Dispatches from the Creation Wars

A group of some 200 leaders, including many prominent Republicans and retired generals, are issuing a statement condemning torture, abuse and indefinite detention of military detainees.

A bipartisan group of 200 former government officials, retired generals and religious leaders plans to issue a statement on Wednesday calling for a presidential order to outlaw some interrogation and detention practices used by the Bush administration over the last six years.

The executive order they seek would commit the government to using only interrogation methods that the United States would find acceptable if used by another country against American soldiers or civilians.

It would also outlaw secret detentions, used since 2001 by the Central Intelligence Agency, and prohibit the transfer of prisoners to countries that use torture or cruel treatment. The C.I.A. has allowed terrorism suspects to be taken to such countries.


Good luck getting that from Bush; it would repudiate everything he’s done for the last 7 years. Some specific statements:

Among the signers is George P. Shultz, secretary of state under President Ronald Reagan. “It’s a good time to step back, take a deep breath and set a standard,” Mr. Shultz said in an interview.

Mr. Shultz would not criticize the practices of the Bush administration but said he believed strongly that the United States should treat terrorism suspects as it expected American prisoners to be treated.

“If you have served in the armed forces, as I did in the Pacific in World War II, and you’ve been secretary of state, you understand reciprocity,” he said.

The list includes more than 30 retired generals and admirals and numerous former secretaries of state and defense including Zbigniew Brzezinski.