August 19, 2008

** California Becomes First State to Condemn Use of Torture in 'War on Terror' **

Eisha Mason
California Progress Report
2008-08-18 01:06:00

On Thursday, the California Legislature adopted SJR 19, a resolution to prevent the state's licensed health professionals from engaging in torture.

As a result of SJR 19, state medical boards will inform health professionals of their obligations under both domestic and international law regarding treatment of prisoners and detainees. They will be warned that if they participate in interrogations that do not conform to these standards, they risk future prosecution. The state will also request the Department of Defense and Central Intelligence Agency to remove California doctors and psychologists from settings that fall short of international standards of treatment.

The myth that the U.S. does not torture is coming apart at the seams. Every week there are new revelations of misconduct. The abuses are not the result of "a few bad apples," but rather stem from a short-sighted and reckless policy that has damaged the lives of countless people held in U.S. custody, attacked the emotional and spiritual well-being of American soldiiers who have witnessed it and undermined the moral authority of America in the world community.

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