In most issues of the Washington Monthly, we favor articles that we hope will launch a debate. In this issue we seek to end one. The unifying message of the articles that follow is, simply, Stop. In the wake of September 11, the United States became a nation that practiced torture. Astonishingly—despite the repudiation of torture by experts and the revelations of Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib—we remain one. As we go to press, President George W. Bush stands poised to veto a measure that would end all use of torture by the United States. His move, we suspect, will provoke only limited outcry. What once was shocking is now ordinary.
Bi-partisan statements (because decrying torture should never be party politics) can be read at the individual links:
Bob Barr , Rand Beers, Peter Bergen, Jimmy Carter, Steve Cheney, Amy Chua, Richard Cizik, Wesley K. Clark, Jack Cloonan, Chris Dodd, Kenneth M. Duberstein & Richard Armitage, Eric Fair, Carl Ford, Lee F. Gunn, Chuck Hagel, Lee H. Hamilton & Thomas H. Kean, Gary Hart, John Hutson, Claudia Kennedy, John Kerry, Harold Hongju Koh, Carl Levin, Richard Lugar, Leon E. Panetta, Nancy Pelosi, William J. Perry, Paul R. Pillar, Tim Roemer, John Shattuck, Anne-Marie Slaughter, Theodore C. Sorensen, William H. Taft IV, Thomas G. Wenski, Lawrence B. Wilkerson, Steve Xenakis
It is past time to hold the administration accountable for this and to stop the faux debate. There is no debate, it is simply immoral, wrong and un-American. I know C&L readers are engaged politically, but please do not allow those around you to be apathetic. Forward the Washington Monthly article to everyone you know...ask that they make their voices heard by contacting their congresspeople and more importantly, presidential candidate. Let's make a concerted effort to pressure the White House from vetoing the measure. It has worked before, and it can work now.