[+/-] Governments say they follow U.S. on jail treatment
From the Department of I Told You So, which is on That Didn't Take Long Street:
Some countries try to refute criticism over their treatment of prisoners by saying they are only following the U.S. example on handling terror suspects, a U.N. human rights expert said on Monday.
Manfred Nowak, the U.N. investigator on torture, told a news conference that "all too frequently" governments respond to criticism about their jails by saying they handled detainees the same way the United States did.
"The United States has been the pioneer of human rights and is a country that has a high reputation in the world," Nowak said. "Today, other governments are kind of saying, 'But why are you criticizing us, we are not doing something different than what the United States is doing.'"
He said nations like Jordan tell him, "We are collaborating with the United States so it can't be wrong if it is also done by the United States."
Nowak, along with other U.N. human rights officials, has criticized U.S. policies against terror suspects, including secret jails, harsh treatment and the lack of due process. He turned down a visit to Guantanamo Bay because he could not interview detainees and prison officials in private.
He has argued that if there is evidence against detainees, after years in jail, it should be presented to the usually "efficient" and fair civilian courts rather than military tribunals.
Aren't you proud to be a shining beacon to the rest of the world?