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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
Acres of hemp grown by “patriotic‚” U.S. farmers in 1942 at the behest of the U.S. government:
A study suggested that the health effects of exposure to nuclear radiation at Chernobyl were no worse than ill health resulting from smoking and normal urban air pollution.
Greenpeace apologized after activists accidentally defaced the site of Peru’s 2,000-year-old Nazca Lines when they unfurled cloth letters reading “time for change” near the ancient sand drawings. “We fully understand,” the group wrote in a statement, “that this looks bad.”
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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.”