For those who believe that the nation is finally coming to grips with the infamous program of torture implemented by President Bush, think again. The Republican senators are not only refusing to confront the White House, they actually blocked legislation to bar torture.
Using a procedural tactic, Sen. Lindsay Graham blocked the legislation. The move raises again questions of the Democratic strategy. There is no need to bar torture: it is already a crime. However, the Democrats again want to deal with torture as an issue of future conduct rather than address the criminal acts ordered by the President. Thus, they are focusing on the obstruction of justice in destroying evidence sought by courts while prospectively (and redundantly) banning torture in the future. Now we will have neither.
In the meantime, the Attorney General (who was allowed to escape answering the central question on waterboarding) will now be in charge of an investigation involving the President and various high-ranking officials — on the issue of waterboarding. It appears that our system is so dysfunctional that it cannot even denounce torture or recognize an obvious conflict.
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