensifies its searche for a Summer Intern who worked in the office.
He is said
to be from the Middle East. Hopefully unrelated, but evidence is mounting... i.e. - employees received a strange letter before the WTC attack containing a white powdery substance and a "Cheap" Star of David charm...
posted by da5id
on Oct 8, 2001 -
On September 30th, there was a peace protest in Washington D.C.
I'm surprised no one else linked to this -- about 50 students from my college
attended and joined the crowd of a few thousand. I would have gone, but I'm dubious about the efficacy of public protest despite the fact that I'm an affirmed pacifist. What do you folks think? Will a totally non-military action be an appropriate response? (And is there any possiblity of the US acting in such a way?) Is the loss of a single additional human life in this new war justifiable?
posted by tweebiscuit
on Oct 3, 2001 -
Finally, a creative idea for the "New War." Granted, it wouldn't solve the whole mess, but it might be a step in the right direction. It sure wouldn't make us any new enemies.
"A panel of four Williams College professors urged restraint in the so-called war on terrorism Monday, with one of them calling upon America to bomb Afghanistan not with explosives but with food and medical supplies.
Anthropology professor David Edwards, speaking during a public forum at Chapin Hall, said airlifts similar to those provided to West Berlin by the United States and Britain in 1948 and 1949 could prove a public relations coup and an unexpected blow to terrorist Osama bin Ladin, in a country wracked by starvation, civil war and oppression.
"Bin Laden expects us to strike with military force. It's what he's prepared for. In dealing with terrorism, you have to do the unexpected," said Edwards, an expert on Afghanistan who was joined on the panel by political science professors Marc Lynch, Gary Jacobsohn and James McAllister."
posted by martk
on Sep 26, 2001 -
'AMERICA and Britain are producing secret plans to launch a ten-year “war on terrorism”..
' declares this
(otherwise fairly generic) article without citing its sources. Be prepared for the possible oxymoron of a line that is 'the whole focus of the long-term American approach was being driven by Richard Cheney
Oh yeah -- hate to promote Murdoch media but also noteworthy in this mornings edition of the London Times are the revelations that whilst 200 British 'are certain to have perished
', a further 800 are missing
following the disaster and a piece warning of a 'nightmare scenario
' in which Pakistan could lose control of its nuclear weapons
to none other than THE TALIBAN.
posted by Kino
on Sep 20, 2001 -
Realism Urgently Needed - Or Not?
David Ignatius's column today in The Washington Post addresses the question of effectiveness in the war against terrorism. He tells the sobering story of the CIA's collaboration with the terrorist Ali Hassan Salameh.
The downside: "The most obvious (lesson) is that collecting intelligence about terrorists is a truly dirty business. This world cannot be penetrated without help from members or friends of the terrorist network".
The upside: "Paradoxically, these tragic days have probably been an ideal time for the CIA to be recruiting new sources of intelligence about terrorism. The barbaric attacks Tuesday aroused disgust around the world --- not least among civilized Muslims. Some of these disgusted Muslims will surely want to help the United States and its allies put the terrorists out of business."
The crucial moral question: It's really a classic means/ends debate. Is it right - or just acceptably expedient - to collaborate with known terrorists in order to strike out at those we don't yet(or otherwise will never) know about?
posted by MiguelCardoso
on Sep 16, 2001 -