Dec 12, 2005
“The U.S. government does not authorize or condone torture,” claimed Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. She is also quoted saying to her audience on her recent trip to Europe, “It is against U.S. law to be involved in torture or conspiracy to commit torture.”
Her words were firm, her tone sincere. But, like so many other “sincere” statements, it was nothing but a blatant lie. But the U.S. media actually reported the story as if there could be any question about whether the U.S. tortures.
What does it mean to chain people up on walls? What does it mean to keep them in the dark or in extreme cold or in extreme heat? What does it mean to beat them to a pulp? What does it mean to hook up wires to their genitals or to nearly drown them? What does it mean to keep people in prison for years without ever charging them, let alone sending them to trial?
In fact, these methods used by the U.S. are the typical methods of torturers throughout the world.
Of course the U.S. uses torture – in great quantities. And their own officials even admit it. Their top lawyer said the U.S. would follow the Geneva Convention or the Convention Against Torture ONLY when it suited U.S. policy.
Whether it is called “rendition” or “enhanced interrogation techniques,” it is torture. Whether it is done in this country or some other one at U.S. behest, it is still torture. And it is an integral part of U.S. policy.
But as disgusting as this part of U.S. policy is, it is only a small portion of a much broader policy of violence, pursued by every U.S. administration, and aimed at controlling the peoples of the world.
Today there are thousands and thousands of Iraqi and Afghani families who have lost their loved ones to U.S. bombs; thousands are maimed, their homes turned into rubble, their chance of employment next to nothing, their country involved in hideous civil war.
Since the end of World War II, the United States has carried out more wars than all other countries put together. And wars are not the only method used by U.S. governments. The U.S. regularly has used covert military actions. For example, the “Al Qaeda terrorists” got started with CIA money used to arm and train them against the Russians in Afghanistan 20 years ago. The U.S. supplied the Contra terrorists who murdered and tortured the people of Nicaragua. The death squads in El Salvador and Guatemala were paid with our tax dollars. What of the bloody dictators propped up by the U.S. government in Indonesia, in the Philippines, in Turkey, throughout Latin America from the Dominican Republic to Chile?
Neither the activities nor the lies of the Bush administration are new. They are all aspects of the long-term policy of U.S. imperialism.