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Frank RIch: The banality of Bush's torture

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Doctor_J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 06:57 AM
Original message
Frank RIch: The banality of Bush's torture
Edited on Sun Apr-26-09 07:00 AM by Doctor_J

Yet we still shrink from the hardest truths and the bigger picture: that torture was a premeditated policy approved at our governments highest levels; that it was carried out in scenarios that had no resemblance to 24; that psychologists and physicians were enlisted as collaborators in inflicting pain; and that, in the assessment of reliable sources like the F.B.I. director Robert Mueller, it did not help disrupt any terrorist attacks.

The newly released Justice Department memos, like those before them, were not written by barely schooled misfits like England and Graner. John Yoo, Steven Bradbury and Jay Bybee graduated from the likes of Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Michigan and Brigham Young. They have passed through white-shoe law firms like Covington & Burling, and Sidley Austin.

Judge Bybees rsum tells us that he has four children and is both a Cubmaster for the Boy Scouts and a youth baseball and basketball coach. He currently occupies a tenured seat on the United States Court of Appeals. As an assistant attorney general, he was the author of the Aug. 1, 2002, memo endorsing in lengthy, prurient detail interrogation techniques like facial slap (insult slap) and insects placed in a confinement box.

He proposed using 10 such techniques in some sort of escalating fashion, culminating with the waterboard, though not necessarily ending with this technique. Waterboarding, the near-drowning favored by Pol Pot and the Spanish Inquisition, was prosecuted by the United States in war-crimes trials after World War II. But Bybee concluded that it does not, in our view, inflict severe pain or suffering.

Still, its not Bybees perverted lawyering and pornographic amorality that make his memo worthy of special attention. It merits a closer look because it actually does add something new and, even after all weve heard, something shocking to the five-year-old torture narrative. When placed in full context, its the kind of smoking gun that might free us from the myths and denial that prevent us from reckoning with this ugly chapter in our history.


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/26/opinion/26rich.html?_r=1
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underpants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 06:59 AM
Response to Original message
1. MUST READ-torture was for the war on Iraq NOT against terrorism
Just read this.

Frank Rich completes the circle that has, as far as I have read, not been put together throughout this entire week of discussion.
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mwb970 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 07:16 AM
Response to Original message
2. It's frustrating to realize how long we have known this info that is "just now coming out".
I blogged about the torture and lies of bush and the republikans years and years ago. Now it's "brand new news". Maddening!
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Psychic Consortium Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 07:19 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. No doubt the same as with the Germans in WWII
The truth was in plain sight for those who wished
to see it. Most chose to have their heads in the sand.

The shame will come soon enough for all of us.
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Doctor_J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 07:30 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. THeir proaganda appartus is extremely adept
As long as Bush was in the WH, Big Media was going to protect him.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 10:40 AM
Response to Reply #4
10. Newsflash: Thanks to the right leaning corporate M$M - the propaganda and obfuscation CONTINUES.
:grr: :nuke:
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underpants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 08:12 AM
Response to Reply #2
7. Hell this connection wasn't even made THIS WEEK
from anything I have read or seen. Everyone talking about this all week who supposed READ the memos didn't even make this connection.

It was sitting right there and no one dare sayeth it.

Shocking and amazing.
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Berry Cool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 07:36 AM
Response to Original message
5. I will run the risk of looking trivial here by saying I'm shocked at the bad NYT editing here
in letting Lynndie England's first name get misspelled (double d instead of double n).

But...aside from that...oh man.

It is just...well...there are no words for the information presented here: that the reason time was at stake and torture was so "necessary" for our country to perform was that it had a war to sell. And it needed the kind of confessions that would sell that war.

In short, it needed to force terrorists to lie. It needed to force them to give BAD information.

So, whether or not torture produces reliable information for preventing attacks is entirely beside the point. They used it because they KNEW the subjects would say anything to make it stop.

Including that there was a connection between 9/11 and Saddam.

Damn.
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indepat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 07:38 AM
Response to Original message
6. Off to the greatest page you go
:D
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Iwillnevergiveup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 08:38 AM
Response to Original message
8. K&R
Frank Rich....live long and prosper.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-26-09 10:37 AM
Response to Original message
9. I don't have near as much ire for the uninformed, even those "willfully" uninformed as I do ...
Edited on Sun Apr-26-09 10:39 AM by ShortnFiery
those who are brilliant and MANIPULATE reason to make some of the most inhumane and cruel policies seem both appropriate and laudable to "the gullible."

Whenever someone is highlighted on C-SPAN Journal from the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), I (a person of average intelligence with intellectual curiosity) MUST listen carefully lest I could be easily "taken in" by their beautiful bullshit.

In other words, it's the evil but genius-level individuals who are the most dangerous to the effective functioning of our democratic republic. My best examples, IMO, are such individuals as Bill "Ain't Sarah Palin great?" Crystal, General "Peaches" Petraeus and Bill "the bookie of virtue" Bennett in addition a few notable *conservative* (both parties) politicians.
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