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CIA Inspector General report on abuse of prisoners

The last paragraph in Thomas Paine’s 1795 essay entitled Dissertations on First Principles of Government said this:

An avidity to punish is always dangerous to liberty. It leads men to stretch, to misinterpret, and to misapply even the best of laws. He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.

On Monday, Attorney General Eric holder released the confidential CIA Inspector General report entitled “Counterterrorism Detention and Interrogation Activities (September 2001 – October 2003). The report is not for the faint of heart, but I hope libraries will add the document to their collections. As Scott Shane and Mark Mazzetti said in today’s NY Times (Report Shows Tight C.I.A. Control on Interrogations):

The Central Intelligence Agency’s secret interrogation program operated under strict rules, and the rules were dictated from Washington with the painstaking, eye-glazing detail beloved by any bureaucracy.

Many have written about the report (Michael Sherer, Publius, Dahlia Lithwick to name but a few) but folks should read Glenn Greenwald’s post on the topic:

“What every American should be made to learn about the IG Torture Report”. Glenn Greenwald. Monday Aug. 24, 2009.

As a side note, I’d like to reiterate my twitter comment for those that didn’t see it. PLEASE would all journalists include links and citations for supporting documents on ALL of their pieces?? The Web means that there’s no excuse or need to save space. Don’t make your readers have to search for supporting documents. It’ll make them go away.

Released CIA Report — post-9/11

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