Monday, April 27, 2009

You know what Der Sturmer needed?

A David Broder.

As the Christian Science Monitor and others have noted, the torture authorized in the OLC memos spread to Guantanamo, Afghanistan, and Iraq. In February 2006, Human Rights First released a report called Command's Responsibility: Detainee Deaths in U.S. Custody in Iraq and Afghanistan (.pdf). David Broder can read the Executive Summary here. Among other things, it identifies eight people that were tortured to death, thirty-four cases of confirmed or suspected homicide, and eleven cases where there is suspicion that interrogation and detention conditions resulted in death. It's over three years later now. Do these murders also constitute 'U.S. policy' for which no one should be held accountable? No investigations, right?

But even if we hadn't killed dozens of people in our custody through abuse and neglect, we'd still have to face up to the fact that this torture wasn't ordered only to find evidence of future terror attacks. According to the unanimously approved Senate Armed Services report on the treatment of detainees, torture was used to get information linking Saddam Hussein to the 9/11 attacks. Is it okay to start a war of choice based on coerced false testimony? That's okay, Broder?

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