We've been lobbying the Department of Justice all these months without realizing that the key to justice lay in the Department of the Interior, and specifically in the National Park Service, which has told activist Steve Lane he will be prosecuted if he attempts to demonstrate waterboarding at Thursday's anti-torture rally in Washington, D.C.
The permit for the rally reads "Waterboarding exhibit will not be allowed for safety reasons."
Of course it's not news that the government views waterboarding as a crime.
Attorney General Eric Holder called it torture at his confirmation hearings.
But it is news that someone has been threatened with prosecution if he engages in torture.
We learn about ongoing torture by the government all the time, and we're told all the time that torture is no longer official policy, and yet in neither type of story is there ever any suggestion that the laws against torture might be enforced, now or in the future.
In the government's view, torture must be less safe when performed without the benefit of government resources, doctors, lawyers, psychologists, videographers, and vice presidents.