January 22, 2005

Understanding torture

Tony Greenstein on Charles Clarke turning a blind eye to torture.

So, Charles Clarke is going to seek "memorandums of understanding" with Algeria, Egypt, Tunisia and Jordan that they will not torture or execute their citizens on their return (Clarke pins hopes on deportation, January 20)? But all of these states already have laws forbidding torture. Indeed, there is no state in the world which has a law permitting torture. Why should any "memorandum of understanding" regarding torture be worth the paper it is written on, if the rulers of these states already allow their own laws to be breached? Wouldn't it be more honest if Clarke were to admit that in order to escape the embarrassment of the House of Lords judgment, he is happy to turn a blind eye to what happens afterwards?
Tony Greenstein
Brighton


Frankly, I've got no special reason for posting this except that when I first started to ask questions about Zionism I was greeted with anger. I really was only asking questions at the time because I wanted to believe that Zionism was a good thing. Then one day I saw a leaflet setting out some of the crimes of Zionism against the Palestinians and details of Zionist disruption of anti-Zionist meetings in London. The leaflet was signed off by Tony Greenstein. It was like liberation at the time. It's not so exciting now, but I like to offer him a hat-tip when I get the excuse. I think his dad (if he's still alive) is an orthodox rabbi and a Zionist and his brother is a West Bank settler, so you've got to admire the guy's motivation, if you don't approve of Zionism that is.

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