Monday, April 20, 2009


Just about everyone that I can think of has posted on the subject of the illegal torture that was approved by the last administration. I have posted on this three times before, but I feel there is even more to be said now.

I think everyone knows by now that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was waterboarded 183 times in March 2003 and Abu Zubaydah was waterboarded 83 times in August 2002. Emptywheel posted this on Saturday, which covers some of the information found in the CIA IG report. I have heard that all the information that they received from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was gotten prior to the waterboarding, which tells me the torture was not only illegal but also unnecessary.

As I said, I had posted twice prior to this on this subject. Those posts can be found here, here, and here. In one post I explain that the only thing that has come out of the torture of any of these individuals was the recruitment of more terrorists for al Qaeda, and the other has to do with the medical personal involved in the torture.

We, as a free country, have never before used torture to get information out of prisoners of war, or enemy combatants, or whatever Bush and Cheney called them. It has always been against our ethics to do anything like this, until now.

There are many things that the Bush administration did that were wrong, many were unconstitutional, but I feel nothing has ruined our image in the world quite like the torture of prisoners has. This is against the Geneva Convention on the treatment of prisoners, which the United States signed.

What has been done by all those involved must not go unpunished. If this is not brought before the courts and taken care of now it will happen again. Someone sometime will look back at this and see that those responsible went unpunished, that nothing was ever done to the perpetrators. This will set a precedent and will give others a reason to do the same thing, and when something is said, they will refer to this time when nothing was done. All we need to do is look back to when nothing was done to G. Gordon Liddy, Oliver North, and Ronald Reagan for the Iran-Contra Scandal.

Germany had the Nuremberg Trails after WWII. The Nazis were put on trial for the war crimes they committed. It's time we had our own version of the Nuremberg Trials here. No more waiting. No more putting it off, and no more of this "that's the past" bullshit.

President Obama this needs to be taken care of now so it never never happens again.


Jacob said...

You know, GE, it seems I read something the other day, from Panetta? He (whoever it was) said they would not go after CIA employees who engaged in torture because they were just following orders.

Hmmm. Wasn't that defense creamed at Nuremberg?

Makes me think that everyone in government of whatever party is part of a gang that, while they fight over turf, they cover each other's asses when attacked.

Grandpa Eddie said...

Wasn't "just following orders" part of Lt William Calley's defense for the My Lai massacre, too, when the government used him as a scapegoat?

It wasn't a viable plan for either him or the Nazis, and shouldn't be for those who tortured or those who ordered the torture!