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NewsOpinionReaders Respond

Torture is un-American

Central Intelligence AgencyBarack Obama

It was great to read your editorial "The truth about torture" (April 23). It confirmed what the peace community has argued for years:

"Not only did the Bush administration indisputably engage in torturing prisoners to extract information, a practice banned by both U.S. and international law, but the nation's highest officials knew about the abuses and condoned them."

Unfortunately, the Obama administration has taken the cowardly position of refusing to indict the torturers. Obviously such a probe would go after "the nation's highest officials."

Yet the Obama administration went after the whistle-blower John Kiriakou, a former CIA officer who exposed the fact the CIA was deeply involved in the use of torture.

On Feb. 28, 2013, Mr. Kiriakou was sent to federal prison for 30 months. Meanwhile, the CIA agents and contractors who engaged in torture have never been charged with violating the law.

And sadly, torture continues today at the prison in Guantanamo.

The U.S. has challenged other countries' records of human rights violations. But China, for example, has retorted the U.S. should look at its own human rights situation before casting aspersions on others.

If President Obama hopes to leave a legacy, he must close the U.S. prison in Cuba, prosecute torturers, end killer drone strikes and bring home all U.S. troops.

Max Obuszewski, Baltimore

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