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Fwd: An Advocate for Torture as our Next Federal Judge? Act Now

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  • Constance Kosuda
    Jill Savitt, Human Rights First wrote: Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2006 15:31:25 GMT From: Jill Savitt, Human Rights First
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 4, 2006
      "Jill Savitt, Human Rights First" <alerts@...> wrote:
      Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2006 15:31:25 GMT
      From: "Jill Savitt, Human Rights First" <alerts@...>
      To: "Constance Kosuda" <ckosuda@...>
      Subject: An Advocate for Torture as our Next Federal Judge? Act Now

      An Advocate for Torture as our Next Federal Judge? Act Now
      human rights
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      Dear Constance,
      When Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld authorized the abuse of prisoners in U.S. custody – including keeping prisoners naked, forcing them into stress positions, and using dogs to terrify them - he acted on the advice of William J. Haynes, the General Counsel to the Department of Defense. When the top military lawyers raised objections, Mr. Haynes ignored them and instead embraced the now-discredited "torture memos."
      This week, Mr. Haynes is being considered for a lifetime appointment as a federal judge.
      President Bush nominated Mr. Haynes to a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, the governmentÂ’s favorite court for trying cases in the "war on terror."
      The "torture memos" could not survive public scrutiny - will Mr. Haynes? This week the Senate Judiciary Committee has an opportunity to question Haynes - help make sure the committee gives these issues the attention they deserve.
      His nomination is deeply concerning. He is responsible for policies that led to the abuse of detainees in U.S. custody, and he might rise to a position where he has the last word on some of today's most important legal issues.
      The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that the Guantanamo military commissions, recommended by Mr. Haynes, are illegal. It also ruled that Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions applies to detainees in the "war on terror," contrary to what Haynes argued; Common Article 3, among other things, prohibits cruel, humiliating and degrading treatment of detainees.
      It is the committee's responsibility to find out if Mr. Haynes is the most appropriate person for the job.
      Write the committee members today, asking them to compel Mr. Haynes to answer questions about his role in developing these detention policies.
      Thank you so much for taking action - we will certainly keep you updated.

      Jill Savitt
      Director of Campaigns
      Human Rights First

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