The Soap Box                           


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“All are witness to the outrageous distortions and outright lies repeated by right wing figures on any subject. Their intentions are stated clearly: make this President fail. On every single issue. And, use any method to bring that about. With these considerations as a backdrop, … [i] Mr. Obama and his political advisers must not srink from the duty to investigate the full range of his predecessor’s trampling on human rights, civil liberties and judicial safeguards that would allow this country to make sure this sordid history is behind us for good.


The inspector general CIA report describes cruel practices well beyond waterboarding. They included threatening a detainee’s family members with sexual assault and threatening to kill another’s children; the staging of mock executions; and repeatedly blocking a prisoner’s carotid artery until he began to faint. 


Guidelines approved by Mr. Bush’s Justice Department, were dedicated to finding ways to authorize abuse and evade legal accountability. But the report offered a scathing condemnation of those guidelines, which it said diverged “sharply” from the practices of military and police interrogators, and the positions of pretty much everyone else, including the State Department, Congress, other Western governments and human rights groups. The inspector general said that, in some cases, interrogations exceeded even the Bush Justice Department’s shockingly lax standards.


It is possible to sympathize with Mr. Obama’s desire to avoid a politically fraught investigation. But the need to set this nation back under the rule of law is no less urgent than it was when he promised to do so in his campaign. That will not be accomplished by investigating individual interrogators. It will require a fearless airing of how the orders were issued and who gave them. Only by making public officials accountable under the law can Americans be confident that future presidents will not feel free to break it the way Mr. Bush did. [ii] 

[i] Macdray, Braintree, MA, August 26th, 2009, New York Times 


[ii] The Torture Papers”, August 25, 2009, New York Times


One Small Step for Accountability                        Ongoing Torture after Supreme Court and New Laws

 1min  1min

CIA Report Released - Prosecutor appointed           Cheney on Torture, IG Report, Sifton, Turley

 8min  11min


Col Wilkerson on CIA Report, Accountability


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