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http://www.ThePortlandAlliance.org/torture
Checkout The Alliance Torture Portal


Torture is illegal, immoral, and it does not work.


Torture is illegal, immoral and it does not work.

"Torture is illegal under the Geneva Conventions, the U.N. Convention Against Torture, the U.S. Constitution and the U.S. Army Field Manual."

"Fortunately our choice is not between torturing prisoners and becoming victims of terrorism. That was Hitler's cowardly claim. Torture is a response of fear and despair. We can choose courage, hope, compassion and human decency.  We can obey the rule of law."

Torture is also immoral. All three branches of Abrahamic tradition agree. And the experts at the Pentagon and intelligence experts worldwide agree that resorting to torture produces flawed intelligence and "torture and abuse cost American lives."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/.../11/28/AR2008112802242.html

"We need to return to an ethic of responsibility and
accountability that is critical if citizens are to have
faith in their government and the world is to respect
this nation. This is not just a matter of the rule of law.
It is a matter of national security."

http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/04/30/gross.torture.law/

These are the simple facts.

"If the law is discarded in the fight against terror, terrorists can rack up a win."
~Peter Weiss Center for Constitutional Rights.www.ccrjustice.org

www.washingtonpost.com
Until we renounce the sorts of abuses that have stained our national honor, al-Qaeda will be winning.

How America Became a Global Kidnapper and Torturer

Ian Cobain, Portobello Books

An excerpt from the new book, 'Cruel Britannia: A Secret History of Torture.' READ MORE»


http://www.worldpolicy.org/blog/2012/05/11/above-law-us-crimes-during-war-terror

Torture is not any more past than racism.  Both are alive and well. One must only pay attention, read behind the headlines, and face facts. Any black person in America understands racism is not "over."  And "rendering" for torture, rape, and murder is still legal in America today. Thank your bought and paid for congressman or woman who voted for this under Bush and has never corrected this error.  (And habeas corpus remains suspended as of Friday, January 25, 2013.

"Under President Obama, the U.S. continues rendering individuals to countries that torture, such as Egypt. Before, this was called “extraordinary rendition,” because the CIA made the decision to violate the Convention against Torture and the U.S. enabling legislation, both of which prohibit rendering someone to a country where it is likely he or she would be tortured. Obama ended the CIA’s role in this process, but now, the Justice Dept. can render anyone to Egypt for trial, which has no practical effect, since most or all prisoners suspected of terrorism or mere political dissent in Egypt are tortured.  “Extraordinary rendition” under President Bush and “ordinary rendition to trial” under Obama has amounted to the same thing since Attorney General Holder’s view of the war on terrorism is the same as his predecessors, Michael Mukasey, Alberto Gonzales, and John Ashcroft.

One notable case of where this went wrong was with Maher Arrar. Following a tip from the Canadian government to American authorities, he was detained at JFK Airport in New York. He was then rendered to Syria where he was held and tortured for 10 months. He was able to negotiate a $10 million settlement from the Canadian government, but American courts accepted the Obama administration's argument that no civil or criminal trial could proceed because of U.S. national security claims.

Obama's claim that he outlawed torture is similarly weak. Torture by U.S. government officials still happens under the Obama administration. The case of suspected Wikileaks leaker Bradley Manning is one such example. Even before Manning was charged with espionage for his alleged theft of classified documents given to Wikileaks, he was held for months, without clothes, under solitary confinement. What is more troubling is the increased deaths of Afghan civilians due to drone attacks by the U.S. Under Obama, drone air strikes have intensified, killing more civilians and creating more resentment from Afghan partners for the U.S. presence in the country. Recently, a U.S. airstrike killed 5 children and their mother. This war on terrorism on the cheap, is not only criminal and immoral, it is also counter-productive.

American courts accepted the Obama administration's argument that no civil or criminal trial could proceed because of U.S. national security claims. No victim of rendition has ever received an apology or acknowledgment in a U.S. court. For example, three British citizens known as the Tifton Three were arrested while touring Afghanistan and then tortured in Guantanamo, only to be told after their release that they could not sue because they were non-persons under U.S. law.

The lack of accountability in the U.S. and other Western states in reference to crimes against humanity such as torture, enforced disappearances, rendition to trial in torturing states, and the deaths of innocent civilians stands in direct contrast with the idea that only the rank and file are prosecuted or even identified. The risk of harming the innocent, as well as the use of prohibited methods, even against terrorists, is an ongoing reality.

Mark Danner, a journalist and UC Berkeley professor, describes this state of affairs as the “new normal.” U.S. officials continue to break the law with impunity excused by a “state of exception,” which the public tolerates or supports, even though democratic rights, the rule of law and constitutional democracy are eroding."

http://www.worldpolicy.org/blog/2012/05/11/above-law-us-crimes-during-war-terror


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