I was watching GW Bush's news conference from the G-8 Summit on CNN this evening. At one point a reporter from the BBC asked a question about torture:
Q: Mr. President, I wanted to return to the question of torture. What we've learned from these memos this week is that the Department of Justice (news - web sites) lawyers and the Pentagon lawyers have essentially worked out a way that U.S. officials can torture detainees without running afoul of the law.The way in which Bush side-stepped the moral question of torture leaves me feeling very very uncomfortable. All this time we've been told that what happened at Abu Ghraib was the mistake of a few low-rank privates. But here we have the President of the United States refusing to condemn the use of torture. It makes me feel very uneasy. The Washington Post has a report on the news conference here.
So when you say that you want the U.S. to adhere to international and U.S. laws, that's not very comforting. This is a moral question: Is torture ever justified?
BUSH: Look, I'm going to say it one more time. Maybe I can be more clear. The instructions went out to our people to adhere to law. That ought to comfort you.
We're a nation of law. We adhere to laws. We have laws on the books. You might look at these laws. And that might provide comfort for you. And those were the instructions from me to the government.
On a slightly separate note, I thought I'd share this website with you: George W. Bush or Chimpanzee?... Very funny.