With Tony Blair and Jack Straw cornered on extraordinary rendition, the UK government is particularly anxious to suppress all evidence of our complicity in obtaining intelligence extracted by foreign torturers.
The British Foreign Office is now seeking to block publication of Craig Murray's forthcoming book, which documents his time as Ambassador to Uzbekistan. The Foreign Office has demanded that Craig Murray remove all references to two especially damning British government documents, indicating that our government was knowingly receiving information extracted by the Uzbeks through torture, and return every copy that he has in his possession.
In a big "fuck you" to the British government, UK bloggers have done a coordinated leak of the documents being supressed today. In case those sites are shut down by the British government, I have republished the documents as well. At this point, Blair might as well admit defeat on these memos and move on.
And it's brutal stuff. Such as:
- We receive intelligence obtained under torture from the Uzbek intelligence services, via the US. We should stop. It is bad information anyway. Tortured dupes are forced to sign up to confessions showing what the Uzbek government wants the US and UK to believe, that they and we are fighting the same war against terror.
- I gather a recent London interdepartmental meeting considered the question and decided to continue to receive the material. This is morally, legally and practically wrong. It exposes as hypocritical our post Abu Ghraib pronouncements and fatally undermines our moral standing. It obviates my efforts to get the Uzbek government to stop torture they are fully aware our intelligence community laps up the results.
- We should cease all co-operation with the Uzbek Security Services they are beyond the pale. We indeed need to establish an SIS presence here, but not as in a friendly state.
The US marriage of convenience with Uzebekistan, perhaps the most repressive regime in the world, gives lies to all the bullshit post-WMD justifications for invading Iraq ("evil regime" and all that jazz). Among other atrocities, Uzbekistan boils its dissidents alive. And no, that's not from Amnesty International or other "do-gooder" organization, but from the State Department's 2004 human rights report.