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Yesterday, a group of medical professionals, Physicians for Human Rights, released a comprehensive review of medical evidence concerning the treatment of detainees. The group found comprehensive evidence of torture and other abuse that resulted in long-term physical and psychological damage, thus satisfying even the most stringent criminal-law definition of torture. Which raises the question of war crimes. Major General Antonio Taguba completed the single most thorough and impressive of the half-dozen studies the Pentagon has commissioned into detainee abuse. “There is no longer any doubt as to whether the current administration has committed war crimes,” Taguba says. “The only question is whether those who ordered torture will be held to account.”
Could officials of the Bush Administration face war crimes charges? In The New Republic, I examine that question and note that, far from this being an outlandish suggestion, criminal cases are in fact being prepared. Which is why the Bush Administration torture-team members need to think twice before boarding an airplane that will take them beyond the sheltering confines of the United States.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
From the June 2014 issue
Percentage increase in the annual number of polio cases in Pakistan since 2005:
A bowl of 4,000-year-old noodles was found in northwestern China; and a spokesman for the Chinese Academy of Sciences said that “this is the earliest empirical evidence of noodles ever found.”
A federal judge sentenced the journalist Barrett Brown to 63 months in prison for sharing a link to information stolen from the private-intelligence firm Stratfor by a hacker in 2011. “Good news!” Brown said in a statement. “They’re now going to send me to investigate the prison-industrial complex.”
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“I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.”