Jane Mayer’s got a whopping-good piece in the latest New Yorker detailing the frustrated crusade of one Alberto J. Mora to stop the institutionalization of torture by Bush administration officials.

No cappuccino-sippin’ liberal, Mora – the son of Hungarian and Cuban refugees– was the Navy’s chief legal advisor. He’s also an honest and humane patriot who was disgusted and alarmed – long before anyone heard of Abu Grhraib — by the way the U.S. military was treating its prisoners.

Much to his credit, and elevating him far above the moral gnomes who generally populate the upper echelons of the administration, Mora drew no distinction between plain cruel and sadistic treatment of prisoners and outright torture. On this subject, he wasn’t willing to split hairs (or for that matter to break shinbones, smash jaws or cause organ failure).

Unfortunately his prolonged effort to reel in his own Pentagon ran smack dab into – yes you guessed it–other legal advisors in the administration who were more loyal to Dick Cheney than to constitutional and international law.The long and short of it, is that Mora was straight-out lied to by the administration. While he was being told that policy was being re-shaped to accommodate his protests against abuse, the administration was secretly authorizing the use of torture.Make sure you read Mayer’s entire story. It will leave you numb.