From the Wasington Post
The International Committee of the Red Cross concluded in a secret report that the Bush administration’s treatment of al-Qaeda captives “constituted torture,” a finding that strongly implied that CIA interrogation methods violated international law, according to newly published excerpts from the long-concealed 2007 document.
Well first, isn’t that a bit paradoxical, WaPo? Torture DOES violate international law. Period. So since (no longer if after this report) The Bush Torture Program did torture, the report doesn’t “imply” that international laws against torture were broken……it says so.
For more information on the report, see Valtin’s article Leaked! International Red Cross Report on CIA Torture, and the original article US Torture: Voices from the Black Sites By Mark Danner/
But here is the crux of the issue, as far as justice for those in the Bush Administration who ordered the torture….and for those who are currently responsible under the law to pursue that legal justice.
“It could not be more important that the ICRC explicitly uses the words ‘torture’ and ‘cruel and degrading,’ ” Danner said in a telephone interview. “The ICRC is the guardian of the Geneva Conventions, and when it uses those words, they have the force of law.”
He discounted the possibility that the detainees fabricated or embellished their stories, noting that the accounts overlap “in minute detail,” even though the detainees were kept in isolation at different locations.
Let us repeat that.
“The ICRC is the guardian of the Geneva Conventions, and when it uses those words, they have the force of law.”
Update* The ICRC the most authoritative of the international agencies that inspect and determine whether abuses of the Conventions have occurred. That is why governments allow them to monitor it. They are required by the Conventions, which are legally binding to the signatories, to allow them to monitor and determine whether torture or other abuses have occurred.
It has determined torture has occurred.
Each High Contracting Party shall be under the obligation to search for persons alleged to have committed, or to have ordered to be committed, such grave breaches, and shall bring such persons, regardless of their nationality, before its own courts.
That would be Attorney General Holder. He is obliged, under the Geneva Convention to bring torturers before the courts
The ICRC is the entity that determines if torture has occurred.
Now, the ICRC has determined that torture has occurred.
The ICRC has alleged in this report, according to their role, that torture has occurred.
Which means that the The Bush Torture Program did officially violated international laws against torture and has officially violated the Geneva Convention.
Let’s pound that nail home for Attorney General Holder. The United States Government officially tortured, according to the agency that officially determines whether torture has or has not occurred. Torture is officially illegal, officially a crime, officially a Geneva Convention violation, which we are officially obligated to uphold by the Constitution. The Attorney General of the United States is officially obligated to investigate and prosecute crimes.
Can the Attorney General then ignore this official report?
Can the President allow the Attorney General to do so?
And then the final question. At what point does ignoring an official report of torture become being an accessory to torture by “covering it up” through not investigating and prosecuting based on an official report?
* The evidence and reports continue to mount. So far the DOJ, to all appearances, has ignored these reports and evidence. Now there is an allegation of torture by the very agency that is tasked with that function. Will this too be ignored?
At what point does legal inaction ….become illegal complicity?