March 8, 2008, President Bush vetoes H.R. 2082, the Intelligence Authorization bill, which prevents the CIA and other US agents from using simulated drowning - waterboarding, sexual humiliation, dogs and other techniques that amount to torture and ill-treatment.

These methods of interrogation have been labeled alternative, harsh, and enhanced in an attempt to conceal what our government is really committing…acts of torture.

People, please take a look at this closely. We are ultimately responsible for what our government does in our name. This kind of blatant disregard for human rights causes us far more damage than any benefits we receive from it. Torture is wrong everywhere, all the time, regardless of what agency or country does it. We are breaking the rules we as a country fought to establish in the first place.

The Bush Administration has stated it does not torture, yet has to redefine its definition to condone its own actions. This bill was backed by 18 former national security experts including secretaries of state and national security advisors along with 43 retired admirals and generals. It would have left the 19 interrogation techniques in the Army Field Manual available to the CIA.

It isn’t clear that the use of torture has prevented a repeat of 9/11. It is clear, however, that the use of these practices hasn’t captured Bin Laden or stabilized Afghanistan or Iraq.

Torture by the US makes our own servicemen susceptible to the practice by our enemies. The debate on torture was put to rest years ago. It’s what separated us from the bad guys. Condoning torture decays our moral standing, endangers our troops and our society.

“Some may argue that we would be more effective if we sanctioned torture or other expedient methods to obtain information from the enemy.  They would be wrong.  Beyond the basic fact that such actions are illegal, history shows that they also are frequently neither useful nor necessary.  Certainly, extreme physical action can make someone ‘talk;’ however, what the individual says may be of questionable value.  In fact, our experience in applying the interrogation standards laid out in the Army Field Manual … shows that the techniques in the manual work effectively and humanely in eliciting information from detainees.”

That was Gen. David Petraeus in an open letter to troops in Iraq last May.

Our troops have served with honor, our president has not. Stand up for what is right and work to overturn the president’s action.

Learn more and take action at http://denouncetorture.amnestyusa.org.

http://www.speaker.gov/legislation?id=0168

 

03/11/2008 --
The House fell 51 votes short of overriding the President's veto of the Intelligence Authorization Act.  In addition to setting aside funds for all U.S. intelligence gathering, this bill would have banned the CIA and other U.S. interrogators from using inhumane techniques, including waterboarding. The bill used the Army Field Manual as the standard for what is allowed and prohibited.

Our representative and how they voted-

Senate Supports Torture Ban:
Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) voted against ban.

House Supports Torture Ban:
Representative Ron E. Paul (R-TX 14th) - no vote

House Fails to Override Veto of Torture Ban:
Representative Ron E. Paul (R-TX 14th) voted for ban.

 

Peace. Don’t sleep.