You don't have to dig very deep to learn that torture is commonplace in Afghan prisons and detention centres. There's an abundance of evidence that those delivered into the hands of Afghan gaolers were indeed tortured for the usual reason torture is employed - to coerce confessions.
What I found particularly troubling was a survey of Afghan security officials undertaken by the Afghan Independent Human Rights Organization in 2006. Barely one in six officials surveyed understood that torture was illegal. One in six. If five out of six don't know that torture is illegal, what are the chances that torture will be rampant among those delivered into their hands?
The second most common purpose of torture in Afghan prisons? Money. AIHRO reports that many captives were tortured to pressure their families to come up with bribes.
All along we've known that the Afghan government and its officials were as bent as a bad nail. We knew from the top down that the power structure was rife with crime and corruption. We knew that they freely predated their own people. From everything we knew of them, what made us think - even for a moment - that we could trust them not to torture detainees we turned over to them?
I hope that the prime minister, his defence ministers and foreign ministers and all his top generals acted out of sheer boneheaded stupidity. I hope that because the alternative is really hard to contemplate.