December 18, 2005
McCain's License to Torture?
But this whole discussion conveniently neglects the fact that US governments of both political stripes have always made extensive use of torture, whether by their own agents or through proxies. The current debates make it appear as if torture were something new for the US. McCain cannot have been unaware of this history, knowing what he does about torture.
Perhaps his whole campaign around restoring "America’s honour" has really been about trying to stave off the risk of this grisly history — and the real nature of the American system of government — penetrating the public's consciousness any more than it has already.
To look at it another way, McCain, by obliterating both the history and the present in a single stroke, has given carte blanche, not only to this particular Administration, but also to all future (and past) US governments, to employ torture whenever, however, and wherever they wish. Quite an achievement for one who is purportedly such a vehement opponent of the practice.
• My other posts on related topics:
Commandress in Chief
Opportunism, thy name is Dubya!
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