What we can do is put every single person who was involved with, authorized, or knowingly covered up these atrocities in jail for an extended period of time. The fact that there is virtually no prospect of that happening is so disheartening to me.
Papa Vel-DuRay was at one of the German concentration camps right after the liberation, and one of the things they did was make the people of the nearby village come and see what had been done in their name. They all denied knowing anything about it, which was sort of ridiculous, because even their village stunk of death, but at least they had to confront it, and Germany is a much better country for it now.

While this is not at the level of the Holocaust, it is good that we are having to face it. Unfortunately, I agree that nothing will likely come of it, since we have such a dumbed down population.
Torture actually shut down some promising leads - using it was VERY counterproductive
What should we do? Disband the CIA, blacklist its agents and contractors, and prosecute its war criminals. Won't happen--the CIA's history is replete with costly mistakes, oversteps, public lies, illegal activity, and unhelpful brutality; and no one's ever done anything about any of it but give them more funding--but it would be a start.
#3 this is different from the holocaust mostly in terms of degree.
so when do Bush and Cheney make that trip to the Hague for their war criminals / crimes against humanity trials?
#6: Apart from the profiling aspect, I'd say none of this is even remotely comparable to the fucking Holocaust. I don't remember a conference after 9-11 where we decided to exterminate an entire people and then carried it out on an industrial scale. What this is comparable to is what the CIA was doing throughout the entire Cold War, only back then with mostly tacit support from the American people. If you really want to find something comparable to the Holocaust, look instead to the Indian Removal policies of the nineteenth century. No point in muddying the motives and scale of the Holocaust by comparing it to actions more befitting the petty machinations of an authoritarian banana republic. Hyperbole does no one any favors.
Yet another stark difference between today's republicans and democrats despite the left sitting out elections claiming both parties are 'the same'. Republicans are very cruel people who've lost their humanity, democrats don't seem to be. The mentalities of those in each party is very different. If you're ever detained as a suspected terrorist by this country you'd better hope a democrat is in the white house. Although you're still facing some very harsh circumstances when detained in this country, not torture though unless it's solitary confinement, from what I understand anyway. Good god the Bush years were awful
#9: Again, did we set out to exterminate a people based purely on their race or ethnicity? If the answer to this question is no, it's not comparable to the Holocaust. There's a whole exciting world out there of atrocities that serve as much better analogies. Let's stop reaching for the top shelf.
I was hesitant to bring up the holocaust, because people always get distracted by any reference to it. My point was that the allied forces made the Germans confront what was done at the death camps in their name. Here, our own government is providing us the opportunity to learn of what it did in our name, but little will probably come of it.

I do wonder what would have happened with to report if it were to come up during the Senate we are about to have.
#12: I got your point, it made sense.
The proper response from the Democrats to the Republican paroxysms over this is to repeat ad nauseum: Republicans are apologists for torture. I don't expect them to make especially good use of this fact however, but it is a fact.

One thing we really should keep in mind. We are only in a position where the excesses of the 'war on terror' can be criticized because there has not been a major terrorist attack in this country since 911. Americans in general have not become any less ignorant, paranoid, fearful or authoritarian since the immediate aftermath of that attack when they were all gung-ho for torture, profiling, detention without trial and randomly bombing Islamic countries. It would only take one more major terrorist attack in this country to completely eradicate whatever paltry progress we have made towards confronting this issue.
#14: Well said. After 9-11, the American public was ready to follow the Bush administration off the cliff. Now, there's this weird public amnesia about it all. When Bush and Congress where building the institutional and legal architecture of the War on Terror, where was the intense scrutiny and talk of potential war crimes among the Patriot Act-supporting lawmakers elected by the American people? What political price did any of them actually pay by institutionalizing torture. The American public spends too much time congratulation itself instead of making the link between our (by which I mean the majority of Americans who didn't give a shit) own votes and tacit support and the actions of lawmakers, and by extension, the intelligence community. Oversight wasn't such a priority in the wacky days after 9-11.
I look forward to the stream of Fox News stories on how 180 hours of sleep deprivation is no different from working a few late nights and having to shit yourself is shrugged off as something babies do.
We should have done what was allowed under the last Geneva Accord we signed.

Just take the irregular forces out back, shoot them, and give them a decent burial.

It really is effective at stopping the violence.
@10- The Democrats are the party of sitting on the sideline with their eyes covered while their eyes covered while this happened. And when they controlled both houses and the executive they DID NOTHING. In fact the Obama administration reinforced the Bush era claims to executive authority to do whatever the hell they wanted to "terrorists."
What exactly is the definition of "crimes against humanity?" Because, I've got to say, if this isn't it, it must be so goddamned close to it as to make no difference.
@14, Republican hypocrisy is neatly encapsulated in this little framing of Marco Rubio tweets (text below):

Marco Rubio, everybody.

— Jon Lovett (@jonlovett) December 9, 2014

Marco Rubio @marcorubio · 4h 4 hours ago
Those who served us in aftermath of 9/11 deserve our thanks not one sided partisan Senate report that now places American lives in danger.

Marco Rubio @marcorubio · 20h 20 hours ago
Esta noche en el Senado de EEUU aprobamos sanciones contra los violadores de derechos humanos trabajando por @NicolasMaduro en #Venezuela

Marco Rubio @marcorubio · 20h 20 hours ago
Just moments ago the U.S. Senate passed our bill imposing sanctions against human rights violators working for @NicolasMaduro in #Venezuela
@20 Wikipedia's answer to my question:…

I'd say there's enough stuff there to give a positive match.
Jobs are waiting for these agents in municipal police departments! No training required! Veterans encouraged to apply!
Why didn't you simply provide the direct link to the document from the Senate Intelligence Committee?…
Sounds like a great question. But I don't have an answer.
1. Q: Guess who coined the term "Enhanced Interrogation", with some of the identical "techniques" (hypothermia, strappado, etc.)
A: Yep, you guessed it: The Gestapo. And hey, they were found to be 'war crimes' and the perpetrators were sentenced to death. I'll bet no CIA person even goes to jail for this.

2. WHOA! Hey, a CIA person IS in jail! But wait, what's this? It's John Kiriakou, the guy who blew the whistle on CIA torture, sparking this report.
Perhaps we could let him out of jail now.

3. "That "discomfort" wasn't enough for Bush[II] to pull back on the program, though."
As if he even had the ability to do so. He would not have been allowed to.
Remember, his daddy was former CIA head, and his great-grandaddy supported Hitler!
The U. S. government investigated both Bert Walker and Prescott Bush, and under the Trading with the Enemy Act seized all shares of Union Banking, including shares held by Prescott Bush. The government held that "huge sections of Prescott Bush's empire had been operated on behalf of Nazi Germany and had greatly assisted the German war effort."

Let us not forget that Prescott Bush also helped form the "Office of Strategic Services", the predecessor of the CIA.

Blood all over his family tree.
#17: I honestly don't know if you're joking or incredibly dense. I'll give you the benefit of a doubt, and just assume you're not actually calling me a Nazi because I don't think comparing this to the Holocaust is accurate, or claiming that torturing some Muslims is comparable to trying out an entire ethnic group. Because if you're that dumb, I kind of feel bad for ya.,
#17: I honestly don't know if you're joking or incredibly dense. I'll give you the benefit of a doubt, and just assume you're not actually calling me a Nazi because I don't think comparing this to the Holocaust is accurate, or claiming that torturing some Muslims is comparable to trying to wipe out an entire ethnic group. Because if you're that dumb, I kind of feel bad for ya.
i'm not the monster - I don't believe in collective guilt.

if you voted twice for bush, however, you are the monster.

29: Fair enough. I feel the same way really.
What we can do is put every single person who was involved with, authorized, or knowingly covered up these atrocities in jail for an extended period of time.
They're secret agents, dude. SECRET AGENTS.
@31 I guess we'll have to wait to see what polls have to say about Republican attitudes to this report then. Absolutely as clear as the blue sky that most Republican political figures are unabashed apologists for torture. Check out the latest quotes from characters like Rubio and McConnell. That one Republican, yourself, does not support these sort of crimes does not make it 'disingenuous' to say that Republicans, as in a large majority of Republicans, do.
@31: Ahh, the No True Scotsman fallacy. I knew that was coming!
shorter @31: "I don't support torture, I just vote for people who do."

Close your fucking tags arthur.

Cheney knew exactly what was going on. Bush was too stupid.
And you're welcome for the tag closing.
@31: Yup, that's a No True Scotsman all right.

I can't wait for the Republican tribunal on Obama's use of drones for extrajudicial killings, and the used of autonomous weapons to kill children.

As of early this year, the Obama administration has killed 2,400 people with drones, including 961 civilians. Of them, 198 were children. Is a 40% civilian casualty rate pass the test for war crime?

Oh,,,, and is Gitmo closed, are is he still force-feeding people six years later?
Thank you @5 and @8 for daring to mention that none of this is an aberration. From Wikipedia, which is no great source on the subject, but at least contains this entry: “In the 21st century, many of the torture techniques developed in the MKULTRA studies and other programs are being used at U.S. military and CIA prisons such as Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib.[128][133] In the aftermath of the Congressional hearings, major news media mainly focused on sensationalistic stories related to LSD, "mind-control", and "brainwashing", and rarely used the word "torture". This suggested that CIA researchers were, as one author put it "a bunch of bumbling sci-fi buffoons", rather than a rational group of men who had run torture laboratories and medical experiments in major U.S. universities; they had arranged for torture, rape and psychological abuse of adults and young children, driving many of them permanently insane.”

I am survivor of US torture, beginning in the 1960’s. I am still recovering from the torture I was subjected to throughout my childhood and periodically as an adult, at a number of facilities across the country. I am one of thousands of known survivors, with more coming forward everyday, many of whom are in their early twenties, so we know the programs continue to this day. Torture may not work as an interrogation technique, but it is highly effective in conditioning behavior and inducing predictable states of amnesia. Consider how valuable being able to induce amnesia might be to a criminal network, or a spy agency. A rather impressive group of researchers and survivors attempted to set up a truth commission in 2010, but we were strong armed out of existence within a month of our first press release. Sadly, it may be that yet another generation suffers before any of these ongoing torture programs are exposed.
@31- "I share many Republican principles - limited government, states rights, balanced budgets and fiscal conservancy"

I don't know how you can possibly claim any of those as Republican values. You're talking about the party that wants to ban marriages between consenting adults, use the federal government to force educational standards on the states, can't balance a budget to save their lives, and thinks cutting income before cutting spending is reasonable.

Plus they endorse torture. But as I said, the Democrats haven't exactly displayed a spine on the torture issue either.
@12, the majority of the concentration/death camps were in Poland so the German citizenry didn't ever actually see them. The Pole who were forced to help the survivors/clean the camps were not automatically converted to sympathy for the Jews. In fact, when some survivors tried to go back to their villages after the war, they were attacked and in some cases killed. It wasn't until the 1960s that Holocaust literature was published made clear what the suffering was, and much, much later that Germany began its official program of quashing anti-Semitism.
Every U.S. post war president up to and including Obama should be (or should have been) tried for war crimes:…
@39: We don't even USE autonomous weapons for reasons relating to ethics and Terminator. Never even developed one, let alone test it! Also, your "extrajudicial killings" is actually known as "warfare" by people unable to give themselves a first-person colonoscopy.
Sarah dear, Father Vel-DuRay is no longer with us to ask, but I think it must have been Dachau, as I don't remember him ever talking about Poland, and I know he was stationed close to Berchtesgaden (he was in the Army Air Corps Intelligence Division. Us Vel-DuRays make a point of staying far back from the front lines)

Just to make sure I wasn't mis-remembering (or he wasn't being grand about his service) I did google it, and found evidence that the allies did indeed make the locals view Dachau.



We don't develop or test autonomous weapons? Not openly, except for...

- United States X-47B unmanned combat air system (UCAS)
- UK’s Brimstone anti-tank missile
- Norway’s Joint Strike Missile—are
- UK’s Taranis (“merely semi-autonomous")
- And “nEUROn” (USA, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Sweden Switzerland) is explicitly designed for autonomous air-to-ground capability


To Big Government.
The conversation, Tantaros says, is over, and bringing it back up is just more Democratic sniveling.

"The United States of America is awesome," she said. "We are awesome. But we've had this discussion. We've closed the book on it, and we've stopped doing it. And the reason they want to have this discussion is not to show how awesome we are. This administration wants to have this discussion to show us how we're not awesome. They apologized for this country, they don't like this country, they want us to look bad. And all this does is have our enemies laughing at us, that we are having this debate again."…
Check out this dissent from former Sen. Bob Kerrey:…

I didn't know that the committee was composed of all Democratic Senators. Is it any wonder that there's a great divide of the release in the media government? I support the disclosure guardedly. But, I just hope there are no retaliatory actions by jihadists and/or ISIS towards Americans and other westerners as a result.
But, I just hope there are no retaliatory actions by jihadists and/or ISIS towards Americans and other westerners as a result.

OMG! Now they might be cutting off heads in retaliation! So, I guess we'd better lie, torture, and violate all our treaties so lunatics don't have any "reason" to chop off heads.

Rather than just... you know... chopp'n off heads for the fuck of it like they've been doing for the last decade and a half.
@49- The committee was all Democrats because the GOP refused to participate.
@47: It's almost like you don't know the difference between "unmanned" and "autonomous" weapons.
@52- It's too bad he stuck with that rather than nailing you on the difference between war (a violent conflict between states) and extrajudicial killing (murder by a government for whatever reason without due process.) Obama has declared that he believes it is legal for the executive branch to declare anyone enemy and have them assassinated (a policy Bush started). He has promised not to use drones to do this in the USA, which is cold comfort indeed.

That is not war, it's the executive branch being cop, judge, jury, and executioner. There is no oversight, no recourse, and no place for such a thing in a democracy.
@46, over at Salon Glenn Greenwald agrees with you, that in this situation going Godwin is the proper response. And I agree too.
@53: The proffered legal theory is a bit scary, but we're talking about what's actually been done. So far it's really just been members of (mostly paramilitary) groups that have declared war and/or committed acts of aggression against us. The collateral damage is a separate issue, and in my opinion we should tighten the requirements for giving the go-ahead to launch missiles, and transition our armed UAVs to carrying munitions with a smaller radius of lethality (e.g. the Griffin rather than the Hellfire).

Also, not my fault Zok is too dumb to make a coherent argument.

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