The latest “it” within intelligence and military circles seems to be the use of civilian contractors for interrogating prisoners. I don’t like this at all and neither should you.
These men are usually trained by the CIA/military or former CIA/military agents. Despite what the term “contractor” might imply these are simply fulltime 1099 employees of the CIA/military. When’s the last time you hired a contractor to interrogate someone (the police surely don’t do this). This is an extremely gray area. I would assume, like any other contractor, the CIA has contracts with these individuals stating that the CIA is not culpable for what these contractors do while working for them. The light bulb goes off.
The same happens in real life. If I do a job for a company (say Ford) which directly results in you getting overcharged on your next Ford car statement I’m the one who pays, not Ford. The CIA and military are, in a word, “privatizing” the grayest part of what these government agencies do: extract information from uncooperative people.
This means, simply, that if a civilian contractor kills someone the civilian contractor is responsible and not the CIA or military. It’s genius! This means the CIA can simply say “I’ll pay you $X do get Y information” and leave the “details” up to the contractors. When things get out of hands the CIA denies any wrong doing.
You want to know what is so crazy about all of this? Civilian contractors where exempt from prosecution for crimes committed abroad until Congress passed a bill in 2000 that allows the MP’s to ship you back to face felony charges at home. That’s right! The CIA could hire a civilian contractor, who could intern do whatever they wanted to abroad without fear of prosecution back home. Luckily, things have changed. But, the problem still remains that the true culprits are getting away scott free: the CIA and military personnel who circumvent international treaties and US law by using scape goats they’ve personally trained and paid for thanks to a loop hole in the current law.
We should ban civilian contractors from working with and for the CIA and military. If our government can’t work within established laws and treaties we have bigger problems than terrorists.
And don’t give me that crap about “terrorists don’t work inside the laws or treaties so why should we?” You know why? Because we’re better than them and we hold ourselves to higher standards.