In the United States, if you are ambitious, have a college degree, and ready to “serve” your country, the CIA could be a future career option for you - provided you are a US citizen and meet all the required qualifications and background checks.
Accordingly, once you that your dream job, the CIA might decide to ship you overseas based on mutual trust AND your “skills” as a doctor, chef or security guard to places like Guantanamo and other Black Sites to “serve” your country.
Be that as it may, then how come some CIA officials and veterans like Glenn Carle say torture is un-American. Perhaps they want to say those who performed torture are not American. Perhaps they want to distance themselves morally from those who carried out the torture program as doctors (rectal rehydration), chefs (force feeding) and security guards (water boarding). But the truth is as per the agency’s background checks, all these people have to be American citizens – at least in name.
The brutal feeding techniques and other harsh methods they used, human rights groups say, amount to torture, which were revealed by the stomach-turning Senate Intelligence Committee report. They are also the ones that ordered or carried out for decades harsh methods such as sleep deprivation, mock executions and threats that the relatives of the prisoners would be sexually abused.
The important thing is they don’t deny anything. The torturers say they “relied on legal advice and followed orders.” So the American justice system was also involved! No wonder they don’t prosecute. Apparently, torture is not wrong because there are US laws sanctioning it.
But that’s not all. The justice system authorized other illegal practices as well, including the secret capture and indefinite detention of suspects without charges. Simply by designating the suspects “enemy combatants,” the government could then hold them for the duration of the “war on terror.”
No doubt the debate over America’s “foreign export” is almost as grotesque as torture itself. Saying this is un-American can be no legitimate debate about the intentional infliction of pain upon captive and defenseless human beings. The torturers and their enablers may deny it, but they know and knew from the beginning that what they did was obscenely wrong.
In the torture fanfic that proliferated long before and after 9/11, they sanctioned and committed acts of violence and moral depravity on so-called “enemy combatants” that long have been recognized as war crimes under international law. The regime of astonishing and gratuitous cruelty was immoral and illegal but certainly an effective American way of getting valuable intelligence information – the lot of them.
Those who dare point out otherwise or challenge America’s “organized forgetting” syndrome can expect to have their patriotism challenged. That is how any debate over “this is un-American” and “we’re not awesome” has been silenced by consecutive administrations for decades.