Attorney General Eric Holder is considering co-operating with a Spanish court wanting to try the U.S. military and U.S. officials for torture at Guantanamo. This is not the “World Court.” The Spanish judge, Baltasar Garzon, reportedly made his decision to take us to court AFTER the Obama administration released the so-called “torture” memos.
According to Douglas Feith, the complaint is made by an attorney who did his legal studies while serving over seven years in prison for kidnapping and terrorism.
Feith is a former under-secretary of defense for policy 2001-2005, and may be implicated in the charges.
The allegation is not that any of us tortured anyone. And it is not that any of us even directed anyone to commit torture. The allegation is that, when we advised President George W. Bush on the Geneva Conventions and detainee interrogations, our interpretations were wrong — in the view of the disapproving Spaniards. According to the complaint, these wrong interpretations encouraged the president to make decisions that led to torture.
His article provides a good overview of the charges and his own defense.
According to the GuardianUK, the recent decision by the Obama administration to release documents about Guantánamo (so-called “torture memo”) helped the judge conclude that a police investigation, which could lead to criminal charges, was necessary.
Here’s what Holder said:
Mistakes were made” in the creation of the Guantánamo programme, Holder said. “Obviously, we would look at any request that would come from a court in any country and see how and whether we should comply with it.
Spain isn’t stopping with Guantanamo. They’re looking into Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan as a suspected place for American torture, as well.
In the meantime, another Spaniard is deciding whether the National Court (Spanish National Court, I assume – not the World Court) can also bring torture charges against six U.S. officials, including former attorney general Alberto Gonzales. These are dangerous days for America.
Related: Watch Condoleezza Rice talk with a Stanford University student. He asks her how we can “win the hearts and minds” of the world with our past history of torture.