Saturday, March 28, 2009

"the population may yet rise up and demand justice be done" - Updated

Valtin has a good post at Daily Kos on a report by Jason Leopold that the Senate Armed Services Committee is about to release a "voluminous report on the treatment of detainees held in U.S. custody." Interesting stuff.

Valtin concludes:
I don't see how the drive for prosecutions can withstand the inaction of much of civil society on this issue, and that includes the silence or inactivity of the churches, the unions, the bulk of academia and the declassed (or scruffy) intelligentsia and student population. But politics often takes strange turns, and there is no complete accounting for large-scale social-psychological phenomena.

If the torture revelations come at the right way, at the right time, and with the correct visceral punch, the population may yet rise up and demand justice be done, even if it means an unprecedented indictment of a series of the former highest officials in the land. If this happened, it would be as if a lighting bolt had descended upon the body politic, and social struggle would heat up to an indefinite but large degree.

We must state our appreciation for the work of Sen. Carl Levin and the Senate Armed Services Committee for the fine job they have done, even knowing, as they must, that a full airing of the issues would be like throwing a keg of dynamite on the tinder of a society reeling from eight years of near-dictatorial rule. But the work is not done yet, and I will reserve full congratulations until the report itself is out and I've had a chance to review it. I look forward to writing my review, and reading the analyses of the many other fine commentators on the net who are sure to pounce on this juicy nugget and squeeze it for all it is worth... at least I hope that's what happens.
For information on what the courts are up to with regard to FOIA requests by the ACLU for the torture tape library, see emptywheel today.

--the BB

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