Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The anti-torture CIA chief

Obama's pick to head the CIA is unambiguously against torture. What a powerful message his appointment will send.

I hope he and Obama are somehow able to hold Bush people accountable for systematically abusing and killing detainees. (Jane Mayer's "The Dark Side" documents at least one case of a detainee who died during CIA interrogation. I think she wrote there were probably more, but I can't remember everything in the book.)

2 comments:

Fugublowfish said...

Does this mean that you're less conflicted?

odori said...

Yes, I think my thinking as evolved and I've become less conflicted...

Once thing I remain concerned about is whether enough people will support the criminal prosecution of those who tortured detainees and those who wrote the legal opinions authorizing torture.

Opinion polls have shown a lot of Americans didn't care that the U.S. has been torturing detainees. It's only by luck that both major party candidates in the last election opposed torture. It wasn't a major issue in the primary nor in the general election.

So if Obama may face a political backlash from right-wingers if he prosecutes the torturers and torture enablers. And I don't think many people would rally to his defense.

Unless he gave one of his fantastic speeches making a strong case that these people need to be held accountable in court. But would he want to spend his valuable "political capital" that
way?

I don't know. I hope my doubts are unfounded.

I've heard some suggest an American "Truth and Reconcilliation Commission" to dig up and air out all the bad deeds.

That might be more effective than criminal prosecutions.

My thinking is still evolving....