5,964. 6/23/2004

In an interview with author Stephen Hayes on June 23, 2004, Vice President Dick “Cheney explained that because al Qaeda was not a state–as Geneva Conventions signatories are–claims that those terrorists were protected by the conventions were illogical. ‘We have the Abu Ghraib problem in Iraq, but Iraq is different than Afghanistan. Iraq is different than al Qaeda, and it is important to remember that, because people captured in Iraq are treated as under the Geneva Convention. Different set of facts. We also need to be able to interrogate terrorists who potentially had information on the operation plans that the organization might have. Future attacks that they had that they were working on designed to kill Americans, and so that it was necessary to have a policy in place that on one hand was consistent with our basic laws and statutes concerning such ordinances: torture, for example, which we don’t engage in, but at the same time allow for interrogation, that would give us the information needed to save American lives.’ ”

 – Stephen F. Hayes, Cheney, Page 481

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