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Top Dems Backtrack on Torture
December 4, 2008
Time constraints prevented me yesterday from writing about Dianne Feinstein’s comments concerning torture in yesterday’s New York Times, in which the California Senator — who will replace Jay Rockefeller as Chairperson of the Senate Intelligence Committee — rather clearly backtracked on what had been her repeated, unequivocal insistence throughout the year that the CIA should be required to comply with the Army Field Manual when interrogating detainees. But Time’s Michael Scherer picked up on the same backtracking and did a very good job of highlighting what appears to be Feinstein’s (as well as Ron Wyden’s) conspicuous, and rather disturbing, reversals.
But it’s actually somewhat worse even than Scherer suggests. According to Mark Mazzetti and Scott Shane, who wrote the article, Feinstein and Wyden are just two of the “senior Democratic lawmakers” who have “seemed reluctant in recent interviews to commit the new administration to following the Army Field Manual in all cases” — despite the fact that both Feinstein and Wyden said throughout the year that they emphatically favored such a measure and even co-sponsored legislation requiring it.
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