Here’s Alberto Mora, Navy General Counsel from 2001 to 2006, one of the heroes of this whole sorry episode. “The net effect of this policy of cruelty has been to weaken our defenses, not strengthen them,” he said.
Mora is in full crusader mode, and rightfully so. “Harsh” is a euphemism in this interrogation debate, he said. Instead, the “right adjective is ‘cruel’” and the behavior in question “could “easily rise to the level of torture.” Our efforts, Mora said, should “not be on just banning torture, but banning cruelty.” It is “beyond dispute that interrogation including cruel treatment was conducted.”
And he uses the c-word: Criminal. All our Geneva-compliant allies, Mora said, would consider these actions “criminal.” And that means “international cooperation… diminished, as officials became concerned that” helping us “could constitute aiding and abetting what would be considered criminal activities in their own country.” I can’t wait to hear how Joe Lieberman explains that away.