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Torture Team: Rumsfeld’s Memo and the Betrayal of American Values
A Discussion Featuring Philippe Sands, author and professor of Law at University College, London, and Scott Horton, legal affairs writer, Harper’s Magazine
This event is free and open to the public
Date: May 5, 2008
Time: 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Location: Lipton Hall, 108 W. 3rd Street
About Torture Team: Rumsfeld’s Memo and the Betrayal of American Values (Palgrave MacMillan)
Beyond the infamous memo signed by Donald Rumsfeld, what do we really know about the torture that the U.S. government has signed off on? Philippe Sands, a seasoned prosecutor of war criminals including Augusto Pinochet and Slobodan Milosevic, details the systemic abuse at Guantanamo, including never-before published interviews with the lawyers and military officials that admit to compliance with interrogation orders coming from the top. And to be certain, it doesn’t stop at Guantanamo. The techniques have migrated from Gitmo to Abu Ghraib to Basra to Matrix Chamber. It is systemic, illegal, and will continue into the next Administration unless there is a drastic policy change. Would any of the presidential hopefuls have that courage?
Philippe Sands is an international lawyer, professor of law, and Director of the Centre on International Courts and Tribunals in the Faculty at University College London. He is the author of Lawless World: America and the Making and Breaking of Global Rules and is a frequent commentator on news and current affairs programs including CNN, MSNBC, and BBC World Service. He has been involved in many leading international cases, including the World Court trial of Slobodan Milosevic and the treatment of British detainees at Guantanamo Bay. He frequently advises governments, international organizations, NGOs and the private sector on international law. In 2003, he was appointed a Queen’s Counsel. He has been appointed to lists of arbitrators maintained by ICSID and the PCA.
He has previously held academic positions at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, Kings College London, University of Cambridge, and was a Global Professor of Law at New York University from 1995-2003. He was co-founder of FIELD (Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development), and established the programs on Climate Change and Sustainable Development. He is a member of the Advisory Boards of the European Journal of International Law and Review of European Community and International Environmental Law (Blackwell Press). In 2007 he served as a judge for the Guardian First Book Prize award.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:
The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.
Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”