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NRCAT Responds to US Executive Order Regarding Detainee Interrogations


January 26, 2009 | bpfna

National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT) lauds President Obama for issuing an Executive Order ending torture, but also expresses caution about the task force established.

Here is the statement from National Religious Campaign Against Torture President Linda Gustitus:

President Obama asked this country during his campaign to join him in changing the world. By requiring the CIA to abide by the restrictions in the Army Field Manual in conducting interrogations of detainees, by closing the CIA's secret prisons, and by providing the International Committee of the Red Cross access to all US-held detainees, he has already changed the world with respect to America's use of torture. He has rejected the use of torture as an interrogation technique and allowed the United States to again find its moral bearing. 

The establishment of a task force to study whether the CIA should be able to use additional interrogation techniques beyond those approved in the Army Field Manual is a cause for concern. We call on the President to ensure that any additional techniques are humane, effective, and available for public scrutiny. We cannot afford to risk a return to the secret abuses of the past.  Specifically, the President should publicly affirm that any additional interrogation techniques comply with the "golden rule" - that they would be both moral and legal if used upon a captured American.

The religious community has labored faithfully for three years to end U.S.-sponsored torture. We are grateful today for this important step. The dark, dark days of the past are behind us, and we all must work to make sure they never return again.

For more information, click on "Countdown to End Torture" at

BPFNA is an endorser of NRCAT's statement, "Torture Is a Moral Issue".

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