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The senior United Nations expert on the integrity of legal processes states that beginning next year, Donald Rumsfeld will have difficulties traveling outside of the United States because of his connection to war crimes. The official, Leandro Despouy, drew his conclusions based largely on a review of the recently released report of the Senate Armed Services Committee, which directly connected the mistreatment of prisoners to policy decisions taken by Rumsfeld. Despouy is a well-known Argentine human rights lawyer and diplomat who has served as the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers since 2003.
Despouy also strongly supported the initiative of President Barack Obama to close the detention facility at Guantánamo.
Despouy said the “strong resistance” put forward by the former US administration to current US president Barack Obama’s decision to close the detention centre has nothing to do with the officially cited reason of “national security” considerations.
Rather they are fearful that they may be taken to task once the detention centre is closed, said Despouy.
His comments echoed those of another senior U.N. expert, Manfred Nowak, who said that the United States had a formal legal obligation to open a criminal investigation into the use of torture by the Bush Administration and to prosecute those who developed torture policy.
More from Scott Horton:
No Comment — March 28, 2014, 12:32 pm
On CIA secrecy, torture, and war-making powers
No Comment — November 4, 2013, 5:17 pm
An expert panel concludes that the Pentagon and the CIA ordered physicians to violate the Hippocratic Oath
No Comment — August 12, 2013, 7:55 am
How will the Obama Administration handle Edward Snowden’s case in the long term?
Discussed in this essay:
The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, by Elizabeth Kolbert. Henry Holt. 352 pages. $28.
The extinction symbol is a spare graphic that began to appear on London walls and sidewalks a couple of years ago. It has since become popular enough as an emblem of protest that people display it at environmental rallies. Others tattoo it on their arms. The symbol consists of two triangles inscribed within a circle, like so:
“The triangles represent an hourglass; the circle represents Earth; the symbol as a whole represents, according to a popular Twitter feed devoted to its dissemination (@extinctsymbol, 19.2K followers), “the rapidly accelerating collapse of global biodiversity” — what scientists refer to alternately as the Holocene extinction, the Anthropocene extinction, and (with somewhat more circumspection) the sixth mass extinction.
Percentage of Americans who say they would not enjoy spending time with their own clone:
Astronomers recorded the most powerful pulse of radiation ever observed; the radiation was emitted from a pulsar 12,000 light-years from Earth and was “capable of totally vaporising and ionising all known materials, shredding them into hot plasma.”
Alberta dentist Michael Zuk, the owner of a molar that belonged to John Lennon, revealed that he hoped to clone a new Lennon and raise him as a son. “Hopefully keep him away from drugs,” said Zuk, “but, you know, guitar lessons wouldn’t hurt.”
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Science’s crisis of faith