A City Council anti-torture resolution

Who are the torturersWhen our president signed the Military Commissions Act, it granted US agencies the power to torture their captives. Dear council members, the PPJPC comes before you to ask that the City of Colorado Springs adopt a resolution to condemn the use of torture anywhere in the world. You may say that it not the place of a municipality to second guess national legislation. We would assert to you that it is.
 
I know that for the most part the members of the council support the Bush administration, and you begin every meeting with an invocation to a higher authority. Somewhere between those authorities exist moral principles which have been agreed by international consensus, appropriately called conventions. They bind the laws of nations and they bind you too.

The Geneva Conventions govern the treatment of individuals in war. They were written to protect all people, there are no peoples excluded. Waring regimes have often tried to hold that certain combatants should not protected by international conventions but the Geneva Conventions were adopted to preempt just such ploys.

There is a later Convention on Torture which our nation has also ratified. And there are further conventions that make clear the enforcement of international law. That no person, regardless of their nationality, is exempt from the international conventions. Further, that no laws, passed by nations attempting to circumvent the rule of law, will exempt individuals or nations from having to adhere to internationally agreed principles.

You may tie your political fortunes to the Bush administration, and perhaps in your lifetime that ship may still float. But on the troubling matter of torture, the unfair and immoral abuse of defenseless individuals, I believe you know you face a higher and certain judgment.

Eric Verlo

About Eric Verlo

On sabbatical
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