enemies of all mankind

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David Cole’s article in the latest issue of The Nation, “Tortured Exceptionalism,” begins with this passage:

"The torturer has become like the pirate and slave trader before him hostis humani generis, an enemy of all mankind." So proclaimed the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in 1980, in a landmark decision ruling that the prohibition on torture was so universally accepted that a US court could hold responsible a Paraguayan official charged with torturing a dissident in Paraguay. It is highly unusual to hold foreign officials responsible for wrongdoing committed within their own country, but the court declared that when officials violate such a fundamental norm as the prohibition on torture, they can be held accountable anywhere they are found. [emphasis added]

This is the sentiment I wish had been at my fingertips when I wrote about torture last year. As ML King once noted, "The arc of history is long, but it bends toward justice.” Pinochet and Milosevic could not parlay their “Senator for Life” and “head of state” chips into a winning position in regards to international law, and I suspect that they will have company in the future.

Kissinger, are you listening? Rumsfeld? Rice? Cheney? Dubya?

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on February 27, 2006 4:55 PM.

just what we need: aggressive ignorance was the previous entry in this blog.

a taste of their own medicine is the next entry in this blog.

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