Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Michael Ratner (CCR) on Maxime Bernier, Maher Arar, Canada and good old torture (video)

From The Real News:
Michael Ratner is President of the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) in New York and is shocked about what has has happened:

A Canadian Foreign Affairs training manual has created a diplomatic firestorm. At issue is a list of countries with possible torture and abuse cases. The list includes the United States. The manual was inadvertently released to lawyers from Amnesty International working on a lawsuit involving alleged abuse of Afghan detainees by Canadians. US Ambassador to Canada David Wilkins has stated that the inclusion of the United States is absurd. Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Maxine Bernier promptly issued an apology, stating that the manual will be reviewed and rewritten. The Real News spoke with Michael Ratner, president of the Center for Constitutional Rights and a leading expert in international law and torture and abuse cases.

Michael Ratner:

I mean, there should be just people in Canada screaming at the government about this, just screaming. It's pretty shocking that the United States ambassador picks up the phone or says something publicly and is able to essentially change what the truth is, basically change the facts, and say despite the fact that you know about Iraq, that you know about Khadr in Guantanamo, or we know torture was an everyday technique used for interrogation in Guantanamo, that one phone call, Canada would just fold when it actually, as I said, was sort of heroic for us in the United States, that our northern neighbor who had its citizens, at least Arar—and it didn't protect Arar initially—that it then went ahead and did.

- The Real News: Did Canada cave under US Israeli pressure?

No comments:

Post a Comment