Sunday, November 05, 2006

Coming soon to a democracy near you

This is simply disgusting.

The Bush administration has told a federal judge that terrorism suspects held in secret CIA prisons should not be allowed to reveal details of the "alternative interrogation methods" that their captors used to get them to talk.

The government says in new court filings that those interrogation methods are now among the nation's most sensitive national security secrets and that their release -- even to the detainees' own attorneys -- "could reasonably be expected to cause extremely grave damage." Terrorists could use the information to train in counter-interrogation techniques and foil government efforts to elicit information about their methods and plots, according to government documents submitted to U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton on Oct. 26.
We will torture you and put you in secret prisons, but what we do and where we do it is so secret even you can't talk about it.

The unstated conclusion here, of course, is that the detainees can never be released, either, becuase the government can only control what they say so long as they control access to the detainees. So if they are not terrorists, we cannot release them because of what we did to them when we suspected they were terrorists. And if they are terrorists, we can't tell anyone because that would involve revealing how we got the information, and that information itself is our nation's most sensitive national security information. So it is not what they did, but what we did to them, that we must keep secret.

Kafka was a prophet, and Joseph Heller his godchild. And George Orwell was wrong. It isn't the dictaorship we should fear, the totalitarian government; it is democracy. It is us.

We are the monsters.

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