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Saturday, November 23, 2006

Important Stuff.

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Secret Interrogation

The CIA used to have secret prisons where they held enemies of the state without charge. No longer. Sure, the prisons are still there, and the prisoners have not been charged. But it's not secret any more. Bush explained that the prisons are scattered around the world, and that "alternative interrogation methods" are used, rather than torture.

I think I would prefer the CIA's interrogation techniques to the electric drills commonly used in Baghdad. But I also think that people should not be arbitrarily imprisoned.

The White House said that the prisoners (or detainees) in these secret (but publicly acknowledged) prisons should not be allowed lawyers lest they reveal the details of these alternative interrogation techniques.

The government said in court filings that those interrogation methods are now among the nation's most sensitive national security secrets and that their release -- even to the detainees' own attorneys -- "could reasonably be expected to cause extremely grave damage."

I think the damage would be political more than anything else, particularly since the "alternative interrogation techniques" are fairly well documented.

I can imagine myself in a CIA prison, enjoying long hours chained against a wall standing up, when the CIA man slaps me in the belly and says, "Well, Bob, we've determined you're innocent. These long months of alternative interrogation have finally paid off."

"Great!" I reply. "When can I go home?"

"Well, there's a problem with that. We can never let you leave, because now you know our secret interrogation techniques."

Note: Bob is a really interesting guy who lives in Oklahoma. He is usually not so overtly political. You can signe up for his monthly Junk Mail by going to his site: