Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What every American should be made to learn about the IG Torture Report

I wrote earlier today about Eric Holder's decision to "review" whether criminal prosecutions are warranted in connection with the torture of Terrorism suspects -- that can be read here -- but I want to write separately about the release today of the 2004 CIA's Inspector General Report (.pdf), both because it's extraordinary in its own right and because it underscores how unjust it would be to prosecute only low-level interrogators rather than the high-level officials who implemented the torture regime.  Initially, it should be emphasized that yet again, it is not the Congress or the establishment media which is uncovering these abuses and forcing disclosure of government misconduct.  Rather, it is the ACLU (with which I consult) that, along with other human rights organizations, has had to fill the void left by those failed institutions, using their own funds to pursue litigation to compel disclosure.  Without their efforts, we would know vastly less than we know now about the crimes our government committed.

Before saying anything about the implications of this Report, I want to post some excerpts of what CIA interrogators did.  Every American should be forced to read and learn this in order to know what was done in their names (click images to enlarge):

 Threats of execution

Threats to kill detainee and his children:

Pressure points on carotid artery:

Threats to rape detainee's female relatives in front of him:

"Buttstroking" with rifles and knee kicks:


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