The NYT has been pretty mute about the torture memo Sturm und Drang. But the Washington Post has arrayed all of its mighty, vast stable of chicken hawk, Zionist neo cons to whack us over the head and waterboard us with their many tears of rage and hate: they love torture and think it is a mighty tool with which we can rule the planet. This battle for the hearts and minds of Americans is continuing because roughly half of Americans want to live in a Soviet/KGB state protected from pesky ‘terrorists’ even if this means losing all their liberties and civil rights. Not to mention, international war crimes are OK with this half of America.
In surprisingly good English, the captive quietly answers: ‘Yes, all thanks to God, I do know when the mujaheddin will, with God’s permission, detonate a nuclear weapon in the United States, and I also know how many and in which cities.” Startled, the CIA interrogators quickly demand more detail. Smiling his trademark shy smile, the captive says nothing. Reporting the interrogation’s results to the White House, the CIA director can only shrug when the president asks: “What can we do to make Osama bin Laden talk?”
Um, bin Laden is a CIA operative. Just like Bush flew all his family out of the US while full fledged US citizens including former Presidents were prevented from flying for several days. But special jets were used to fly all over America to pick up these people because they were very big inside the CIA even though none of them are Americans.
Americans should keep this worst-case scenario in mind as they watch the tragicomic spectacle taking place in the wake of the publication of the Justice Department’s interrogation memos.
What is so comical about these torture memos? Unless we laugh at public hangings.
It will help them recognize this episode of political theater —i.e.: isn’t real or important, eh? —as another major step in the bipartisan dismantling of America’s defenses based on the requirements of presidential ideology.
We must change our songs and pledges of allegiance. From ‘Land of the Brave’ to ‘Land of the KGB.’
George W. Bush’s democracy-spreading philosophy yielded the invasion of Iraq and set the United States at war with much of the Muslim world. Bush’s worldview thereby produced an enemy that quickly outpaced the limited but proven threat-containing capacities of the major U.S. counterterrorism programs — rendition, interrogation and unmanned aerial vehicle attacks.
Rendition is illegal kidnapping and then illegally and illicitly moving captives across international borders in order to avoid the Red Cross and other humanitarian groups. Then, one may torture these people until they die and no one would be the wiser. The Nazis called this ‘Nacht und Nebel.’
Unmanned aerial vehicle attacks are robot assassins which also illegally cross borders a la IDF and attacks whoever it wishes, usually killing lots of innocent people or targeting wedding celebrations, etc. Far from containing threats, these robot murdering machines and the kidnapping of people who are held without charges illegally in distant lands, this is more like kicking an anthill. Or hitting a hornet’s nest. And I wish the WP would stop paying hacks to talk about how we are bringing ‘democracy’ to any Muslims on this planet. This is the last thing we want.
ORIGINAL DOWNING ST SMEARS VICTIM
RETURNS TO HAUNT NEW LABOUR
Tuesday 28 April 1.45pm
Formal Evidence Session on UK Complicity in Torture
Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights
Witness: Craig Murray, former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan
(currently Rector of the University of Dundee).
In 2004, Craig Murray told us that:
– The British Government was complicit in the most vicious forms of torture
– He had been the victim of a lurid smear campaign initiated by New Labour
– The government was lying about all this
In 2004, much of the public and media was not willing to accept that the government would cooperate with torture or with false allegations against an innocent man. Many still had trust in the basic honesty and decency of government.
The evidence that Craig Murray was telling the truth about torture has now become overwhelming, including from the case of Binyam Mohammed. The UK “benefited” continually from intelligence passed on from the CIA waterboarding programme and from torture in countries including Uzbekistan, Pakistan and Egypt.
Craig Murray suffered the most high profile sacking of any British Ambassador for a century. But in 2005 the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee refused to hear him in evidence, despite allowing Jack Straw to appear and attack him.
Astonishingly, this is the first time Craig Murray will ever have been allowed to give formal evidence in the UK on his grave allegations, and be questioned on the truth of his testimony.
As the Scotland Yard investigation proceeds into MI5 and MI6 collusion in 16 cases of torture, Craig Murray will argue that it is not the security service operatives, but the Ministers who set the policy – and specifically Jack Straw – who should be facing criminal charges.
Contact: Craig Murray on 07979 691085 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Transcript of Craig Murray’s formal evidence statement is athttp://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2009/03/trying_again_my.html
I need help to get this out to the mainstream media. Can you spare half an hour on Sunday or Monday to do that? Things you might do are:
– Find email addresses or fax numbers for newsrooms at newspapers, press and broadcast media and news agencies
– Send them a copy of the press release, and then telephone to make sure that somebody reads it
– Research on the internet reporters who have covered torture and extraordinary rendition, and send copies to them
– Speak with any journalist you have any contact with, alert them to the story and get them to pass it on to a suitable colleague
– Do not forget the Scottish media, political magazines and journals, specialist broadcasters, regional media and international correspondents in London
– Send copies to relevant NGOs – again following up with a phone call
– Rope in anyone with media experience and contacts you know to help
– Spread the news on the internet
Do not worry too much about duplication – it may be helpful, and there is much greater danger of too little being done than too much. I am sorry I am always asking you for help, but there is only one of me!
The parliamentary TV service is filming the hearing, so there will be footage and pictures available. It will also be webcast by parliament, though whether live or not I do not know.
Bravo, Braveheart Craig Murray! Hammer away! Of course, this story will not appear in the NYT or the WP. He isn’t a warmonger. He isn’t a Zionist. If this hearing is on You Tube, I will connect to it. As the internet expands its reach, our ability to circumvent the warmongering side of the media improves.
Josh Smith, by the way, is OK. Here are two videos about how our government is making it impossible to do ordinary things like film war monuments or take photos of the private Federal Reserve buildings. The first video is from England where subjects don’t have any civil rights and the Bobbies are Bullies.
Snapping this photo at MY request nearly got Josh arrested. Why this should be illegal baffles me. Of course, the cops are paranoid but this is not an excuse for them to act like thugs. Today, by the way, the WP efforts to make fun of the torture memo business continues with Gerson whining about how conflicted he is. Torture or not to torture? That is the question. Except the answer for him is very easy: torture away! If only Hamlet figured this out. Instead of trying to get his step father to confess his sins, he could have waterboarded him.
I respect many of those who say “never” in regard to coercive interrogation — just as I respect pacifists who believe that the use of violence and coercion by government is always wrong. This can be a position of admirable moral consistency, and some have willingly sacrificed for its sake. But holding this view is not an option for those in government, charged with the protection of citizens who share this position and those who do not. Adherence to this principle could involve unwilling sacrifice for many others.
Turning our government into an extension of the Spanish Inquisition will save no souls, protect no people and do no good. This is why our Founding Fathers were totally against torture [except for slaves, of course!]. It is very simple.
Some have dismissed this argument as “moral relativism” or the assertion that the ends justify the means. But this betrays a misunderstanding of ethics itself. The most difficult moral decisions in government are required when two moral goods come into conflict.
Torture or not to torture? Ah, an ethical problem! I recall, most real thinkers didn’t have to think very long about this, but only if they were not tools of some despot. All tools of despot obviously know the answer to that question: torture is perfectly OK if it is for the ‘greater good’, which usually coincides with what the despots want.
Most of us believe in the dignity of the human person, a principle that covers even those who commit grave evils. Most of us believe in the responsibility of government to protect the innocent from death and harm.
Obviously, all the editorial writers of the Washington Post are not ‘most of us.’ About ‘protecting the innocent’: how doest this square with kidnapping and abusing two small boys, the youngest being only 7 years old? Their crime: we wanted to catch their daddy and hoped to torment them into giving us information.
Government officials pursue both moral goods in a complicated world. In retrospect, they may sometimes get the balance wrong. But national security decisions are not made in retrospect.
This is a common, common DC theme: the past is not prologue to the future. The past is buried and we pretend to have amnesia. What on earth are we securing? According to all oaths of office, it is not the USA, it is the CONSTITUTION. And Gerson knows this perfectly well. Our Constitution forbids kidnapping children and torturing them for information. Period.
I suspect that most Americans, in considering these matters, would come to certain conclusions: There should be a broad presumption against harsh interrogations by our government. An atmosphere of permission can result in discrediting crimes such as Abu Ghraib. But perhaps in the most extreme cases — when the threat of a terrorist attack is clear and serious — American officials may need to employ harsh questioning, while protecting terrorists from permanent injury. In broad outlines, this approach is consistent with the Justice Department memos.
Seig Heil. I look and look and no where in the Constitution nor in any of the amendments, do I see, ‘If information might be useful, the government can kidnap and torture people, even small children.’
I remain ambivalent about these issues. I suggest some psychiatric treatment for your pathological problems, buddy. There may be other, equally effective ways to get information from terrorists — I don’t know enough about such techniques to be certain. Elements of the interrogation program may have been mistaken. But these were not clear or obvious calls — and they deserve more than facile, retrospective judgments.
There is nothing ‘facile’ of our collective horror over the fascists who tortured people, kidnapped people, some of whom were totally innocent or small children. We see no ambiguity because there is none. This is as close to a stark black and white issue if there ever was one. This is why those memos are very, very long and tedious reading. The authors had to slowly worm their way into the heart of the rotten apple and to thus, justify, bit by bit, outright torture.
And it is worse: much of this torture was designed to force victims to lie about Saddam Hussein. To justify our illegal invasion. This is a major war crime. Just like the fact that there were zero WMD when we illegally invaded. These things must be brought to justice. Justice cannot be denied. The longer we tarry, the more degraded we grow. Look at the Washington Post! A moral relativity swamp filled with crocodiles and water moccasins.
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