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In Tehran reports circulate that protestors held in the infamous Evin Prison are being waterboarded. The practice was unheard of in Iran before the latest troubles. So where did the Iranians get the idea of waterboarding prisoners? Ask Dick Cheney. Iranians, like others around the world, are carefully watching the torture debate in America. The former vice president describes waterboarding as “dunking in water” and insists it isn’t torture. Those who set the political stage in Washington dismiss the question of accountability for torture as an “attempt to criminalize policy differences.” The idea that Washington’s trivialization of the issue will result in tens of thousands around the world being tortured, in some cases tortured to death, is beyond their comprehension. Chuck Todd is one of the brighter political commentators of the new generation, yet in recent on-air remarks even he fell for these typical inside-the-Beltway delusions. Glenn Greenwald challenged him, and the two had a face-off interview that is well worth a listen. Now Stephen Colbert takes a look at Chuck Todd and his perspective on the torture debate, putting Todd’s views in just the context in which they need to be assessed.
More from Scott Horton:
Conversation — March 30, 2016, 3:44 pm
Joseph Hickman discusses his new book, The Burn Pits, which tells the story of thousands of U.S. soldiers who, after returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have developed rare cancers and respiratory diseases.
Freddie Gray’s relatives arrived for the trial in the afternoon, after the prep-school kids had left. By their dress, they seemed to have just gotten off work in the medical and clerical fields. The family did not appear at ease in the courtroom. They winced and dropped their heads as William Porter and his fellow officer Zachary Novak testified to opening the doors of their police van last April and finding Freddie paralyzed, unresponsive, with mucus pooling at his mouth and nose. Four women and one man mournfully listened as the officers described needing to get gloves before they could touch him.
The first of six Baltimore police officers to be brought before the court for their treatment of Freddie Gray, a black twenty-five-year-old whose death in their custody was the immediate cause of the city’s uprising last spring, William Porter is young, black, and on trial. Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing.
Number of Turkish college students detained in the last year for requesting Kurdish-language classes:
Turkey was funding a search for Suleiman the Magnificent’s heart.
A former prison in Philadelphia that has served as a horror-movie set was being prepared as a detention center for protesters arrested at the upcoming Democratic National Convention, and presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump fired his campaign manager.
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“Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'”