Sunday, November 13, 2005

Torture: McCain's Cold Fury

Sen. John McCain, a torture survivor, starts out slow in his essay leading the current issue of Newsweek's domestic edition. But his arguments are solid, and his anger at the Bush administration's record on torture is incandescent:

...
I don't mourn the loss of any terrorist's life. Nor do I care if in the course of serving their ignoble cause they suffer great harm. They have pledged their lives to the intentional destruction of innocent lives, and they have earned their terrible punishment in this life and the next. What I do mourn is what we lose when by official policy or official neglect we allow, confuse or encourage our soldiers to forget that best sense of ourselves, that which is our greatest strength—that we are different and better than our enemies, that we fight for an idea, not a tribe, not a land, not a king, not a twisted interpretation of an ancient religion, but for an idea that all men are created equal and endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights. ...

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10019179/site/newsweek/

The companion piece by Evan Thomas looks at the debate over less-than-fatal means of torture:

... Since 9/11, torture lite has been used by the Americans in the war on terror. In the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, fearful that another attack was imminent, Vice President Dick Cheney said, "we have to work... the dark side, if you will." Declared the CIA's then Counterterror chief Cofer Black: "After 9/11, the gloves came off." At one point, the Bush administration formally told the CIA it couldn't be prosecuted for any technique short of inflicting the kind of pain that accompanies "organ failure" or "death."...
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10020629/site/newsweek/

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