ARTE broadcast an excellent 85-minute documentary last week on torture in the USA, by the journalist and filmmaker Marie-Monique Robin. It is no longer available for viewing on the ARTE web site but may be seen on YouTube (in 9 parts) [UPDATE: and here].
It continues to leave me speechless that torture is not only practiced in the US but is justified—by politicians, academicians, intellectuals, and media pundits—and largely accepted by the public, or so it seems. The libertarian policy intellectual Ted Galen Carpenter is also appalled—yes, there are still honorable people on the American right—, as he writes in this essay from last week on The National Interest web site. As Galen concludes
An America in which torture becomes an acceptable, even normal, practice is not the America I know. It is not an America that I would want to know.
Back to Marie-Monique Robin, she authored an exceptional book in 2004, Escadrons de la mort, l’école française—Death Squads, the French School—, on how French military officers—all veterans of the Algerian war—trained Latin American dictatorships of the 1970s and ’80s—notably Argentina and Chile—in torture techniques. The book has not been translated into English but does exist in Spanish. It was also made into a documentary, which may be seen on YouTube (in 7 parts) [UPDATE: and here and here (with Spanish subtitles)].