Mark Danner

Leaked ICRC Torture Report


Mark Danner, Professor of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley, discusses the leaked torture report from the International Committee of the Red Cross, the clear ICRC pronouncement that CIA interrogation techniques amounted to torture and the untenable stalemate between Attorney General Eric Holder’s declaration that waterboarding is torture and Dick Cheney’s admission of same.

MP3 here. (21:13)

Mark Danner was formerly a staff writer at The New Yorker and frequently writes for The New York Times Magazine. His article “US Torture: Voices from the Black Sites” appears in The New York Review of Books.

6 thoughts on “Mark Danner”

  1. I’m really surprised the U.S. allowed the ICRC to interview these guys. Guess that must have been after Bybee and Yoo left, so they couldn’t hoke up a legal rationale for keeping the ICRC out.

    If you hadn’t noticed, Holder isn’t gonna prosecute.

    I passed by the Polish black site in the summer of 2001. As we drove by, my Polish relative said that it was a Soviet army base, and “The Russians moved out and the Americans moved in.” I found out in 2007 that it was one of the black sites.

  2. From above link: “Holder added that the administration does not want to criminalize policy differences.”

    There you have it folks, the Democrats. Let’s hear it for ’em.

  3. Good interview with Danner.

    Attorney General Eric Holder doesn’t want to “criminalize policy differences.” Say what? Torture, rendition, and the like are “policy differences”? Also, the Convention Against Torture requires an investigation.

    Truth, Justice, and The American Way are looking pretty threadbare.

  4. The popular talking point is that desperate US officials overreacted after 9/11.

    1) Torture isn’t an effective interrogation method (assuming the goal is to attain reliable information).

    2) Warrantless surveillance began before 9/11.

    3) The CIA, NSA and FBI ITOS all failed to share crucial information with the FBI Cole investigators. Though the spin consists of a bunch of stupid excuses, the truth is that these failures have never been properly investigated as admitted by author James Bamford.

    IMO it isn’t an accident that the same people who acted bizarrely before 9/11 were pushing for illegal policies after 9/11. The overreaction theory only makes sense if one simply ignores all the bizarre pre-9/11 conduct, ignores the ineffectiveness of torture and ignores the lack of accountability for officials involved in pre-9/11 failures. For example, Hayden, Rice and Hadley.

    Cheney gets to go on TV and brag about his police state tactics because the journalists are cheerleaders and much of the information is classified. The information that seeps out tends to refute everything Cheney claims.

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