For Immediate Release
Veterans Group Applauds Release of Detention and Interrogation Program Report
St. Louis, MO - Veterans For Peace issued a statement praising the recent release of a U.S. Senate report detailing incidents of torture and detention by the CIA. The organization, “calls for a full investigation and accountability of officials at the highest levels for the authorizations and execution of torture techniques by the CIA and its international partners.”
“We understand that there was tremendous pressure placed on government officials and leaders after the September 11, 2001 tragedy to keep people safe and find the perpetrators,” said Michael T. McPhearson, Executive Director of the group. He went on to say, “But that is no excuse for breaking the law and trampling on the values our nation professes to uphold.”
“Terror cannot be ended with more terror,” commented Veterans For Peace President Patrick McCann.
McCann continued, “Torture and holding innocent people for indefinite periods is terror. Abu Ghraib was the most visible example of U.S. torture policies. Unfortunately it did not start or end there. Those claiming this report places lives in danger should hold accountable the people who designed and authorized torture as acceptable. Their actions are responsible for any retaliation.”
Veterans For Peace advocates for the U.S. to adhere to the treatment of detainees as outlined in the 1949 Geneva Conventions. A resolution passed by their 2004 national convention states, “Be it further resolved that all parties who bear responsibility for the torture of ‘detainees’ be prosecuted to the fullest extent under the laws of the United States of America and International Laws including War Crime Statutes.”
“As former service members we are always told we defended the constitution and American values. Torture is the opposite of those values. Veterans For Peace continues to defend those values and the human rights of all people,” stated McPhearson.
Veterans For Peace is a national organization founded in 1985. It is structured around a national office in Saint Louis, MO and comprised of members across the country organized in chapters or as at-large members. The organization includes men and women veterans of all eras and duty stations including from the Spanish Civil War (1936-39), World War II, the Korean, Vietnam, Gulf and current Iraq wars as well as other conflicts. Our collective experience tells us wars are easy to start and hard to stop and that those hurt are often the innocent. Thus, other means of problem solving are necessary.