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Levin enters the fray, lashes out at Cheney

New York, NY — The Democratic Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee last night lashed out at former Vice President Dick Cheney for bearing “false witness” and “straying from the truth” in recent comments about U.S. treatment of foreign detainees.  Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, speaking to the Foreign Policy Association in New York City, said Cheney’s recent attempts to justify harsh interrogation techniques at Guantanamo Bay and other U.S. run facilities threatened to undermine U.S. security.  It was the latest blow in an ongoing debate between top former Bush administration officials and Democratic leaders over detainee policies in the U.S.-led fight against terrorism.

“Former Vice President Cheney’s world view, which dominated the Bush years and so dishonored the nation, gained a little traction last week,” said Levin.  “If the abusive interrogation techniques he champions – the face of which are the pictures of abuse at Abu Ghraib – if they are once more seen as the face of America our security will be severely set back.”

Levin’s remarks came in the wake of a Senate Armed Services Committee investigation conducted over the past 18 months that holds senior officials in the U.S. government responsible for creating a culture in which such practices were allowed to flourish.  The report claims “senior officials in the U.S. government solicited information on how to use aggressive interrogation techniques, redefined the law to create the appearance of legality, and authorized their use against detainees,” according to Levin.

“The seeds of Abu Ghraib’s rotten fruit were sown at the highest levels of our government,” he said.

Levin’s remarks drew a mixed response from those in attendance, with some walking out before the speech ended and others giving a standing ovation.

COURTESY FOREIGN POLICY ASSOCIATION 28 MAY 2009

 

Author

Josh Hammer

Josh Hammer is an International Relations theorist, with expertise in terrorist ideology, American foreign policy, and war / conflict resolution. He currently holds a Master's of Science degree in International Politics from the University of Edinburgh, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations from the George Washington University. Josh's most recent work, his M.Sc. thesis, is a comparative analysis between Marxist / Leninist ideology and Osama bin Laden's global jihadi movement. He currently resides in New York.

Areas of Focus:
Terrorist Idealogy; American Foreign Policy; Conflict Resolution;

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