Over White House opposition, the Senate has passed legislation banning torture. With Vice President Dick Cheney as the point man, the administration is seeking an exemption for the CIA. It was recently disclosed that the spy agency maintains a network of prisons in eastern Europe and Asia, where it holds terrorist suspects.Bush is obliquely admitting that we *do* torture, have an interest in mainiting the "right" to torture while proclaiming that we do not torture. The Bush Administration not only gives a finger to the Geneva Conventions, but simultaneously says we do not torture while seeking an exemption to allow torture by government officials-- meanwhile there are still people in this country who do not understand why he is so well-loathed worldwide.
The European Union is investigating the reports, which have not been confirmed by the White House.
"Our country is at war and our government has the obligation to protect the American people," Bush said. "Any activity we conduct is within the law. We do not torture."
I can't think of anything more despicable than fighting for the right to torture when we see fit. Not just because I find the mere notion of torture morally repugnant but because it is well known that its effectiveness is very highly dubious. Situational ethics anyone?
You know who has been speaking out with great moral clarity on this issue lately? Jimmy Carter. In a nutshell, Carter points out the obvious-- that Republicans are destroying key American values with stunts like this. Carter is too smart to ask the pithy, obvious bumper-sticker question that other so-called good Christians should be asking themselves: Who Would Jesus Torture? But that is exactly what they should be asking themselves.