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RE: Bush Administration policy directly connected to torture case?


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RE: Bush Administration policy directly connected to torture case?
Topic: Civil Liberties 2:07 pm EST, Nov  7, 2003

Someone wrote:
] Huh?

I promise I can build a comprehensive argument that a policy of sending trouble makers to people who engage in torture is a violation of several treaties on human rights, and if it involves American citizens is directly unconstitutional. Furthermore, there are few things which can be more offensive to our ideal of civil liberties then a policy such as this.

The thing that makes this case so stark is that we aren't even talking about a trouble maker. We're (as far as I've been able to tell) talking about a guy who once got someone that we suspect of being linked to troublemakers to cosign on a lease. Thats all that it seems like they had on him.

Should we investigate that? Yes. Should we have done it this way? No. This is not an investigation, this is sending someone to die a prolonged and horrible death at the hands of people who will not and cannot provide us with useful information (how do you trust the government of Syria to report clearly to you on their interrogation?) simply because it creates an atmosphere of fear.

In the United States we do not employ torture because it is cruel and unusual. Because it violates the very essence of our Constitution. In the United States we have due process because when we do punish people they ought to actually be guilty. This case is an absolutely perfect example of why you have due process. Because if you don't have due process you harm innocent people. When your system of justice meters out punishments arbitrarily upon the innocent it is no different in its effects then the criminals it intends to control!

Now it is not at all clear that such an executive order exists, and if it exists it is not at all clear that it applies to U.S. citizens. People, recently in particular, are fond of making the case that the constitution does not apply to citizens of other countries. There are obviously limits to that argument. How can you build a nation based on the ideas about rights, about equality, about the pursuit of happiness, while simultaneously engaging in, for example, the ethnic cleansing of a people? The fact is that you cannot. The fact is that it is possible to engage it activity which is so far beyond the pale, so completely malicious to the values that our system of government is supposed to uphold, that it is impossible for any thinking person, and indeed any court of law, to stomach the argument that one can engage in such an activity legally as long as the victims don't have green cards.

A formal administration policy which orders our border police to hand people, on the slightest suspicion, over to a government with which we do not maintain any kind of regular relations, such that they may be tortured to death, for no other reason then to spread fear, in particular when so many other options exist, is just such a policy.

I pray that when, and if, the truth comes to light here, that it does not remotely resemble the situation which I have just described.

RE: Bush Administration policy directly connected to torture case?

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