The Senate report on the CIA’s torture program makes me ashamed to be an American. The United States, a nation that many still think of as “city on a hill,” adopted the values and tactics of the “evil empire,” the Soviet Union, and those of Nazi Germany. Those nations also tortured people in the name of “national security.” Some people have even adopted the language and attitudes of the Nazis; claiming that they were justified and shouldn’t be held accountable for their actions because they were “just following orders” and the president told them it was legal, therefore it was.
The defense of following orders didn’t hold up at Nuremberg in 1945 and it doesn’t (or at least shouldn’t) hold up today. As the old phrase goes, “The law prohibits both the king and the beggars of France from sleeping under the bridges of Paris at night.” The law is supposed to apply to everyone equally, yet a certain political party that howls that our elected (not appointed) president disregards the law is busy spouting these justifications for an appointed president’s orders.
So much for our moral superiority and American exceptionalism. So much for Western “Christian” values.