Thursday, December 08, 2005


Bush Administration to 100% of Torture

Extraordinary renditions (kidnapping suspects and shipping them off to other countries known to use torture) will continue - but the US promises that its own people won't be doing the "harsh" interrogating:
Posted on Wed, Dec. 07, 2005

Cruel treatment banned everywhere, Rice says, signaling policy shift

By Warren P. Strobel and Drew Brown

Knight Ridder Newspapers

KIEV, Ukraine - In what appears to be a major shift in U.S. policy on detainees, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Wednesday that U.S. forces operating overseas are prohibited from mistreating suspected terrorists.

Previously, the Bush administration had argued that its obligation to uphold a ban on "cruel, inhumane and degrading" practices under the Convention Against Torture, a United Nations treaty, applied only to U.S. territory.

"As a matter of U.S. policy, the United States' obligations under the CAT (Convention Against Torture), which prohibits cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment - those obligations extend to U.S. personnel wherever they are, whether they are in the United States or outside of the United States," Rice said during a stop in Kiev.
Remember when Don Rumsfeld said US personnel observing torture had no duty to interfere, only to object? The nationality of the person waterboarding you has little if any effect on the resulting suffering - and we're still seeing no real effort made to ensure the people being "harshly questioned" actually know anything.
The CIA inspector general is investigating a growing number of what it calls "erroneous renditions," according to several former and current intelligence officials.

One official said about three dozen names fall in that category; others believe it is fewer. The list includes several people whose identities were offered by al Qaeda figures during CIA interrogations, officials said. One turned out to be an innocent college professor who had given the al Qaeda member a bad grade, one official said.

"They picked up the wrong people, who had no information. In many, many cases there was only some vague association" with terrorism, one CIA officer said.
(Source: Washington Post, Wrongful Imprisonment: Anatomy of a CIA Mistake Dec. 4, 2005 [emphasis added.])


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