Torture Memo Authors Feel Bad

Tara McKelvey, an editor at The American Prospect, discussing the authors of the torture memo in an interview by Ken Silverstein in Harper's:

Guys like [John] Yoo and Timothy Flanagan, who was deputy White House counsel under Alberto R. Gonzales, discussed techniques like stress positions and sleep deprivation that were approved for high-level Al Qaeda suspects—and those techniques were used on Iraqi civilians. I had a heartfelt conversation with Flanagan and told him what I had heard from Iraqis: that these techniques had been used on men, women and children in Iraq. He feels bad about it; I know he does.
Good, I hope that his future is as 'sleep deprived' as the Iraqi civilians that experienced the fruits of his labors.

Tara McKelvey continues:
But the fact is that he and Yoo and some of these other people from the best law schools and universities in this country were the ones who came up with the legal definitions that allowed for the abuse to happen.


Thousands of detainees have gone through U.S.-run facilities in Iraq, but thousands more—anyone held for less than fourteen days—were never registered or tracked. Human-rights reports and interviews I conducted show that some of the worst abuses took place at short-term facilities—a police station in Samarra, a school gymnasium, a trailer, and places like that, where individuals were held for up to two weeks.
Read the whole thing for Rumsfeld's role, the lack of consequences and the unexamined roll of contractors in all of this.

1 comment:

I.M. SMALL said...


The secret memos authorizing
Torture have been revealed--
To our forbears it were surprising
To see the past repealed.
Alas, the "moral high ground" has
Been thrown away entirely,
Conceded to the wind, alas:
Status destroyed that suffered direly.

The way was paved for it upon
Our popular TV,
The ancient sympathy is gone
Outmoded, so you see--
Alack, the murky pitch of black
We wallow in, as muddy
Our cesspool yet contains, alack,
Portion not miniscule most bloody.

A flawed perception underlies
The use of torture, thus:
That any other we surmise
Not worth the jot of us.
A foreign woman or a man
(Or multiplicity)
Is worth less than one Murikan,
Proclaimed without apology.