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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

New Report: Yes, U.S. Did Torture

UPDATE:  Dan Froomkin at Huff Post looks at what's truly new in the torture report--tough and solid criticism of both Obama and the U.S. media for covering up or splitting hairs on torture.  Meaning no national "conversation" about it.

Earlier:  Scott Shane at NYT with story just posted on "independent" 577-page report declaring flatly that U.S. did indeed needlessly torture after 9/11.  Will be released later this morning but NYT posts online now.  Separate chapters on Gitmo, Afghanistan, Iraq.
The sweeping, 577-page report says that while brutality has occurred in every American war, there never before had been “the kind of considered and detailed discussions that occurred after 9/11 directly involving a president and his top advisers on the wisdom, propriety and legality of inflicting pain and torment on some detainees in our custody.” The study, by an 11-member panel convened by the Constitution Project, a legal research and advocacy group, is to be released on Tuesday morning...
While the task force did not have access to classified records, it is the most ambitious independent attempt to date to assess the detention and interrogation programs. A separate 6,000-page report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s record by the Senate Intelligence Committee, based exclusively on agency records, rather than interviews, remains classified.
“As long as the debate continues, so too does the possibility that the United States could again engage in torture,” the report says.
The use of torture, the report concludes, has “no justification” and “damaged the standing of our nation, reduced our capacity to convey moral censure when necessary and potentially increased the danger to U.S. military personnel taken captive.” The task force found “no firm or persuasive evidence” that these interrogation methods produced valuable information that could not have been obtained by other means. While “a person subjected to torture might well divulge useful information,” much of the information obtained by force was not reliable, the report says.

1 comment:

Harry Shearer said...

Cheney going to UK for Thatcher funeral. Convention Against Torture requires countries to prosecute torture. Will Cheney end up in Ecuadorian embassy for sanctuary?