Thursday, January 17, 2013

Demand transparency on torture from the White House

Passing on this important online action by the Bill of Rights Defense Committee:
Demand transparency on torture from the White House

Earlier this month, the Senate Intelligence Committee voted to approve a 6,000 page report on torture based on a three year investigation that reviewed over 6 million pages of documents from the CIA and other intelligence agencies. While the Senate report is sharply critical of torture, however, it remains secret.

Sign this petition to remind America what we once stood for.

The Obama administration and the Senate Intelligence Committee could help advance the debate. Simply allowing the press and the public to read the committee's report would expose the film’s potentially misleading narrative.

Sign this petition to tell the White House that you demand transparency on torture and the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report to the public.

For more information and further analysis, visit The People's Blog for the Constitution, and download flyers to take action locally.
President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

We, the undersigned, write to remind you that torture is wrong, immoral, unconstitutional, universally illegal, and has proven harmful to US national security, and also to urge you to promote transparency, as you have repeatedly promised.

The extensive report approved in December 2012 by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence could inform the public about an area of persisting secrecy and escalating controversy. We urge you to immediately declassify the report and enable its unredacted release to the public and the press.

Your pledge to promote transparency requires no less. So do domestic and international law, which impose an affirmative obligation to investigate all credible reports of torture and pursue prosecution of all culprits, whatever their position or rank. So far, your administration has dramatically failed that responsibility, choosing political expediency over the rule of law.

In your second term, your administration could address this failure by supporting efforts to promote transparency and accountability, starting by declassifying the Senate Intelligence Committee's report in order to enable its vital release to the public.

With mass incarceration subjecting millions of Americans to a "new Jim Crow" racial caste system, the impunity with which architects of torture flaunt their (in many cases, public, and even judicial) positions makes a mockery of our criminal justice system. Prosecution of only the powerless, and impunity for the powerful, represents a flagrant double standard that ultimately encourages disrespect and disdain for the law.

We eagerly look forward to reading the Senate's findings, and to thanking your administration for helping make your rhetoric a reality.


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