Legalizing Torture (washingtonpost.com): “There is no justification, legal or moral, for the judgments made by Mr. Bush’s political appointees at the Justice and Defense departments. Theirs is the logic of criminal regimes, of dictatorships around the world that sanction torture on grounds of ‘national security.’ For decades the U.S. government has waged diplomatic campaigns against such outlaw governments — from the military juntas in Argentina and Chile to the current autocracies in Islamic countries such as Algeria and Uzbekistan — that claim torture is justified when used to combat terrorism. The news that serving U.S. officials have officially endorsed principles once advanced by Augusto Pinochet brings shame on American democracy — even if it is true, as the administration maintains, that its theories have not been put into practice. Even on paper, the administration’s reasoning will provide a ready excuse for dictators, especially those allied with the Bush administration, to go on torturing and killing detainees.”

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