Monday, January 24, 2005


There's a weird unreality to the whole debate on torturing Al Qaeda or Iraqi prisoners (sparked by the nomination of Al Gonzales to be Attorney General). We already put American prisoners in situations that are just as bad (or far worse) than the torture that is alleged to have happened at Guantanamo or Abu Ghraib.

Imagine that Al Gonzales had written a memo that said: "If we catch Al Qaeda members or Iraqi insurgents, let's allow them to be repeatedly raped over a period of years." As soon as such a memo became public, there would be an outcry over "legitimating torture," etc. Yet that's exactly what we already do right here in America to prisoners of all kinds, including minor drug offenders who haven't actually harmed anyone.

Stuart Buck


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