Sunday, October 03, 2004

Torture is the Unofficial Policy of the Bush Administration

Ever since Abu Ghriab I have suspected that torture was the unofficial policy of the Bush administration. Seymour Hersh's article on Abu Ghraib and his article the Gray Zone are powerful indictments of this administration's handling of the war on terror, the war in Iraq, and the use of torture as a policy tool.

The roots of the Abu Ghraib prison scandal lie not in the criminal inclinations of a few Army reservists but in a decision, approved last year by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, to expand a highly secret operation, which had been focussed on the hunt for Al Qaeda, to the interrogation of prisoners in Iraq. Rumsfeld’s decision embittered the American intelligence community, damaged the effectiveness of élite combat units, and hurt America’s prospects in the war on terror. |Link|

Zwichenzug has posted over at the Bellman an article about how the Republicans are now trying to change the law to allow the extradition of foreign nationals to countries that will torture them (even if they didn't originate there), under the euphemism extraordinary rendition. Upon doing some research, I learned that Rep. Edward Markey along with my representative, Henry Waxman, have sponsored House Resolution (HR) 4674 to ban extraordinary rendition. Check it out on Thomas. Or go read Zwichenzug's original post.

I tend to blame Bush for destroying international law and not respecting human rights, but it is really the current leadership of the GOP who should be blamed, and Bush is merely one of their tools.

I was pissed off about the entire invasion of Iraq. But I have been incredibly pissed since Abu Ghraib. This administration has made the torture of foreign nationals its unofficial policy. This policy has done irreparable harm to international law and has poisoned world public opinion against the US.

The real kicker is that torture is totally unreliable, and the torture at Guantanamo Bay probably hasn't led to a single useful piece of information.

The Guardian is also reporting that US claims of genocide in Sudan's Darfur region are greatly exaggerated. I think this is a clever ruse to make people think that this administration gives a damn about genocide, to divert attention from the debacle in Iraq, and to lay the groundwork for bombing yet another Muslim country.

I agree with Arkangel when he wrote: I don't just want to beat the GOP -- I want to end them. I don't care how many decades it takes -- I want to end them.

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