I learned the meaning of "impunity" from my work with Central and Latin Americans, usually persons made refugees by their own criminal governments that were supported by mine. The organization Derechos describes the concept:
Our president is now seeking to make impunity for torturers the law of the land. To judge by his press conference on Friday, some of the hired help must have been afraid they might eventually be prosecuted; Bush wants the Congress to make torture safe for its perpetrators.
As usual, Billmon nails what is at stake in the current pulling and hauling over legalizing torture:
Hat tip to Mahablog for pointing to the press conference video.