Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Torture Dennis Hastert, please.

There's this bill to ban the practice of sending people to other countries to be tortured. One might ask oneself, "self, why isn't that already illegal?" It is, but America does it anyway, and has for years, and when someone brings it up, the Official Response is, "we asked them not to do that, but they did it anyway." So the new bill doesn't talk about why we might send someone to a country that tortures; it just makes it illegal to send a prisoner to any country we know tortures people. I guess they know they can't legislate against lies (or ignorance).

What I find interesting is that Dennis Hastert is saying he's against it.
But when New York Times columnist Bob Herbert asked a spokesman for House Speaker Dennis Hastert whether Mr. Hastert supports the Markey bill, the answer was: "The speaker does not support the Markey proposal. He believes that suspected terrorists should be sent back to their home countries." (I called Mr. Hastert's office, but there has been no response.) But international treaties we have signed, and our own laws, forbid outsourcing torture including to "home countries" of alleged terrorists whom we have not charged with any crime.
I wonder if his point is, "we should be able to return prisoners to their country of origin, even if that country tortures." I can't tell. It wouldn't be the worst reason offered, but it certainly doesn't get my agreement. Fafblog has the alternative:
Since torture is an effective, morally acceptable means to prevent terror, the only problem with our current policy is that it fails to torture all terrorists.
Post a Comment