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09 December 2014

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oth

Obama is just as depraved as the general public:

http://www.pewresearch.org/daily-number/torture-justified/

Physical force and torture has been mainstream on TV and movies for a long time. It always worked on shows like '24' even if Jack Bauer felt bad about it...

As Scalia says, it's not cruel or unusual punishment, because it's not 'punishment'

ThePanzer

The moral argument against torture is the most important as you alluded to. Unfortunately the morale argument has been treated as the least important, with arguments over effectiveness and legality being the top considered items.

The inability to realize that the morale argument is the most important highlights the morale rot that spread through our republic and is an increasingly systemic feature.

In a lot of ways I no longer recognize my own country. We seem to be slowly morphing into the worst practices of our former cold war adversaries. Continuous and widespread public surveillance, militarization of the police force, untouchable corrupt elites, media sources that act as stenographers for elites, the inability to admit defeat or failure on any foreign policy adventure, etc.

We're not anywhere near the soviet levels of repression, but that seems to be the track we're moving towards on the horizon.

Or to put it differently, the founding fathers ideals and goals for the nation are rapidly receding as we run towards their polar opposite.

DC

"Well, Doctor -- what have we got? A Republic or a Monarchy?"
Ben: "A Republic, if you can keep it."

Soon, if not already, we will have largely lost the definition of a republic. For our purposes, the question would have to be re-posed to Mr. Franklin to reflect modern statehood outside of monarchical reign: what would we call an interventionist government controlled by oligarchs and other special interests masquerading as a popular democracy?

oofda

Especially Hayden, who repeatedly lied to all- the President, Congress and the U.S. people.
Here is a passage about his lying:

“Several on the team profoundly affected,” one agency employee wrote at the time, “some to the point of tears and choking up.” The passage is contrasted with closed-door testimony from high-ranking CIA officials, including then-CIA Director Michael V. Hayden, who when asked by a senator in 2007 whether agency personnel had expressed reservations replied: “I’m not aware of any. These guys are more experienced. No.”

Colonel,
Didn't you once note that Hayden had never beena field intel officer, but an analyst. Maybe that explains some of his actions- but not all.

HankP

I'm old enough to remember when we were told that this sort of thing is what separated the US from other horrible countries.

This stain will not wash out.

William R. Cumming

P.L. Agree with your sentiments for reasons of your expertise and perhaps my lack of it. But the real culprits were those opining in factual ignorance and legal ignorance at the DoJ.

Someone must have told the President that he must support the troops. The CIA appointees and employees are not TROOPS and not in the chain of command of the Commander-In-Chief. So he in fact and law is fully accountable as the Chief Executive.

Did you know the CIA retirement system twice as rich for those under it as compared to the Military or FERS employees?

Did you know President Truman was opposed to the creation of the CIA even though created by the National Security Act of 1947?

Pete Deer

Pat,
You echo my feelings exactly on this issue. Depraved, heartless, and cowardly acts committed to allegedly keep our country safe? Does any of us feel safe with the likes of dastardly securocrats hiding in the shadows? What their apologists (and I include Obama as the torture apologist in chief) fail to grasp is that if they figure they can do it to a foreign "terror suspect," what's to prevent them torturing you, or me? We call ourselves exceptional and allow this to happen in our name?

Our constitution has become little more than a sick joke.

Pete

John

Rectal feeding! Those CIA dudes have some serious kink going on. I am astounded at their inclination to shove stuff up other peoples butts without their permission.
But that also goes with all the BSDM imagry of dog leashes, degrading nudity, choke sex, electric wires and so on.
Wow, America. Looks like you need to cool down and schedule a few therapy sessions.

Imagine

Please remember Guantanamo Bay, a continuous and ongoing middle finger to justice. Team America--please look in the mirror.

cville reader

If the DOJ was operating under factual and legal ignorance, that may very well have been by design. The less they knew, the better.

The NYT's take is that the CIA conceived this scheme, and often deceived both Congress and the White House about its operation.

I will never be convinced that this program was run without White House approval-- even if the Bush Administration chose not to know all of the details.

And that is one reason that I will never, ever vote for another member of the Bush family again. Too many vested interests -- not all of which I think most of us fully understand.

walrus

Sorry for not identifying myself and putting words in Col. Langs mouth, I'm not sure of his view of what has been done in all our names.

I also have a concern that I hope is being addressed: the mental state of those who participated in, or were exposed to the torture program as well as its victims. My understanding is that this type of behaviour leaves deep mental scars on everyone involved.

Charles I

Well there was a greasy haired WH lawyer involved in it as I recall, so famous if I couls remeber his name - Gonzalez? -so would you.

Oh yeah, here it is Yoo and Gonzales.

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/02/the-torture-memos-10-years-later/252439/

cville reader

I don't know about the greasy hair, but another latino heavily involved in this affair was Jose Rodriquez, who has roots in South Florida and was also involved in Iran Contra. I don't believe that is a coincidence, and yes, sometimes conspiracies actually do exist.

shepherd

John,

Like you, I find rectal feeding particularly disturbing. Rectal alimentation and hydration was a common medical practice before the invention of the IV and the feeding tube. It's how people in comas were kept alive, most famously President Garfield.

But who the hell dredged up that practice in this case and enjoyed applying it?

turcopolier

walrus

Not aware of the words attributed to me, but I have the deepest revulsion for what was done in our names. Such behavior does, indeed, ruin the perpetrators and victims alike. Perhaps FZ, Wolf et al will stop interviewing Haydon on TV. He and all those involved should be shunned. pl

SteveG

DC

Caeseria,or life as we know it
after crossing the Rubicon?😱

The beaver

Walrus

This is another report to read ( though it is financed by soros):

http://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/sites/default/files/globalizing-torture-20120205.pdf

1. The CIA secretly held its detainees in Afghanistan, Lithuania, Morocco, Poland,Romania, Thailand, and Guantánamo Bay.
2. In August 2009, ABC News reported that the CIA used a site in Lithuania as a secret detention facility for “high value” detainees.
1201
According to that report, the CIA held up to eight “high value detainees” at the facility until late 2005.

Dick Marty, rapporteur on secret detentions for the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, subsequently confirmed that U.S. “high value detainees” were
held in Lithuania.
3.The good Leaders in Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, Mauritania, Djibouti, must have made $$$$ off the CIA for being the torturers

Charles I

I meant the combed back cop/mafioso hairdo look which has always appeared shiny - greasy - to me, and redolent of an idiosyncratic reptilian thuggish beady-eyed, low-brow bullshitting stereotype I impose by default every time I see it, and no greaseball/latino connection or slur. The shiny pricks usually don't let em down.

As for Florida - Cubans, Latinos, conspiracies covert and criminal - twas ever thus.

As for conspiracy, as far as I can tell its been ongoing since at least the Balfour Declaration, I only started paying attention around the Reagan era. .

Cee

Walrus,

How can America make any moral arguments for intervention in world affairs with this still hanging over its head?

This isn't the first thing to hang over our heads. Remember the School of the Americas and the those we taught to torture nuns and anyone who got in the way of dictators the US supported. I recall that there were even CIA torture manuals.

All of this has made me sick for years! And I will go on record to say that Sisi in Egypt can be the first one to feel the sting of cooperating with this evil.

Cee

John,

I thought exactly the same thing! They are sadists!!

tv

2,753 people died at the WTC on Sept. 11, 2001.
Many jumped to avoid being burned alive.
A couple of terrorists had water thrown in their faces or were subjected to loud music.

What's worse?

Haralambos

I find so much of this reporting in the NYT at this point outrageous. So much of this was available throughout the past 13 years. The powers-that-were and -are from 2001-the present must have been brain-dead or perhaps more accurately soul-dead to have missed the revelations and controversies over Abu Graib: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abu_Ghraib_torture_and_prisoner_abuse; the John Yoo findings: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Yoo; and Rumsfeld's comments: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/murray-waas/rumsfeld-on-detainees-i-s_b_189833.html to name only a few of the high-profile media items up over these recent years.

I am not a lawyer, but I think impeachment is an option for both currently-serving office-holders and former office-holders. I doubt those options will be exercised--unfortunately.

oofda

Read the damn report and then say that. This was done in our name and was illel- against the Law of War. Over 30 years in the military- most as a JAG doing mil law, and we taught and were taught that this was wrong - and invariably got false intel.
No way to justify this.

C Webb

Conflating these two separate events and then making a faulty Comparison doesn't help anyone.

Augustin L


2 books to get a grasp of the phenomenon. Political ponerology by Andrew Lobaczweski to understand from whence this evil came. And by way of deception from Victor Ostrovsky a former mossad operative. He clearly depicts barbaric tortures sessions the palestinians were regularly subjected by the Mossad decades ago. The scenes in Ostrovsky's book are eerily similar to the content in today's. Who taught whom ?

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