This is what happens when the shining city on the hill elects a downmarket asset-stripper as Decider:
Canada's foreign ministry has put the United States and Israel on a watch list of countries where prisoners risk being tortured and also classifies some U.S. interrogation techniques as torture, according to a document obtained by Reuters on Thursday.There's diplo-speak and then there's the truth. The Canadian government obviously believes in telling it's own employees the latter while sticking to the formewr for public consumption. In this, alas, it is not alone among Western nations that must deal with the US as ostensible ally, economic and military superpower as well as with the Israeli tail that so often seems to the US dog.
The revelation is likely to embarrass the minority Conservative government, which is a staunch ally of both the United States and Israel. Both nations denied they allowed torture in their jails.
The document -- part of a training course on torture awareness given to diplomats -- mentions the U.S. jail at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba where a Canadian man is being held.
The man, Omar Khadr, is the only Canadian in Guantanamo. His defenders said the document made a mockery of Ottawa's claims that Khadr was not being mistreated.
Under "definition of torture" the document lists U.S. interrogation techniques such as forced nudity, isolation, sleep deprivation and blindfolding prisoners.
"The United States does not permit, tolerate, or condone torture under any circumstances," said a spokeswoman for the U.S. embassy in Ottawa.
A spokesman for Foreign Minister Maxime Bernier tried to distance Ottawa from the document.
"The training manual is not a policy document and does not reflect the views or policies of this government," he said.
The government mistakenly provided the document to Amnesty International Canada as part of a court case the rights organization has launched against Ottawa over the treatment of detainees in Afghanistan.
Amnesty Secretary-General Alex Neve told Reuters his group had very clear evidence of abuse in U.S. and Israeli jails.
"It's therefore reassuring and refreshing to see that ... both of those countries have been listed and that foreign policy considerations didn't trump the human rights concern and keep them off the list," he said.