News that civil liberties groups will boycott Sir Peter Gibson's enquiry into UK citizen's 'war on terror' torture claims and what Labour government officials knew is a blow to the enquiry - and the government's liberal credentials.
The excuse from Malcolm Rifkind that he 'cannot recollect an inquiry that's been proposed to be so open' is entirely irrelevant as previous government's have always allowed the security forces off the hook through excessive secrecy.
While it is the case that certain information regarding security issues would always need to be examined in private, drawing up terms of reference so restrictive that those actually representing the detainees feel they cannot reasonably take part is clearly wrong.
Liberal Democrats in government need to prove they make a difference and are leading a new style of open and deliberative politics. Here is a simple issue for the Deputy PM and colleagues to take a stand and make a liberal and democratic difference.