Sunday, July 24, 2005

Eyes (still) wide shut, part II: Cheney defends torture

Well, more or less. Amba has the story here, quoting extensively from an article in today's Times. Here's some of it, and I think it speaks for itself:

Vice President Dick Cheney is leading a White House lobbying effort to block legislation offered by Republican senators that would regulate the detention, treatment and trials of detainees held by the American military.

In an unusual, 30-minute private meeting on Capitol Hill on Thursday night, Mr. Cheney warned three senior Republicans on the Armed Services Committee that their legislation would interfere with the president's authority and his ability to protect Americans against terrorist attacks.

The legislation, which is still being drafted, includes provisions to bar the military from hiding prisoners from the Red Cross; prohibit cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of detainees; and use only interrogation techniques authorized in a new Army field manual.

The three Republicans are John McCain of Arizona, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and John W. Warner of Virginia, the committee chairman. They have complained that the Pentagon has failed to hold senior officials and military officers responsible for the abuses that took place at the Abu Ghraib prison outside of Baghdad, and at other detention centers in Cuba, Iraq and Afghanistan.

McCain, Graham, and Warner. Hardly a triumvirate of bleeding-heart liberals. Would anyone care to defend Cheney on this one? I'm just not sure how mandating the humanitarian treatment of detainees is such a bad thing.

(For part I, see here.)

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