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« Iraq: Coalition of the Drilling (3) | Main | Plamegate, Armitage, Hitchens. »

The torture legislation: Shame on the US!

Update: October 3, 2006.
Ah, we all agree. The torture legislation, rushed through Congress, is disastrous. Everybody in the reasonable Left, said so. What can an Alien like me do here?
I read the revelations about the torturing prisons, the renditions, the mock trials before "militaty commissions". It appears, that, first, the FBI (2003) refused to go along. Then, even the CIA and its waterboarding contractors, after the Supreme Court judged it wrong (2005), went on strike. Bush had to do something.
Here is, how he twisted the case, interpreting the FBI, CIA and Justice refusals as a protest against the "vagueness" of the Geneva Convention. Source: - Ivins: Saying something over again doesn't make it true - Sep 22, 2006:

(Ivins:)"Bush kept insisting the legislation to permit such tribunals is vital and 'the program will not go forward without it' because young intelligence officers might be accused of breaking the law(!)."

Bush: 'Let's see if I can put it (Article III of the Geneva Convention) this way for people to understand. There is a very vague standard that the (U.S. Supreme) Court said must kind of be the guide for our conduct in the war on terror and detainee policy. It's so vague that it's impossible to ask anybody to participate in the program for fear ... of breaking the law. That's the problem.'
Ivins: "Actually, the problem is the proposed program of tribunals is illegal -- and not young intelligence officers but potentially old war criminals are at risk, as well."
Indeed. The situation looked hopeless for Bush. Soon, he would have had to liberate Charles Graner from jail, as the only person in the US, who would greedily act as torturer in the Bush & Cheney way. And Lynddie England for the women.
But with a diabolic mastership, he succeeded in having his way with Congress.
The new legislation makes an exception for people who are deemed "terrorists" (without a justicial check on the executive) in this, that they may be tortured, are deprived of the rights, any accused in the world has, as to information about the facts he is accused of, etc.
And, listen well, this is US legislation about foreign people. For the time being, American citizens are to be treated in the US in a traditional way. That may change, in the future.

Now, the question to me, is, if the US Army, that has to bear the full burden of this barbaric policy, will execute it without problems. The US army is not built for that job. It goes against its traditions and morals. I guess, that, finally, this whole torture and mock tribunal business will be privatized, and bought with contractors. In Iraq, this is already largely done this way.
And the world outside of the US?
Even staunch allies of the US, who are invited to host American military on their soil, will think twice about it. Even if you are yourself a ruthless dictator, it must be a hard decision, to accept a community of professional torturers and "Nacht-und-Nebel" *) mock-tribunals on your doorstep.

I think, that a complaint with the old International Court in the Hague (that judges affairs between states) has a good chance to end in a shameful condemnation of the United States of America.

*) "Nacht und Nebel" prisoners in Nazi Germany, were prisoners who were judged summarily and secretly by mock tribunals and who disappeared afterwards into the "dark and the fog" of concentration camps.

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