Let’s get something clear..
I was remiss before, but it’s worth quoting the salient parts of this Tyler Cowen post: The purpose of our blogging is to circulate ideas that are new, or at least new to us and perhaps to you. But every now and then there is something to be said for sheer repetition of the important. ...
I was remiss before, but it's worth quoting the salient parts of this Tyler Cowen post:
I was remiss before, but it’s worth quoting the salient parts of this Tyler Cowen post:
The purpose of our blogging is to circulate ideas that are new, or at least new to us and perhaps to you. But every now and then there is something to be said for sheer repetition of the important. If nothing else, this incursion into the known might make those points more memorable, more salient, or more likely to influence your behavior. So here goes: Torture is morally wrong, and the U.S. government should not be torturing people or easing the use of torture. And yes I will make an exception for the ticking nuclear time bomb.
And for those who think this is merely an example of the United States “outsourcing” torture to other countries, consider the following Los Angeles Times story by Mark Mazzetti: (which is not about torture per se, but certainly an exanple of what happens when torture is condoned):
The Army has concluded that 27 of the detainees who died in U.S. custody in Iraq or Afghanistan since 2002 were the victims of homicide or suspected homicide, military officials said in a report released Friday. The number is higher than Pentagon officials have acknowledged, and it indicates that criminal acts caused a significant portion of the dozens of prisoner deaths that occurred in U.S. custody. The report by the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command is the first detailed accounting of detainee death cases the military has investigated in those countries. Most of the incidents cited in the report previously had come to light. Three death cases cited in the documents occurred after the Abu Ghraib scandal in Iraq revealed serious abuses in the military detention system and prompted several high-level investigations into the U.S. military’s prison system worldwide. The 27 confirmed or suspected homicides occurred during 24 separate incidents, 17 of them in Iraq and seven in Afghanistan. The Criminal Investigation Command has determined that there were homicides in 16 of the incidents and is continuing to investigate the other eight incidents. So far, the Army has found sufficient evidence to support charges against 21 soldiers in 11 incidents on offenses that include murder, negligent homicide and assault. The five other completed investigations involve personnel from the Navy, other government agencies and foreign armies.
Despite the report, the Army does not plan on prosecuting anyone named. Here’s a thought — with the Iraqi insurgency looking for an exit option, and with it becoming increasingly clear who’s running foreign policy nowadays, perhaps this would be a good time to ease out the guy responsible for this cancer on the military?
Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and co-host of the Space the Nation podcast. Twitter: @dandrezner
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