Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

U.S. 'knew damn well' Arar would be tortured: senator," CBC, January 20, 2007.

US Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, Patrick Leahy, a Democrat from Vermont, said during questioning of US Attorney-General Alberto Gonzales Thursday, Jan 18

"We also knew damn well if he went to Syria, he'd be tortured. And it's beneath the dignity of this country — a country that has always been a beacon of human rights — to send somebody to another country to be tortured.

"You know and I know that has happened a number of times in the past five years by this country. It is a black mark on us."

Leahy noted that U.S. officials claimed to have had assurances that people sent to Syria would not be tortured.

"Assurances," he snorted, "from a country that we also say now that we can't talk to them because we can't take their word for anything."

[The US is not now and never has been "a beacon of human rights." That is a Cold War fiction. The US ended slavery 30 years after the British Empire. It committed genocide against numberous North American First Nations and in the 30s and 40s closed its doors to Jews fleeing the Holocaust in Nazi Germany. When did American women get the vote or the right to own property? If she gets the nomination--if--Hillary Clinton will be the first American woman from a major party even to run for president. The US is not a beacon, it is not really even a leader--certainly not *the* leader or the *only* leader.]
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