Date: Wed, May 28, 2008 at 11:40 PM
Subject: Where Is the Outrage - Robert Scheer
This nightmarish bogey of officially-condoned torture excesses by American personnel just won't go away. Just last week the Justice Department's Inspector General issued a 370-page report on U.S. complicity in torture. It is the albatross-around-the-neck which I presume, and in fact hope, will characterize the Bush administration in history. May future administrations regard such behavior as the third rail to be avoided politically at all costs. I commend to you reading Robert Scheer's op-ed.
QUOTED EXCERPT: Are we Americans truly savages or merely tone-deaf in matters of morality, and therefore more guilty of terminal indifference than venality? . . . . Because the report was widely cited in the media and easily accessed as a pdf file on the Internet, it is fair to assume that those of our citizens who remain ignorant of the extent of their government's commitment to torture as an official policy have made a choice not to be informed. A less appealing conclusion would be that they are aware of the heinous acts fully authorized by our president but conclude that such barbarism is not inconsistent with that American way of life that we celebrate. . . . That this systematic torture was carried out not by a few conveniently described "bad apples" but rather represented official policy condoned at the highest level of government was captured in one of those rare media reports that remind us why the Founding Fathers signed off on the First Amendment. "These were not random acts," The New York Times editorialized. "It is clear from the inspector general's report that this was organized behavior by both civilian and military interrogators following the specific orders of top officials. The report shows what happens when an American president, his secretary of defense, his Justice Department and other top officials corrupt American law to rationalize and authorize the abuse, humiliation and torture of prisoners." END QUOTE