Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., defended his “no” vote on a bill establishing clear anti-torture standards (it passed 90-9) by telling The Eagle editorial board that he was protecting a good source of intelligence as well as supporting the troops. The bill, he argued, was a “public vote of no confidence in our servicemen and women.”
He’s got it backward. Roberts should listen to Army Capt. Ian Fishback, the West Point graduate and Iraq war veteran who last month sent an eloquent letter to Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., stressing that soldiers aren’t getting clear guidelines on torture and are thus being made scapegoats.
He also maintains that the Army is covering up widespread abuse of prisoners.
Roberts isn’t helping the average grunt with his vote — he’s putting them at risk. As for intelligence gathering: Many experts say that torture rarely produces dependable information anyway.
Posted by Randy Scholfield
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