After the 9/11 attacks, President Bush assured the American people, “We don’t torture.” By “we” he meant people working for the federal government, including those in the CIA and the military.
Since then, we’ve learned about the Abu Ghraib scandal, where some photographs or videos still remain under lock and key because what they depicted was so shocking even to members of Congress.
Since then, we’ve learned that U.S. personnel have engaged in torture, beatings, waterboarding, forced isolation, and various forms of sex abuse on detainees and prisoners in U.S. custody in different parts of the world, including at least one American.
Since then, we’ve learned that several prisoners have even been killed or disappeared while in the custody of CIA officials and U.S. military officials.
Since then, we’ve learned that President Bush secured secret legal opinions from White House lawyers that could be construed to authorize torture.
Since then, we’ve learned that President Bush has sought and secured from Congress immunity for U.S. personnel who have engaged in torture.
Since then, we’ve learned that President Bush has refused to send CIA agents to Italy to stand trial for kidnapping for the purpose of torture.
And now, the latest revelation: We now learn that FBI officials opened up a secret war-crimes file detailing first-hand accounts of torture and sex abuse at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp. After U.S. officials intentionally and knowingly ignored the file, a senior FBI official ordered it to be closed.
Throughout it all, President Bush has continued to maintain, “We don’t torture.”