Retired Military Leaders Support Accountability for Torture

Human Rights First’s retired military coalition was cited in an L.A. Times column this weekend on Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision to review CIA interrogations. After last week’s meetings in Capitol Hill focused on the need to close Guantanamo, they are now also stressing the need for accountability for torture:

Their arguments are straightforward: The rule of law should apply even in a
war against lawless terrorists, and the CIA should be held to the same standard
of accountability as the soldiers who were tried for what they did at Abu
Ghraib.

“I’m amazed at my former colleagues in the intelligence community who think
[Holder’s decision] is a terrible thing,” said retired Army Lt. Gen. Harry E.
Soyster, former chief of the Defense Intelligence Agency. “If accountability is
going to discourage CIA officers from doing their jobs, then we have the wrong
culture.”

“In the military, we’re told to follow the rules,” Taguba said. “We expect
that our civilian leaders will do the same.”

Human Rights First organized the meeting with Holder last week, as well as meetings with media and a public event as part of our Protecting America Post-Guantanamo campaign, which is also cited in the article:

In a campaign organized by Human Rights First, a nonpartisan human rights group,
the generals and admirals are pressing the administration to close the
Guantanamo facility on schedule, give its inmates civilian trials and — until
then — to house them in American prisons.

Join our campaign to close Guantanamo!

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Published on October 5, 2009

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