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October 01, 2009

Commentary on grant of habeas corpus to al Rahiah

Regarding the grant of habeas corpus to Fouad Mahmoud al Rahiah, held and tortured in Guantanamo for seven years, commentary from Andrew Sullivan:

The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan.

Mercifully, America under Bush and Cheney was not a totalitarian regime.

It had an executive branch that embraced the ethic of tyranny in warfare, and a legislative branch so supine it was a toothless adjunct, but it retained a judiciary that began, too late, of course, to push back against the hermetically sealed war-and-torture cycle. The Founders were wise to add such a check. Without it, we would have no way out of the maze that Cheney pushed us in.

Last week we discovered, thanks to the judiciary, a clear example of this tyrannical impulse occurring under Bush and Cheney. We now know that torturing a human being to get proof that he deserved to be tortured was not just a theoretical fear of mine. It happened. If it happened once, it almost certainly happened more often. The temptations are just too great; and when you have clear evidence that Bush and Cheney knew some inmates to be innocent but tortured them anyway to manufacture evidence of their guilt, we know that there was nothing in the character of those two men to restrain the true nightmare scenario.

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