Sunday, February 26, 2006


"If cruelty is no longer declared unlawful, but instead is applied as a matter of policy, it alters the fundamental relationship of man to government. It destroys the whole notion of individual rights. The [US] Constitution recognizes that man has an inherent right, not bestowed by the state or laws, to personal dignity, including the right to be free of cruelty. It applies to all human beings, not just in America—even those designated as 'unlawful enemy combatants.' If you make this exception, the whole Constitution crumbles. It’s a transformative issue."
So says Alberto Mora, the outgoing general counsel to the US Navy, to Jane Mayer (The Memo). Mora, whose mother was Hungarian and father was Cuban, adds that he does not fear reprisal for stating his opposition to the Administration’s emerging policy:
"It never crossed my mind. Besides, my mother would have killed me if I hadn’t spoken up. No Hungarian after Communism, or Cuban after Castro, is not aware that human rights are incompatible with cruelty...The debate here isn’t only how to protect the country. It’s how to protect our values."

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