Retired Military Leaders Call on Party Platform Committees to Reject Torture

Washington, DC — Thirty-one retired generals and admirals are calling on the Democratic and Republican Platform Committees to include platform planks unequivocally rejecting the use of torture and other official cruelty in the treatment of prisoners.

In a letter sent to both parties’ platform committees today, the retired senior military leaders described the illegal use of torture as “a defining issue for our Nation,” contending that it does “immense harm to the reputation and moral authority of the United States, undermining our efforts to combat terrorism.”

The letter’s signatories, who describe themselves as representing “diverse political affiliations and opinions,” are part of a larger group of retired generals and admirals who are speaking out against torture and working to ensure that U.S. policy reflects a single standard of prisoner treatment consistent with the Geneva Conventions.

Read the full text of the letter and short bios of the signatories here:

Letter to Democratic Platform Committee

Letter to Republican Platform Committee

“This should not be a partisan issue,” the letter reads, “We are asking the platform committees of both major parties to send a clear message that the next President of the United States – no matter who he is – will uphold our obligations under the Geneva Conventions and return the United States to its long-standing and proper role as a world leader on human rights.”

Some members of this group of retired generals and admirals traveled to New Hampshire and Iowa during the primary season where they met individually with eight presidential candidates from both parties. They have also visited key states in the presidential campaign process to ensure that the next commander-in-chief understands the fundamental importance of prisoner treatment issues to members of the United States Armed Forces and to our national security.


Published on August 1, 2008


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