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Torture is Never Acceptable

For Immediate Release: August 25, 2011

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No Matter What Cheney Says, Torture is Never Acceptable
Religious coalition responds to release of excerpts from Cheney’s book

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As excerpts from former Vice President Dick Cheney’s memoir – as well as his own commentary on the book – begin to be made public, the National Religious Campaign Against Torture is condemning Cheney’s reported ongoing defense of torturing detainees.

In a pre-taped NBC interview to air next week after the release of his book, “In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir,” Cheney is quoted as asserting he has “no regrets” about supporting the euphemistically named enhanced interrogation tactics, and even in retrospect, he would again authorize waterboarding, widely considered a violation of U.S. law today.  “I would strongly support using it again if circumstances arose where we had a high-value detainee and that was the only way we could get him to talk, Cheney told NBC’s Jamie Gangel.

In response, Rev. Richard Killmer, Executive Director of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, released the following statement:

“Mr. Cheney disgraced this country and continues to disgrace himself.  He may have “no regrets,” but he is simply wrong on his view of the use of torture.  Mr. Cheney refuses to learn the lesson learned by civilized countries around the world after WWII – that torture is always immoral and can never be justified under any circumstances.  The National Religious Campaign Against Torture is saddened that the former vice president, who authorized various methods of torture including waterboarding, extremes of heat and cold, sleep deprivation, long-term isolation, sensory deprivation and stress positions, continues to defend his authorization of such torture.” 

The National Religious Campaign Against Torture has long called for a Commission of Inquiry to investigate U.S.-sponsored torture and to recommend safeguards to end U.S.-sponsored torture forever.  Killmer went on to say:

“The United States has a long way to go before we come to terms with the dark deeds done by U.S. officials, with direction from the Vice President, during the interrogation and detention of prisoners.  We have a moral obligation to fully investigate the government’s past use of torture.  Through his book, the Vice President may be helping us to do that.  If there is one positive consequence to come out of the chronicling of such behavior, it is providing the American people with additional details on torture.  Perhaps reliving the story of the horrors committed under the stamp of the Vice President’s office in the aftermath of 9/11 will compel serious investigation by the U.S. government.”


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