Cross Posted From: Article of Faith:
“In an embarrassing turnabout, the Department of Justice backed away Wednesday from a denial by Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales of responsibility for the treatment of a Canadian who was seized by American authorities in 2002. The man was deported to Syria, where he was imprisoned and beaten.
“Asked at a news conference on Tuesday about a Canadian commission’s finding that the man, Maher Arar, was wrongly sent to Syria and tortured there, Mr. Gonzales replied, “Well, we were not responsible for his removal to Syria.” He added, “I’m not aware that he was tortured.”
[snicker] Meanwhile, the guy in question, Maher Arar, is making the case that American officials sent him to Syria despite his protests that he would be tortured there.
“The facts speak for themselves, you know,” Mr. Arar said. “The report clearly concluded that I was tortured. And for him to say that he does not know about the case or does not know I was tortured is really outrageous.”
It really does give credence to the idea that the rush to pass anti-terrorism legislation in the Senate (the entire Bush v. McCain/Graham/Warner stand off) is less about politics and more about this administration’s thugs covering their collective backsides against the possibility of brutality/war crimes charges in the future.
Glenn Greenwald has more.