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The Robert Delahunty torture-memo controversy at St. Thomas

[Note: Professor Delahunty served as a visiting professor at the U of M law school - not without controversy.]

Dr. Steven Miles, a U of M bioethics professor, writes in MinnPost:

"Should Robert Delahunty, an author of memos leading up to the Bush administration's fateful decision to abandon the Geneva Conventions with regard to war-on-terror prisoners, hold the position of associate professor of law at the University of St. Thomas School of Law?"

"Delahunty will not publicly debate his critics. His supporters say that Delahunty does not support torture. Some supporters argued that he was simply laying out options, although the memos clearly express a legal conclusion."

"Delahunty was a mature lawyer who had a position as a senior public servant when he wrote his opinions. He did not have to sign those documents. His peers, including William Taft IV, in the administration dissented. Delahunty has a right of free speech -- but the debate is not about free speech. It is about the quality of Delahunty's work, the sycophancy of his service, and the destructive impact of his work on the edifice of law itself. For these, he does not merit the honor of being a professor of law."

Steven H. Miles, MD, a professor at the Center for Bioethics, University of Minnesota, is the author of "Oath Betrayed: America's Torture Doctors."

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