(OpEdNews.com) -- Gina Haspel's appointment as CIA director sends a message that is clear to the CIA workforce, to our allies around the world, and to our enemies. That message is that any CIA officer can break the law with impunity and still get promoted; indeed, one can even be promoted to director. The message is that, when push comes to shove, the United States doesn't care about human rights. We pretend to. We insist that other countries do. But that's all for show. If you are a strategic ally of the United States (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Ukraine immediately come to mind) you can do whatever you want and we'll look the other way. The message is that we don't care about international law, even though we know that our torture program and the illegal prison at Guantanamo are the leading recruitment tools for terrorist groups around the world.
But we should care. And we should start by rejecting the nomination of Gina Haspel as CIA director. Here's why.
As has been reported widely in the press, Gina Haspel was the chief of a secret prison overseas where alleged al-Qaeda prisoners were tortured in violation of US law and the United Nations Convention Against Torture. Her supporters will tell you that reasonable people can agree to disagree on "enhanced interrogation techniques." I say that that's impossible. First, the U.S. government executed Japanese soldiers after the Second World War because they had waterboarded American prisoners of war. Let me repeat that. Waterboarding was an executable offense in 1945.
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