Friday, April 06, 2007

An Open Letter to President Bush by Daniel Clay Marsh

Dear President Bush

Recent British difficulties in the gulf have highlighted a shortcoming in American policy that you as Commander in Chief can repair. The military still lives under the shadow if not directions of "Name Rank and Serial Number" as portrayed in film and lore. The world situation has changed and increasingly captives of other cultures and governments are being pressured if not tortured into statements they would not otherwise make. The US could make such statements of no value by changing the national policy.

Our policy should be that citizens and personnel of the US may say anything their captives wish to avoid punitive actions that would not be permitted in the US. Further that any statements made by US Citizens not made at home or in a neutral third party setting were considered sheltered under national policy and not to be taken at face value.

The preceding policy would make the "publicity" statements and apologies of captives of no value and provide captives protection from torture through authorized capitulation to demands. You can change this by executive action and help lead the world to similar international agreement thereby providing a measure of personal safety to military personal and other national representives not currently available, both to our citizens and public servants and the rest of the worlds.

You as President and we as a nation can make a difference in the treatment and care of our public representives and servants and those of the world by your making this simple but important policy change. I respectfully request that you/we, Do it now.

Yours Daniel Clay Marsh

1 comment:

Jettboy said...

I actually like this idea, as in reality I don't think very many people take any of the confessions at face value in the United States. Something tells me that is the same with others outside the U.S. whenever dealing with enemies. Still, is it really a policy or just a part of military culture?

On the other hand, I don't think it must be a requirement. There is a sense of honor for those who still believe that enduring pain and torture without giving the enemy anything is a type of protest. After all, the idea is a sense of freedom in thought and words.

There is also secrets that must not be allowed and perhaps this is why the policy is there in the first place. When you give out things and then don't on other things it can be obvious why. When you don't give out anything easily it is harder to determine if there is anything important to know. Perhaps the policy is you can say whatever they tell you to say, but don't say anything not given to you.