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And, yes, I DO take it personally: Doing an end-run around the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on torture
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Monday, April 21, 2008

Doing an end-run around the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on torture

great god... it just gets worse and worse and worse...

General Richard Myers, chairman
of the US joint chiefs of staff from
2001 to 2005

from saturday's guardian...
America's most senior general was "hoodwinked" by top Bush administration officials determined to push through aggressive interrogation techniques of terror suspects held at Guantánamo Bay, leading to the US military abandoning its age-old ban on the cruel and inhumane treatment of prisoners, the Guardian reveals today.

General Richard Myers, chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff from 2001 to 2005, wrongly believed that inmates at Guantánamo and other prisons were protected by the Geneva conventions and from abuse tantamount to torture.

The way he was duped by senior officials in Washington, who believed the Geneva conventions and other traditional safeguards were out of date, is disclosed in a devastating account of their role, extracts of which appear in today's Guardian.

In his new book, Torture Team, Philippe Sands QC, professor of law at University College London, reveals that:

· Senior Bush administration figures pushed through previously outlawed measures with the aid of inexperienced military officials at Guantánamo.

· Myers believes he was a victim of "intrigue" by top lawyers at the department of justice, the office of vice-president Dick Cheney, and at Donald Rumsfeld's defence department.

· The Guantánamo lawyers charged with devising interrogation techniques were inspired by the exploits of Jack Bauer in the American TV series 24.

· Myers wrongly believed interrogation techniques had been taken from the army's field manual.

The lawyers, all political appointees, who pushed through the interrogation techniques were Alberto Gonzales, David Addington and William Haynes. Also involved were Doug Feith, Rumsfeld's under-secretary for policy, and Jay Bybee and John Yoo, two assistant attorney generals.

there simply aren't words to adequately describe just how DESPICABLE these people are...

here's a thought from juan cole who, rightly, bemoans our country's failure to hold these criminals to account...

Lawrence Wilkerson, Colin Powell's former chief of staff, is quoted as saying that the perpetrators of torture could well be arrested and tried in other countries as war criminals if they travel abroad. It is an index of the despotism to which the United States has fallen victim that we must hope for other, more civilized countries, to try our war criminals. Why can't public officials be prosecuted for violating the Bill of Rights' guarantee against cruel and unusual torture? Why can't an International Military Tribunal be set up as at Nuremberg?


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