Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Strange new fastidiousness: Not turning prisoners over to other governments to have them tortured

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For a while, particularly under the Bush Administration, the US routinely transported prisoners (sometimes people that the US had kidnapped) to foreign prisons so that they could be tortured without the US actually doing the torture itself—subcontracting the torture, as it were. At other times, of course, the US would happily do its own torture, as of the innocent German kidnapped in Macedonia.

Now, apparently, the US is trying to regain its torture virginity by being very public in its decision to protest torture of prisoners it transfers to prisons under foreign control; the military seems to think it deserves high praise for this (and never mind what we did earlier).

Rod Nordland and Thom Shanker report in the NY Times:

The American military has suspended the transfer of detainees to some Afghan prisons out of concern over continuing human rights abuses and torture, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force said Wednesday in response to questions about the subject.

In addition, the American-led coalition said that it had asked the Afghan government to investigate allegations of torture by Afghan Local Police units that have been trained and advised by American Special Operations forces.

The moves were a setback on detention issues that have created tension between the countries, and on years of international efforts to promote humane treatment of prisoners. And under American law, the torture allegations could also set off significant financial aid cutoffs to parts of the Afghan security forces, which play a crucial role in plans for an American withdrawal that are based on handing over responsibility for security to the Afghans as early as this spring.

Afghan control over all detention in the country has been a primary demand of President Hamid Karzai and was a central issue of the summit talks between Mr. Karzai and President Obama in Washington just a week ago. . .

Continue reading.

Written by LeisureGuy

17 January 2013 at 1:32 pm

Posted in Military, Torture

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