Thursday, November 26, 2009

Canada Not Alone: UK Also Supports Torture

SOMETIMES YOU JUST FEEL SO ALONE IN THE WORLD, especially when you've done something dirty and despicable. The shame is almost too much to bear and you're in danger of letting yourself be swayed from the righteous path. Then, at your darkest hour of moral crisis, you discover that you're not alone. There are others who share your burden.
It will come as a relief to everyone out there, I'm sure, to know that Britain also has been revealed to have actively encouraged torture. Not in Afghanistan mind you - they left that to us, it seems. But in Pakistan, where British citizens of Pakistani heritage were seized and tortured. Some had their fingernails ripped out. Other were whipped and threatened with drills.
The British are very civilized and helpful though. It wouldn't be fair to just let the Pakistani security services have to do everything, so it appears there was a division of labour. The Brits, specifically MI6, would write up questions and the Pakistanis would be the muscle to get the answers. Wisely, perhaps following our own Mr. Stephen Harper, Peter MacKay and, of course, the indefatigable Gen. (ret.) Rick Hillier, the Brits are denying everything. I hear that they are even denying that they exist, just to be sure that their bases are covered.
Perhaps there's another lesson here: invading and occupying countries where you're not wanted and targeting specific sectors of your population for attack, well, it leads to a very bad, very dark place. It leads to civilians being bombed, to waterboarding, to secret prisons and to handing over prisoners to people that we know will torture them. And, of course, it leads to lying.
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